As the goal of equality between men and women advances a little with each generation, we should not lose sight of our important differences. None of us would argue the fact that men and women are physically different. Our physical differences are rather obvious; it’s in our size, weight, shape & anatomy. Our psychological differences, on the other hand, are not so obvious and can be difficult to examine or describe, because they are hard-wired into the way we think.
This is particularly true when we consider the way men and women reflect upon the status of their health and what they do to improve it. Almost every woman with a man in her life knows, for example, how difficult it is for her guy to make an annual physical checkup a priority. Many men will simply avoid visiting a doctor, unless they have had a serious injury or feel that their current ailment has become an acute matter.
While men and women do share the same goal to be healthy, their approach to the challenges for achieving good health can be quite different. Women, for example, tend to have a better understanding of what foods their bodies need in order to boost their energy, manage their weight, and prevent or treat disease. They actively seek nutrition information to better manage their health. Men, on the other hand, tend to be less proactive in seeking health information, particularly about how their daily diet impacts the way they look and feel, and shapes their future.
With weight-related diseases affecting both men and women, and all ages in between, we should all be concerned about nutrition and the foods we eat.
Men, though, may have an extra reason to be concerned. They tend to gain weight around the waist. Added weight around the waist – the beer belly – can predispose men to diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, sleep apnea, and certain cancers. It can even make your hubby snore!
It’s not just the men folk who need to pay attention here
If you’re a woman with a special guy in her life, get him started on the road to better health. Ask him (rather convince him) to read these weight management tips.
If you’re the man doing the reading, get ready, get hyped! She’ll thank you for it.
Doesn’t matter if you’re a guy or a gal - you may not only shed unwanted pounds, you’ll be taking an effortless path to looking and feeling great.
- Remember this golden rule - do not starve thy body. Many diets do not satisfy us, leaving us feeling hungry and frustrated. We need the right combination of foods; adequate protein, whole grain starch, and colorful vegetables and fruits.
- Get the right amount of protein. Men and women need the same amount of protein (a minimum of 60 grams per day). Studies show that eating adequate protein at all meals will help with weight loss and keep you satisfied longer! Examples of good protein sources:
- Lean chicken (90 g or 3 ounces) = 30 g
- Eggs (2) = 12 g
- Beans, peas, lentils (125 mL or ½ cup) = 10 g
- Nuts (almonds) (36 g or 60 mL) = 8 g
- Low fat milk (250 mL or 1 cup) = 10 g
- Greek yogurt (200 mL or ¾ cup) = 18 g
- Mozzarella cheese, 15-20% milk fat (60 g or 2 ounces) = 16 g
- Stick to whole wheat, whole-grain ingredients found in breads, pastas, cereal or rice. Be label savvy and choose 4 grams of fibre or more per serving. Eating whole-grain, high fibre foods will help stave off hunger pains.
- Have breakfast and make it a priority! Research has shown that people who eat breakfast have more success in maintaining their weight. Including a protein with fruit and a whole-grain, whole wheat starch will keep you from craving unhealthy snacks.
- Having a snack attack? Two to three snacks per day can be good for you, as long as you’re making smart choices. Your snack should ideally combine a protein source with a fruit, vegetable or a grain. Aiming to have your snack within 90 minutes of your next meal will help you be less hungry at meal times, and allow you to choose healthier options throughout the day.
- Load up on fruits and vegetables. Choose a wide variety of colours to maximize your vitamins. When serving yourself meals, cover half of your plate with vegetables and then move on to the protein. When you get to the starchy, higher calorie foods, you’ll have just enough room for a small portion.
- Watch your beverages! Remember that alcoholic beverages and speciality coffees are high in calories, while water with a twist of lemon is calorie-free. Try to limit diet sodas, as they are not the healthiest choice and can actually make you hungrier!
- Get moving! Ask your sweetheart to go for an evening power walk. Try to reach 150 minutes per week. Not enough time during the week? Be a “weekend warrior”! Do one hour on Saturday, one hour on Sunday and leave the remaining 30 minutes for your mid-week lunch break.
If you would like more information to maintain a healthy weight, achieve good cardiovascular health, prevent hypertension or treat diabetes, download our nutrition factsheet series at this link.
Stay tuned next week when Chicken Farmers of Canada brings to you quick-n-easy/lean-n-mean grilling ideas. You will not want the BBQ King or Queen in your house to miss out on these recipes!