The January diet: good intentions for healthy weight loss

The January diet: good intentions for healthy weight loss

The weekly menus with easy and delicious recipes to bring healthy foods to the table and regain well-being

January. As often happens in this period, many feel the need to get back in line, not only dispose of the pounds accumulated during the holiday month par excellence, but also switch to a healthier, more conscious diet. Not surprisingly, there is talk of good resolutions for the new year. Unfortunately, however, very often we do not know where to start. There is a lot of information that we receive every day.

With the help of Dr. Corrado Pierantoni, specialist in endocrinology and metabolic diseases and clinical nutritionist in Lanciano (Ch), we have collected the most important ones. The expert has devised a weekly menu which, in agreement with your family doctor and in the absence of particular health problems, can be repeated over time to regain a state of well-being, return to a healthy weight and implement a healthy diet.

Good intentions at the table

Eating "in season"

Follow the seasons of the sun to improve health. In this period, therefore, choose typically winter vegetables such as cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, pumpkin, cabbage: in addition to being rich in antioxidants such as vitamin C, an ally of the immune system that we should also support during the cold months with nutrition, they help to purify the liver, to the benefit of the beauty of the skin. So don't be tempted by cherries and strawberries which are completely out of season and extremely expensive.

Don't skip meals

It is a very bad habit adopted by many people in the belief that they are removing some calories and, therefore, losing weight. A mistake that could cost you dearly since not only can you get hungry at subsequent meals and end up eating more than you should, but it would also slow down your metabolism. Better to eat little but often, therefore, having 5 meals a day. In this way, blood sugar levels are kept at bay and the consequent production of insulin, which is responsible for the accumulation of fat and body weight.

Use less salt

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends a daily consumption of salt of less than 5 grams, corresponding to about 2 grams of sodium per day. Numbers that in Italy are unfortunately higher. We remind you that an excessive consumption of salt causes an increase in blood pressure, with a consequent increase in the risk of the onset of serious related cardio-cerebrovascular diseases, such as myocardial infarction and cerebral stroke. The intake of salt has also been associated with other chronic degenerative diseases, such as cancers of the digestive system, in particular those of the stomach, osteoporosis and kidney diseases. To season, use herbs and aromatic plants or spices such as chilli instead: they enrich flavor, do not make you bloated and give a greater sense of satiety. Well, also the gomasio.

Drink enough

At least 2 liters of water per day. Water is an indispensable food in our daily diet to maintain a normal state of health. Even moderate dehydration can lead to fatigue and reduced concentration, as well as headaches and dry skin. Without this precious element, our body could not carry out any physiological process. To reach this quantity, in the morning as soon as you wake up it is recommended to take a drink of water and lemon (discover all its properties here) and sip herbal teas and infusions throughout the day.

Increase the amount of fruit and vegetables

3 servings of vegetables a day, both raw and cooked, and 2 of fruit: this is the advice of the experts to recharge your batteries. Fruit can be eaten in mid-morning and mid-afternoon snacks, vegetables for lunch and dinner. In the two main meals, it is always good to accompany the vegetables with 2 glasses of water to get a discount on the glycemic index. Their fiber, in contact with water, forms a gel that helps to lower the glycemic index of foods composed of carbohydrates, to the benefit of weight and health.

More fish, less meat

Yes, but how many? Portions of meat (preferably white and lean) should be eaten a maximum of 2 times per week. Fish, on the other hand, can be consumed up to 3-4 times due to its protective role for health. Very rich in omega 3, it protects the heart, arteries and brain. Preferably choosing the local one to reduce the environmental impact and, why not, save money.

Take more probiotics

Studies show that the beneficial bacteria that "live" food probiotics can help prevent certain digestive disorders and improve bowel regularity. Kefir, for example, is a valuable aid to facilitate digestion, reduce gastroesophageal reflux and control the amount of LDL (bad) cholesterol in the blood. Thanks to its positive action on intestinal transit, it is also a very useful food for deflating and slimming the belly. Actions also exercised by yogurt. But be warned: some many are high in sugar. Choose, therefore, the natural white ones.

