Healthy Diet: What is a healthy diet? So much information reaches us that it can mislead us. Write down these keys, and you will see that it is much easier than you think.
A healthy diet supplies you with the nutrients (vitamins, minerals ) and energy that your body needs. As a book definition, it is impeccable but very unclear and applicable.
It is much easier to understand that a healthy diet is, for example, our traditional diet, the Mediterranean diet. Why? Because it includes all food groups (carbohydrates, fruit, vegetables, cereals ), proteins (meat, fish, eggs, legumes), and fats (nuts, olive oil). Still, its base is mainly vegetable (fruit, vegetables, legumes, and cereal). Do you want more details? Keep reading.
1. What Foods Should a Healthy Diet Include
Carbohydrates. When we think of them, we immediately think of bread, rice, pasta, or potatoes, but we rarely think that vegetables and fruit are also carbohydrates, which is very important. Legumes also provide carbohydrates, which are also a vegetable protein (that is, they offer more than one necessary nutrient).
For this reason, in a healthy diet, the usual thing is that the base is vegetables and vegetables and bread is an accompaniment or the protagonist of breakfast or snack, white pasta or rice can have a day or two to the week of prominence, to be the main dish, but, in general, they should be included as a garnish.
And fruit is the most recommended dessert and one of the best snacks during the day.
Proteins Another word that almost instantly refers us to the fillet of veal. But protein is also tofu or chickpeas. The World Health Organization (WHO) proposes that plant proteins make up 75% of the diet, and animals, 25%.
Therefore, it is essential to prioritize the consumption of vegetable protein, that is, legumes and soy derivatives such as tofu textured soy or seitan (which is made from gluten from cereals), or new Vegetable “meats” that are emerging now like Heure, Beyond Meat, or Quorn.
And as for animal protein, it is better to eat more fish than meat and within the heart, poultry, or red rabbit (veal, lamb ). Eggs are also a good option, and if there are no health problems, you can eat up to one each day.
Dairy products also provide protein, and you have to take 2-3 servings a day (milk, yogurt, cheese ). And it is more advisable that dairy is whole than skim because the fat in yogurt is considered healthy.
Fats Fat is essential in a healthy diet, but it must be healthy, such as olive oil, nuts, and fruits such as avocado. Avoid those that come from processed and ultra-processed foods (sausages, pastries ).
2. Healthy Servings
The rations must be adjusted to the person’s size since, logically, that of a man of 1.80 meters and 90 kilos of weight cannot be the same as that of a woman of 1.60 meters and weighs 60 kilos.
And to know the ideal portion, your body is the perfect measure. For example, a serving of vegetables is what you can fit in both hands; a part of rice is what you can do in a fist; the meat, the palm of your hand without the fingers.
Another straightforward way to get the quantities right is to use the Harvard plate. Here is how to distribute the amount of each food group (half a plate for vegetables, a quarter for protein, and a quarter for cereals, rice, or potatoes). For dessert, fruit or yogurt, which, like other dairy products, does not need to be skimmed.
3. For a Healthy Diet, Avoid Ultra-processed
But the healthy diet is not just eating healthy foods but avoiding unhealthy ones. This is one of the recommendations made, for example, by the American College of Cardiology. And what should we avoid?
Well, ultra-processed foods, foods too high in fat, sugar and salt, preservatives, colorings, additives. But not only those that we buy in the supermarket, we must bear in mind that homemade pastries also have to be
something specific. For example, in our grandparents’ days, cakes and sweets were for special celebrations, not for everyday life.
4. How is the Typical Menu of the Healthy Diet
Breakfast. Mini or whole-wheat toast, cereal or rye with ham, turkey meat, tuna to which you can add sliced vegetables and tea or coffee with or without milk. Or rolled oats cooked in milk or soaked in yogurt or kefir with fresh fruit and tea or coffee with or without milk.
Mid-morning and mid-afternoon. A fruit or a yogurt and a handful of nuts; a carrot; a hard-boiled egg; a handful of baked chickpeas
Food. Salad or vegetable dish, second of legumes or derivatives such as tofu, meat, fish or egg, and seasonal fruit.
Dinner. Boiled or steamed vegetables, vegetable cream or soup, fish, egg or tofu or hummus (two highly digestible ways to eat legumes at night) and a fruit or yogurt.