Erin writes for a number of blogs on various health, nutrition, and wellness topics.
Food's Effect on Health
You might often hear that, for good health, you need to exercise regularly as well as eat right. Today, let’s focus on the eating right aspect.
There’s a lot of food you see at the grocery stores, and different kinds of food mean different kinds of nutritional qualities. Many food products are highly processed and refined. While some processed foods aren’t bad at all, many are.
According to the NHS, some processed foods contain ingredients like added salt, sugar, fat, and flavorings that cause people to consume more than is recommended. These foods are often also higher in calories. So, try to buy foods that are less processed. Why?
For the sake of your health! Processed foods can affect health negatively if you’re not careful. Medical News Today says chemically processed foods, also called ultra-processed foods are a major contributor to obesity and illness worldwide.
They explain that while mechanical processing doesn’t make foods unhealthful, chemical processing can. Eating heavily processed foods like frozen or instant meals, baked goods, packaged foods, cereals, crackers, chips, candy, reconstituted meats, and soda can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disorders, and all-cause mortality.
All this is due to the added sugar, artificial ingredients, refined carbohydrates, low amounts of nutrients, lack of fiber, high amount of calories, and trans fats in highly processed and chemically altered foods.
The solution? Practice healthy eating and adopt a balanced diet!
How a Balanced Diet Might Look
What does a balanced diet look like? There are a few ideas out there, here’s a couple:
- ChooseMyPlate— MyPlate suggests filling half your plate with fruits and vegetables, the other half with protein and grains, and having some dairy for every meal. Eating healthier means focusing on variety, amount, and nutrition.
- The Power Plate— The Power Plate is one quarter fruit, one quarter legumes, one quarter vegetables, and one quarter grains. It focuses on plant-based eating that lowers the risk of many diseases while supplying your body with the nutrition it needs.
A healthy diet often includes plant foods like fruits and vegetables. In his HubPages article, David says a healthy diet should consist of all three macronutrients (protein, carbs, fats) and a variety of micronutrients (vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, etc).
Without the proper nutrition, your health will deteriorate fast. Not only will your risk of disease go up, but your chances of developing diabetes, osteoporosis, arthritis, and other health problems will too. The body needs certain nutrients for cells, tissues, organs, pretty much everything.
How Do You Eat Healthier?
When choosing which foods to buy, other than trying to eat more whole plant foods, Harvard Health advises people to ignore the marketing claims on the front of packages and inspect the ingredients instead. Reading the ingredients will tell you if there are many of those unhealthy additives.
Look over your grocery list, does it contain much produce? Or mostly snacks? Fruits and veggies can make great snacks too!
You can also try recipes that implement more plant foods. There are plenty of delicious salads and other hearty meals that can satisfy you while being plant-based.
If you don’t want to change much, you can try whole food supplements. Whole food supplements are better than other supplements because they are made from whole food. Whole plant foods supply your body with the nutrition it needs to properly function.
Whole food supplements are meant to be more convenient than trying to completely overhaul your diet. Instead of taking the time to research how to use more plant foods in your cooking, simply take a whole food supplement. Some popular brands include Athletic Greens, Balance of Nature, Nature’s Way, SuperBeets, Texas Superfoods, and more. Find which is best for you.
Nutrition is important for your overall health. Poor nutrition will increase your risk for numerous diseases and health problems. Conversely, eating a healthy, balanced diet, will lower your risk of disease and help you body function.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Erin Day