What a waist: follow our uncomplicated do's and don'ts for maintaining a nutritious, slimming diet.

Author:Oz, Mehmet
Position:A Healthy You - Interview

This month we answer your questions about diet and weight (or what we emphasize even more, waist) control.

Q: I like to go without breakfast, have coffee and then a big lunch. As long as I don't overdo the calories at lunch, is this strategy OK?

A: Eating right is about more than calories consumed and burned. For long-term weight loss, you need to get your metabolism at an optimal, calorie-burning set point--and your no-breakfast strategy flunks that test.

Coffee and caffeine are great (enjoy a few cups for brain and cancer prevention benefits; caffeinated tea works, too). If you skip breakfast, though, your body will expect real nutrients by lunch-time--and will hold onto calories and fat even if you don't overindulge. But chances are that you will overdo it, chowing down on bigger portions or stuffing with more starches than if you'd eaten breakfast. A new study involving Cornell University students showed exactly that.

Don't sabotage your health. With your coffee, eat fruit or a piece of 100 percent whole wheat toast with a little peanut butter or walnut butter.

Q: What are your best tips to help someone stay on a weight-loss diet?

A: Losing weight isn't that tough if you have a smart approach. And again, you want to remember that your waist is more important than your weight. Because belly fat is close to vital organs, it is the most dangerous body fat and is a big warning that future health problems (heart disease, diabetes and cancers) are likely in your future.

So ditch the scale in favor of the tape measure. Women should shoot for waists of 32.5 inches or less; men, 35 or less. No matter what, get below 36 for women and 40 for men.

Here are the best waist and weight tips from our coaching success stories and research-based medicine. Our typical participants at En forcerECoaching. corn lose about two-thirds pound per week (women), or just under I pound per week (men), for the first 26 weeks; they keep that much or more off for as long as they're in contact with us. Here are the keys:


* Walk 10,000 steps daily. Buy two pedometers so you're never without one.

* Stock only healthy foods. Without temptations, you'll automatically eat right. Check labels and purge products with any of these ingredients listed among the first five (we discussed these in our September column on blood pressure--read it at SUCCESS.com/Oz-Roizen; these food villains raise BP, too!):

  1. Simple sugars (corn syrup., brown sugar, maltose...

To continue reading