For thousands of years the connection between good food and great health has been depicted in many ways. Our ancestors knew the importance of eating good foods that can bring vitality to our system. But, in today’s fast paced world, good food seems to have taken a back seat in our priorities list. Many people even believe that fast foods and packaged foods can suffice to provide them the necessary nutrition.
The concept of good food has changed as people want to eat something that can be prepared easily and is extremely palatable. Good food was never about the quantity but quality. Junk and processed foods only promise to offer quality but end up adding inches to our waistline.
What is good food?
Contrary to popular beliefs, good foods need not be expensive or “delicious”. Instead, a good food is the one that caters to the nutritional needs of our body. The food that we consume should have a careful balance of vitamins, minerals, proteins, complex carbohydrates and dietary fibers.
Effects of good foods on the body
Good foods can do wonders when consumed in the regular diet. It can improve cardiovascular health, skin health and brain health. Nutritious food coupled with an active physical exercise routine is known to increase longevity and boost immune system.
- Eating balanced meal is a good way to prevent chronic diseases
- Good foods can help a person to stay fit and disease-free
- Various ailments can be effectively cured when medicines and balanced diet are planned appropriately
- Body can respond better to challenges in terms of stamina, strength and endurance when the person consumes balanced meals regularly.
Effects of good food on the mind
Most people know that healthy eating can keep them disease-free and obesity-free, but many do not know the effect of healthy foods on our mind. There are numerous studies that suggest that the diet influences mood and mental health of an individual to a significant extent. In one of the studies, it was shocking to see the strong links between regular consumption of processed foods and high stress levels.
- Excessive intake of sugary foods have been linked to anxiety disorders
- Diet that is not balanced and unhealthy has shown to cause chronic mental diseases such as Dementia, ADHD, Alzheimer’s and unhealthy diet can worsen Schizophrenia.
- People who consume fresh fruits and veggies are known to have a decreased risk of mental diseases
- Mentally ill patients often see some relief when they eat nutritious food along with a proper treatment
- Food seem to influence the way our brain functions in terms of cognition and emotions
How to start eating healthy
Eating healthy is on everyone’s mind but not many does it because it is easier said than done. However with few simple tips eating healthy cannot be difficult to achieve.
- Make a simple diet plan without any complexities. It is difficult to micro manage when it comes to calories or various food choices. Ensure to add in fresh foods and subtract processed foods from your diet.
- Know what go into your system. Reading the list of ingredients before buying your choice of healthy food is very vital and a good practice. The consumers need to get aware of various substances that can help or harm your fitness.
- Right changes in the diet make all the difference. While it is necessary to stop eating unhealthy food, it is even more vital to replace unhealthy food choices with healthy options.
- It is better to eat home cooked meals au lieu the takeaways. Cooking at home gives to the power to include healthier options in your meals.
- Gradual success is long lasting. You cannot leave sugar binging overnight. Even if you do, you are likely experience relapse. Instead, gradually reducing the binges can work for lobg-term.
- Eat on time. Our bodies respond better when we eat on time. Untimely food can cause stress and stomach distress.
- A heavy breakfast followed by good lunch can end with very light dinner in the night. Eat light in the night!
- Frequent meals are great ways to include healthy food options in your diet.
- Practice moderation
- Do not skip meals or resort to crash diets for losing weight
What to eat and what not to?
Aside from fresh fruits and veggies, leafy greens, nuts, seeds, fish, pulses, soya etc one can follow certain simple tips in their daily diet that can help them stay healthy.
In your daily diet you should include more of:
- Dietary fiber- Dietary fiber can ease your digestion problems and improve metabolic rate. For people with insulin sensitivity, good amount of fiber in their diet can help.
- Proteins- Proteins are known as building blocks of the muscles and cells. Pulses, nuts, seeds and fish are a great source of protein
- Complex carbohydrates- Complex carbohydrates are easily and slowly digested by our system that can help in blood sugar level maintenance. Some of the examples of complex carbohydrates include: beans, fruits, whole grains and vegetables.
- Cut down on salt and sugar- Eating more salt or sugar content can have undesirable effects on the health. Decreasing the intake of sugar and salt content is one of the effective ways to increase the quality of your diet.
- Rainbow cooking- Adding vegetables of different colors to your cooking can be equally fun and healthy. It is a wise choice to buy vegetables of various colors and hues. It is known that dark vegetables that have rich color contain more nutrients compared to paler vegetables or fruits.
- Dietary supplements- Dietary supplements are not that necessary if a healthy individual is eating everything that benefits the body. However, when you cannot draw nutrients from the food that you are eating (under treatment/medications) you can consult with your nutritionist to get a suitable dietary supplement.
- Last but not the least, mental readiness to eat good foods that benefit your health is very important without which there won’t be any motivation to go that extra mile to include healthier choices in your daily diet!
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