If you want to preserve health, slim and beautiful body as long as possible – eat properly! Healthy nutrition is the key to a long life, and even a child knows about it. What do you need to do to live up to a hundred years? Food and Nutrition Magazine is sure that the secret of longevity is a healthy and nutritious diet.
What is healthy nutrition?
Healthy nutrition is nutrition that ensures the growth, normal development and vital activity of a person, contributing to the strengthening of his health and the prevention of diseases. Adherence to healthy eating practices combined with regular exercise reduces the risk of chronic diseases and disorders such as obesity, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer.
The basic principles of healthy eating:
- Eat only when you are really hungry;
- Eat slowly, chew food thoroughly;
- Eat only sitting;
- Do not try to swallow the entire portion at once, put it in your mouth in small pieces;
- Eat only when you are calm and relaxed;
- Eat no more than 4 meals at a time;
- Move a lot;
- Try not to drink water while eating and do not drink the liquid immediately after a meal;
- The main meal should be at lunch;
- During the meal, do not be distracted by foreign objects and try to concentrate on the process of eating. This technique helps maximize digestion;
- Food should be as fresh as possible. Do not eat what was cooked yesterday. Do not be lazy to cook again;
- Food should be natural;
- Eat more fiber. Fresh vegetables and greens should always be on your table;
- Compliance with these principles of healthy eating will help you gain health, as well as help you keep yourself in shape.
How malnutrition affects our health
Our nutrition-related associations often begin and end with weight-related problems. But such an assessment is very conditional and is only a partial truth. It turns out that various obscure ailments in the form of fatigue, irritability, etc., which we most often attribute to stress and/or other all sorts of circumstances, may be associated with unhealthy diets. Therefore, visits to doctors, newsletters and pills aimed at supporting our body, bring us a symbolic result with temporary relief.
If we do not take timely measures to change our eating habits, then the list of ailments over time can be replenished with really serious diseases: diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and even some types of cancer.
Youth does not help us to think about such things, but with age weight problems go into the background, and you get the first diagnoses in your medical books.
So, the signs of malnutrition:
- Excess weight;
- Fatigue, especially unmotivated;
- Fast fatiguability;
- Anxiety, decreased mood, depression;
- Low stress tolerance;
- Sleep apnea;
- Reduced brain activity in the form of memory impairment, concentration, decision-making, etc.;
- Reduced personal effectiveness.
Why is it important to eat healthy foods?
As opposed to improper nutrition, balanced nutrition supports our body in optimal health, which is manifested by a number of external and internal signs, sensations and effects. And we begin perhaps, with life expectancy.
The effect of healthy eating on life expectancy
The duration of our life depends on how healthy we eat. The World Health Organization cites shocking figures: at least 2.7 million people worldwide are dying because they do not get enough fruits and vegetables in their diets.
The effect of healthy eating on the heart
Cardiovascular diseases are the number one cause of death worldwide. This includes death from coronary heart disease and strokes. When we come to the doctor with complaints of increased pressure, interruptions in the heart, etc., he first assesses our appearance (for example, overweight), finds out our unhealthy habits, studies the tests and most likely, prescribes a diet. Moreover, the success of treatment will depend directly on how we follow the recommendations on nutrition. But is it worth waiting for a reason to visit a doctor to start taking care of your heart? We can start to regulate, for example, the quantity and quality of fats that we eat. The heart is negatively affected by saturated fats (red meat, palm oil, margarine). On the contrary, there is a mass of various research evidence that a diet low in fat, cholesterol and sodium reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
The effect of healthy nutrition on the brain
The activity of our brain directly depends on nutrition. This indirectly confirms the fact that a small piece of chocolate can improve our performance and mood. But still you should not expect that absorbing chocolate in large quantities, you will have a fresh look and vigorous life. Recent studies completely refute this misconception. For its good work, the brain needs many nutrients:
- Folate (meat, beans, greens – cabbage, spinach, broccoli);
- Omega-3 fatty acids (fatty fish, flaxseed, almonds, pecans, walnuts, eggs);
- Vitamin C (berries – blueberries, raspberries, plums and cherries, bell peppers, citrus fruits, dried fruits – prunes, raisins);
- Vitamin E (nuts, vegetable oils).
In addition, the brain “loves” food with minimal cooking. A large amount of processed food can also cause irritability, fatigue and difficulty concentrating. And we become less creative, which is very dangerous for people whose life is connected with creativity. Proper nutrition, improves blood supply to the brain, which helps prevent even Alzheimer’s disease.
