1 – Eat More (Low Gi Foods)
- Bread made with 50% oats or more, wholegrain bread, rye bread
- Porridge, unsweetened oat based muesli, most high fiber breakfast cereals
- Pasta- brown or white
- Brown rice ,wild rice and basmati rice
- All pulses- beans , peas and lentils
- Fresh fruit
- Nuts, seeds
- Rye or wholegrain crackers or crispbread
Eat Less (Higher Gi Foods)
- Table sugar
- Foods high in sugar e.g. sweets, biscuits, cakes, bakery products etc
- Cooked fruit
- Some root vegetables e.g. parsnip
- Refined breakfast cereals sugar coated or very processed
- Sliced pan breads – brown or white
- Sports drinks, soft fizzy drinks, juice
- Fast food, very processed food
2 – Eat Slower
Help your digestion
- Remember it takes the brain 20 minutes to register feeling full so it is important to always eat slowly.
- Digestion starts in the mouth. Chew your food well. The teeth and saliva help break down the foods before it gets to the stomach.
- Think about what you are eating and enjoy your food.
- Put you knife and fork down between mouthfuls just to slow things down.
3 – Never skip meals
- Your blood sugar levels and hunger will ultimately get the better of you.
- You will overcompensate with less nutritious foods later on.
- Always eat breakfast, lunch and dinner and try to have fruit snacks in between.
- Eating little and often helps to regulate your blood sugar levels.
4 – Eat more plant protein ( e.g. peas, beans and lentils)
- Chickpeas in salads
- Hummus ( made from chickpeas)
- Kidney beans in chilli
- Butter beans in soup
- Cannellini beans in salad
- Lentils in soups and salad
- Soya beans
- Peas, beans and lentils contain lots of fiber which keep the digestive system healthy and are good for the heart.
- They are low Gi and very low in fat.
- They are a good source of protein, especially for vegetarians.
5 – Don’t add salt to your food
- Black Pepper
- Lemon Juice
- Low fat vinaigrette
- Sauces with less that 3% fat
- A lot of the food we eat already contains salt.
- Salt increased blood pressure and can also cause water retention which will appear as weight gain.
- Experiment with spices and herbs instead of adding salt during the cooking or at the table. Garlic contains allicin which may affect blood clotting and help lower levels of IDL ( bad ) cholesterol and blood pressure levels.
6 – Eat oily fish at least once a week
- Fresh Tuna
- Oily fish contain the essential fatty acid omega-3, important for brain function and heart health
- These essential fatty acids have many anti-inflammatory effects and can lower triglycerides (bad fats) and reduce blood pressure.
7 – Avoid saturated fats
For example butter, lard, fat on meat and skin of chicken
8 – Watch protein portion sizes
Two servings of protein-rich foods will meet the daily requirements of most adults. The following are the recommended serving sizes for protein:
- A serving the size of
- 1 small chicken fillet
- 1 small salmon cutlet
- 2 small pork chops with fat removed
- 1 piece of steak the size of a deck of cards
- ½ a cup of beans or pulses
- 2 eggs (up to 7 in a week if your cholesterol is normal or less than 5 eggs if you have high cholesterol)
9 – Choose low fat dairy products
- Full fat dairy products contain mainly saturated (bad) fat.
- Choosing low fat milk, cheese and yoghurts can help you to reduce your saturated fat intake.
- Dairy products also contain protein, calcium, magnesium and zinc.
- They are essential for healthy bones, blood pressure and metabolism.
- Choose 3 servings of low fat dairy products per day e.g. 1 low fat yoghurt, a matchbox-sized piece of low fat cheese and a glass of semi-skimmed milk. The calcium in these foods can actually help you manage your weight.
10 – Eat more natural foods
Aim to eat at least 5 servings of fruit and vegetables per day – two servings of fruit and three servings of vegetables (one salad, one green, and one other).
- What is a serving of fruit and vegetables?
- 1 medium sized fresh fruit (e.g. apple, oranges, and banana)
- 2 small sized fresh fruit (e.g. plums, kiwi, mandarin)
- 3 dessertspoons of fresh fruit salad
- 1 small glass of fresh fruit salad
- 1 small bowl of vegetable soup
- 3-4 dessertspoons of cooked vegetables or salad
11 – Watch quality & quantity of snacks
Try to eat 3 meals each day and 3 fruit snacks. Choose low Gi foods for your snacks rather than high Gi foods. If you fancy the odd treat, have a mini dark chocolate bar or one wholegrain biscuit.
12 – Enjoy alcohol in moderation
The recommended intake of alcohol is:
- Men – 21 units of alcohol per week
- Women – 14 units of alcohol per week
However, if you are trying to lose weight you should reduce this as much as you can. A unit is:
- A glass of wine (125ml) OR
- Half a pint of beer or lager OR
- A measure of spirits