In nutrition, diet is the sum of food consumed by a person. The word diet often implies the use of specific intake of nutrition for health or weight-management reasons. Complete nutrition requires ingestion and absorption of vitamins, minerals, essential amino acids from protein and essential fatty acids from fat-containing food, also food energy in the form of carbohydrate, protein, and fat. Dietary habits and choices play a significant role in the quality of life, health and longevity.To be able to function properly, our body needs all the nutrients that come from foods, that is proteins, carbohydrates (sugar) and fats, plus vitamins and minerals. To help maintain a healthy weight and have the best chance to stay in good health, balance is key.
What is healthy or balanced diet?A balanced diet is a healthy diet. At all stages and conditions of life, we need a balanced diet that can be adapted while following the same principles, for example Children, elderly people need a little bit more protein and calcium for growth, maintenance or repairing. Think of eggs, fish, white meat, legumes and dairy products. A healthy diet may improve or maintain optimal health. In developed countries, affluence enables unconstrained caloric intake and possibly inappropriate food choices.A healthy diet provides the body with essential nutrition: fluid, macronutrients, micronutrients, and adequate calories. A healthy diet may contain fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and includes little to no processed food and sweetened beverages.It protects you against many chronic noncommunicable diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes and cancer. Eating a variety of foods and consuming less salt, sugars and saturated and industrially-produced trans-fats, are essential for healthy diet
Guidelines of nutritionThe WHO (the World Health Organization) has given recommendations in 5 points that summarize the basis of nutrition:
- Eat roughly the same amount of calories that your body uses. Healthy body weight = “calories in”- “calories out”.
- Eat a lot of plant foods: vegetables, legumes, whole grains, fruits and nuts.
- Limit your intake of fats, preferring the healthier unsaturated fats to saturated fats and trans fats.
- Limit your intake of granulated sugar, ideally less than 10g/day.
- Limit salt / sodium consumption from all sources