The effect of healthy eating on digestion
Each of us periodically observed these or other violations of this important system of the body. Are you aware that digestive discomfort may indicate a lack of soluble fiber in the diet? As a consequence, our intestines may not work properly, which can manifest as a kind of constipation, and in the form of diarrhea. Food and Nutrition Magazine reminds you that soluble fiber can delay gastric emptying, regulates nutrient absorption in the small intestine, and promotes healthy stools.
The recommended daily dose of fiber: women – 25 grams, men -38 grams.
Another important aspect is that healthy nutrition maintains a healthy intestinal environment. It is formed by a huge number of bacteria, which must eat good food. In this regard, we need products with probiotic properties.
The effect of healthy eating on metabolism and weight
Even a child knows that excessive weight gain or weight loss indicates a person’s poor nutrition. Lack of weight suggests that the body is chronically lacking important nutrients. Excess weight indicates that food contains a large number of empty calories. In both cases, a person needs a balanced diet to maintain a healthy weight.
Besides the fact that a properly balanced diet directly supports a healthy weight, it is also a direct regulator of metabolism. For example, a large amount of fruits and vegetables affects fat and carbohydrate metabolism, which can contribute to the process of losing weight and normalizing weight.
A nice bonus to weight normalization can be improved blood pressure, lowering cholesterol and the risk of type 2 diabetes.
The effect of proper nutrition on our mental health
Many scientific studies convince us of the positive effects of nutrition on mental health. Some time ago even a new direction appeared in psychiatry – nutritional psychiatry, which studies the effect of healthy eating on a person and the treatment of people with the help of a diet.
It has already been proven that a balanced diet plays a huge role in the prevention of mental problems such as stress, bipolar disorders, schizophrenia, depression, Alzheimer’s disease, etc.
The reason for such positive effects of healthy food on the brain is the direct effect of biologically active substances (vitamin B, zinc, folic acid), which improve mood, as well as provide smoother assimilation of sugars by the body. Slow and unsharp digestion of sugar protects us from mood swings.
Impact of a healthy diet on immunity
Unhealthy eating habits can cause reduced immunity. Under these conditions, we tend to get sick, and we can also suffer from poor wound healing.
Recent studies have suggested that good nutrition can work wonders with our resistance to disease. Proper use of vitamins and minerals, such as A, C and E, zinc, selenium, iron and folic acid increase immunity.
How proper nutrition affects skin and hair
Many people know that a healthy diet helps clear our skin from rashes. But this is only part of the nice bonuses associated with the healing properties of food. Proper nutrition provides elasticity, fresh and bright appearance of our skin, helping us to fight wrinkles and various pigmentation disorders. We should include more fruits and vegetables in a balanced diet. Their biologically active substances stimulate the production of their own collagen and other substances, and therefore the risk of premature aging of the skin is reduced.
It should also be noted that a beautiful and safe tan can also be achieved thanks to healthy components of the diet. According to scientists, a diet that includes a lot of vegetables and fruits, leafy greens, olive oil and fish can even protect us from melanoma.
Besides, unbalanced diets can deplete the body and make our hair fragile and prone to loss. Conversely, proper nutrition with sufficient amounts of vitamin C, zinc, iron, protein can delay the process of hair loss and early graying hair.
Impact of healthy nutrition on the skeletal system and dental health
We cannot but mention the benefits of a balanced diet for our teeth and bone tissue. And it’s not just a beautiful posture and an attractive smile.
Since childhood, we are taught to care for our teeth properly in order to keep them intact and extend their lifespan. Unfortunately, 2-fold cleansing and other manipulations with the oral cavity are not a guarantee that we will keep good teeth by old age. Signs of an unhealthy diet can include periodontitis, tooth decay and loss. The connection with food becomes obvious if we consume a lot of sugar. Even if we eat small doses, the risk of caries increases.
An unhealthy bone system suffers from osteoporosis. In contrast, a balanced calcium-rich diet helps preserve our bone tissue and prevent osteoporosis. The recommended daily intake is 1000 mg of calcium for adults aged 19 to 50 years. Eat dairy products with a small amount of fat, cheese, yogurt, green vegetables, broccoli, fruit juices and cereals. In addition to calcium, you should eat more foods containing vitamin D.
Below you can read the conclusions that we draw from this analysis of the benefits of proper nutrition to our health:
- We look and feel better;
- Our mood improves. We become happier;
- We become more energetic, creative, stress-resistant and positive, because of which our efficiency at work improves;
- Our immunity increases;
- Our life expectancy is increasing;
- Proper nutrition reduces the risk of serious diseases: coronary heart disease, strokes, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease and even depression, thereby saving money on medications;
The good news is that a healthy diet for the brain will work equally well for the heart and for weight control. And we do not need to concentrate our attention on particulars. You just need to start following the principles of healthy eating!