Buy Italian extra virgin olive oil

Its properties for health are undisputed, as long as it is extra virgin, preferably cold-pressed and maybe even local, to support the local economy. It's good, but don't overdo it. For this reason it is important not to exceed the dose of maximum 3 teaspoons per meal, used both for seasoning and for cooking. If we add a tablespoon less of oil every day, at the end of the year we would have lost a few kilos thanks to this strategy alone.

Follow the 4 P's rule

When you sit down at the table, respect the now famous 4 P rule that is, do not combine the following carbohydrate-containing foods in the same meal: pasta, bread, potatoes and pizza. This does not mean giving up carbohydrates, but simply not eating them together.

One last tip? If you still don't, take advantage of the New Year's resolutions to start physical activity. And during the day, never miss the opportunity to breathe deeply in the fresh air. Oxygen, in fact, is considered the most powerful fat burner: think that to oxidize just one gram of fat, about 3 liters of oxygen are needed.

The menus of the week

MONDAY

JUST WAKE UP: Drink of water and lemon

BREAKFAST: 1 kefir; 2 rice cakes with a thin layer of jam; 1 cup of green tea

MORNING SNACK: 1 pomegranate juice

LUNCH: Pasta and lentils; chard with peeled tomatoes and onion

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 apple; 1 clove and cinnamon tea

DINNER: Sweet and sour sardines; sautéed broccoli; 1 slice of toasted wholemeal bread

TUESDAY

JUST WAKE UP: Drink of water and lemon

BREAKFAST: 1 glass of vegetable milk; 1 slice of toasted wholemeal bread

MORNING SNACK: 1 orange juice

LUNCH: Veal strips with balsamic vinegar; salad; 1 slice of toasted wholemeal bread

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 kiwi; 1 clove and cinnamon tea

DINNER: Risotto with walnuts and cauliflower; sautéed Belgian endive

WEDNESDAY

JUST WAKE UP: Drink of water and lemon

BREAKFAST: 1 vegetable yogurt; 1 tablespoon of whole oat bran; 1 kiwi

MORNING SNACK: 1 persimmon

LUNCH: Egg and pea omelette; 1 slice of toasted wholemeal bread

AFTERNOON SNACK: 20 g of dark chocolate; 1 clove and cinnamon tea

DINNER: Mixed salad; spelled and chicory soup

THURSDAY

JUST WAKE UP: Drink of water and lemon

BREAKFAST: 1 juice of grapefruit, carrots and pineapple; 1 slice of toasted bread with extra virgin olive oil

MORNING SNACK: 1 slice of toast with smoked salmon; 1 cup of green tea

LUNCH: Radicchio and pear salad; 1 plate of bresaola with lemon; 1 slice of toast

AFTERNOON SNACK: 8 hazelnuts; 1 clove and cinnamon tea

DINNER: Jerusalem artichoke salad; cous cous with dried tomatoes, peas and rocket

FRIDAY

JUST WAKE UP: Drink of water and lemon

BREAKFAST: 1 kefir; 2 wholemeal biscuits; 1 kiwi; 1 cup of green tea

MORNING SNACK: 1 orange juice

LUNCH: Swordfish with cherry tomatoes, olives and capers; artichoke and mushroom salad; 1 slice of toast

AFTERNOON SNACK: 5 almonds; 1 clove and cinnamon tea

DINNER: Wholemeal pasta with vegetable ragout; sautéed carrots

SATURDAY

JUST WAKE UP: Drink of water and lemon

BREAKFAST: 1 HD yogurt; 2 dry wholemeal biscuits; sliced ​​fruit; 1 cup of green tea

MORNING SNACK: 1 orange juice

LUNCH: Mixed salad; grilled chicken breast; 1 slice of toasted wholemeal bread

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 juice of pineapple, apple and carrot

DINNER: Mixed salad; 1 vegetarian pizza with vegetables

SUNDAY

JUST WAKE UP: Drink of water and lemon

BREAKFAST: 1 kefir; 1 slice of homemade cake

MORNING SNACK: 1 kiwi

LUNCH: Pasta with sardines and pine nuts; turnip tops sautéed in oil, garlic and chilli

AFTERNOON SNACK: 20 g of dark chocolate; 1 clove and cinnamon tea

DINNER: Eggs in cocotte with truffle; leeks au gratin; 1 slice of toasted wholemeal bread

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