Foods to Assist You with Your New Years Resolution

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Eating healthier and shedding a few pounds seems to be on everyone’s resolution list this year. Making drastic changes can make it much more difficult to stick with your new eating plan. Katherine Tallmadge, national spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association and a registered dietitian believes there are healthy foods that can be “slipped” in your diet.

The American Diabetes Association recommends that you begin to increase your intake of fiber and whole grains and rye seems to be high on the list. Tallmadge says “Rye lowers cholesterol like oats do, and it evens out blood glucose for diabetics.” Oats can bring down cholesterol levels but many people may not know rye can have the same effect. In a study in new issue of the journal Nutrition, Finnish doctors found that men who had borderline high cholesterol lowered their numbers by eating dense rye bread. Other grains can include barley. U.S. Department of Agriculture found that people who had diets high in barley lowered their total cholesterol levels and reduced the risk factors associated.

The FDA suggests that foods high in soy could reduce coronary heart disease and researchers state that soy can help prevent certain cancers. Soy can be found in a variety of foods such as protein powders, tofu, soy meats and soy milk. The Soyfoods Council states that soy is a strong source of protein and is especially important because protein supplies the amino acids that build the components of the immune system.

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Soybeans are the only plant sources that contain all essential amino acids, making it a complete protein.
Tallmadge suggests that parent attempt to introduce soy into their children's diets as well. "We know that when introduced earlier in life, it can have a very strong protective effect against breast cancer and prostate cancer," she says. Soy can also help fight childhood obesity because it's low in fat and calories.

Omega-3 fatty acids is helping people overcome depression, ward off heart conditions, help arthric conditions and has outstanding medicinal purposes. "Wild salmon is a wonderful dish that's not only tasty but is great for you," Tallmadge says. "It cuts inflammation in the body that can lead to heart problems. It's a good source of vitamin D and also contains omega-3 fatty acids that keep the brain and heart healthy." Other fishes with high levels omega-3 fatty acids can include mackerel, sardines, herring, fresh tuna, trout and anchovies.

Antioxidant foods seem to be the buzz word these days and green tea is on top of the list. A recent Japanese study discovered that nearly 500 Japanese women with stage I and II breast cancer had a lower chance of the cancer recurring if they drank green tea daily.

Other studies have shown green tea can help you stay slim. “They've found people who drink green tea every day are leaner," Tallmadge says. "Green tea helps lower belly fat." But she states there is a catch. One sup of tea a day will not help. "You have to drink a lot of it ... at least three, up to six cups a day, to get the effect," Tallmadge says. "And that means you use bags or loose tea every time you make a cup."

There are foods that can assist you with your news years resolution in shedding some pounds and eating healthier. Tallmadge says, "Putting these foods into your diet are excellent substitutes for other foods that may not be healthy. If you are trying to cut down on sugar, and are looking for a drink alternative, why not green tea? Or a better snack at night can be rye crackers instead of chips. It's all a matter of balance and good nutrition."

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