Healthy eating is important for many reasons. The benefits of healthy eating can be experienced right away along with preventative measures like avoiding diabetes or heart disease. Healthy eating is also one of the most effective ways to lose weight or maintain the weight you’re at and you will feel better when you follow a healthy diet of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, dairy, and other healthy food choices.
One of the most important parts of eating healthy is adding whole grains to your diet. You should aim for making half of all the grains you eat whole grains. Whole grains include rice, pasta, bread, oatmeal, breakfast cereal, grits or tortillas made of the entire grain kernel including the germ, bran and endosperm. Whole grains include whole wheat pasta, whole wheat bread, whole wheat tortillas, whole grain bread and bagels, and brown rice.
The next important food to consume when you want to eat healthy is vegetables. It’s incredibly easy to add more vegetables to your daily diet by adding them to different types of meals and they include a wide variety of vitamins and minerals that are the basis of healthy eating. If you or your family doesn’t care for vegetables, try adding them to fun dishes such as having minestrone soup, adding lettuce and other vegetables to your sandwiches at lunch time or filling up half your plate with salad and the other half with your other dinner items.
Along with vegetables, fruit also includes a lot of health benefits with their many vitamins and minerals. A healthy eating plan involves whole grains, fruits and vegetables as part of a balanced diet. Fruits are best when served fresh, though frozen fruits are also acceptable as long as they don’t include any added sugar. If you go for canned fruits, choose those packed with water only, never heavy syrup or sugar Fruits are packed full with vitamin C, folic acid, dietary fiber, and potassium as well as being naturally low in fat, calories, and sodium.
You should also get plenty of calcium with low-fat dairy products such as soy milk, milk, yogurt, and cheese. These foods not only have plenty of calcium for building strong bones, but they also include vitamin D, protein, potassium, and other nutrients that you need for a healthy diet.
Lastly, add protein to your diet. If you eat meat, choose lean cuts of meat, preferably not luncheon meat or processed meats like sausage, bacon, or hot dogs. Try to fill up on chicken and fish and limit the amount of red meat you eat. If you’re a vegetarian, you can get your protein from soy, tofu, nuts, seeds, beans, and legumes.