Weight loss: Michael Mosley on ‘the healthiest diet’ to target belly fat

Michael Mosley advises dieters to keep snacks out the house

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Having a larger midsection usually means there is more visceral fat (the type of fat that surrounds organs), which research shows can increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes and inflammation. Decreasing the amount of visceral fat means the risk for developing these diseases goes down. But no one needs to embark on a crazy crash diet to see weight loss results. A healthy balanced diet will do the trick and Dr Michael Mosley is an advocate for the Mediterranean Diet. So what foods does it involve? The diet expert explained and also shared an easy recipe. 

Dr Michael has said: “Eating a Mediterranean Diet, which is full of fibre, protein and healthy fats is a sustainable and enjoyable approach to everyday food. 

“Scientific research has shown this to be one of the healthiest diets on the planet. 

“It is based on less processed foods and incorporates a wholefood approach without cutting out any specific foods groups giving you a lot of food freedom.” 

What a Mediterranean Diet involves: 

Olive oil is one of the healthiest fats that you can eat. 

It contains a range of polyphenols and antioxidants, which are good at damping down inflammation, including in the brain, the breast and the gut.

Oily fish for example salmon, tuna and mackerel are all a big part of the Mediterranean diet.  

Oily fish contains a key ingredient – Omega 3 – which many don’t get enough of in a diet. 

Another core food group of the Mediterranean Diet is fruit and vegetables, but ensuring a colourful range is consumed to give lots of healthy nutrients. 

Full fat dairy products such as milk, cheese and yoghurt are also included. 

There’s good evidence that yoghurt, with live active cultures, can help improve antibiotic-associated diarrhoea, may lessen the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome and help reduce constipation. 

Studies have also shown that cheese that contains live bacteria can be good for your gut.

Eggs have been rehabilitated as a healthy staple in the diet. 

They contain a wide range of vitamins, minerals and high quality proteins and can improve your cholesterol and lipid profile.

And if eating eggs stops you from eating sugary breakfast cereal or having that muffin in the middle of the morning, then that is mission accomplished.

Nuts are also great to cook with and also make the perfect snack, giving an energy boost as they contain healthy slow burn oils, along with lots of lovely fibre to keep your gut happy and are a good source of protein.

Red wine: Studies have shown that drinking red wine in moderation can reduce blood pressure, CRP (a measure of inflammation) and triglyceride levels (the amount of fat circulating in the blood). 

Red wine has also been shown to improve gut health by increasing the levels of healthy bacteria, including Bacteroides and Bifidobacteria, types of bacteria associated with slimness and lowering cholesterol respectively.

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Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken 

The Fast 800 website explains: “One of our most popular recipes on The Fast 800 Online Programme, this prosciutto wrapped chicken is easy to make. Serve alongside a variety of vegetables and you’re sure to be full until your next meal.” 

The recipe serves one, there are 360 calories per serving. 

It takes 10 minutes to prepare and 35 minutes to cook. 

Ingredients:

• 150g skinless chicken breast

• 20g prosciutto

• Two tsp extra virgin olive oil

• Quarter of an onion, diced

• One garlic clove, minced

• 100g chopped tinned tomatoes

• Half a tsp dried oregano

• 50g spinach leaves

• 10g parmesan cheese, grated

• Quarter of lemon, zest and juice

• Fresh parsley, chopped

Method:

1. Flatten the chicken with a rolling pin until about 2cm/0.5 inch thick – wrap in prosciutto.

2. Pan fry in half the olive oil until golden (a few minutes on each side) – it doesn’t need to be cooked through. Remove and set aside.

3. Add garlic and onion to the same fry pan with the remaining olive oil and saute for a few minutes. 

4. Add the tomato and oregano and warm through to thicken. 

5. After five to 10 minutes, add the spinach and stir through to wilt – then add the chicken back in and top with parmesan. 

6. Put the lid on and cook down for 15 minutes.

7. While it’s cooking, make the topping by combining finely chopped parsley and lemon zest and juice.

8. Serve up your prosciutto wrapped chicken and top with the parsley mix. 

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