Make the 'flexitarian' diet your New Years resolution

FLINT (WJRT) (12/28/2017) - This is the time when many people set out to accomplish a New Years resolution.

If weight loss is a goal, doctors are saying they know the way to do it -- what is being called the "flexitarian" diet. It's more sustainable over the long term than a wholesale dietary or lifestyle change.

"It's a lifestyle to be healthy," said Michelle Bernreuter of Hurley Medical Center's Diabetes Center. "It's not just, I'm going to do it for a month."

She said some people want to make resolutions to completely change their lifestyles all at once. Flexitarian, is a way to ease into the changes in a healthy way.

"It's not all or nothing," Bernreuter said. "You can make small changes."

Scientists along with Hurley Medical Center nutritionists are saying a plant-based diet is the best.

"When you go more towards the plant-based -- getting the extra fiber from the fruits and vegetables -- that's really good for your gut health," Bernreuter said. "There's a lot of research that says it helps with weight loss, prevent chronic disease. Things like diabetes, heart disease, cancers. They're all related to what you eat."

Not being able to eat meat would be a huge turnoff to many people. Bernreuter said there are a lot of substitutes.

"Things like beans, dried beans are a very good choice for protein," he said.

Doctors also urge people not to restrict themselves entirely from certain types of foods. Balance and making healthy choices are most important.

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