A healthy diet consists of the following: fruits, vegetables, whole grains (e.g., unprocessed corn, beans, millet, oat and wheat), nuts and legumes (e.g., unrefined chickpeas, kidney beans, almonds, sesame and peanut butter). At least 400 grams (i.e., five servings) of fruits and vegetables a day. Foods that are considered unhealthy or not meeting the recommended dietary allowances include fast food, fried foods, junk foods, desserts, sugar, confectionary, deep-fried foods and starchy foods. Alcohol and tobacco consumption should be limited. Smoking should be quit completely.
In order to achieve and maintain a healthy diet, you need to know how and when to eat. For people who want to lose weight, low-calorie diets are usually recommended. The main benefits of such diets are reduced caloric intake without compromising the intake of essential nutrients. In order to prevent chronic diseases, healthy diets should consist of at least a combination of whole grain foods, nuts, legumes and fruits.
It is a good idea to eat breakfast, especially in the morning. Breakfast provides the energy needed for the rest of the day and is also an essential nutrient source. The first meal of the day should contain at least three servings of fruits and vegetables. Fruit juices, milk, cereal and yogurt are all important sources of carbohydrates. Eggs are another good source of protein.
Healthy diets should be balanced and include foods from each group. The most popular healthy diet is the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) pyramid. The USDA pyramid has seven categories of foods containing different nutrients that are necessary to live. Foods are categorized into three groups: Grains, Vegetables, and Fruits. A healthy diet does not include all foods in one category; instead, it focuses on foods from each group.
Some studies have shown that a low-fat, low-calorie diet may lower the risk of heart disease and some types of cancer in Americans. One of the most important elements of a healthy diet is drinking at least two glasses of pure water daily. Water helps maintain your body’s pH levels and aids in digestion. Water also lubricates and removes toxins from the body.
Americans spend about twenty-five percent of their lives eating foods that are considered unhealthy. Changing your lifestyle and improving your healthy dietary practices can make a big difference in your long term health and well-being. Make a list of healthy foods that you enjoy and make a grocery list of foods that are low in calories. Start implementing healthy dietary practices and get moving!