Whoever said that you can not have your cake and eat it too? Having a proper diet doesn’t mean starving yourself, but instead, it means eating the right types of food. The body needs its daily supply of nutrients, and going without proper nourishment can only make matters worse. A healthy lifestyle does not only consist of a healthy diet, but also keeping an active lifestyle. Exercise and brisk walks in the park could prove to be a better alternative to taking medications. Always remember that the best way to health is to keep everything natural.
This famous food pyramid gives a good visual presentation of the amount and type of food that should be eaten daily. It is shaped like a pyramid and divided into compartments representing a specific food type. This serves as a basic guide on what type of food is good, and what recommended amount should be taken for better health.
The US Department of Agriculture has released the latest food pyramid, depicting a more accurate and clearer description of how much and what type of food should be taken daily. This is different from traditional food pyramids, which only showed approximate recommended daily consumption amounts. Food types are divided into 6 different colors contained in 6 triangles of varying sizes making up the food pyramid. The new pyramid represents the recommended proportion of food-type intake. Unlike the old pyramids, the new pyramid is not based on a 2,000 calorie daily intake. The new pyramid is represented in this format to allow more flexibility in planning individual diets.
- Orange represents grains. Grains should provide 6 ounce-equivalents (1 ounce-equivalent means 1 serving), half of which should be whole grains.
- Green for vegetables. Vegetables should provide 5 servings or 2.5 cups.
- Red represents fruits. Fruit groups should provide 4 daily servings or 2 cups.
- Yellow represents oil. Oils should provide 24g or 6 teaspoons
- Blue for milk products. Milk should provide 3 cups/servings
- Purple represents meats and beans. Meat and Beans Group should provide 5.5 ounce-equivalents or servings.
The new food pyramid represents a new look in how a person chooses his diet. Additional calories may be taken if all guidelines have been met. An additional 267 calories of solid fats and sugars may be consumed once all requirements are met.
Fat Fighting Foods and Drink
Another good way of eating your way to better health is by choosing better foods to eat. Eating considerable amounts of certain types of food could significantly lower undesirable fat in your body. Below is a list of fat fighters that could help you burn those unwanted curves:
- Oranges–these citrus fruits contain flavones, which help burn and drive away those fatty deposits in your body.
- Sweet potatoes–higher in fiber content compared to their white siblings, sweet potatoes keep insulin levels in check, keeping those unwanted curves at bay.
- Almonds–rich in alpha-linolenic acids which speeds up fat burning, almonds could prove to be a good substitute to chips in passing those idle hours.
- Soybeans–they are not only a good source of protein, but soybeans also save you from fat deposits. They contain choline, a compound that not only burns fat, but also stops fat absorption.
- Swiss cheese–not all cheese is created equal; cheese is a good source of calcium, which limits fat-producing enzymes. Some cheese, however, contains fat, so stick with low-fat cheese and milk products.
- Berries–eating berries could help you lose those flabby thighs by providing energy for those workouts. Not only are they a good source of vitamin C, berries will give you that extra boost in the gym.
- Red wine–a glass of red wine after dinner does not only refresh, but is also a good way of burning those fats. Studies have shown that red wine helps lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.
The Good and the Bad
Modern living with all its amenities has certainly made life a little bit easier. But along with the good things that technology bring comes their negative effects on health. A short stroll to the grocery stroll is replaced with a quick ride in the car. Physical exertion does not only build a strong physique, but also helps burn those unwanted fats. Even traditional values such as home-cooked meals are being replaced by quick calls to the nearest Chinese or pizza fast food restaurant. The truth is that life is moving so fast today that everything seems to be a blur.
America is one of the richest and most technologically-advanced countries in the world today. One simple question is shouldn’t America be one of the healthiest places in the earth, too? Obesity is one of the growing health problems in the country today. A quick glimpse of the people in the streets or at the office could prove this undeniable truth. Prevention through information and education of simple healthy habits could spare future generations from suffering the same health problems we face today.
Written by, Ronald Uy, RN
© 2010 H.I.C. Digestive Health
New Food Pyramid. Retrieved October 11, 2009 from Sampaguita Children’s Learning Center: http://sclc.i.ph
8 Foods That Fight Fat. Retrieved October 11, 2009 from Yahoo! Health: http://health.yahoo.com
Low Fat Cooking. Retrieved October 11, 2009 from About.com: http://lowfatcooking.about.com