Five healthy habits for better eating

13 January 2016

It’s a proven fact that a balanced diet is one of the keys to physical and mental wellbeing. We need nutrients (carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins and minerals), fibre and water to keep our body running properly.

That’s why it’s important to follow a series of healthy steps and build them into our daily routine. Food is one of the best preventive medicines, so take note!

1. Follow a varied diet that doesn’t leave out any of the different food groups, since they all have a role to play and the nutrients they provide are vital for our body to work at full potential. For example, carbohydrates and fats give us the necessary energy for our vital functions and physical activity, proteins help build our tissues, and minerals help regulate the body’s functions.

2. Keep cholesterol at bay! Eat healthy, unsaturated fats, which you’ll find in foods like olive oil and nuts, rather than saturated fats (sausages, full-fat dairy products, etc.) and as far as possible avoid trans fats (mass-produced baked goods, margarine, etc.).

3. Don’t skip meals. You should have a full, varied breakfast (with dairy products, fruit or vegetables and cereals) to start the day firing on all cylinders. It’s best to eat carbohydrates at lunch (to avoid accumulating energy you’re not going to burn) and have a light dinner. And don’t forget to have some fruit or yogurt as mid-morning and afternoon snacks.

4. Add fibre to your diet. Don’t forget to eat the recommended five pieces of fruit and vegetables a day, as well as pulses and cereals. Fibre doesn’t count as a nutrient because it doesn’t act in the body’s internal processes, although it does play a major role in digestion.

5. Drink water. Human beings need water to stay alive so we should drink water regularly throughout the day, even before we feel thirsty. Between 1.5 and 2 litres of water a day is enough, given that we also take in water from other foods such as fruit and vegetables.

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