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Go Low And Eat More For Good Health

It has been advocated that eating a low-calorie food, such as vegetables and fruits, can provide you with many healthy benefits. A new study, conducted by Pennsylvania State University in State College and published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, has further proved that a low-energy-dense eating plan not only reduce the total energy intake but also maintain a high-quality diet, without having to decrease the amount of food consumed each day.

A low-calorie or a low-energy-dense meal has fewer calories for every gram of food compared with high-calorie meal. The energy density of food refers to the number of calories per gram of food. So, 50g of food containing 10 calories is said to be of low energy density compared to another food of the same weight that contains 100 calories. For example, a slice of watermelon weighing 150g contains 47 calories while 100g of mixed dried fruit contains 268 calories.

The researchers studied the dietary information of 7500 adults, whose diet was grouped as low-energy-dense, medium-energy-dense, and high-energy-dense. People on the low-energy-dense diet, as compared with participants on a high-energy-dense diet, were instructed to eat more food but still consumed fewer calories in total.

Moreover, their diet, which included fruits, vegetables, and fiber-rich grains, were low in fat and high in water content and nutrients, providing vitamin A, C, and B6, folate, iron, calcium, and potassium. The researchers therefore recommended eating a variety of fruits and vegetables; low-fat and reduced-fat dairy products, grains, meat and meat alternatives to achieve a low-energy-dense diet.

So, what advantages of low-calorie food have comparing with high-calorie food? Usually, low-calorie foods are bigger and bulkier to make you feel like you have more to eat in terms of quantity yet you consume less calories. These foods are mostly high in nutrients without much fat. On the other hand, high-calorie foods are often low in dietary fiber and can provide you with excess calories without your knowledge. For example, a packet of raisins may look very little compared with 10 grapes. But 100g of raisins contains 272 calories yet 100g of grapes contains only 60 calories.

Just remember this: a low-calorie, high-quality diet is a healthy approach to a healthy lifestyle. It will certainly help to reduce the risk of diet-related conditions like obesity, heart disease, and cancer. It is hoped that the above findings can encourage individuals to eat healthily with a low-calorie diet that is capable of meeting one’s nutritional requirements.



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