Eating well to keep our bodies healthy and strong doesn't mean only getting the necessary amount of essential nutrients, but also adopting healthy habits when eating meals.
+ Eating properly doesn't imply only getting enough nutrients or eating in a disorderly manner. To make sure that foods are absorbed properly in the body for them to really be effective in supporting the health and keeping your weight under control you should make sure to:
MAKE SURE TO EAT DURING BREAKFAST
To kick start your day with a healthy meal, your breakfast should include:
• At least one low-fat, high-fiber energetic food: whole grain cereal, wholewheat bread, fruit.
• At least one low fat, high protein: skim dairy products such as milk, yogurt, or cream cheese.
• Quickly absorbed sugar (only when your weight is low): sugar, jams, and honey.
• Healthy fats (only when your weight is low): nuts.
• Plenty of liquids, in juices, water or infusions.
∎ Don't skip breakfast.
- • This is the first meal after the fast of the night which has allowed your digestive system to rest. Breakfast should keep the body energized and the mind clear all day long.
EATING SAFE FOOD
When food isn't fresh make sure to:
- • Don't eat foods that have been prepared in unsanitary conditions.
- • Throw out any dented or pinched canned foods.
- • Observe expiry dates.
- • Don't refreeze foods and make sure foods stay chilled.
- • Remember that although the freezer keeps food from developing bacteria, when you defrost it you should put it in the refrigerator or straight into the microwave immediately before cooking.
- • Don't keep foods out of the refrigerator for very long.
- • Make sure meat is cooked properly; only when the center reaches 158 °F/70 °C can you be sure that all bacteria have been destroyed by cooking.
- • Carefully wash all fruit and vegetables.
∎ Don't go long periods of time without eating during the day. One of the main culprits of weight gain is not eating anything for prolonged periods, because you are distracted or busy. It modifies your metabolism and when you finally eat, hunger and anxiety make it difficult to control what foods you're eating and the size of servings. You are more likely to eat junk food or over eat, making you gain weight over time.
A lunch in low fat proteins (fish, lean meats and egg whites) and complex carbohydrates from fruits and vegetables helps to keep your mind alert and calm, satisfying your appetite, because the meal incorporates all nutrients that you need. Carbohydrates for energy to help you work, aminoacids to improve neurotransmission and the break down and synthesis of proteins. Your body breaks down these nutrients slowly, providing energy for the whole day.
∎ Make sure that lunch serves its purpose.
That's to say that lunch provides you with the energy and nutrients that you need to help keep you going and keep you alert. Lunch shouldn't make you feel drowsy or sleepy because of the extra work breaking down food.
∎ Don't skip afternoon snack.
- • A long interval between lunch and dinner is the worst enemy of weight control.
- • The path to weight gain is “picking” before meals. If you get home tired and hungry before dinner, you are more likely to pick at snack foods like cheese, deli meat, crackers and wine, that have more calories than a well-planned meal.
∎ Eat a well-balanced dinner.
- • To keep you healthy, you should keep in mind that dinner should provide you with the nutrients your body needs.
- • The best dinner should complement your lunch.
- • Remember that while lean proteins help keep you alert, complex carbohydrates in pastas and grains and the sleep inducing aminoacid tryptophan in milk give off serenity and calm to help you get the repairing sleep you body needs.
A combination of pasta, vegetables and a low-sugar dessert like yogurt or fruit, with milk or cheese is a great option for dinner.
∎ Eat high quality foods.
- • It's important to look for and opt for foods that are low in fat, especially low in saturated fats.
- • Stay away from trans fats. Carefully, look at nutrition labels to find out if the foods have hydrogenated oils added. We should get fats naturally from foods like lean meats and dairy products, which provide more than enough to stay healthy. Excess fats are harmful for the health.
- • It's important to carefully read food labels on packaging to find out the nutritional information and ingredients.
- • You should check to see how much fiber is found in food, and opt for products that have a higher amount of fiber per serving.
- • You can also find out from food labels how much calcium and iron is found in the food product. Its best to choose foods that are low in fat and calories, but high in essential nutrients.