Diets ranked for weight loss, heart health

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nutsIt’s dieting time!

The new year has just begun, and there is a strong chance that many of your clients will be starting diets in order to shed those unwanted pounds that crept on over the holidays. Just in time for the nationwide focus on weight loss, the US News and World Report recently published its best diets of 2014. Based on an intense regimen of literature review and assessment by experts, 32 diets in total were ranked from their heart healthiness to their likelihood in helping dieters lose weight. To be top-rated, a diet needed to be nutritious, easy enough to follow, produce results and offer guidance for the prevention of heart disease and diabetes. Along with the benefits, the best diet would also manage to help people get healthy with no unsafe side effects.

Nutrition professionals will not be surprised by the two diets that were ranked the highest: the DASH diet and the TLC diet.

The DASH (Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension) diet is highlighted in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans as a way to put the principles for healthy eating into action. The TLC (Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes) diet, created by the National Institutes of Health, also follows the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Both diets focus on eating more fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, low-fat dairy products, whole grains, fish and poultry; while limiting red meat, foods high in salt, fat and added sugar. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free eating plans can all be easily accommodated under these diets as well. Sample eating patterns that list portion sizes per calorie level are available for getting started.

An essential tool in getting clients off to the best start is evaluating their current eating pattern using the latest nutritional analysis software. By looking at what they are currently eating as a baseline, you can then make recommendations that will guide them towards more nutritious eating and better health. Robust and detail-oriented nutritional software will go the extra step in allowing your clients to enter a diet record online and send the information to you, so that you can get a head start before meeting with them. Reports that show the essential nutrients and how to obtain them through food are great teaching tools that foster longer-term understanding. Make sure nutritional software is a part of your professional tool kit!