Healthy nutrition is the basis of a healthy lifestyle. Your diet in combination with physical activity can help you to maintain the desired weight, and boost your overall health. It also reduces the risk of diseases like heart diseases, diabetes, and cancer.
Healthy nutrition for adults
Healthy nutrition for adults includes the foods rich in nutrients like vitamins, minerals, fiber. These foods nourish our bodies by fulfilling those requirements that keep you healthy. Include foods that are rich in nutrients:
• Fruits and vegetables
• Whole grains like oats, brown bread, and brown rice
• Nuts and seeds
• Low-fat milk and other dairy products like cheese or other substitutes
• Eggs, seafood, lean meats
How can you follow a healthy diet plan?
Below are some tips to follow a healthy diet plan
• Eat low fat/low sugar snacks
Wherever you are, whether, at home or work, healthy snacks can help you to tackle hunger and also prevent you from overeating.
• Choose colorful vegetables every day
Choose green leafy vegetables like spinach, fenugreek, mustard greens and reds and oranges like tomatoes, red peppers, carrots, sweet potatoes.
• Eat breakfast every day.
Don’t skip breakfast, it prevents you from overeating.
• Eat whole grains frequently
Eat whole grains like oats and brown bread, brown rice, and pasta.
• Choose fresh fruit over artificial fruit juice
Artificial juices have little to no fiber, and most of them have added sugar.
• Use olive oil and other healthy oils
Use Olive oil, canola, and peanut oils. They are healthy for your body.
Adults of all ages who are physically more active require more calories in comparison to those who are less active. The quantity of food you should eat depends upon factors like age, sex, and how much physically active you are. Men require more calories as compared to women. The requirement of calories for younger adults is more than middle-aged and older adults.
Healthy nutrition for pregnant women
A pregnant woman needs more amount of calcium, iron, protein and folic acid as compared to a woman who is not expecting.
Based on this, a pregnant diet is divided into five food groups:
3. Whole grains
4. Lean protein
5. Dairy products
Fruits and vegetables
Pregnant women should eat more fruits and vegetables, especially during the second and third trimesters. These foods are not only low in calories but they have enough amount of vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
Pregnant women should eat foods rich in protein, for example, cheese, tofu, beans, nuts, seeds, eggs, meat, and fish.
Pregnant women should eat more whole grains foods as they provide energy and also an important source of iron, vitamins, and fiber. Some of the examples of whole grains are oatmeal, wheat bread, brown rice.
Consume dairy foods (milk, cheese, and yogurt) 3-4 times a day when you are pregnant. They are rich in calcium, vitamin D and protein.
Pregnant women are recommended to take a daily prenatal vitamin to get some of the nutrients that are not possible from diets alone, such as folic acid and iron. It is not always possible to get enough amount of folic acid from diet only. It is therefore recommended to take folic acid 600 micrograms daily. Pregnant women having an age of 19 or more require 1,000 milligrams of calcium daily while pregnant teens aging between 14 to 18, require 1300 milligrams per day. Pregnant women should receive 27 milligrams of iron per day.
Healthy breakfast, lunch and dinner ideas
A balanced diet focuses on fulfilling all the nutrients requirements of your body. It consists of macronutrients like fats, carbohydrates, and protein as well as micronutrients like minerals and vitamins.
The requirement of these nutrients can be fulfilled through a combination of the five major food groups:
Fruits and vegetables
Pulses and cereals
Fats and oils
You require three main meals every day to let your body function properly. The breakfast should be the heaviest meal of the day but because of the hectic schedule, most of the people don’t manage to eat this meal properly. Dinner should be the lightest meal but becomes an elaborated family meal in most of the households.
The basic elements of the balanced diet are same with the only difference how they are presented in every meal.
Here are some breakfast, lunch and dinner ideas
A healthy breakfast comprises of three things that include dietary fiber or carbohydrates (wheat bread, wheat flakes, oatmeal, white oats) proteins (eggs, yogurt, milk, and sprouts) and nuts (almonds, cashews, walnuts, apricots, and figs).
