Preparation / Directions:
When respondents to our Ladies' Home Journal American Woman Survey last year reported that their weight is one of the most dissatisfying aspects of their lives—fully 61 percent are not happy with what the bathroom scale tells them—we developed a research-based, healthy, doable diet. The result is the Ladies' Home Journal/American Dietetic Association Diet of the Century. This diet isn't about quick weight loss (which on fad diets is mostly water loss); it focuses on helping you develop eating habits you can really live with. Guided by the USDA Food Guide Pyramid (an outline of what to eat every day based on dietary requirements), we created a diet plan that is low in fat and recipes that offer great taste and variety. And there's even room for snacks and desserts.
THE TEST: We put this diet plan to the test with twenty women who needed to lose weight. During a twelve-week period, our dieters met three times with a registered dietitian to help them adapt the eating plan to fit their food likes and dislikes and activity levels. Then the dieters were on their own, and most of them chose to either continue the plan and lose more weight or to go on maintenance, which involves using the Food Guide Pyramid to plan meals, but also allows more servings.
THE RESULTS: All twenty women stayed on the diet and all lost weight—though some more than others. But no matter what their personal weight results were, all of our dieters learned new healthy habits and feel encouraged that they can incorporate these changes into their daily lives. We think you'll be pleased with the Ladies' Home Journal American Dietetic Association Diet of the Century as our dieters were.
THE DIET OF THE CENTURY MENUS: Here's our meal-by-meal eating plan—it's simple enough to follow on your own. These balanced menus, which you can mix and match as you like, are based on the USDA Food Guide Pyramid. We aimed for an average of 1,550 total calories a day (1,400 calories from the menu and 150 from snacks or a dessert each day). You choose where the 150 calories come from. And remember, the more active you are, the faster you will shed pounds. This eating plan is one the whole family can enjoy, but if they aren't dieting with you, just increase t