By Gilbert Atta Quainoo
Another aspect of a healthy diet is ensuring that when you add up all your meals for the day, it is adequate pertaining to the need of your body.
Age, gender, height ,weight, body fat and other body composition indices ,activity level ,medical condition present and others all affect the body’s requirements.
A dietician can really be of great help with this .See one today to get your body composition measured and to help you create a diet plan that is designed to suit your body need.
HOW TO EAT
As it is said, variety is the spice of life and food is no exception .If possible ,aim to vary your meals .Try to experience different foods from the various food groups by being creative and adventurous with new recipes and combinations, in as much as your feeding your body in a healthy way. Having one particular dish almost every day of the week, especially when the reason for doing so is not because it’s your favorite dish, but to stay healthy, although you don’t really like the dish. You would probably get fed up and are more likely to return to eating unhealthy. Eating must pleasurable be a experience and food should be enjoyable.
Timing play an important role in your bid to provide your body with good nutrition .You can be doing yourself more harm than good when you have healthy meals but at the wrong time. To have at least your three main meals daily; breakfast, lunch and supper, four to five hours. So if breakfast is eaten by 8am (which is the appropriate time) ,lunch should be between 12 -1;30pm ,and supper from 5-6;30pm .Healthy mid meal snacks is are allowed and can be preferably a serving of fruit for example ,an orange ,pawpaw, apple and etc. Meals taken after 7pm should be light; a cup of tea or a bowl of light soup or salad,etc. Having good timing of meals keeps your body in check, thus enabling you to stay healthy.
So in all, food should be balanced, adequate and varied .It must be eaten at appropriate time and in moderation.
GOOD HEALTHIER CHOICE ARE;
Plan your meals and stick to it. Make a shopping list comprising of everything you intend to buy before you get tempted to get the attractive yet unhealthy foods.
Read food labels of packaged foods to assist you to make healthier choices and don’t also to check the expiry dates.
Avoid overheating food including oils as it reduces the quality of food .Vegetable and Fruits are especially encouraged to be taken as fresh as possible.
Buy, cook and store food in ways that keep them safe to consume. This means buying food items from hygienic sources, covering prepared meals when not in use, etc.
Choose and prepare foods low in salt. Replace artificial spices with natural ones likes prekese, ginger, dawadawa, garlic, mint, coriander etc.
Cut down or if possible, avoid alcohol. Limit the intake of refined and processed foods. These foods are high in saturated and Trans fat, as well as sodium and preservatives. Examples include processed meats, canned and take away foods. Cook at home more often and try to eat out less. It’srelatively easier on your pocket while you’ll know exactly what is in the food .Opt for low fat cooking methods like steaming, grilling and boiling instead of frying.
Limit intake of sugary foods and beverages as well as high fat snacks such as doughnuts, biscuitsand crisps. Swap them for whole fruits.
Some fruits juices aren’t made from real fruits, but rather concentrates and sugar while most lack fiber .It is also easier to consume a lot in one sitting.
Make eating times regular and slow down your eating by chewing more and taking smaller bites .These will reduce the likelihood of unintentionally eating more food.
What ,when and how much you eat and drink ,plus being physically active all play vital role in being healthy .Bad habits are difficult to break and changing your diet entirely at once could be disastrous.
Nonetheless, you would not regret the decision you take to adopt a healthier lifestyle. Make small change a day at a time and notice amazing results .It is possible and you can do it
The writer is a student of Ghana Institute of Journalism