Include high-fiber whole grains in your lunch like brown rice, barley, starchy carbs and some protein-rich foods like cottage cheese, pulses, fish. Also, consume probiotics like yogurt or buttermilk. Have salads to complete your meal.
Fill your dinner plate with green vegetables to get vitamins and minerals. Limit carbohydrates but don’t cut them off completely. Include healthy fats in your dinners like fish, nuts and seed oils.
The breakfast should be taken about 1.5 hours after you wake up. There should be a gap of at least three hours between breakfast and lunch and the same between lunch and evening tea time. Dinner should be taken at least two hours before your sleep time so that the body can complete the digestion process.
Exercises for a healthy living
Exercise is a great way to boost your health. At the same time, by doing physical exercises you can have fun and feel better. Make a goal to do exercises of different types for 150 minutes/week if you are doing moderate-intensity exercise or 75 minutes/week of vigorous exercise.
You can do different types of moderate and vigorous exercises like walking, running or swimming. Do strength training two times a week. Examples are lifting free weights, push ups, pull ups, body weight squats and many more.
Always ask your doctor if you are going to start a new exercise programme especially in case if you have any chronic disease such as diabetes, heart disease.
Benefits of exercising
Exercise can help you to maintain weight because when you do physical activity, you lose some calories.
Regular exercise helps to prevent a wide range of health problems and diseases, including diabetes, arthritis, depression etc.
Physical exercises trigger various brain chemicals that may help you to feel relaxed and happier.
Regular exercising improves your muscle strength and stamina because when you do physical activity, oxygen and nutrients are delivered to your tissues which in turn helps your cardiovascular system to perform efficiently.
Promotes sound sleep
Regular physical activity can help you to fall asleep faster and also you have a sound sleep.
Improves sex life
Regular physical activity can improve your stamina and physical looks which in turn improve your sex life.
Yoga and meditation for a healthy living
Yoga and meditation have important health benefits. By practicing yoga and meditation, you can keep a balance between the body, mind, and spirit. It improves the breathing techniques. Below are the benefits of yoga and meditation:
Boosts your Immune System
With a practice of yoga and meditation, you can get physical and mental relaxation. Many studies have proved that relaxation boosts the immune system.
Encourages Good Eating Habits
People who practice yoga and meditation regularly also follow a healthy diet. A healthy diet can improve your health.
Yoga positions pull the muscles, ligaments, connective tissues and increase your range of motion. With a regular practice, it can improve your flexibility.
Yoga and meditation is a very powerful way to combat stress naturally. It is therefore recommended for people who experience stress and anxiety in their daily life.
Helps in Lowering Blood Pressure
When there is stress, there are chances of high blood pressure. As discussed before, yoga and meditation help to fight stress. So, with a regular practice, it can lower your blood pressure.
Healthy lunch ideas for kids
Health food is important for the growth of kids. When children go to school, it is necessary to offer them healthy as well as delicious choices for lunch.
Here is a list of foods you can give to your kid in lunch
Fresh fruits, crunchy vegetables
Dairy food like cheese slice, grated cheese or yogurt
Protein-rich foods such as boiled egg, peanut butter
Starchy food for e.g. Bread, Fruit bread
Some suggestions for lunch boxes:
Fruits and vegetables
Include fresh fruits or tinned fruits. You can prepare a small box of mixed vegetables like carrot, capsicum, cherry tomatoes, cucumber.
Include different types of bread in lunch boxes such as flatbread, fruit buns, muffins, rice cakes. Fillings of the sandwich can include peanut butter, cheese, egg, grated carrot, baked beans
Yogurt and custard
Fruit yogurts and custard can be included in a lunch box. They must be kept cool in an insulated tiffin box. But avoid giving desserts and flavored milk as they are high in sugar.
Muffins and cakes
Prepare cakes and muffins at your home which is a great way to include more fruits as well as vegetables.
Food safety for lunch
Food safety is also necessary along with healthy nutrition. Food is kept in lunch boxes for many hours, so the lunch box is needed to remain cool.
Insulate the lunch box is the best choice to keep your lunch fresh. Always prepare food by following hygienic methods because the food is stored in the lunch box for several hours. Dairy products, eggs should be kept cool and to be consumed within four hours of preparation.