Don't let its name scare you - the three-apples-a-day diet involves a lot more than starving yourself by eating nothing else except three apples a day. This diet is in fact a long term weight loss solution developed by American dietitian going by the name of Tammi Flynn, who holds a Master's degree in Nutrition Science from the prestigious Texas A&M University, and involves a sensible and balanced approach that's manageable and quite easy to put into practice. No starving yourself - just making the right choices as far as the quality and quantity of food you consume.
There are several basic principles involved in this diet. The first one is to eat an apple before every main meal. Why apples, you will ask. Well, first of all, one single medium-sized apple only contains between 250 to 420 kJ, virtually no fat and definitely no sodium. Apples contain large amounts of dietary fibers, which make you feel full quite easily and help you cut back on your food intake, as well as many other beneficial substances such as antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Another important principle is to stick to small meals - the so-called "nibbler" eating pattern - rather than eating three large meals every day.
What to eat, then, during this diet? According to Flynn, we should include low-fat proteins in every meal or snack that we have, since proteins also have a high satiation value and will help us feel full longer. In addition to the three apples, we should eat at least five more servings of fruit and vegetables every day, to cut your energy intake and not get hungry. Drink a lot of water, but no more than four - five glasses a day to avoid any electrolyte imbalances. Eat low-fat dairy products every day - low-fat or fat-free milk, yogurt and cottage cheese are rich in calcium and proteins. Cut back on your alcohol consumption and exercise for at least 30 minutes every day - running, cycling, dancing, swimming, whatever suits you best, and you'll soon see the results.