A balanced diet is a diet that contains differing kinds of foods in certain quantities and proportions so that the requirement for calories, proteins, minerals, vitamins and alternative nutrients is adequate and a small provision is reserved for additional nutrients to endure the short length of leanness. In addition, a balanced diet ought to offer bioactive phytochemicals like dietary fibre, antioxidants and nutraceuticals that have positive health advantages. A balanced diet should offer around 60-70% of total calories from carbohydrates, 10-12% from proteins and 20-25% of total calories from fat.
HEALTH BENEFITS OF A BALANCED DIET
According to research, healthy eating increases energy, improves the way your body functions, strengthens your immune system and prevents weight gain. The other major benefits are:
Meets your nutritional need. A varied, balanced diet provides the nutrients you need to avoid nutritional deficiencies.
Prevent and treat certain diseases. Healthful eating can prevent the risk of developing certain diseases such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease. It is also helpful in treating diabetes and high blood pressure.
Following a special diet can reduce symptoms, and may help you better manage an illness or condition.
Feel energetic and manage your weight. A healthy diet will assist you to feel higher, provide you with more energy, and help you fight stress.
Food is the mainstay of many social and cultural events. Apart from nutrition properties, it helps facilitate connections between individuals.
HEALTHY COOKING TIPS
With today’s fast life, cooking a meal in the traditional style is extinct. People mostly opt for eating less healthy fast foods, ready to eat meal packets, etc.
To make a healthy meal, the most important thing is to cook it at your home, rather than opting for outside cooked food. Explore healthy ways to add variety to your meals as repetition can cause boredom. Infuse your diet with the excitement and good taste you crave for. Here are a few suggestions for cooking healthily.
Having to choose healthy food does not mean you need to give up on your favourites. Think of how you can turn your favourites into a healthy option. For instance:
1.Decrease the meat and add more vegetables to your dishes.
2.Use whole wheat flour instead of refined flour when you bake.
3.Blot your fried foods to take off the extra oil.
4.Use low-fat yoghurt instead of mayonnaise
5.Add cut fruits to your curd, rather than having flavoured yoghurt
6.Try to skim milk instead of a normal one.
7.Use non-stick cookware to reduce the need for oil to cook.
8.Microwave or steam your vegetables rather than boiling them to avoid loss of nutrients.
9.Fats in your foods should be maintained at a minimum.
10.Choose lean meats and skim dairy products. Fats are good in the form of nuts, seeds, fish, olives when they are accompanied by other nutrients. Some amount of fats while cooking is good as to help the body to absorb fat-soluble vitamins.
If you wish to use oil, try cooking sprays or apply oil with a pastry brush. Cook in liquids (such as vegetable stock, lemon juice, fruit juice, vinegar or water) instead of oil. Use low-fat yoghurt, low-fat soymilk evaporated skim milk or cornstarch as a thickener instead of cream.
Choose to scrub the vegetables than peel as there are many nutrients in the skin. When you have to boil the vegetables, retain the vitamin-rich water and use it as a stock in another preparation.
Switch to a reduced salt wholemeal or wholegrain bread.
For sandwiches, limit your use of spreads high in saturated fat like butter and cream cheese; replace with scrapings of spread or alternative nut spreads or low-fat cheese spreads or avocado. Choose reduced-fat ingredients like low-fat cheese or salad dressing.
Add a lot of vegetables to your sandwich to make it healthier.
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