I154.jpegt’s no secret that America has a weight problem. According to the USAFacts, nearly 70% of adults in the United States are overweight or obese. This not only affects our self-esteem and confidence, but it also puts us at risk for a variety of health issues such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer.

While many factors contribute to weight gain and obesity, one of the main culprits is a poor diet. With so many fast food options and processed foods readily available, it can be easy to fall into unhealthy eating habits. However, making simple changes to your diet can not only help you lose weight but also improve your overall health and well-being.

As a recognized leader in medical care for southeastern New England communities, our Prima CARE team offers this healthy food guide to help you make better choices for your body and reach your weight loss goals.

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What Makes a Healthy Diet?

A healthy diet is one that provides the body with all the essential nutrients it needs while also limiting unhealthy foods and beverages. A balanced diet should consist of:

  • Fresh fruit and vegetables: These are important sources of vitamins, minerals, and fiber that our bodies need to function properly. They also add volume to our meals without adding excess calories.

  • Lean proteins: Foods such as chicken, fish, beans, and tofu provide essential amino acids that are the building blocks of our muscles and tissues. They also help keep us feeling full and satisfied.

  • Whole grains: Foods like whole-wheat pasta, brown rice, and quinoa are important sources of fiber and complex carbohydrates that help provide sustained energy for our bodies.

  • Healthy fats: Avocados, nuts, and olive oil provide essential fatty acids that help keep our hearts healthy.

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends filling half your plate with fruits and vegetables and choosing whole grains over processed ones. It also suggests limiting added sugars and saturated fats, which can be found in many popular fast food options.

Tips for Eating Well & Losing Weight

Changing your diet can feel overwhelming, but if you break it down into easy-to-digest steps, these changes can be much easier than they initially seem. Here are some simple tips:

1. Plan Your Meals Ahead

Spend some time each week planning your meals. This helps avoid the temptation of opting for fast food or processed meals when you're short on time or energy. By planning out your meals, including snacks, and creating a shopping list based on your meal plan, you’ll have the tools you need to stick to a healthy diet. Plus, it’ll save you time and money in the long run.

Additionally, try meal prepping on the weekends, where you cook and portion out your meals for the week ahead. This way, you always have healthy options readily available, even on busy days.

Use these ideas to get started:

  • Breakfast: Overnight oats with Greek yogurt and berries

  • Lunch: Grilled chicken and vegetable wrap with hummus

  • Dinner: Baked salmon, brown rice, and roasted vegetables

2. Incorporate More Whole Foods

Whole foods are natural, unprocessed foods that provide our bodies with essential nutrients. These include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats. Incorporating more of these foods into your diet can not only help you lose weight but also improve your overall health.

Here are some tips for incorporating more whole foods into your meals:

  • Swap processed snacks such as chips and cookies for fresh fruit, raw vegetables with hummus, or a handful of nuts.

  • Add extra vegetables to your meals. Sneak in extra veggies by adding them to dishes like omelets, stir-fries, or pasta sauces.

  • Replace white rice with brown rice or quinoa. These whole grains provide more fiber and nutrients than processed white rice.

3. Stay Hydrated

Sometimes, we confuse thirst with hunger. Drinking water regularly can help control your appetite and support your metabolism. 

To keep yourself hydrated:

  • Aim for at least 8 glasses of water a day and avoid sugary drinks like soda, which can add unnecessary calories to your diet.

  • Carry a reusable water bottle with you throughout the day to remind yourself to drink more water.

  • Flavor your water with fruits or herbs for a refreshing and tasty alternative to plain water.

4. Practice Portion Control

When it comes to weight loss, the amount of food we eat is just as important as what we are eating. Start by familiarizing yourself with recommended serving sizes; for instance, a serving of meat should be about the size of a deck of cards, while a serving of fruits or vegetables should be about the size of a baseball.

Here are some tips to help you practice portion control:

  • Use smaller plates and bowls to help you visually control your portions.

  • Measure out serving sizes using measuring cups or a food scale.

  • Fill half of your plate with vegetables, one-fourth with lean protein, and one-fourth with whole grains.

  • Avoid eating straight out of a bag or container, as it can be easy to overeat without realizing it. Instead, portion out your food onto a plate or bowl before eating.

5. Be Mindful

Eating mindfully involves paying attention to the food you are eating and being fully present in the moment. This can help prevent overeating and promote healthier food choices.

Here are some tips for practicing mindful eating:

  • Eat slowly and savor each bite, paying attention to the flavors, textures, and smells of your food.

  • Avoid distractions while eating, such as watching TV or scrolling through your phone.

  • Stop eating when you start feeling full, even if there is still food on your plate.

  • Check in with yourself before reaching for seconds; are you actually hungry, or are you eating out of boredom, stress, or habit?

6. Explore Nutritious Recipes

Healthy eating doesn't have to be bland and boring. There are many delicious and nutritious recipes available that can help you lose weight without sacrificing flavor. For inspiration, visit our blog on the top 5 most nutritious Portuguese dishes for delicious, healthy options that can add variety to your diet.

How Prima CARE Can Help

Prima CARE is dedicated to supporting you every step of the way on your weight loss journey. OurMedi-Weightloss® program offers:

  • Personalized Plans: Tailored to meet your health needs and weight loss goals, our plans maximize success without compromising your well-being.

  • Medical Supervision: With Medi-Weightloss, our medical professionals oversee your progress and adjust your plan to help you reach your goals.

  • Nutritional Counseling: Understanding nutrition is key to lasting weight loss. Our team offers guidance and tools for informed dietary choices.

  • Ongoing Support: Our team checks in with you regularly and provides resources to help keep you on track and motivated. We’re here to support your wellness journey for the long haul.

Prima CARE: Your Weight Loss Partner

Adding healthy foods to your daily meals not only helps with losing weight but also offers numerous health advantages that can significantly enhance your overall well-being. By focusing on a variety of food groups, engaging in meal prep, and experimenting with different foods, you can enjoy delicious foods in a healthier way. This approach not only puts you at a lower risk for chronic diseases but also makes the weight loss journey more enjoyable and sustainable.

With Prima CARE's Medi-Weightloss program, achieving your weight loss goals is within reach. Our medical experts are dedicated to helping you make healthier food choices and creating a personalized plan that works for you. 

Ready to start your weight loss journey?Contact us today to learn more about our Medi-Weightloss program and schedule a consultation with our nutrition experts! 

Frequently Asked Questions

What health benefits can I expect from eating fewer calories?

Eating fewer calories, when done right, can lead to numerous health benefits, including weight loss, improved heart health, better blood sugar control, and reduced risk of chronic diseases. Our Medi-Weightloss program can help you create a calorie-controlled meal plan that meets your nutritional needs and helps you reach your weight loss goals.

Can I still enjoy my favorite foods while trying to lose weight?

Yes, you can! At Prima CARE, we believe in sustainable and enjoyable weight loss. That's why our medical experts will work with you to find healthier alternatives and ways to incorporate your favorite foods into your meal plan. With moderation and portion control, you can still enjoy a variety of foods while losing weight.

What makes Prima CARE's Medi-Weightloss program different from other weight loss programs?

Our Medi-Weightloss program takes a holistic approach to weight loss, focusing not only on diet but also behavior and lifestyle changes. Our team will monitor your progress and adjust your plan to ensure safe and effective weight loss. We offer continuous support and resources to help you sustain your weight loss long-term. 

Perhaps most notably, our program is led by medical professionals! You can rely on us to guide you every step of the way on your weight loss journey.

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