Healthy Nutrition: Making Better Food Choices

According to the Mayo Clinic, healthy diet involves eating foods that provide your body with what it needs to function properly; it should consist primarily of eating clean foods, and avoiding those containing preservatives and additives. Clean foods mean whole foods in their most natural state. These foods provide your body with essential minerals, vitamins and nutrients; these can be found in a variety of food groups.

A healthy diet is essential to feeling your best and to help ward off obesity. Reports from Obesity Canada suggest that 10% to 25% of teenagers, and 20% to 50% of adults are overweight. To combat obesity and to maintain good health overall, proper diet is a requirement. Designing a healthy eating plan you can stick with can put you on the right track to better health.

Fruit

Children should consume at least four servings of fruit every day and adults should consume at least seven. Fruit sources include berries, apples, apples, melon and bananas.

Vegetables

Children should consume at least four servings of vegetables per day, and adults at least seven. Vegetable sources may include broccoli, spinach, romaine lettuce, sweet potatoes, squash and carrots.

Whole Grains

Children should consume at least three servings of whole grains per day, and adults should eat at least six. Whole grain food sources include brown rice, barley, oats, quinoa and wild rice.

Proteins and Protein Alternatives

Children should consume at least one serving of protein or protein alternatives every day. Adults should consume at least two servings of protein or protein alternatives. Protein sources include fish such as herring, salmon, trout, sardines and mackerel. Other protein sources include poultry such as turkey and chicken. For those who don’t eat meat, protein can be gained from other sources such as tofu, beans and lentils.

Dairy and Dairy Alternatives

Both children and adults should eat at least two servings of dairy every day. Dairy sources include skim milk, low fat cheese and yogurt. Alternative dairy sources include soy milk products.

Avoid Refined Foods

Avoid – or at the very least – limit your intake of refined foods. Refined foods such as cookies, cakes, pies, ice cream, potato chips and candy bars contain excessive sugars and carbohydrates.

Stay Hydrated

Be sure to drink lots of water on a daily basis. Drinking too little water may lead to dehydration. Water also helps keep your organs free from toxins by flushing them out your system. The recommendation is to drink eight glasses per day.

To combat obesity and to maintain good health overall, proper diet is a requirement. Designing a healthy eating plan you can stick with can put you on the right track to better health. #healthypandamom

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