Don't starve to be slim

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STUDY Going hungry is no way to lose weight

STEP UP THE PROTEINA meal could have two portions of broccoliPhoto: Reuters
STEP UP THE PROTEINA meal could have two portions of broccoliPhoto: Reuters

People wanting to slim down should steer clear of starvation diets, warned Jan Prinzhausen, a dietary adviser and instructor at the BSA Academy in Saarbruecken, a German higher education institution responsible for health management and illness prevention.

“After several days of going hungry, discontent and cravings for food set in as the body tries to protect itself against the danger of starving,” he said. To prevent this defence mechanism from operating, the stomach must be filled and the body's requirements of vital nutrients must be met.

“The intake and choice of foods shouldn't be restricted too radically because rapid weight loss leads to a ‘yo-yo effect,'” Prinzhausen said, adding that it was not possible to abstain from supposedly diet—busting foods in the long term.

A basic slimming diet consists of vegetables, legumes, fruit, leafy greens, nuts, saltwater fish, lean meat, poultry and milk or dairy products — “all of which you can have a little more of,” Prinzhausen noted. He said that protein-rich foods like these also prevented muscle wasting, which results from slowed metabolism and disrupted fat burning.

Instead of eating noodles and pork chops with gravy for lunch, Prinzhausen suggested two potatoes, two portions of broccoli, a fish filet with lemon juice and, for dessert, yoghurt with fruit slices.

“Then in the afternoon it's all right to eat some chocolate, or the like, along with an apple,” he said.





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