Healthy Eating is a Balancing Act

We are inundated with stories about how healthy eating can prevent serious diseases like obesity, type II diabetes, and heart disease, but the messages can be mixed about just what that is. Understanding a few things about food and nutrition is a good way to get the answer.

The crucial part of healthy eating is a balanced diet. A balanced diet – or a good diet – means eating from all the different food groups in the right quantities. There are five main food groups: whole grains, fruit and vegetables, protein, diary, and fat & sugar.

  • Whole grain
    • unlike refined grains, still has the bran and the germ attached.
    • we should consume at least 3 ounces of whole grains per day.
    • are rich in fiber, minerals and vitamins.
    • To be really sure something is whole grain, you have to read the label. In the list of ingredients, the word whole or wholegrain needs to appear before the name of the grain.
  • Fruits and vegetables
    • are rich in vital vitamins, minerals and fiber.
    • may protect from developing heart disease, diabetes type 2, and cancer.
    • Most health departments throughout the world recommend that we consume five portions of fruit and vegetables each day. This could include either fresh, frozen or canned, or dried.
    • A portion means either one large fruit, such as an apple, mango, or a banana, or three heaped tablespoons of vegetables. It could also include one glass of 100% fruit or vegetable juice.
  • Protein
    • is the building and repairing of tissue in our body.
    • Protein-rich foods also include essential minerals, such as iron, magnesium, zinc, as well as B vitamins.
    • should make up about 20 to 25 percent of our nutritional intake.
    • The following foods are good sources of protein:
      • Tofu
      • Meat
      • Poultry
      • Fish
      • Eggs
      • Beans
      • Nuts
  • Dairy
    • a good source of calcium which is important for healthy bones and teeth.
    • Dairy products include:
      • milk
      • yogurt
      • cheese
    • Nutritionists say we should aim for low fat dairy products.
  • Fats
    • There are two basic types of fats –
      • saturated
        • Cream, margarine, and fried foods are high in saturated fats.
      • unsaturated
        • Vegetable oils and oily fish are rich in unsaturated fats.
  • Sugars
    • Sugary foods and drinks, like some sodas and sweets should be kept to a minimum because they are high in calories and bad for your teeth.

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If you live in the Las Vegas area and are considering bariatric surgery, schedule an appointment with Dr. Shawn Tsuda. He and his team of experts can help you find the right treatment for your unique situation.

food pyramid


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