Spinach and Vinegar Diet

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Spinach and vinegar salad
Spinach and vinegar salad (Image: fresh spinach salad in a brown wooden bowl image by David Smith from Fotolia.com)

Fad diets crop up with regularity as bathing suit season approaches. Two such diets that have gained some recent popularity are the Vinegar and Spinach varietals. Each claims to have a quick fix for your weight-loss quandaries; but as with any exercise or diet endeavor, you should enter them only with the approval of your health-care professional.

Vinegar Diet

Apple cider vinegar gained a reputation as a fast-acting weight-loss food after a study was released linking vinegar consumption to weight loss in mice. The acid in the vinegar coupled with the fruit pectin reportedly combine to cause fat to burn. Researchers gave mice either water or acetic acid (the main chemical in vinegar) and found that the mice that consumed the vinegar developed up to 10 percent less body fat than those that drank water.

The regimen for the vinegar diet is to consume 1 tbsp. of vinegar approximately 10 minutes before mealtimes. It makes no requirements as far as what foods you should consume. While vinegar is healthy and low in calories (at just 3 calories per tablespoon), the study does not prove conclusively that vinegar is a weight-loss aid for humans. If you want to lose weight, opt for a regular regimen of healthy foods and exercise.

Spinach Diet

The spinach diet advocates incorporating several servings of spinach into your diet each day for a quick weight-loss fix with super power. Dieters should be wary of any quick fixes, but unlike the vinegar diet, diets high in vegetables such as spinach have been clinically proven to aid in weight loss, lower blood pressure and reduce risk of certain cancers. Consume 2 to 3 cups of packed spinach each day and you are officially on the spinach diet. The plan does not require that you eat the vegetable at any given time during the day and is not specific about preparation.

One of the biggest complaints about the spinach diet is that it becomes monotonous and boring. To lose weight successfully on this plan, find a variety of recipes that suit your taste and provide a serving or two of spinach. Kale and garlic have many of the same health and weight-loss benefits as spinach, and incorporating them into your diet will satisfy your weight-loss needs while also giving you some welcome variety at mealtimes. Select dark, vibrant bunches of spinach. Baby and adult spinach provide similar health benefits, and you can experiment with which type works best in certain recipes. Keep fresh, pre-washed baby spinach on hand and toss it into salads, mound sautéed black beans and feta cheese atop for a hearty dinner salad, or add it to sandwiches, veggie wraps and homemade pizza. Cooking concentrates nutrients and fiber in spinach; so try to incorporate cooked spinach into your diet plan. For a side dish to serve with grilled fish or a bean and barley salad, sauté fresh spinach in olive oil with diced garlic. Lasagnas and casseroles provide a perfect opportunity for adding spinach to your diet. No advanced preparation is needed; you can simply add the vegetable to each layer. The most basic preparation for spinach is to sauté. Heat a large bunch of spinach in a skillet with a dash of water and let it cook until just wilted, tossing frequently; then add it to your favorite dishes. The basic concept of this diet is that as you add spinach to your daily food intake, you will feel fuller longer and will replace other, less healthful foods with multiple servings of spinach daily.

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