Healthy Eating: The Basics

healthy eating

Everyone knows the importance of staying physically active. But it is equally important to pair your efforts with a balanced diet to be at your personal best. Did you know that up to 80% of premature heart disease and stroke can be prevented through your lifestyle and habits? This includes eating a healthy diet and being physically active.

Why a Balanced Diet Is Important

Healthy eating helps maintain your body’s everyday functions, promote optimal body weight and prevent chronic diseases. The nutrients in the food you eat support your daily activities and routine, protect your cells from environmental damage and repair cellular damage when they occur.

A healthy diet can help lower your risks of chronic diseases by:

– Reducing blood pressure

– Improving cholesterol levels

– Helping to manage weight

– Controlling blood sugar

How to Achieve a Healthy Diet?

At the heart of a nutritious diet are foods low in unnecessary fats and sugars, and adequate in vitamins and minerals. Canada’s Food Guide recommends eating a variety of healthy foods every day.

1. Eat Vegetables and Fruits

Vegetables and fruits are packed with nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and fibres. They help you manage your weight by keeping you full longer.

2. Choose Whole Grain Foods

This includes whole grain bread, crackers, brown or wild rice, quinoa, oatmeal and hulled barley. Whole grain foods have proteins, fibres and vitamin B.

3. Eat Protein Foods

Protein foods include legumes, nuts, seeds, tofu, fish, shellfish, eggs, poultry, lean red meats, milk, cheese and yogurts, and fortified soy drinks. Protein helps build and maintains muscles, bones, organs and skin.

4. Have Enough Fluids

Stay hydrated by having enough fluid from water, nutritious beverages and fruits.