Sheryl Kraft, a freelance writer and breast cancer survivor, was born in Long Beach, New York. She currently lives in Connecticut with her husband Alan and dog Chloe, where her nest is empty of her two sons Jonathan. Sheryl writes articles and essays on breast cancer and contributes to a variety of publications and websites where she writes on general health and wellness issues. She earned her MFA in writing from Sarah Lawrence College in 2005.Full Bio
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Dieting can be tough. And lots of us are doing it.
So, if you're doing it, you might as well make it as easy, fun and healthful as possible, right?
These products can help streamline the process and take some of the guesswork out of shedding pounds.
And remember: Losing weight is a gift that keeps on giving. You decrease your risk for conditions and illnesses like heart disease, cancer and diabetes, while lowering your blood pressure, increasing your mobility, improving your cholesterol levels, and feeling like a better version of yourself. Just losing 5 percent of your weight can help improve metabolic function in many tissues, including fat, liver and muscle, says the NIH.
So many good reasons to give it a go—what have you got to lose?
- For when you need some cooking inspo … The Mediterranean and DASH diets are touted as two of the healthiest around. This cookbook offers a hybrid of both, augmenting yummy recipes with research to back up the claims. The Mediterranean diet, adapted from the habits of one of the world's healthiest populations, includes lots of whole grains, nuts, veggies and fruits (and a bit of red wine), while the DASH diet, designed to lower blood pressure, incorporates whole grains, low-fat dairy, fruits and veggies. Read more about 5 Diets to Help You Lose Weight While Improving Your Health.
- For when zoodles beats noodles … For a healthy alternative to pasta, take a zucchini and run it through this spiralizer and presto—you'll have noodles that are an incredibly fresh and healthy alternative to pasta. Vegetable noodles can also be fashioned from carrots, butternut squash, beetroot, sweet potatoes and more. Take a look here to for lots of ideas. And, while you're at it, consider adding this handy tool to your kitchen arsenal.
- For when you want to brown bag it, but better … It's always a good idea to pack your own lunch, not just because you'll save bucks, but because you can pick and choose healthier alternatives to calorie-laden fast food and save on delivery fees and time wasted waiting in long lines. Bentology makes a grown-up lunch box that offers a handy way to pack five different courses, each in their own inner-removable container. Bento boxes originated in Asian cultures, traditionally holding rice or noodles, fish or meat and cooked veggies, but this smart way to divide up a meal can be translated easily to our culture or any other, as well.
- For when you want to divide and conquer …Experts advise planning your plate a certain way for healthy eating: fill half of it with fruits and veggies and the other half with equal portions of lean protein and whole grain. These colorful plates take the guesswork out of it and serve as a handy reminder of the importance of portion control and healthy nutrition.
- For when you want to add movement to the mix … While it's true that calories matter when you're trying to lose weight, so does exercise, especially if you're genetically inclined to be overweight. Among those exercises: jogging, mountain climbing, cycling, stretching, swimming, yoga and dancing. There are lots and lots of reasonably priced workout clothing options as well as instructional videos available on Amazon and other sites.