Sometimes women who are looking to lose weight or be more healthy look to only the “calories” or “fat cal” part of the nutrition label. This is good for starters, but what we need to do is more proactive in what we choose to eat nutritiously. Sometimes you can get more bang for your buck when you eat something low in calories AND high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Why? Because according to Harvard researchers eating the right things can lead to you looking up to years younger than your “Real Age”.
So I investigated this Real Age thing at www.realage.com and based on things like happiness, stress, income, ethnicity, medical problems, foods eaten, workout hours, and weird things like how fast you drive, I found out that I am 16.7 years old! I’m 22.7, so that’s astonishing. I went back and redid some questions and changed some answers like I probably exaggerated on but my age went down to 15.8! Odd. Give the test a shot and it will make you more aware.
Anyway, on to the super foods and what they can do for common female issues:
GOAL: Clearer skin
How to: Do not eat high glycemic foods (carby things like sugary donuts, fried anything). Instead try cherries, oranges, tomatoes, whole grain pastas, peanuts, artichoke, grapefruits, grapes, and squash. These foods do not cause an immediate spike in insulin because they are low on the GI scale, which lessens your risk of getting diabetes too.
GOAL: Digestive movement
How to: Drink lots of water! At least eight 8 oz glasses a day. That’s about 4 Crystal Geyser water bottles which is not bad at all between workouts and the water you need to drink during meals. Also, eat high fiber whole grains, fruits, and veggies. The #1 recommended fruit across the board was Papaya. Runner-ups include apples, pears, berries, citrus, and kiwi. Of the veggies list, broccoli, spinach, and sweet potatoes seemed popular. Oh, and everyone mentioned Raisin Bran Cereal or anything bran!
GOAL: Lose weight
How to: Pretty much stay away from anything fried, salted, or pre-packed. When snacking, choose fruits and when eating salads go easy on the dressing. In fact, try vinaigrettes – they add lots of flavors for itty-bitty calories and don’t weigh down your veggies. Egg whites are so good and make great omelets! Try egg whites with tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, and mushrooms for a super good breakfast that’s high in vitamins and protein and low in calories. Remember to eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re full. Really.
GOAL: Promote healthy, shiny, hair!
How to: Eat salmon! Its omega-3 fatty acids, quality protein, b-12 and iron resources are tough to beat. Don’t eat it and you’ll get dull hair and dandruff. Eew. Vegetarians, eat flax-seed. Kidney beans and lentils have plenty of protein to promote hair growth. And finally, poultry like chicken and turkey help fight brittle hair and color loss.
GOAL: Increase metabolism
How to: There really are not any foods that make you have an increased metabolism. What you can do though is drink lots of water, exercise regularly (esp. weight training to burn cals even when you’re sleeping and aerobics to increase your blood flow and heart rate), and eat small frequent meals. This helps your body understand that you are not in starvation mode and therefore will burn fat instead of trying to hoard it.
CONCLUSION: To achieve these goals most efficiently, I say don’t get overwhelmed and just do the following.
- Exercise regularly, at least every other day.
- Drink lots of water, at least eight 8oz glasses or 4 water bottles.
- Increase fruit intake
- Increase colorful vegetables intake
- Substitute white rice and bread for anything 100% whole wheat or bran.
- Stop eating foods you already KNOW are bad for you but are in denial about!