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Maintaining A Balanced Diet

Maintaining A Balanced Diet

What is a balanced diet?

A balanced diet is a healthy diet that fulfills all the nutritional needs a person requires to function correctly. Humans need a certain amount of calories and nutrients to stay healthy. Eating a balanced diet helps you maintain good health and reduces the risk of multiple diseases. A balanced diet comprises a healthy mix of carbohydrates, proteins, calcium, fat, vitamins, and minerals. Your diet should include fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and lean proteins to get these essential nutrients.

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Why is it important to follow a balanced diet?

  1. These foods are rich in vitamins and minerals that help maintain your cells, tissues, and organs.
  2. A well balanced diet helps you stay fit. It allows you to maintain a healthy weight, reduces the fat percentage in your body, and gives you energy.
  3. A balanced diet includes proper nutrition, which results in strengthened immunity. This provides your body to fight against harmful germs and viruses, thus keeping you healthy.
  4. A well-balanced meal leads to improved brain functions and helps keep your mind active.

How to maintain a healthy and balanced diet?

Creating and following healthy eating habits shouldn’t feel like a chore. Start with making small changes to your daily diet, and soon you will make a big impact on your eating pattern, which will lead to a healthier lifestyle.

Here are some tips to help you maintain a healthy diet:

  1. Create a meal plan and stick to it.
  2. Include fruits and vegetables in your diet.
  3. Switch from refined grain to whole grain foods.
  4. Drink at least 2-3 litres of water everyday.
  5. Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk.
  6. Include protein-carb-vitamin rich snacks.
  7. Be physically and mentally active.
  8. Have necessary starch and healthy fats.
  9. Prepare healthy snacks.
  10. Sleep well.

Finding the balance

We all love processed foods and they are okay in moderation, but you can always look for healthier alternatives to maintain a balanced diet! We have compiled a list of some healthier alternatives for you:

  1. Baked popcorn or made-at-home popcorn with a drizzle of olive or vegetable oil is a source of good dietary fibre.
  2. Ice-creams and Greek yogurt are great options loaded with calcium and protein.
  3. 70% cocoa dark chocolate bars are a guilt-free indulgence, and they are rich in antioxidants, protein and fibre.
  4. Tortilla chips made from kale and other greens contain the right amount of nutrients.
  5. Sweet potato fries have a high amount of carbs, calories, dietary fibre, and vitamin A.
  6. Cheese cubes will give you a boost of calcium and protein. You can top the cheese with fruit or nuts for bonus vitamins.
  7. Oatmeal cookies are packed with fibre, calcium and iron.

Physical and Mental Health

In addition to following a healthy and balanced diet, remember to exercise regularly as well. Physical activity not only improves physical health but also improves your mental health. A balanced diet and regular physical activity can help you:

  1. Achieve and maintain a healthy weight.
  2. Reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.
  3. Reduce the risk of certain forms of cancer.
  4. Strengthen muscles, bones, and joints.
  5. Improve mood and energy levels.

Follow the 3Rs

Reflect - on your eating habits.

Replace - your unhealthy eating habits with healthier ones.

Reinforce - your new, healthier habits.

Let’s take a look at a few simple tricks to help maintain a balanced diet and a healthier relationship with food and eating:

  1. Keep a food diary for a few days to evaluate what you eat every day. Write down how you felt when you ate.
  2. Create a list of “cues” by reviewing your food diary to become more aware when you’re “triggered” to eat for reasons other than hunger.
  3. Circle the cues on your list that you face on a daily or weekly basis.
  4. Ask yourself about the cues you’ve circled; is there anything else you can do to avoid the cue or situation?
  5. Replace unhealthy habits with new, healthy ones.
  6. Reinforce your new, healthy habits and be patient with yourself. 

Moderation is key when it comes to diet. Enjoying your favourite treats in moderation is a more realistic, sustainable and healthier approach than restricting or cutting out any food groups. A well balanced diet with proper exercise and enough sleep will lead to a healthier lifestyle. To ensure that your meals are balanced and nutritious, always consult your dietician to know what diet works for you.

At Pace, we believe in balance, so we stock your favourite snacks and fresh fruit and veg, so you can stay healthy and happy at home!

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