What is healthy eating? What are the benefits of healthy eating? What are list of healthy foods and beverages that can help you reduce the risk of chronic dieseases?
Healthy eating simply means eating wholesome and balanced food that contributes to good health and eliminating foods that leads to illness, diseases and health problems. Healthy foods are foods and beverages that contain the essential nutrients, are low in saturated and trans-fats, salt and sugar.
The food you eat should contain the right amount of simple and complex carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins and minerals. Some examples of healthy foods are organic food, whole grains, unsaturated fats, fruits, vegetables and water.
The benefits of healthy eating are to keep your body strong, energized and well nourished. Eating healthy is important to support life processes and growth and maintaining an appropriate body weight. Maintaining a wholesome and healthy diet and following a healthy eating plan is important because it helps you avoid the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis and certain cancers.
There are several ways to know if you aren't eating properly. The obvious are when you find yourself overweight or underweight with health related problems, feeling fatigue or lack of energy or having symptoms of the lack of nutrition or vitamins and minerals deficiency.
There are three other ways to find out if you haven't been following a healthy eating plan.
The most common way is to measure your BMI or body mass index. It is a measurement of your weight in relation to your height. The BMI is a tool that can help you identify if you are of healthy weight, underweight, overweight or obese. A BMI of under 18.5 is too thin. Normal weight is between 18.5 to 24.9. A BMI between the ranges of 25 to 29.9 is considered overweight and over 30 is obese.
Here's a free BMI calculator to check your BMI.
You can also check your waistline or waist measurement to determine it because this is where you carry your excess kilos. According to several medical studies, a waist circumference greater than 80cm or 32 inches for women and 94cm or 37 inches for men indicate increased risk of obesity and cardiovascular disease. A measurement of 88 cm or 35 inches in women and 102com or 40 inches for men is at the danger level.
The other way of measuring is to measure your waist-hip ratio. What you have to do is measure the circumference of your hips at the widest part of your buttocks and then divide by your waist measurement. If you have more weight around the waist, you will face more health risk.
Now that you know the benefits of healthy eating, here are a few healthy eating tips and good eating habits.
Choose food that when combined are easily digestible. Unsuited food combination causes stomach upsets, digestive disorders and gas. And it takes more energy to digest incompatible food combination.
High bad cholesterol level happens when you eat too much saturated fat. Excess fat also makes you feel lethargic and unhealthy that limits your movements and it affects your overall health and wellness.
Avoid diet programs that guarantee that you can lose weight without any physical effort or a healthy eating plan. Check before you try the over-the-counter diet pills. The ingredients may cause side effect that is harmful for your heart.
A US study shows that eating fast food more than twice a week has strong links with weight gain and insulin resistance.
Fluids prevent dehydration. Drink lots of nonalcoholic, decaffeinated liquids. Freshly squeezed fruit juices are the best fluids. Stay away from alcohol as it contributes to dehydration.
Include food supplements or vitamins according to the recommended dosage especially if you are cutting out certain essential food due to allergy or some other reasons.
Avoid food except fruits and juices before going to bed and have your dinner before 9:00 pm.
Eat grilled, broiled, steamed or raw food instead of fried. Eat your chicken with the skin removed.
Eat slowly and refrain from talking while you are eating. When you gulp your food or drinks, you swallow excessive amounts of air. It may result in gaseous build up. Avoid drinking through a straw for the same reason.