By: Judy Davie - The Food Coach
Like it or not summer is on its way out, the air outside is cooler and the produce arriving at the markets reminds us that Autumn is here.
As sad as it is to know that in a week or so we will have to wave goodbye to the delicious summer produce we've loved so much these past few months, there's no need to fight it. There's great pleasure in turning the pages of our seasonal cookbooks ready to enjoy a whole new repertoire of eating that is found in Autumn.
And it may surprise you to know that Autumn is probably the best season to lose weight. With fewer social engagements, people are drinking and eating out less and there is more time to prepare food. The meals you can make with the seasonal produce of Autumn are rich in texture, colour and flavour they leave you feeling satisfied and nourished and less tempted to overeat.
If you went through summer wishing you felt more comfortable in your swimmers and thin cotton clothes, then why not decide to do something about it and shed those kilos once and for all.
Believe it or not, if you want to lose weight, the greengrocer's is the first place to go to shop. Before any other foods, fresh vegetables will give you the greatest number of nutrients for the least number of calories which is why dietitians recommend that you fill half your plate with veggies before anything else; the non-starchy ones that is.
Intermittent fasting has become quite popular these days and the 5 and 2 fasting diet where you eat 500 calories on 2 nonconsecutive days allows the flexibility to enjoy meals out with friends and an occasional sweet treat during the 5 days where you don't fast. Five hundred calories is not much but you may be surprised how manageable it is when you include a green smoothie made with spinach, celery, apple, and lime and drink it throughout the day. With an evening meal full of veggies and a small amount of protein, it becomes a manageable discomfort for a worthwhile end goal.
If that sounds like something you would like to try, Judy Davie, The Food Coach and author of The Greengrocer's Diet, has developed a new 42-day program called Lighten Up Autumn which combines evidence-based fasting with 42 days of daily content and includes and range of tool and activities to help anyone who needs to lose weight and has struggled in the past to keep it off. You can learn more when you visit her website.
For nonfasting days, Autumn is the time to bring out the stockpot. A roast chicken served with steamed veggies (not roasted yet) is great at this time of year and with the stock, you can make a light chicken soup to take to work with crackers and topping. It's the perfect meal for office workers who want to take their lunch to work and save money. Filled with seasonal veggies such as onion, carrots, celery and fennel and chicken it's nourishing and delicious and a welcome change from summer salads.
It's no coincidence that the produce of the season is what our body cries out for and needs for nourishment. As the season progresses, we will look forward to the arrival of guava - the most Vitamin C rich fruit of all - kiwifruit, mandarins, limes and oranges - The arrival of these antioxidant abundant fruits are the army we need to strengthen the immune system against colds and flus that tend to attack as the days become cool and work runs us down.
A diet rich in seasonal produce is precisely what the body needs for peak performance and Autumn is a great season to lose weight.
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