One primary piece of advice that was omnipresent in our growing-up years was to eat healthily. The balanced diet and the food charts that we came across in our science textbooks became null and void after we reached adulthood. But the fact of the matter is that these food charts are not just for kids and teens, they suit an adult’s health as well.
In fact, a healthy, balanced diet will vary depending on one’s age, lifestyle and physical activity, but following a balanced diet with nutritious food contributes to a malnutrition-free environment. It also helps us fight various health issues, including both communicable and non-communicable diseases.
“Increased production of processed foods, rapid urbanization and changing lifestyles have led to a shift in dietary patterns. People are now consuming more food high in energy, fats, free sugars and salt/sodium, and many people do not eat enough fruit, vegetables and other dietary fiber such as whole grains,” says the World Health Organisation’s report (1) which also highlights the fact that an unhealthy diet and lack of physical activity leads to global risks to health.
10 Best Foods For Health
A well-balanced diet forms the basis of healthy living. Make sure to include these 10 health foods in your diet to stay healthy and happy.
- Pulses: There are different types of pulses, and they are rich in protein. Make sure you add pulses to your diet at least four times a week to get the necessary protein intake for the body. These are plant-based foods that are rich in fiber, magnesium and vitamins.
- Broccoli: One of the important foods that help heart health and contains cancer-protecting compounds. The high amounts of fiber content aid the process of digestion.
- Berries: Berries such as raspberries, strawberries, blueberries and blackberries are loaded with antioxidants. They help fight inflammation and give a healthy glow to your skin.
- Apples: Rich source of antioxidants and nutrients, helps gut health, reduce the risk of stroke and blood pressure. The famous adage ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ is certainly true.
- Greens: Green leafy vegetables are a rich source of vitamin K. There are different varieties of greens that have many benefits for overall health. Including one variety of greens in your diet, every day reduces cholesterol and heart diseases and has also proven to keep cancer at bay.
- Nuts: When hungry, nuts can come in handy as a healthy snack. Cutting down on junk and adding a bowl of mixed nuts to your diet plan helps with weight balance. Right from Keto to Vegan, nuts can be a part of various diet plans.
- Milk And Yogurt: A powerhouse of protein and calcium, milk and yogurt are rich in various nutrients. It helps in preventing osteoporosis and restoring bone and tooth health.
- Eggs: People fear that eggs might increase cholesterol, but having eggs does have some benefits. This protein-rich food is a great source of Vitamin D. They improve good cholesterol and help with weight management.
- Whole Grains: High in fiber, improves gut health. It is proven to reduce heart disease and certain cancers too.
- Fish And Meat: It helps with boosting brain health and with reducing the risk of autoimmune diseases.
Pro Tip: Make sure you consume all these 10 healthy foods in a week.
Healthy Eating Plate
A well-balanced plate comprising every component of health-rich food is said to be a healthy eating plate. Load half of your plate with seasonal fruits and vegetables, a quarter with grains, and the remaining with protein-rich foods. Make sure the food is cooked in moderate oil and reduce the intake of sugary drinks and caffeine.
Pro Tip: At least five portions of fruits and vegetables a day are recommended.
A Healthy And Balanced Diet
A well-balanced diet helps in maintaining overall health. Pregnant and lactating mothers should have a good intake of healthy food. Moderate inclusion of all these nutrients with frequent intake of water helps in maintaining body weight. Experts advise that the base meal should be rich in fiber as it aids the digestion process. If digestion issues are taken care of, that addresses the healthy functioning of other organs and parts of the body. Children who are two and above should try eating the food consumed by other members of the family. Make your meal selection healthy and wise by swapping junk with healthy options.
Pro Tip: Limit your salt intake to 5g a day.
Water is considered the elixir of life, but there are various other health drinks that can also be consumed. Green tea, black coffee, nut milk, freshly squeezed fruit juices and smoothies are some of the drinks that one should consider. These health drinks consist of tons of nutrients and vitamins, which help in boosting immunity, regulating mood and fighting depression. They also improve digestion and help fight against various diseases.
Pro Tip: Always prefer freshly made drinks and avoid canned juices and carbonated drinks.
Healthy Homemade Lunches
Making a healthy meal at home helps with building immunity. It helps in managing health better and reduces the risk of various ailments such as heart disease, blood pressure and cholesterol. A simple meal which is made at home is fresh, hygienic and always healthier than the food ordered from outside. It is convenient to order outside a day or two owing to one’s busy schedule at work or a client meeting, but make sure the option you choose is still healthy.
Pro Tip: Prefer vegetables and fruits that are seasonal.
A Balanced Meal
Pro Tip: Prefer steaming or boiling food items instead of frying.
Breakfast is considered to be the most important meal of the day, and it is not advisable to skip it. A busy workday is no excuse to skip breakfast. Keep nuts and a bowl of fresh fruits handy in case you cannot dedicate time for a sit-down breakfast. Various studies also reveal that a proper breakfast helps in aiding weight management. A healthy, nutrient-rich breakfast fuels the body and brain to function throughout the day. School-going kids especially should not skip breakfast as it is linked to attention span. A well-balanced breakfast helps them to pay attention and perform well at school.
Pro Tip: Reduce fat intake, especially saturated fat and trans-fat consumption.
FAQs On Healthy Foods
Q. What Should I Eat Every Day To Be Healthy?
A. Your everyday meal should consist of a good proportion of grains, pulses, nuts, greens, fresh vegetables and fruits and eight glasses of water. Limit the servings of poultry and meat to twice a week.
Q. Can I Eat Eggs Every Day?
A. Experts advise that a healthy individual can consume up to three whole eggs per day, which is considered completely safe.
Q. Is Rice Good For Your Body?
A. A rich source of carbohydrates, rice helps with fueling the body. It has low amounts of sodium, fat, and cholesterol, and it has not been proven to bring in any negative effect on the body.
Q. Is It Good To Eat Bananas Every Day?
A. One fruit that is available throughout all seasons, bananas are an excellent choice to be consumed every day. One to two bananas a day is considered a safe and moderate level of consumption.