Archive for October 26th, 2009

From the Nutrition Data Website,a diet that makes sense…and can actually be maintained over time. It’s not a fad, it’s a framework. Read about the Better Choices Concept:

The Better Choices Diet revolves around one very simple key concept:

For every food that you eat, there are likely to be other equally nutritious foods that will satisfy your hunger with fewer Calories.

The Better Choices Diet starts with a simple nutritional analysis of your current diet. It evaluates each food that you now eat, and recommends alternative foods that may provide more nutritional value and help you feel full on fewer Calories. Instead of shocking your body with an abrupt change in foods, the Better Choices Diet focuses on evolving your diet one food at a time.

Other benefits of the Better Choices Diet
Unlike many other diet plans, the Better Choices Diet:

• Has no banned foods. Instead of rigid lists of “approved” and “unapproved” foods, the Better Choices Diet allows you to eat anything, but encourages you to make smarter food choices.

• Requires no special foods or other investments. Everything you need to understand and use the Better Choices Diet is contained within the Nutrition Data website.

• Can be used with other diet plans. The tools and methods of the Better Choices Diet can also be used to improve the effectiveness of most other diet plans.

• Can also be used for weight gaining diets. The Better Choices Diet is not just for weight loss; it’s about controlling your weight (up or down) through proper food selection and hunger control.

How the Better Choices Diet Evaluates Foods

The Better Choices Diet determines potential food substitutions with the help of ND’s Nutritional Target Map, which maps food in relation to their predicted satiating effect (Fullness Factor) and nutrient density (ND Rating). Foods closer to the upper right corner of the Nutritional Target Map are Better Choices for healthy weight loss, and foods closer to the lower right corner are Better Choices for healthy weight gain.

Better Choices Nutritional Target Map

The 4 Steps of the Better Choices Diet:

1. Make a daily record of everything you eat. Making a record of your diet is a very tedious task if you’re using paper and pencil, but it’s very easy to do with the My Tracking feature of My ND. Please read the My Tracking Help page to learn how to track and analyze your intake.

2. Determine which foods contribute the most Calories to your diet. The primary focus of the Better Choices Diet is to gradually replace some of the foods that you now eat with other foods that are more supportive of your goals. It makes sense to start with those foods that are contributing the most calories to your diet, since this is most likely to have the greatest positive impact on your progress. This step is automated with My Tracking. The tracking report that it generates includes a listing of all foods that you consumed, along with the percentage of calories that each supplied to your diet.

3. Make Better Choice substitutions for those foods. For each item on your tracking report, you’ll also find links to Better Choice substitutions. Select your goal (weight loss, optimum health, or weight gain), and click on the link to explore the resulting list of foods. It’s not important to choose foods that appear highest on the list—simply choose any of these foods that you would enjoy eating.

4. Repeat. Your goal is to gradually evolve your diet to include more nutritious and filling foods and less unhealthy and unsatisfying foods. Over time, as you incorporate more of these foods into your diet, the total calories that you consume will drop, and the overall nutrient density of your meals will increase.

Warning: The Better Choices Diet is a self-directed program.

Despite its potential benefits, the Better Choices Diet is not recommended for those with eating disorders or diet-related medical conditions. It is best suited for individuals who are only moderately overweight and reasonably self-disciplined. All diet analyses and food recommendations are provided interactively via the Nutrition Data website. Although these services are free, no other specific dietary advice is provided. The Better Choices Diet also relies heavily on ND’s Ratings and Fullness Factors. While these calculated values provide a reasonable scientific prediction of a food’s benefit with relation to diet, they can not take into account every aspect of a food’s value. For this reason, no guarantee can be made on the accuracy or suitability of this diet with respect to your individual needs. If in doubt, please consult a nutritionist or healthcare professional for more specific dietary recommendations.

For more on the Better Choices Diet and Nutrition Data tools for tracking and evaluating your food choices, click here.

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