In New York, summer is synonymous with Central Park concerts, Riis beach parties, halter tops and skimpy bikinis. Gone are the months of heavy coats and bulky sweaters; warm weather calls for sparse clothing, dieting and staying in shape. But, in our food-loving society, only a minority remain permanently slim. The rest of us struggle to remove our few or many extra pounds, to eliminate a bulge here or create a curve there. Some succeed, but many are soon frustrated in their attempts. Just what does it take to reduce and remain trim, anyway?
One thing it takes is the right diet, which doesn’t necessarily mean three portions of this or seven of that a day. The right diet is the one tailored for you — one that fits your one-of-a-kind needs, tastes, time commitments and personality. Often we go on diets because they have been recommended by a friend or because we’ve heard they produce startling results. We forget, unfortunately, that what works for one may be a flop for another; just because a colleague lost 15 pounds doesn’t guarantee that we will. What will work for you is a diet designed for you. Armed with willpower and coupled with consistent exercise, almost anyone can successfully diet.
Examine the diets below and decide if you’re finally going to adopt one and stick to it. Congratulations! Enjoy your summer. You’re on your way to healthy and perfect slimness!
The Scarsdale Diet
This seems to be the diet of the year. Everyone around the country, from paupers to politicians, are boasting about its amazing results. The diet, invented in Scarsdale by Dr. Herman Tarnower, works because the chemistry of the food mixtures produces ketones, a body chemical that reduces the appetite.
Here are the rules: drink absolutely no alcohol; use lean meats only; eat vegetables raw, whenever possible; avoid all butter, oil and margarine; trim fat from all steak; use lemon and vinegar on salads — no dressing or mayonnaise; drink coffee black, tea unsugared [sugar substitutes and diet drinks permitted]; indulge in no between-meal snacks except raw carrots and celery; eat only the foods listed, no substitutions — except for any lunch you may substitute one-half cup of low-fat pot cheese, one tablespoon of low-fat sour cream with sliced fruit, six walnuts or pecans and a diet drink.
Do not stay on this diet over 14 days. Wait two or three weeks and then go back on. Weight losses can be as much as 20 pounds in 14 days.
Breakfast* — One-half grapefruit; one slice of dry protein toast; coffee or tea.
Lunch — Lean cold cuts; tomato slices; coffee or tea.
Dinner — Broiled fish; combination salad [as many vegetables as desired]; one slice of dry protein toast; grapefruit; coffee or tea.
Lunch — Fruit salad [any kind, as much as desired]; coffee or tea.
Dinner — Plenty of steak; tomatoes; lettuce; celery; olives; Brussel sprouts or cucumbers; coffee or tea.
Lunch — Tuna fish or salmon salad with lemon and vinegar; grapefruit; coffee or tea.
Dinner — Two lamb chops; celery; cucumbers; tomatoes; coffee or tea.
Lunch — Cold chicken; raw or cooked spinach; coffee or tea.
Dinner — Two eggs; cottage cheese; cooked cabbage; one slice of dry protein toast; coffee or tea.
Lunch — Assorted cheese slices; raw or cooked spinach; one slice of dry protein toast; coffee or tea.
Dinner — Broiled fish; combination salad [as many vegetables as desired]; one slice of protein toast; coffee or tea.
Lunch — Fruit salad [any kind, as much as desired]; coffee or tea.
Dinner — Cold chicken; tomatoes; grapefruit; coffee or tea.
Lunch — Hot or cold chicken; tomatoes; carrots; cooked cabbage or broccoli or cauliflower; grapefruit; coffee or tea.
Dinner — Plenty of steak; celery; cucumbers or Brussel sprouts; tomatoes; coffee or tea.
Your Own Diet
What if regimented diets just aren’t your style? You’ve tried them, unsuccessfully, and find them confining and too much of a hassle. Why not design your own? Any low-calorie diet will work as well as others, since, let’s face it, nothing beats counting calories for shedding pounds. Right?
Begin by purchasing a calorie-counter booklet, both inexpensive and easily obtainable in pharmacies and bookstores. Next, design your diet as you would a jigsaw puzzle, with each piece representing a serving from one of the food groups: proteins, fruits and vegetables, grains, dairy and fats. The puzzle can change each day but should always consist of foods from each group. This is essential for a well-balanced, healthy diet. But, there is one catch — regardless of what you eat daily, total consumption cannot exceed 1200 calories for small frames or 1500 for large frames. Why that number of calories? Why not more or less or the same for each frame?
