Authorities have advocated healthy eating guidelines for overall wellness. The food pyramid and the basic food groups (go, grow and glow foods) are the traditional guides that most of us adhere to in order to meet our daily nutritional requirements. But the modern family knows how challenging it can be to follow these dietary guidelines. The many conveniences offered by processed packaged foods given our hectic schedules at school and work lead us to unhealthy food choices. As a result, obesity is at an all time high and many medial conditions have become the result of our avid consumption for pre-packaged food stuffs. To counter these, here are practical healthy eating guidelines that you and your family can use everyday to lose the excess fats and stay fit and healthy.
For starters, you can choose your carbohydrates wisely. While carbs are the body’s main source of energy, simple carbohydrates that come from processed foods and boxed meals cause blood sugar levels to rise and metabolism to slow. Complex carbohydrates that can be taken from whole grains, fruits and vegetables are the ideal carbohydrate source. If you’re having a particularly difficult time choosing the good carbs, keep a food journal so you are more mindful of whatever it is that you are snacking or nibbling on. Fats, too, have received a lot of flak lately. However, omega-3 fatty acids found in fish, plant-based oils and nuts are good fats. They contain anti-inflammatory properties that promote health, aid in weight loss and prevent degenerative diseases.
Another healthy eating guideline that you can follow is to make reading food labels a habit. Inasmuch as processed food cannot be avoided in this day and age, make sure that you carefully read the box. Most products that are labeled “fat-free” have double the sugar content. Conversely, “sugar-free” products may also be higher in fat. If you cannot go all-natural in your food choices, read food labels and opt for the healthiest processed food available, if such juxtaposition can be found.
Excess calories and unhealthy sugars are not only found in solid food, they are also present in processed beverages and alcoholic drinks. High fructose corn syrup is the culprit behind the ever-rising levels of obesity and they are found in the sodas we drink. Processed fruit juices are also chockfull of sugar. As such, soda, packaged fruit juices and alcohol should be avoided.
To stay fit and healthy, health authorities also recommend drinking lots of water or natural fruit and vegetable juices to keep the body hydrated and the appetite curbed. Drinking lots of water also flushes out toxins in the body more efficiently.
Never skipping breakfast is another healthy eating guideline that must be strictly followed. Eating the most important meal of the day fuels your body. Since you are full, you don’t binge or get tempted to snack on empty calories all throughout the day. Besides, eating breakfast keeps your metabolism running all throughout the day. Also, eating smaller meals spread out during the day also ensures that the metabolism keeps humming for a more consistent calorie-burn.
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