What You Eat Matters More Than the Calories

July 29, 2011
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Conclusion: “There are good foods and bad foods, and the advice should be to eat the good foods more and the bad foods less,” he said. “The notion that it’s O.K. to eat everything in moderation is just an excuse to eat whatever you want.” Researchers found that the kinds of foods people ate had a larger effect over all than changes in physical activity.

Good Foods: Weight loss was greatest among people who ate more yogurt and nuts, including peanut butter, over each four-year period.

Conclusion: “There are good foods and bad foods, and the advice should be to eat the good foods more and the bad foods less,” he said. “The notion that it’s O.K. to eat everything in moderation is just an excuse to eat whatever you want.” Researchers found that the kinds of foods people ate had a larger effect over all than changes in physical activity.

Good Foods: Weight loss was greatest among people who ate more yogurt and nuts, including peanut butter, over each four-year period.

Neutral Foods: The foods that resulted in weight loss or no gain: fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

Bad Foods: The foods that contributed to the greatest weight gain linked to an average weight gain of 3.4 pounds in each four-year period. Major contributors were potato chips (1.7 pounds), sugar-sweetened drinks (1 pound), red meats and processed meats (0.95 and 0.93 pound, respectively), other forms of potatoes (0.57 pound), sweets and desserts (0.41 pound), refined grains (0.39 pound), other fried foods (0.32 pound), 100-percent fruit juice (0.31 pound) and butter (0.3 pound).

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See NYT article on weight gain.