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Katherine's Diet Tip #7: Visit Old McDonald!

Old McDonald Had a Farm ... I'll never forget those tomatoes. They were soft, plump, sweet and deep red, still warm from the sun - the kind you only get fresh from the vine. And for us city folks, the kind we usually can only get at our local Farmers Markets.

I've encouraged my clients - individual and corporate - for many years to shop at Farmers Markets. It's been quite a successful strategy they have used to lose weight. The fruits and vegetables are so fresh and delicious, they can't help but eat them and find creative recipes for them. And science shows that's an easy way to lose weight. Not only that, reduce cancer and heart disease risk! How about YOU following me in The Georgetown Dish most Mondays with proven strategies to lose weight, improve your eating and health habits, or just increase your knowledge about nutrition? We can improve our habits together (yes, I'm still a work in progress!), share new recipes (I would love to publish some of yours!), and even share our ups and downs on our road to great health (and hot bodies?)!

Create new memories and experiences for yourself and your family by buying your fresh fruits and vegetables at our Farmers Markets and making eating healthfully a joy. One of my favorite childhood memories was the taste of my grandmother's vine-ripened tomatoes. It's funny how childhood experiences stay with us. Today, when I shop at the Wednesday Rose Park Farmers Market or the Sunday Dupont Circle Farmers Market (and soon, the new Georgetown Market at Wisconsin & P), I still revel in those feelings. Physically I'm in downtown Washington, D.C., but mentally and emotionally, I'm picking my grandmother's backyard tomatoes in the bright summer sun.

Another bonus of shopping at Farmers Markets is you're contributing to saving the environment. Local produce uses less energy, saves water and encourages a regions's unique varieties of fruits and vegetables; heirloom varieties passed down for generations is an example.

Bottom Line: Lose 36 pounds in a year. Fresh produce from a Farmers Market will make you hungry for a salad every day. Adding fruits, vetables, salads, new vegetable dishes - especially soups, to your daily meals and snacks will help you cut back on other more fattening foods - and science has proven for every meal you add a vegetable dish, you naturally eat about 100 calories fewer! You'll end up losing an impressive amount of weight - and that's without dieting!

Excerpted from "Diet Simple: 195 Mental Tricks, Substitutions, Habits & Inspirations" by Katherine Tallmadge (LifeLine Press)