Diets are generally used for weight loss, for a better lifestyle, for avoiding complications in case of health issues, etc. With a diet that involves potatoes, rice and pasta, many fruits and vegetables, foods rich in proteins, like meat, fish, lentils, as well as the intake of milk and dairy products and recuing salt, fat and sugar is the best diet for providing the necessary nutrients to the body. The key for a healthy diet lies in the balance of food intake and its ingredients. A balanced diet involves a right proportion of a wide variety of food associated with drinks will lead to achieving a healthy body weight and will help maintain it.
There are thousands of obese and overweight people around the world and this leads to the idea that many of them are either eating too much, or are not eating healthy food. Drinks can be as well bad for the diet and the weight if these contain a lot of calories. Adults need to drink and eat less calories for losing weight, even with a balanced diet, and this is due to the advance in age. After a certain age, the body can not lose calories in the same way as it did before in younger years, that is why the same amount of exercising and the same balanced diet is not enough.
There are 5 groups of food and for a balanced diet, it is indicated to choose a variety of food from the first 4 groups. The five groups are:
Many people eat too much sugar and fatty products and drink high caloric beverages and forget about fruits and vegetables, as well as fiber. Every balanced diet must have some fat food in it, but it should never come in excess because this is not part of a healthy diet. The first group that contains fruits and vegetables are vital for the body because it contains vitamins and minerals. Nutritionists advice eating 5 portions of various fruits and vegetables per day for the best results. This reduces the risk for developing heart diseases, as well as stroke and some forms of cancer. One portion is usually measured as one apple, banana, pear or a fruit of a similar size. Then one slice of watermelon or pineapple is one portion as well. And about vegetables, 3 full tablespoons of it is considered one portion. Combining fruits for breakfast and as a snack before lunch, lunch with side salad, dinner with vegetables and dried fruits in the evening will make it 5 portions per day.
The second group is made of starchy foods and it should involve 1/3 of the food intake per day. Potatoes are a good source of fiber, especially if eating it skin, while whole grains full of fiber too: brown rice, whole wheat pasta and whole meal bread. The third group is involving all type of meat, as well as eggs and beans, which are all important for the growth and repair of the body cells, as well as a god source of vitamins and minerals. Meat contains zinc, iron and B vitamins. The best meat is poultry, preferably skinless. Fish is rich in protein and many other vitamins and minerals too.
Eggs and beans are rich sources of protein too, while nuts are good sources of fiber. Nuts also contain fat, so eating it with moderation is a good choice. The fourth group is milk and dairy products which are and important source of protein and calcium for keeping bones in a healthy state. Lo-fat dairy products will do great in a balanced diet to avoid too much fat intake. They are very rich sources of energy for the human body, however too much intake of these will lead to consuming more energy than the body can burn and this means an increase in weight.
Constant intake of fatty and sugary foods can lead to obesity and this increase the risks for various medical conditions like Type-2 diabetes, as well as some forms of cancer, heart diseases and stroke. There are two types of fat: saturated and unsaturated fat. The saturated fat is contained in such products like sausages, biscuits, cakes, pies, cheese and this can lead to an increase in the levels of cholesterol which increases the risk for heart diseases. Unsaturated fat is contained in oily fish, nuts, seeds, avocado, olive oil, vegetable oil, etc., that can help reduce the levels of cholesterol while providing the body with the needed fatty acids for the good functioning of the metabolism.
Cutting down the intake of food containing saturated fat and eating small amounts of food that are good sources of unsaturated fat is a good way to stay healthy. There are two types of sugar: the one that is contained naturally in certain foods, like milk and fruits, and the sugar that is added to the food and drinks that people eat every day. A balanced healthy diet involves cutting on added sugar and thus reducing the intake of such food as ice-cream, jam, pastries, chocolate, biscuits, cakes, sugary drinks, etc. Eating food with natural sugar in it is a good alternative.