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"For Healthier Living"
 

The wellness diet is about aiming for variety, and include as much fresh food as possible in your diet. Minimize your consumption of processed and fast food. Eat an abundance of fruits and vegetables, and try to include carbohydrates, fat and protein in every meal. Most adults need to consume between 2,000 and 3,000 calories a day. Women and smaller, less active people require fewer calories; men and larger, more active people need more calories.

Carbohydrates

On a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet, adult women should eat about 160 g to 200 g of carbohydrates daily. (Most of this should be in the form of less refined, less processed foods such as found in fresh vegetables and fruits.) Adult men should eat about 200 g to 220 g of carbohydrates a day. Reduce your consumption of foods made with wheat flour and sugar, especially bread and most packaged snack foods. Eat more whole grains (not whole-wheat-flour products), beans, winter squashes and sweet potatoes. Avoid products made with high-fructose corn syrup.

Fat

On a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet, 600 calories can come from fat--that is, about 67g. This should be in a ratio of 1:2:1 of saturated to monounsaturated to polyunsaturated fat. Reduce your intake of saturated fat by eating less butter, cream, cheese and other full-fat dairy products, unskinned chicken, fatty meats and products made with coconut and palm-kernel oils. Use extra-virgin olive oil as a main cooking oil. If you want a neutral-tasting oil, use expeller-pressed organic canola oil. High-oleic versions of sunflower and safflower oil are also acceptable.

Avoid regular safflower and sunflower oils, corn oil, cottonseed oil and mixed vegetable oils. Strictly avoid margarine, vegetable shortening and all products listing them as ingredients. Strictly avoid all products made with partially hydrogenated oils of any kind. Include in your diet avocados and nuts, especially walnuts, cashews and almonds and nut butters made from them.

For omega-3 fatty acids, eat salmon (preferably wild--fresh or frozen--or canned sockeye), sardines, herring, black cod (sablefish, butterfish), omega-3 fortified eggs, hempseeds, flaxseeds and walnuts; or take a fish-oil supplement.

 

Protein

On a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet, your daily intake of protein should be between 80 g and 120 g. Eat less protein if you have liver or kidney problems, allergies or autoimmune disease. Decrease your consumption of animal protein except for fish and reduced-fat dairy products. Eat more vegetable protein, especially from beans in general and soybeans in particular.

Fiber

Try to eat 40 g of fiber a day. You can achieve this by increasing your consumption of fruit, vegetables (especially beans) and whole grains. Ready-made cereals can be good fiber sources, but read labels to make sure they give you at least 4 g and preferably 5 g of bran per 1-oz. serving.

 

Phytonutrients

To get maximum natural protection against age-related diseases, eat a variety of fruits, vegetables and mushrooms Choose fruits and vegetables from all parts of the color spectrum, especially berries, tomatoes, orange and yellow fruits, and dark leafy greens. Choose organic produce whenever possible. Learn which conventionally grown crops are most likely to carry pesticide residues, and avoid them.

Eat cruciferous (cabbage-family) vegetables regularly and include soy foods in your diet. Drink tea instead of coffee, especially good-quality white, green or oolong tea. If you drink alcohol, use red wine preferentially and drink only a glass or two at any one time. Enjoy plain dark chocolate (with a minimum cocoa content of 70%) in moderation.

Vitamins And Minerals

The best way to obtain all your daily vitamins, minerals and micronutrients is by eating a diet high in fresh foods, with an abundance of fruits and vegetables. In addition, supplement your diet with this antioxidant cocktail:

  • Vitamin C, 200 mg a day; vitamin E, 400 IUs of natural mixed tocopherols (d-alpha-tocopherol with other tocopherols or, better, a minimum of 80 mg of natural mixed tocopherols and tocotrienols).

  • Selenium, 200 mcg of an organic (yeast-bound) form.
    Mixed carotenoids, 10,000 IUs to 15,000 IUs daily.

  • In addition, take a daily multivitamin-multimineral supplement that provides at least 400 mcg of folic acid and at least 1,000 IUs of vitamin D. It should contain no iron and no preformed vitamin A (retinol).

  • Take supplemental calcium, preferably as calcium citrate. Women need 1,200 mg to 1,500 mg a day, depending on their dietary intake of this mineral; men should get no more than 1,200 mg of calcium a day from all sources.

 

Other Dietary Supplements

  • If you are not eating oily fish at least twice a week, take supplemental fish oil, 1 g to 2 g a day. Look for molecularly distilled products certified to be free of heavy metals and other contaminants.

  • If you are not regularly eating ginger and turmeric, consider taking them in supplemental form.

  • Add coenzyme Q-10 to your daily regimen: 60 mg to 100 mg in a soft-gel form taken with your largest meal.

  • If you are prone to metabolic syndrome or Syndrome X, take alpha-lipoic acid, 100 mg to 400 mg a day.

Water

Try to take 6 to 8 glasses of pure water or drinks that are mostly water (tea, very diluted fruit juice, sparkling water with lemon) every day. Use bottled water or get a home water purifier if your tap water tastes of chlorine or other contaminants.

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