Normally, the number of daily calories needed depends on the individual metabolism and one’s everyday activities. Calories are the measure of energy needed to keep our bodies going, but when we take in more calories than we burn, the remainder is stored as fat. So, truthfully speaking, caloric intake should depend on the individual, but leading authorities recommend the 1200-1500 margin as a good basis for losing weight, at approximately two to three pounds each week.
Reminder One: There is plenty of leeway for personal food preferences in this kind of diet, but don’t go overboard and eat everything you want. Be selective and exercise willpower.
Minimize your intake of fattening foods, such as starches, fried foods and sweets. You may treat yourself occasionally, but be conscious of overdoing it by strictly limiting the amounts you allow yourself.
Reminder Two: When you eat is just as important as what you eat. Watch your timing and try sticking to three meals a day. Calories consumed in the morning and afternoon can be burned up during the day; foods eaten in the late evening will probably be stored as fat. Attempt to conform your eating patterns into an ample breakfast, an adequate lunch and a light dinner, if possible. The results may surprise you.
Summer is the season when there’s nothing more appealing than a tall, cold drink. Whether bicycling, jogging, swimming or just walking, soaking up hot temperatures can spark constant, seemingly unquenchable thirsts. Fortunately, plain water isn’t the only quencher around. The abundant fruits available in summer can be blended into healthy, low-cal drinks. Try them as snacks or as quick, light summer meals. What better way to quench hunger and thirst and remain streamlined and energetic as well? Enjoy;
1 cup skim milk
1 medium banana
1/2 c. fresh pineapple
1/4 c. unsweetened pineapple juice 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 ice cubes
Mix ingredients [including one of the ice cubes] in blender for 30 seconds. Add second ice cube and blend for another 30 seconds. Garnish with fresh strawberries or cherries and serve immediately.
1 c. skim milk
3/4 c. ripe sliced peaches
2 tbs. concentrated orange juice
Combine all ingredients in blender jar and blend for 15 seconds.
1 c. skim milk
1c. large ripe strawberries (about 15) 1/4 c. low-fat vanilla yogurt
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 ice cubes
Combine ingredients (including one of the ice cubes) and mix in blender for 30 seconds. Add second ice cube and blend for another 30 seconds.
Banana ‘n’ Orange Wheat Germ Shake 1 small banana
3/4 c. milk or plain yogurt
1/4 c. Kretschmer regular wheat germ
1/4 c. orange juice
1 tbs. honey
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/8 tsp. salt
1 ice cube
Slice banana into blender. Add remaining ingredients and blend at high speed for 30 seconds.
- Eat slowly. Take small bites and chew deliberately. It makes a small portion go along way.
- Drink water. Develop your taste buds for this free, zero-calorie, non-intoxicating drink.
- Reduce salt intake. The result is a moderate loss of unnecessary fluids.
- Minimize meat portions. Meat contains more calories than any other food group.
- Beware of leftovers. You may not want to be wasteful, but if you eat them, your waist will be full; Dispose of scraps.
- Watch snacks. If you must snack.
- Watch the calories. A large celery stalk is a wise choice — 5 calories per stalk.
- Take vitamins. A must in dieting; supplements what you may have missed.
- Use smaller plates. You’ll have a full plate, but less calories.
- Shop wisely. When possible, purchase only the quantity you plan to eat.
- Snack Pack. Place a see-through container filled with raw vegetables in the refrigerator. Mark the container ‘Slim & Trim Snack Pack.
- Hang signs. Signs are incentives. Try: “What You Eat Today You’ll Wear Tomorrow.”
- Watch when you eat. Eat largest meals earliest. You’ll burn more calories.
- Remove the skin on chicken. It’s higher in calories than the meat.
- Eat vegetables raw. Nutritious and low in calories, they slow you down by forcing you to chew more.
- Consider frozen yogurt. As a meal substitute, an 8 oz. container of vanilla-flavored frozen yogurt contains 180 calories; with fruits, 210.
- Bacon? Try Canadian bacon — one-third fewer calories than regular crisp bacon.
- Substitute low-calorie skim milk for whole milk [90 calories compared to 160 calories per 8 oz. glass].
- Eat fish. High in protein, low in calories, this is a dieter’s best friend.
- Drink liquids at meals. They help fill you up. If soft drinks, make sure they’re diet. Black coffee and tea unsugared have no calories.
- Use artificial sweeteners.
- Substitute bouillon for gravy. Thicken with a little cornstarch.
- Exercise regularly. Essential to trimming inches.
- Prepare meaty stews and soups a day ahead. Refrigerate overnight and skim the fat from the surface the next day.