Interview with the dietitian Ambra Morelli who explains the advantages of almonds to lose kg, have healthy skin and hair and reduce fatigue
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Going on a diet in the summer to lose weight before the swimsuit test is a goal shared by many.
To lose the extra pounds effectively and lastingly, however, you must avoid drastic diets and excessive training. Above all it is necessary to give the body the right energy and the right hydration, also considering the high heat and sultriness. The solution is to choose healthy foods rich in nutrients, able to ensure long-lasting support and energy. Among these, almonds play a decisive role for a correct diet and for maintaining healthy skin and hair that in the summer months are very exposed to the sun.
For this reason we asked Dr. Ambra Morelli of the ANDID (National Dietitians Association) to give us some fundamental advice on how to eliminate excess fat and tone the body without exceeding in sacrifices.
Why are almonds particularly important in healthy eating, especially in summer?
Almonds have a high concentration of vital elements which is, yes, a general characteristic of dried fruit, but in almonds the quantity contained for many of these elements is decidedly higher. I refer to the contents of B vitamins (niacin, riboflavin, folate), useful substances for example for the normal metabolic processes, of vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant, of mineral salts such as potassium, useful for regulating blood pressure, the magnesium for muscle function, calcium for normal bone maintenance, zinc for skin and hair defense. Almonds are also an excellent source of vegetable proteins.
The summer period is often a holiday period, a time to top up to deal with a subsequent period of work commitments, which will again include stress, limited time to dedicate to yourself, etc. What time does the summer support then to stock up on new strength and energy for the body?
Through a balanced diet that, according to the indications of the Mediterranean-style diet, also includes the consumption of dried fruit, we can “refuel” in a natural and efficient way with all the necessary nutritional substances.
Can you indicate the foods that contribute the most to protecting your hair and skin from the sun?
The substances that contribute to the protection of hair and skin from the effects of sunlight are first of all vitamins and antioxidants. Not only one, but all the vitamins are important and we can assure them with summer vegetable foods, alternating with each other, choosing from the "palette" of the 5 colors of vegetables and fresh fruit, and giving preference to foods that provide carotenoids such as apricots, carrots, yellow and red peppers, etc. Zinc and copper are also important, but also foods with a good protein source; all these substances can be found in fish (also a source of Omega-3), in eggs, in dried fruit including almonds, which are a rich source.
What diet do you recommend in the summer?
I could summarize in a few words: water, light foods, simple cooking, prefer vegetable foods. In reality, there is no "seasonal" diet, but it is advisable, but I also believe it is more spontaneous to prefer foods that are easy to digest, therefore not rich in fat. In practice the diet for the hot period will consist of a simple and balanced diet.
It would be better not to get caught too frequently by the desire to reduce your meal to a quick but unbalanced choice such as a fruit-only meal or reduced to an ice cream cone, which can only satisfy the "desire for cool" and perhaps give the idea of a meal with few calories when in reality these choices correspond to a rapid absorption of nutrients and a sense of satiety that is diluted too quickly leaving more easily free rein to a series of snacks, very probably unhealthy.
A 'smart' snack is precisely almonds, winning in comparison with other types of nuts, equally healthy, but with reduced contents in different nutrients. It is easier in summer to take advantage of foods that can be eaten raw, for example vegetables, and therefore benefit from vitamins that are not lost during cooking. Vegetables in desired quantities and fruit in moderation to avoid taking too much sugar (the fructose naturally contained in the fruit). These foods also satisfy the water requirement, an important element to hydrate us especially in summer, trying instead to limit the consumption of sugary drinks. Even in summer it is good to remember the most important meal of the day: breakfast.
And what physical activity to keep the line?
Physical activity is important throughout the year, fortunately in the summer you are more likely to move due to the possibility of doing it in a more pleasant way in the open air. In addition, many physical activities in the summer are related to the holiday: mountain walks, swimming and all water-related sports that typically take place in the summer season, but which would be better not to tackle "cold" muscles. To be able to carry out these activities it is advisable to get prepared prepared by doing all the year physical activity that allows the maintenance of muscle tone and also helps to maintain a correct body weight always.
Better to plan an aerobic exercise that doesn't have to be intense. If physical activity is a habit independent of the season, to maintain the line it is sufficient to continue with a light but pleasant physical activity, such as for example the simple walk at a brisk pace … maybe along the shore, a daily walk or the dance, etc. or carry out “stealthy” activities, stolen at various times of the day while other activities take place. In addition to these, obviously more challenging sports can be played which, combined with a balanced diet, will give maximum results.