Diet

How to Get an Hourglass Figure through Diet?

Overview

The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that 64 percent of women in the United States are overweight or obese. Reduced physical activity and increased calorie consumption has caused many overweight women to lose that perfect hourglass shape.

A woman’s metabolism starts to slow down after age 30, and continues to decrease with age. The right diet and exercise program can help you achieve a perfect hourglass figure and gain health benefits from staying slim. Losing excess body fat will help slim your waist, creating that hourglass shape.

Hourglass Figure

Calorie Recommendations

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, diets containing between 1,000 and 1,200 calories per day are often effective weight loss diets for many women, and 1,200- to 1,600-calorie diets are generally effective weight loss diets for active women and women weighing more than 164 pounds. The USDA provides sample healthy meal plans at different calorie levels including 1,000-calorie, 1,200-calorie, 1,400-calorie and 1,600-calorie diet plans.

4 Super Foods to Help Achieve an Hourglass Figure

1.     Almonds
Almonds are rich in protein, fiber, vitamin E, magnesium and heart-healthy unsaturated fatty acids. According to a study published in a 2009 edition of the “American Journal of Clinical Nutrition”, research indicates that nuts are beneficial for healthy weight maintenance because they help you feel full and satisfied, may help increase resting energy expenditure and can limit fat bioaccessibility.

2.     Whole grains

Consuming whole grains instead of refined grains is beneficial for weight and fat loss. Whole grains are higher in protein and fiber than refined grains, and have a lower glycemic index. This means you’ll likely feel fuller for a longer period of time. Choose whole-grain breakfast cereals, whole-grain or whole-wheat bread, whole-wheat pasta, oatmeal and brown rice instead of regular pasta, white rice and white bread.

3.     Broccoli
Broccoli is high in fiber and rich in potassium, folate, vitamin A and vitamin K. It helps stabilize insulin release because broccoli has a low glycemic index. Broccoli is also low in fat and calories, making it a good choice for weight and fat loss.

4.     Fish

Fish is a lean source of protein, and contains beneficial omega-3 fatty acids. Medline Plus reports that some studies indicate eating fish may improve weight loss and decrease blood sugar levels. However, be sure to choose baked or grilled fish instead of fried fish when following a reduced-calorie diet.

Tips to Help You Get an Hourglass Figure

  • When cooking, limit or avoid extra sugar, salt and saturated fats such as butter.
  • Steam or grill foods instead of frying.
  • Consume at least 8 cups of water each day, and drink a glass of water before each meal.
  • Increase your intake of high-fiber foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, high-fiber cereals, nuts and seeds.
  • Choose whole grains instead of refined grains and sugars.
  • Replace high-fat meats with other high-protein foods such as lean meats, chicken, fish, soy products, egg whites, low-fat dairy products, legumes, nuts and seeds.
  • Consume low-fat or fat-free milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, reduced-fat cheese or soy products.
  •  Choose healthy unsaturated fats such as olive and canola oils, avocados, flaxseed, fish oils, nuts and seeds.

References

USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010
http://www.cnpp.usda.gov/publications/dietaryguidelines/2010/policydoc/policydoc.pdf

US Department of Health and Human Services
http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/heart/obesity/aim_hwt.pdf

American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19144727

Medline Plus
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/993.html

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