Balanced Diet

Health practitioner Ann Wigmore once stated, “The food you eat can be the safest and the most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison”. The increase in diseases such as obesity, heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and even cancer, which are caused mainly by unhealthy eating habits, has throughout the past decade, proven that this statement is undoubtedly a fact.

It is good therefore to be careful of what you eat. The key after all to a healthy diet is not the amount, but the type of food you eat. With persons being so busy, and fast foods becoming so popular and easily accessible, not many people have the time to prepare properly balanced meals. Having a healthy diet however is very beneficial for your body and mind.

Before we talk about the benefits of having a healthy diet, you may be wondering what makes up a healthy diet? A healthy diet consist of having fruits and starchy foods forming the bulk of most of your meals. The remaining portion should be made up from milk, dairy foods and protein foods. Remember also that it is important to limit the intake of foods and drinks that are high in fat or sugar.

Benefits of a healthy diet

The benefits of eating healthy are numerous some of which include:

  • Good Immune System Health – Minimal deficiencies in certain nutrients can impair immune system function. A balanced diet is therefore very important to the immune system. Essential nutrients are critical in the production and maintenance of key germ fighting cells in the immune system.
  • Weight Control – Eating right along with regular exercise can help you to avoid excess weight. You do not need a rigorous exercise routine. Walking or cycling instead of taking a vehicle or taking the stairs instead of the elevator are beneficial exercises. A low fat diet also helps in losing weight or preventing weight gain. Eating more fruits and vegetables, having a healthy breakfast so as to avoid hunger spasm, which in turn will have you running to a fast food joint, all aide in controlling your weight.
  • Improves Mood – A healthy diet affects not only your body but also your mind. Eating healthy will leave you with a better physique, thus automatically causing you to feel better about yourself, boosting your confidence and self-esteem.
  • Boost Energy – When you eat a balanced diet, your body has the fuel it needs to manage your energy level. Healthy carbohydrates such as whole grains, fruits and vegetables, legumes and healthy proteins such as lean meat, poultry, fish, nuts and beans are vital for energy levels. They keep the blood sugar and insulin on an even level for a steady supply of energy.
  • Healthy Heart -The best weapon against cardiovascular disease is a healthy diet. Eating foods low in calories such as grains, fruits and vegetables, minerals and fiber, help control both weight and blood pressure which are risk factors to heart problems. Adding fish to your diet, especially salmon and trout, can help lower your risk of having coronary heart disease because they contain omega -3 fatty acids which is good for your heart.

A change to a healthy diet can be hard. The key is to aim for balance, look for variety and practice moderation.

  • Aim for balance – Try to eat from the different food groups, instead of just sticking to one or two foods groups for every meal. Your meals should include a balance of grains, protein foods, fruits and vegetables and dairy. Eat when you are hungry, do not starve yourself, and stop when you are satisfied.
  • Look for variety – Choose different foods from each food group. To make your diet seem less boring and a bit adventurous, try new foods. But make sure that your variety will have all the nutrients your body needs.
  • Practice moderation – Do not eat too little or too much of one food. Every food, even sweets if eaten moderately can be healthy for you.

What you eat does affect your body. It is therefore a good choice to have a balanced diet. Every time you eat or drink, you’re either fighting a disease or feeding it.  Are you fighting a disease with your current diet or feeding it?