Having a healthy diet has many benefits. It can help you lose weight or maintain your desired weight. It can lessen cholesterol and avert certain health conditions. In general, a healthy diet keeps your body running every day. Learn to choose healthier foods with this health food options.
Your path to better health starts here
The decisions you make about what you eat and drink are important. They should form a balanced and nutritious diet. We all have different calorie needs according to our age, gender, and activity level. Health states can also play an important role, even if you need to lose weight.
Choose foods from the five groups and follow the tips listed below.
Choose foodstuffs/products that list whole grains as the first ingredient. For example, whole grain bread or whole wheat flour. Whole grains have a low-fat content and a high fiber content. They also contain multipart carbohydrates that help you feel full longer and prevent you from overeating. Avoid foods that say “enriched” or that contain other types of grains or flours. They do not have the same nutrients.
Hot and cold cereals are low in fat. Instant cereals with cream may contain oils rich in fat or butterfat. The granola cereals can also have oils rich in fat and added sugars. Instead, look for options with low sugar content.
Try not to eat rich sweets such as donuts, and muffins. These foods often contain calories composed of more than 50% fat. Lighter options, such as angel cake, can satisfy your sweet tooth without adding fat to your diet.
|Instead of this:||Try this:|
|Croissants, buns, cookies and white bread.||Whole-grain bread, including wheat, rice, and whole wheat rye bread.|
|Donuts, cakes, and buns.||English muffin and small whole rolls.|
|Fried tortillas||Soft tortillas (corn or whole wheat).|
|Cereals with sugar and ordinary granola.||Whole grain cereals, oats, and low-fat granola.|
|Pretzels.||Cookies low in fat and sugar, such as animal crackers, graham, rye, water, salt, and oyster.|
|French fries or corn chips and popcorn with butter.||Pretzels (without salt) and popcorn (without butter).|
|White paste||Whole wheat flour pasta.|
|White rice.||Whole or wild rice|
|Fried rice and rice or pasta mixes with high-fat sauces.||Rice or pasta (without yolk) with vegetable sauces.|
|White wheat flour.||Whole wheat flour.|
Fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are naturally low in fat. They provide flavor and variety to your diet. They also contain the necessary fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Try not to add unnecessary fats to vegetables and fruits. This means avoiding margarine, butter, mayonnaise and sour cream. Instead, you can use yogurt, healthy oils or herbs to season.
|Instead of this:||Try this:|
|Regular/fried vegetables served with cream, cheese or butter sauces||Raw, steamed, boiled or baked vegetables mixed with a small amount of olive oil, salt, and pepper.|
|Fruits served with cream cheese or sweetened sauces.||Fresh fruit with a small amount of nut butter (peanut, almond or cashew).|
|French fries, including french fries, potato croquettes, and potato chips.||Baked potatoes or sweet potatoes|
Beef, pork, veal, and lamb
Select low-fat, lean meats. Lean beef cuts have the words “loin” or “round” in their names. Lean cuts of pork have the word “loin” or “leg” in their names. Remove external fat before cooking. Remove any internal fat, which can be separated, before eating it. Use herbs, spices, marinades, and marinades with low sodium content for seasoning the meat.
Baking and grilling are the healthiest ways to prepare these meats. Lean cuts can be cooked in a saucepan or sautéed. Use a non-stick pan or vegetable spray instead of butter or margarine. Avoid serving proteins with sauces and dressings with high-fat content.
Chicken breasts are a good option because they contain little fat and many proteins. Only eat duck and goose from time to time, due to its high-fat content. Remove skin and visible fat before cooking. Baking, grilling, and broiling are the healthiest ways to prepare poultry. Skinless birds can be grilled or sautéed. Use a nonstick skillet or cooking spray instead of butter or margarine.
Most seafood has many healthy polyunsaturated fats. Omega-3 fatty acids are also found in some fish, such as salmon and cold-water trout. Try to eat fish and seafood twice a week. Fresh fish should have a light color, a clean smell and a firm and elastic flesh. If good quality fresh fish is not available, buy frozen fish. To prepare the fish, you can boil it, steam it, bake it, roast it or grill it.
|Instead of this:||Try this:|
|Breaded fish sticks and croquettes, canned fish in oil, or seafood prepared with butter or served in a high-fat sauce||Fish (fresh, frozen or canned in water), sticks and fish croquettes on the grill, or low-fat seafood, such as shrimp.|
|Perfect and variegated cuts||Select lean cuts of meat, such as round cuts, tenderloin, and entrails.|
|Pork ribs and bacon.||Lean pork, such as loin and pork chops, and turkey bacon.|
|Common minced meat||Chopped lean or extra lean meat, minced chicken or turkey.|
|Cold cuts, such as pepperoni, salami, bologna and liver pate.||Lean cold cuts, such as turkey, chicken, and ham.|
|Hot dogs and common sausages||Hot dogs without fat and turkey.|
Choose nonfat or non-dairy milk, such as soy milk, rice or almonds. Try using low-fat or part-skim cheeses in recipes. Fat-free ricotta can be substituted for cream cheese or in a vegetable sauce. Use 1% cottage cheese for salads and cooking. The strand cheese is a snack option with high calcium content and low fat.
