Many people ask several questions about nutrition such as, what is a healthy balanced diet? What a healthy balanced diet looks like? Which food can help me lose weight? which food is healthy to eat and so on.
In essence, the best healthy balanced diet can help you maintain healthy body weight
However, unhealthy habits, especially, poor sedentary lifestyles, and bad dietary choices can all contribute to an unhealthy life.
Eating a healthy balanced diet is a crucial part of maintaining good health, and can help you feel your best.
What is a healthy balanced diet?
A good number of people ask what is meant by a healthy balanced diet, well, a healthy diet simply means eating a wide variety of real foods in appropriate proportions and consuming the correct quantity of food.
Appropriate proportion is crucial while eating any food as there are some foods that can lead to chronic illnesses when consumed too much.
This article goes ahead to elaborates on the most appropriate healthy balanced diet tips for the overall population.
What consists of a healthy balanced diet
For you to have a healthy balanced diet you should incorporate the following foods in your meal.
Choose unsaturated oils and spreads.
When you consume an excessive amount of saturated fats it may result in an increase in LDP cholesterol in the blood(1).
This may expose you to a high risk of heart disease and stroke.
Trans fats can raise cholesterol levels in the blood, therefore, consider limiting it in your diet.
Therefore, if you are a serious individual, and want to reduce your overall fat intake.
The vital thing to achieve it is by swapping from saturated fat to unsaturated fats.
Higher fiber starchy foods in your diet
A healthy, balanced diet should contain fiber starchy foods.
Fiber helps in burning body fat and reduces the consumption of calories.
It helps in satiety or it makes you feel full.
Including whole grain or wholemeal is very important as they help in energy production.
The starch foods include brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, and brown, wholemeal or higher fiber white bread(3).
Furthermore, they contain more vitamins and minerals.
Note: Starchy foods should make up just over a third of everything you eat.
Drink milk or dairy alternatives
Milk and dairy foods are essential as they are good sources of protein and calcium.
The protein helps keep in the growth of new muscle cells and calcium helps your bones to maintain healthy and strong.
The most appropriate milk or dairy products are skimmed milk, lower-fat hard cheeses or cottage cheese, and lower sugar yogurt.
They contain few calories.
If you cannot find a dairy product then you can choose a dairy alternative such as soya drinks.
Choose unflavored dairy products and calcium-fortified versions.
Eat protein For Healthy balanced diet
Make sure you have some protein in your diet.
Proteins help in the growth of new muscle cells also helps in the recovery and repair of worn-out cells in the body.
Protein also contains a wide range of vitamins and minerals that are essential for your wellbeing.
For instance, eating meat in your diet, it will provide protein, vitamins, and minerals important for the body function.
Meaning it contains iron, zinc, B vitamins, and vitamin B12.
The most recommended food rich in protein are lean meat, chicken or poultry, Beans, pulses, fish, peas, nuts, lentils, and whole eggs
Processed foods are unhealthy therefore limit consuming them.
Note: foods rich in protein are naturally very low in fat and high in fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals.
Fatty fish contains a high amount of omega-3 fatty acids, which helps in brain functions.
Omega-3 fats have powerful significance in your body such as fighting depression, minimizing the amount of fat in your liver, reduces blood triglycerides and helps prevent asthma.
Therefore, consider eating at least 2 portions of fish every week.
Fruit and vegetables
Actually, fruit and vegetables are a good source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
They are very important to your body as they help in the formation of strong bones and another metabolism.
Consider taking whole fruits at least per day such as orange, grapefruits, mango, apple, banana, pear, and guava and this should constitute a third of the food.
Vegetables are packed with a variety of nutrients required by the body.
Therefore, for a healthy, balanced diet, you need to include at least 5 portions of vegetables per day.
Vegetables are rich in omega-3 fats, carbs, vitamin k, water, and fiber.
For example, in the morning, adding a tablespoon of dried fruit, such as raisins, to your morning cereal or eat an apple.
At lunchtime, add a side salad to your lunch. In the evening, have a portion of vegetables with dinner and fresh fruit with plain.
Furthermore, eating enough vegetables and fruits helps reduce the risk of heart diseases, strokes, and cancer.
Make sure you drink enough fluids throughout the day to keep you hydrated.
This is essential as it helps for maintaining healthy hydration levels.
Drink at least 6 to 8 glasses per day(4).
Avoid drinking sugary beverages as they contain high calories.
Therefore, drinking too much may result in an increased amount of cholesterol in the blood.
In addition, when you often consume foods and drinks high in sugar you may result in weight gain and this may lead to obesity and dental cavity.
Eating too much salt may result in blood pressure, thus, exposes you to a high risk of heart disease and stroke. Ensure you drink enough fluid throughout the day.
Avoid consumption of flavored drinks especially processed drinks.
They contain high calories, which can lead to the formation of body fats and health hazards.
A reminder: If you have a special, dietary needs or a medical condition, kindly visit a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian for advice.
A healthy balanced diet is essential for your general health.
Eating a wide variety of foods in appropriate proportions, and consuming the correct quantity of food and drink to achieve and maintain healthy body weight.
Incorporate omega-3 fats and other unsaturated fats, proteins, and carbs, minerals and vitamins are vital in your diet.