Spread the love We have all been there. Sooner or later we all hit a weight loss plateau. No matter how hard you diet or train the scale is stuck. Those pounds of fat that were once falling off effortlessly are now clinging to your body for dear…
Eating Healthy – Explained Simply & Benefits of Healthy Diet?
Eating healthy does not mean you should constantly be on a strict diet, killing yourself in the gym or being unrealistically thin. You should balance your diet well. You should eat enough depending on your physical activity throughout the day. Eat more and you will gain weight, eating less and you will lose weight, regardless if you are eating healthy or not. You should not deprive yourself of the foods you love, rather, eat them in moderation. Eating healthy is about feeling great, improving and stabilizing your mood, having more energy and improving your overall look.
We could be debating and fighting over which foods you should or should not include into your eating healthy diet, to the end of time. One expert will tell you to go ahead and eat certain type of food because it is healthy to eat it on the other hand, another will tell you exactly the opposite. In a world where almost everything is processed and made to taste better you cannot expect to not make a mistake sometimes and eat something unhealthy, as a result, I have seen on multiple occasions people to not like some foods, but when they try them processed they love them. Imagine how much the fruit, veggie, meat etc. has been processed and altered in order for you to like it even if when it is fresh you cannot stand it?
In order to be eating healthy you need a well balanced diet. A balanced diet is one that gives you the right amount of right nutrients from different sources to meet your daily needs. Therefore, in order for you to achieve great and healthy well balanced diet you should consume your calories from:
Foods to include:
- Fresh fruits. You should choose your fruits that are at their best in the season that you buy them. They are fresher and provide more nutrients.
- Fresh vegetables. They should be your primary source of vitamins and minerals in your eating healthy routine. Green leafy veggies are the ones highest in nutritional value and you should eat them every day. Here are some examples: spinach, kale, green beans, broccoli, collard greens etc.
- Whole wheat grains. For the bread to be white they need to process it and by that I mean to remove the hull. The hull is the outer shell where most of the nutrients are stored. Brands that produce whole grain foods prepare them using the whole grain without removing the outer shell so, you get the healthy nutrients, therefore, by eating whole grain foods you are not causing a spike in the insulin levels. The more stable insulin levels you have the better.
- Proteins. Meats and beans are primary sources of protein, which is essential for proper muscle and brain development. You should be eating meats that are low on saturated fats such as chicken, fish and certain cuts of pork and beef. Grass- fed choices are ideal. Other good sources of protein that are beneficial for your health are: lentils, beans, peas, almond, sunflower seeds, walnuts and other nuts. Also, tofu, tempeh, and other soy-based products are excellent sources
- Dairy. Dairy products provide calcium, vitamin D, and other essential nutrients. However, they are high in fats, therefore, you should consume full- fat products in smaller portions. Plant-based milks, such as those made from flaxseed, almond, or soy are typically fortified with calcium and other nutrients making them excellent alternatives to cow milk.
- Oils. You should consume them with care. Good oils, such as olive oil, can replace fattier vegetable oil in your diet, rather than the ones that contain empty calories (calories derived from food containing no nutrients), like deep fried foods.
Foods to exclude:
Aside from including certain foods in your healthy eating diet, there are foods you need to exclude in order for your diet to be healthier. As a result you need to reduce foods such as:
- Refined grains
- Solid fats
- Saturated fats
- Trans fats
The easiest way to control hunger is to drink plenty of water. Because your brain and muscles prefer to work in a hydrated state; you will help your recovery from exercising and keep your kidneys free of debris. According to USGS, up to 60% of the human adult body is water; blood is 92% water according to www.freedrinkingwater.com. Water is also the single most critical nutrient for health, growth, and development. Water is critical to the balance of all the body's systems, including the brain, heart, lungs, kidneys and muscles. You should drink about eight ounces of water for every hour you are awake, if you are physically active you should drink even more so that you can replenish the water you lost during exercise.
Calories are measurement of the amount of energy some type of food has. Your body uses these calories to do everyday activities. As a result, for a healthy diet you should not eat more than you need, because obviously you will gain weight, and if you eat less you will lose weight. An average male should eat around 2500 calories and an average female should eat around 2000 calories.
How much calories your body needs depends on different factors such as:
- Age. Growing children and teenagers need more energy.
- Physical activity. More physical activity more energy needed and vice versa, less physical activity less energy needed.
- Size. Our weight and height affect how quickly we use energy
United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) provides examples of recommended daily calorie intake:
- children ages 2 to 8: 1,000 to 1,400 calories
- active women ages 14 to 30: 2,400 calories
- sedentary women ages 14 to 30: 1,800 to 2,000 calories
- active men ages 14 to 30: 2,800 to 3,000 calories
- sedentary men ages 14 to 30: 2,000 to 2,600 calories
- active men and women over 30: 2,200 to 3,000 calories
- sedentary men and women over 30: 1,800 to 2,200 calories
Benefits of healthy diet
Eating healthy is not always easy, rather, at times it can be a bit hard. Especially when a lot of people around you feast on foods that are high in artificial sugar. Eating healthy and having a healthy, well-balanced diet can not only improve your look, but it can improve how you feel too. In the long run, it can even save you money on future health-care costs.
- Weight Control. I am sure everyone knows this, but it definitely deserves to be here. Maintaining a healthy weight can lower the risk of certain diseases. When starting your day with a healthy breakfast you can avoid getting overly hungry later throughout the day, which can send you running to the fast-food restaurants.
- Improves mood. Eating healthy and maintaining a healthy diet will improve how you feel! We like eating carbohydrate- rich foods because they are associated with increase in serotonin (brain chemical that improves mood.). We can link healthy foods that contain tryptophan (turkey, yogurt, fish) to mood improvement because the body converts tryptophan to serotonin.
- Fewer cravings. Unstable insulin levels in your blood stream can cause you to have cravings. On the other hand, complex carbs and lean protein stabilize those levels and over time the more balanced your diet is these cravings will lessen. As a result, you will resist the urge to reach for unhealthy, high in sugars snacks and it will help you in maintaining healthy weight.
- Combats diseases. Eating healthy diet can help in keeping certain biomarkers, such as cholesterol and blood pressure within their target range. As a result, you lower the risk of cholesterol, stroke, heart diseases etc. The Mayo Clinic says that regular physical activity and proper diet can help you prevent or manage a wide range of other health problems, including metabolic syndrome, diabetes, depression, certain types of cancer, and arthritis.
- Boosted energy. We have all experienced that lethargic feeling we get after eating too much unhealthy food.On the other hand, eating healthy foods can give you the same energy for your daily activities without the lethargic feeling.
If you are not preparing for some sort of competition there is no need for you to have too strict diets. On the other hand the calorie intake guidelines are just that, guidelines. First of all, use them just to know where to start your healthy eating habit and over time tweak it to fit your needs. Make sure you eat the right nutrients from the right sources and you are all good. Strive for progress not perfection.
Try eating healthier and you will feel better for sure! Eat your calories from the right sources and in the right amounts. Always opt for fresh and unprocessed foods. Hydrate yourself regularly and stay away from those sports drinks that claim they have more energy in them, because they are full with artificial unhealthy sugars and you will feel that “energy” for very short period of time because of the fast absorbing carbs. On the other hand you will cause chaos in your bloodstream from so much sugars. Listen to your body and closely monitor how you feel. It will show if you are going on the right path, for sure!
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