Healthy Eating Simplified
In order to perform and feel your best you should eat a balanced and healthy diet. It is remarkably easy to do and what follows is a simple guide to get started on a life long journey of good health and high energy.
What You Eat
The foods which you will eat the most of should be the starchy foods. Items such as cereals, potatoes, rice, and breads are rich in carbohydrates, which is the body’s primary source of energy. When people say they “crash” or “bonk” in the middle of the day it is often due to a lack of starchy foods.
Other sources of carbohydrates are fruits and vegetables. Not only do these provide carbohydrates, but they also contain essential vitamins and nutrients required to maintain a healthy body. The average person should eat at least five servings a day, consisting of a variety of veggies and fruits. A serving can consist of raw or steamed vegetables, a piece of fruit, a glass of 100% unsweetened fruit juice, or even vegetables cooked into main dishes.
Benefits of Fish
Eating more fish will also allow the body to receive more vitamins and minerals. There are generally two types of fish to consider: oily fish and non-oily fish. Some of the non-oily varieties include tinned tuna, cod, coley, plaice, and haddock. Salmon, mackerel, trout, fresh tuna, and sardines have oils that are high in omega-3 fats, which may be a preventative to heart disease.
A dietary risk factor for heart disease is too much saturated fat, which contributes to an increase in cholesterol. We all need some fats in our diet, but it is best to limit the saturated fats and focus more on consuming unsaturated fats from foods such as oily fish, avocados, and vegetable oils.
Think Twice About Salt
Salt should also be consumed in low quantities, which can be challenging considering almost 75% of the salt we eat is already within the food we buy. Salt contributes to higher blood pressure and higher blood pressure can lead to heart disease or strokes. Beyond the age of 11 it is recommended not to exceed 6g of salt a day. Children under the age of 11 should have even less.
Don’t forget to participate in an active lifestyle and maintain a healthy weight. Those that are overweight or obese are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes, certain cancers, heart disease, and suffer a stroke. Getting involved in physical activities is a great way to reduce and maintain a healthy weight.
Make sure to avoid dehydration and drink about 1.2 liters of fluid a day. Try to avoid alcoholic drinks, sodas, and beverages with added sugar–which are high in calories and unhealthy for teeth. Remember, when the weather heats up or you are being active that you may need to drink more in order to avoid dehydration.
Finally, don’t forget to eat your breakfast. It has been said that this is the most important meal of the day. Although some people intentionally skip the first meal with the belief it will help them lose weight, research has shown the people are better able to control their weight when they start their day with a healthy breakfast full of vitamins and minerals.