Kathy Freston, author of Veganist: Lose Weight, Get Healthy, Change the World (Wienstein Books, February 2011), just launched her newest book The Lean: A Revolutionary (and Simple!) 30-Day Plan for Healthy, Lasting Weight Loss to help readers jumpstart their qwest to lose weight and to keep it off. Here are the bestselling author’s seven healthy eating tips.
7 Tips to lose weight for good
Freston, who influenced Oprah and her 378 staff members to go vegan for a week last year, doesn’t focus on vegans in her latest book, but she encourages non-vegans to move towards a plant-based diet and ultimately conscious living.
1. Switch out your milk for nondairy milk
If you are a lacto-vegetarian or non-vegan, Freston suggests ditching the dairy milk. “You can switch it up a bit too. I alternate between soy, rice, almond and hemp,” she adds.
2. Grab a handful of nuts
Go nuts to nosh a healthy dose of protein and good-for-you fats, not to mention fiber and nut-centric nutrition. “Add a handful of raw, unsalted nuts or seeds to your morning snack,” says Freston. “Nuts appear to boost our metabolism, meaning when we eat nuts we burn more of our own fat to compensate.”
3. Add flax
Since vegans and vegetarians eschew seafood, aim to up your omega-3 intake with flax. “Add two tablespoons or ground flaxseed somewhere in your day,” recommends the healthy living expert. “You can sprinkle ground flax over just about anything it has a sweet, nutty flavor so it goes down easy. Plus it’s a huge boost to any weight loss plan because it adds fiber.” According to Freston, flaxseeds are low in carbs, high in most of the B vitamins, and are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. “Flax is also the most concentrated dietary source of lignans, which the good bacteria in our gut turn into powerful cancer fighting compounds,” she adds.
4. Eat a superfood
“Superfoods are extremely potent, nutrient-dense foods that can increase the vital force in your body so that you can detoxify, get your immune system to function optimally, and start feeling balanced and energized,” Freston says. “Goji Berries, chocholate, chia seeds, blueberries and kale are all excellent superfoods.”
5. Multiply the veggies
Why stop at one veggie when you can pile your plate with the nutrient powerhouses? “Instead of serving up just one veggie on your dinner plate tonight, put three on the plate — try butternut squash, kale, and asparagus, for instance, or some other colorful combination! emphasizes Freston. “With more variety, you’ll likely eat more veggies, and with all that high fiber and water content filling you up, you’re on your way to more weight loss.”
6. Take the meat off your plate
Freston promotes a meat-free diet. If you are still eating meat, the conscious living expert recommends taking the animal protein off of your plate. Start with one meal a day, if eliminating it entirely seems impossible. “Within a few weeks of skipping meat and opting for plant protein, your after-meal metabolism increases,” she explains. “Great sources of plant based protein include seitan, tempeh, beans, lentils, tofu, and the many products made from them.”
7. Control your portions
Big plates usually means big meals. Downside your dinnerware to lose weight. Freston suggests, “Use smaller dishes so that you aren’t filling up a huge plate with oversize portions. I like using a small pasta bowl as my main dish.”