The best and worst foods for weight control - AmericaNowNews.com

Foods to control your weight

Potato chips: We eat them, enjoy them, devour them.

But every extra serving of that crunch we have each day is packing 1.69 pounds on us every four years, according to a new study by Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital.

Why? Because we usually eat more than we should. You might eat a small bag of chips from a vending machine. But it may actually contain three servings. And potato chips spike blood sugar and insulin, making us hungrier at the next meal.

The study says counting calories is still important, but it's the quality of foods that matters most. Eating extra servings of french fries, baked potatoes or mashed potatoes can add 1.28 pounds to your weight every four years.

VCU Medical Center's Registered Dietician Mary-Jo Sawyer says she knows why.

"How does a plain potato come? Usually covered in butter, margarine, cheese, sour cream," she explains.

Red meat and deli meats add one pound each four years, says the Harvard study.

"How many of us eat meat in three-ounce portions?" asks Sawyer. "When you order a steak in a restaurant, usually the smallest steak you can get is eight ounces."

And by having that extra alcoholic beverage, you could be adding 0.41 pounds every four years. Overall, study participants gained 17 pounds over 20 years.

But Sawyer says you don't have to cut out any food; just monitor your portions.

"I think you can get into trouble with demonizing one food over the other," she notes. "You get to where people think this food is bad, so I've got to avoid it at all costs."

Try trading those extra chips for a yogurt. The study says an extra yogurt serving prevented 0.82 pounds of weight gain over four years.

Sawyer suggests using the new USDA "food plate" diagram to eat a balanced diet with fruits, vegetables and whole grains to keep you full.

"It's the idea of changing the way we think about things and having more foods, and allowing us to enjoy them rather than have the no, no, no, and I can't have this and that," she says.

That way you can have your occasional potato chips, and eat them too!

Copyright 2012 America Now. All rights reserved.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Fugitive Friday: Central Virginia's Most Wanted

    Fugitive Friday: Central Virginia's Most Wanted

    Friday, July 25 2014 8:49 AM EDT2014-07-25 12:49:07 GMT
    Fugitive Fridays tracks down Central Virginia's most wanted. Take a look at the photos and see if you can help police track down these suspects.
    Fugitive Friday helps track down Central Virginia's Most Wanted.
  • Physicians warn against giving melatonin to children

    Physicians warn against giving melatonin to children

    Parents desperate to get their troubled sleepers to bed are turning to synthetic melatonin, which is a supplement sold over the counter. But expert warn it could have adverse effects on child development.
    Many adults turn to sleep aids like melatonin, but now more parents are giving them to their kids, too. We talked to physicians to see what they had to say about how it could affect your child's development.
  • Six deadly foods for dogs

    Six deadly foods for dogs

    Every pet owner knows a dog can get into just about anything around the house. One woman found that out the hard way when her dog ate a bunch of grapes! Turns out, that's one of the most dangerous foods
    Every pet owner knows a dog can get into just about anything around the house. But these common snacks could be fatal for Fido.
Powered by WorldNow