Low-fat or Greek yogurt can replace sour cream in many recipes. Try mixing it with fruit for dessert. A low-fat sorbet and frozen yogurt have less fat than ice cream.
|Instead of this:||Try this:|
|Whole milk or 2%||Skim milk (without fat), 1%, or non-dairy, such as soy, rice, almond or cashew.|
|Cream or evaporated milk||Evaporated skim milk|
|Regular milk serum||Low-fat milk whey|
|Yogurt made with whole milk||Low-fat, fat-free or Greek yogurt|
|Common cheese, including American, blue, Brie, cheddar, Colby and Parmesan.||Low-fat cheese with less than 3 grams of fat per serving, such as natural cheese / non-dairy tofu.|
|Common cottage cheese||Low-fat cheese, without fat and cottage cheese with less than 2% fat.|
|Common cream cheese||Low-fat cream cheese with less than 3 grams of fat per ounce or low-fat ricotta.|
|Frozen||Frozen sorbet or yogurt with less than 3 grams of fat per 1/2 cup serving.|
Fats, oils, and sweets
Too many high-fat foods add excess calories to your diet. This can lead to weight gain and obesity, or increase the risk of having certain problems. Heart disease, diabetes, some types of cancer and osteoarthritis have been linked to high-fat diets. If you consume large amounts of saturated and trans fats, you are more likely to develop high cholesterol and coronary heart disease.
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It is important that you stay hydrated for your health. However, sugary drinks contain a lot of sugar and calories. These include fruit juices, soft drinks, sports and energy drinks, sweet or savory milk and sweet tea. Substitute with water and other beverages with zero calories.
|Instead of this:||Try this:|
|Biscuits||Fig bars, gingerbread cookies, and molasses cookies.|
|Butter, butter, and margarine.||Olive, canola and soybean oils.|
|Mayonnaise.||Mayonnaise without fat or low in calories.|
|Salad dressing common.||Salad dressing without fat or low in calories.|
|Butter or grease to spread pans.||Non-stick spray oil.|
Aspects to consider when choosing healthy food options
Being healthy is more than a diet – it’s a lifestyle. Combine the choice of healthy foods with regular exercise and smart habits. Adults should do at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. Children and adolescents must perform at least 60 minutes of exercise per day.
If you smoke, you should stop smoking. You should also limit your alcohol consumption. Women should not drink more than one drink per day. Men should not drink more than two drinks per day. Talk to your doctor if you need help to stop smoking or drinking.
Benefits of Eating Healthy Food
Many follow a balanced diet to lose weight and be in shape, but the truth is that this also has advantages to protect mental health.
When talking about healthy diets, most people associate them with losing weight and maintaining a good figure. Eating healthy foods is essential for the brain and mind. Numerous scientific studies have shown that consuming the necessary dosages of healthy nutrients helps improve mental clarity, have a more balanced mood and prevent cognitive decline. These are the reasons why it’s worth eating more nuts, fruits and vegetables, and avoiding fried and processed foods.
1. You will sleep better
Several studies have shown that problems to fall asleep disappear if the person has a healthy and balanced diet. Others have pointed out that sleep disorders usually precede mental illnesses such as anxiety and depression disorders. For this reason, it is important to eat healthy foods and at certain times.
Generally, unhealthy diets are focused on foods that digested easily and produce hunger in a short time. This can damage the sleep cycle in the middle of the night. That’s why it is worth to respect the schedule, always try to eat at the same time and do it according to the diet recommended by the personal doctor.
2. You will save money
According to research published in the journal Health Affairs, people who have a healthy weight spend 42 percent less on medical bills and health expenses than those who suffer from overweight. Additionally, those who consume a lot of soda, package products every two or three hours, and ask for dessert after each meal, will inevitably spend more money.
Therefore, having a healthy diet can mean significant savings and will also reduce the risk of worsening mental health, as financial stress is a risk factor for developing disorders of this type, as revealed in a study published in The Journal Journals of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences.
3. You will be less malignant
There are people who by nature seem to be very malignant. What many do not know is that these attacks of anger usually appear in an unhealthy diet, rich in bad carbohydrates or “empty”.
These are mainly found in processed foods such as rice and white bread, desserts, and cookies with filling, among others. Those who consume them often feel hungry very often during the day, as they digest easily and have no nutritional content.
This feeling of hunger causes a decrease in dopamine levels, which implies having less control over emotions and a greater propensity to irritability, anxiety, mental confusion, and slow thinking. That’s why experts recommend eating good or “complex” carbohydrates, protein and healthy fats.
4. It will improve your mood
Numerous studies have shown that there are several nutrients directly associated with brain health and that when there are deficiencies increases the risk of developing depression and other mental illnesses. For this reason, it is best to eat well to obtain the micronutrients that abound in healthy foods such as omega-3 (salmon and walnuts), folic acid (asparagus and lentils) and vitamin B12 (tuna and milk) and magnesium (spinach and black beans).
This will always be better than taking antidepressants to improve mood. The best way to check for nutritional deficiencies is to have a routine blood test.
A healthy diet includes foods rich in antioxidants, such as carrots, tomatoes, olives, brown rice, and cabbages. Consuming them increases optimism as revealed in a study published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine, and decreases stress levels. It is important to suspend junk food, as it is not only connected with overweight and obesity but also increases the body’s stress cycles. It even alters brain chemistry and hormones designed to help the body fight stress.
By committing to a healthy lifestyle, you can reduce the risk of certain conditions. These include obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer. If you are worried, try to make small changes in your diet over time. Talk to your family doctor or dietitian if you have any questions.