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Why Counting Calories May Not Help Your Diet Plan

For years now, we have been misled and misguided about what is fattening and fat free. It’s a paradox we all love to follow, without paying much or any attention to nourishment in real food. Counting calories doesn’t work for your body, mind or soul. Counting calories cannot help your body to make hormones that are essential to regulate appetite and metabolism. The health problems we face today are not only a result of more calories, but largely because of poor nutrition. Vitamins and minerals are as important as the number of calories a food contains.

Today’s diet industry wants us to believe in the 100 calorie pack that promises health and weight loss. This vicious circle does nothing to solve our issues of fatigue, acidity, poor digestion, weight gain and the list is endless. We have stopped thinking of food as a source of nourishment; we presume food as this calorie laden menace and our appetite as something we must control at all times with will power, and the one with the strongest stands out to be a winner.  A winner that’s not nourished but deprived.

To make it simple, what we need is to look at how our ancestors ate, we need real foods like fruits, vegetables, eggs, animal protein, whole grains, butter and ghee that have sadly been replaced by refined foods over the years. We need less of junk food, less diet dogma, and unlimited access to good nutrition. All these super foods including the natural fats we totally avoid are actually very important.

Points to remember: eating right helps –

1. To balance the hormones

2. Protect fertility

3. Build healthy skin and teeth

4. Cushion our joints

5. Keep inflammation at bay

And when I say nutrients, I am not talking about popping a pill. The body understands food and not a pill. No study in the past has validated any vitamin pill to replace the real goodness. Example: Foods that are rich in calcium such as milk or sardines are also rich in vitamin D which helps the body utilise calcium. This balance and co-action cannot be replaced by a laboratory created pill. Let supplements be just that, a method to supplement your nutritional needs. The primary source must be food.

We need to embrace foods that are rich in natural fats and stop being obsessed about what it will do to our waistlines. Our belief is strong because we heard it from someone, who too heard it from someone else, whether a doctor, a pharmaceutical representative or in a TV commercial. So we spend our lives avoiding foods rich in dietary natural fats that nourished humans in the past. Hence, we throw away the yolks, avoid nuts and natural fats. We test our blood cholesterol to see if our strategy works. But it’s not working despite the obsession, people are sick and disease is prevalent.

We need these fats from seeds, ghee, nuts, organic cold pressed oils for assimilation of A, D, E, K, vitamins in our body. Similarly, without any calorie discrimination, all fruits and vegetables are packed with health promoting antioxidants and phytonutrients. Research has evidence that phytonutrients working together with other nutrients reduce the risk of just about every single lifestyle induced disease.

So if you’ve been avoiding this elixir of health and gulping down profitable processed foods disguised as ‘diet food’ then I have great news: Natural unrefined fat is absolutely healthy so do not  avoid your desi ghee tadkas in moderation and enjoy your omelets with the yolks. Your body, your skin, hair and brain will say “Thank You”.


The opinions expressed within this article are the personal opinions of the author. NDTV is not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, suitability, or validity of any information on this article. All information is provided on an as-is basis. The information, facts or opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of NDTV and NDTV does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.

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Chris Hemsworth Tried a ‘Lost at Sea’ Diet

In Ron Howard’s upcoming film In the Heart of the Sea, based on the true story that inspired Herman Melville to write Moby-Dick; or, the Whale, Chris Hemsworth, a.k.a. Thor, plays a sailor who becomes lost at sea and consequently grows skinny and bearded, as stranded sailors tend to do. Hemsworth shared a picture of his swarthy new look on Instagram, joking that he tried a “Lost at Sea” diet. Now he looks like Tom Hanks in Cast Away, which earned Hanks a Best Actor nomination. While we appreciate Hemsworth’s dedication, we kinda hope he gets hunky again soon. #TeamThor

And for the sake of comparison, here’s Hemsworth being sexy.

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Confirmed: Being Fat Makes It Harder To Lose Weight

Trending News: Yes, Being Fat Makes It Harder To Lose Weight

Why Is This Important?

Because weight loss was already hard. Now it’s harder-er.

Long Story Short

Researchers at Cambridge University have identified a protein released by the body that actively works to inhibit the depletion of fat cells. The more fat you’re carrying, the more of the protein you have.

Long Story

Losing weight is butt. It sucks because it’s hard, it sucks because you have to restrict what you eat (though that may no longer mean what we think it means), and most of all it sucks because it rarely works. But why? How is it that, whenever you want to lose weight, cucumbers take on the caloric density of Cheetos? Why is it that working out more and eating less seems to do nothing, despite all the talk of “laws of thermodynamics” by so-called experts? It may all have to do with a little protein called sLR11, which researchers from the University of Cambridge say actively inhibits weight loss.

Fat loss is technically called “thermogenesis,” which is science-speak for “burning fat for energy” — your fat cells don’t go away, per se, they just use their contents to help you survive until they’re totally depleted. This process is usually initiated by what’s known as “brown fat,” and in theory actually happens when you consume more calories than usual. It makes sense when you think about it — if you’re eating more than you need, your dumb body probably thinks you’re expending more calories, too. But when looking at mice (and humans), the researchers found that sLR11 attached to white fat cells, preventing normal thermogenesis.

“Our discovery may help explain why overweight individuals find it incredibly hard to lose weight. Their stored fat is actively fighting against their efforts to burn it off at the molecular level,” said Dr. Andrew Whittle.

In the primitive world that our bodies believe we still inhabit, sLR11 actually serves a purpose — it likely prevents excess fat burning after a spike in some signal to burn more fat (like a big meal or a drop in temperature), which was likely a regular occurrence thousands of years ago (kill something large, gorge, repeat in a few days, etc.). Even in patients undergoing bariatric surgery, they found that weight loss was directly correlated with a decrease in sLR11.

