Diet Changes to Make by Age 35

Want to maintain your ideal weight as you age? There is no better time than now to make a few changes to your diet. Dr. Margit Lister has a few tips.

We try to ignore the recommendations but eventually we realize that we must accept that we will not maintain our ‘ideal’ weight if we continue to eat as we use too. Our metabolism slows yearly, so eventually you have to change if you enjoy living!

1. Portion sizes are the real key to eating healthy. You can have good food but not at the portion size you want. I know we have discussed this before but this is really the key to staying slim. Think small for meats, dairy and bread; think big for vegetables and fruits. Think TINY (or not at all!) for sweets and treats.

2. Don’t drink your calories. Weight loss and weight gain are calories in vs. calories out. If you drink the majority of your calories, then you can’t have much food. It is a simple way to cut out calories.

Juices, sodas and alcohol should be treated like a “sweet” treat. Which means less than a cup of liquid per beverage. THINK TINY portion sizes. Water is your best choice for health and wellness.

My pregnant patients are always saying “But I don’t like water.” I agree. There was a time when I hated water but I found that if I drank it cold, with a straw and used simple fruits or vegetables for flavoring, it became my drink of choice. Today, I rarely drink anything else.

Start by drinking water when you are thirsty and use water when you are ‘sipping’ a liquid throughout the day.

3. Eat at home! This is an easy way to stay slim. You know what you put in your cooking. You can determine your portion sizes. It is easy to eat healthy at home. It is difficult to eat healthy in a restaurant where you don’t know what you are eating and the portion sizes are GIGANTIC.

If you must eat out;

o Split your entrée with someone

o Take half of it home with you

o Order only an appetizer for your meal

o Ask for a side of vegetables and start eating the veggies first, then the meat.

4. Cut out meat once a week. Meat has been linked to several unhealthy conditions such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Stopping meat consumption once a week (think Monday) is a way to decrease your meat consumption by 15% and start your week off eating healthy.

The added bonus of not eating meat once a week is that this also reduces the carbon footprint on our planet! This practice will save 40 thousand gallons of water and 300 pounds of green house gas emissions from the atmosphere. It also forces you to try other vegetable choices that you may not naturally choose if you were not going meatless.

5. EAT! I know this seems counter intuitive but this is a small caveat that people forget. You need to eat well to loose weight. The trick is to eat small and frequently. I should say eat small GOOD food (fruits and veggies) frequently. Don’t skip breakfast. Eating starts and maintains your metabolism, if you stop eating your metabolism slows and you burn less calories. So start you day with a healthy breakfast and snack on something light and healthy, have a good lunch, sip on water throughout the day, and finish with a reasonable dinner. You will move toward your goal weight. Know that overeating one meal in a restaurant can ruin the hard work that you have done for the entire week, so keep moderation in mind constantly if you are trying to lose weight.

Remember, Set an example for your children. If you make fruits and vegetables a priority in your meals, they see that this is important and they will foster this idea. Our children are the population that is taking the biggest impact from our poor eating. 1of 3 low-income children are obese or overweight by their 5th birthday! I see mom’s who don’t know what food is bad for them or their children. Some are educated mom’s, who have been fooled by the marketing of a package. READ LABELS, Not product packaging!

Snack on fruits and vegetables and keep the high calorie foods out of the house. Incorporate new vegetables into meals and shop in the produce section with your children.

Visit for more tips on being a healthy role model for your kids!

Dr. Margit Lister is an OBGYN with Intermountain Health Care. If you would like to schedule an appointment, visit:

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