FROM THE DIETITIAN’S NOTEBOOK: Weight Loss, Fiber, Noodles

Q. I lost weight over the summer and kept it off. Now the pounds are creeping back. How can I keep my lost weight from returning?

A. While it’s true that the body makes a metabolic adjustment whenever you lose weight, this fact can be factored into a formula for weight management success. Weight experts state that with any weight loss, the calorie-burning actions are reduced by approximately 15 calories for every percent of weight you’ve lost. For instance, if you shed 10 pounds and want to keep them off you’d multiple 15 times 10 pounds, which is 150 calories. Thus, you would eat 150 calories less each day in order to keep the weight from inching back on – any physical activity will also help increase calorie-burning. However, remember that its portion-control and the foods you choose to eat that will play the biggest role in maintaining your healthy weight loss.

Q. Can eating fiber help keep you young?

A. Well, if that were true, fiber would be the top-selling item in stores. What is true about eating fiber is that it helps to keep you regular. In addition, new research published in The Journals of Gerontology, has shown that people who ate the highest amount of fiber in their diets increased their odds of healthy aging (without chronic diseases) by 80 percent. Good food sources of fiber are found in many fruits and vegetables including apples and pears, plus lentils, beans, wild rice and quinoa.

Q. I heard a lady talking about Shirataki noodles in the supermarket. What can you tell me about them?

A. Shirataki noodles are long, white and translucent noodles that contain a type of fiber called glucomannan, which is made from the root of the Konjac plant. These noodles are 97 percent water, 3 percent fiber and contain no digestible carbs along with no calories. What’s interesting about glucomannan is that it’s a form of soluble fiber -- and like all soluble fibers -- it absorbs water and forms a gel. As a result, these non-digestible noodles move very slowly through the digestive tract, which has the effect of making you feel fuller longer – this can aid in weight loss. Shirataki noodles are also considered a “prebiotic” because they nourish the friendly bacteria living in your colon. What’s more, non-digestible soluble fiber, which is found in fruits and vegetables such as white beans, seeds, lentils, cauliflower, sweet potatoes and rolled oats, in addition to Shirataki noodles help support the probiotics function of initiating a slow fermentation process inside the gut that helps nourish both the cells lining the colon and also feeds the friendly probiotics. These healthy actions help to prevent problems such as Leaky Gut Syndrome and constipation.

Learn more about Registered Dietitian Nutritionist/author Deralee Scanlon by giving her a call at 310-351-5019.