Theoretically, this could lead to new drugs designed to suppress sLR11 and thereby aid or increase weight loss efforts. Don’t hold your breath, however, because the research is too early-stage to even begin wondering what that kind of drug would look like.

“But an effective medicine to treat obesity, which safely manages weight loss is still some way off. In the meantime people can find advice on healthy ways to lose weight and boost their heart healthy on the BHF website,” said Jeremy Pearson, Associate Medical Director at the British Heart Foundation (BHF).

Own The Conversation

Ask The Big Question

When will a drug to help with this make it to the market?

Disrupt Your Feed

I knew there was a reason eating Funions somehow didn’t make me skinnier.

Drop This Fact

If obesity rates stay consistent, by 2030, 51% of the population will be obese.

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How to Shut Down Holiday Diet Saboteurs

Photo: Getty Images

We all know that the holiday season can be a healthy-eating minefield. But it’s not necessarily just because of the festive drinks and fattening apps. Friends and family members can also wreck your diet efforts—intentionally or unintentionally.

Most of the time, they mean well, says Susan Albers, PsyD, a clinical psychologist and author of 50 More Ways to Soothe Yourself Without Food ($10.43, amazon.com).”Often, they’re trying to show their love through food, as many families do,” she points out.

On the other hand, not everyone has good intentions. “Some people attempt to push food to alleviate their own guilt: If she’s eating it, then it’s okay if I do, too,” Albers says. “Or it may be jealousy—your friend may be a little envious that you look great in your holiday dress.” Shut down common diet sabotaging comments with these comeback strategies from Albers.

RELATED: 11 People Who Could Wreck Your Diet

The Saboteur Says: “You’ve got to try this! It tastes amazing. Really, eat it.”
Shut It Down: “It looks amazing, but no thanks!” Remember that it’s okay to simply say no with confidence. Don’t apologize or offer an explanation. Practice saying no assertively and firmly before the party if you need to.

The Saboteur Says: “I made my coconut custard pie just for you. I know how much you love it.”
Shut It Down: Appreciate the effort by accepting a gift—even one of food—graciously. Ask to take it home since you are so full—and then regift it.

RELATED: 50 Holiday Foods You Shouldn’t Eat

The Saboteur Says: “I’m going to box up these leftovers for you.”
Shut It Down: Use humor by saying something like, “I’m so stuffed, pretty soon you’re going to mistake me for the turkey!” Or tell your host that your refrigerator is packed; everyone can visualize a full fridge that doesn’t have room for leftovers.

The Saboteur Says: “Why do you even bother dieting during the holidays?”
Shut It Down: “You’re right. Dieting during the holidays is a recipe for disaster. I’m eating mindfully—watching what I eat so I don’t overeat and gain the two pounds that research says most people put on during the holidays.” Agreeing with your critic or starting out with the words “you are right” helps to take out the emotional struggle. And throwing out research makes your comeback grounded and smart.

The Saboteur Says: “One drink can’t hurt, right?”
Shut It Down: Actually, maybe your friend is right—one cup of spiked coffee isn’t going to kill you or your diet. And neither will one cookie. So choose your one indulgence and decline the rest. Say something like, “Thanks, but that drink has as many calories as a piece of pecan pie—and I’d rather eat the pie!”

RELATED: 15 Ways to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

Plant-Based Diet Is the Healthy Option

Forbes magazine reports that “our National Healthcare Expenditure (NHE) is projected to hit $3.207 trillion this year. The U.S. Population is currently hovering at around 320 million, so 2015, looks to be the first year healthcare spending will reach $10,000 per person. We may be bending the cost growth curve, but the per capita amount continues to grow.”

What is a practical and cost effective way to promote health among U.S. citizens?  Preventing disease would seem to be a major part of the answer.  Yes, “Prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Dr. Neil Nedley, M.D., writes that our immune system is a God-given blessing that “usually” throws off numerous attacks by multiple diseases, including cancerous cells. (Proof Positive,13.)

Dr. Nedley promotes a plant-based diet, which is the original diet given by God to man in Genesis. (Genesis 1:29.)  Some of the advantages of the plant-based diet, Nedley writes, are: zero cholesterol, low saturated fats, high fiber, zero animal protein, zero “ heme” iron ((gotten from animal sources, rich in antioxidants, promotes weight control, and provides more nutrients per dollar.(p.84.)

Nedley also points out that males, age 35 and over as a percentage of expected coronary heart disease, in comparison with the general population, has many fewer heart attacks: The general population  percentage is 56%, lacto-ovo vegetarians  (those who eat eggs and dairy) 39%, and total vegetarians, 14%.  Clearly his research shows that the more a population moves toward a plant-based diet, the fewer heart attacks one can expect. (P.84.).

I personally can testify that a plant-based diet is a healthy diet. I have been a vegetarian for some 61 years, the last 20 of those being vegan (no animal products.)  Although I am in my early 80’s, I carry on full daily activities;  I Pastor Guthrie Memorial Chapel in Cumberland County.  In addition, I direct the Chapel’s Christian mission work in Uganda, India, and the Congo.  On November 10 of this year, the Chapel opened a new health Clinic near Kampala, Uganda.

So, what is one way to reduce sickness and health costs in the U.S,?  Moving from an animal-based to a plant-based diet could assist in doing this. The Chapel’s website provides more data at: www.guthriememorial.org.

Dr. Fillmer Hevener, Farmville, Va., (434) 392-6255

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