A life free from diseases, keeping fit and maintaining body shape are some of the concerns that we all struggle with to achieve a quality life. Healthy eating and being physically active are important keys to help you get there! So here are a few tips to help you.
Let’s start with the basics. The Food Guide Pyramid is the simplest tool that helps you to plan your meals properly.
So, based on the Food Guide Pyramid, let us take a look at smart choices within the major food groups.
REFINED VS WHOLE
Carbohydrates or the starchy foods are generally the major portion of our meals. However opting for whole cereals, grains and their products (eg: less polished rice/parboiled varieties, whole wheat flour, kurakkan flour, atta flour, oats, brown bread) is preferred over refined or well- polished carbs. Make sure you select the correct quantity of starch depending on your individualised calorie requirement.
Sri Lanka is blessed with a great variety of vegetables and fruits. Include at least 3-4 vegetables and 2-3 fruits in different colours which will provide vitamins, minerals and fibre and will help reduce risks of Non-communicable Diseases (NCD’s) such as diabetes, blood pressure, heart disease and cancers or/and help with management of same.
Consuming at least 2-3 servings of fish/lean meat/eggs per day will ensure sufficient protein intake. Additionally, pulses such as lentil, chickpea, gram varieties and beans are an inexpensive yet nutritious source of protein, especially for vegetarians.
MILK AND DAIRY
Since milk and dairy products are good sources of protein and rich in calcium, try to include 2-3 servings of low-fat/non-fat versions as part of your healthy diet.
BE CAUTIOUS – FAT, SUGARS AND SALT!
Include a healthy combination of fats giving both unsaturated (nuts, sunflower oil, soybean oil, avocado, oily fish) and saturated (coconut, butter) fats.
Reduce the frequent consumption of foods that are high in sugars, fat and salt as they are generally linked with the increased risk of non- communicable diseases.
A BETTER LIFESTYLE
Keeping yourself adequately hydrated (consume at least 2- 2.5 litres of fluid/day), being physically active (150 minutes of moderate intensity exercises per week), and maintaining a less-stressful lifestyle will supplement your healthy diet to live a quality life.
Now, we have given you a taste and a simple guide to lead a healthy life for you and your family. So, why not visit the Durdans Dietetic and Nutrition Unit for your individualised ‘Healthy Living’ plan.
Dietetic and Nutrition Team – Durdans Hospital
Contact Durdans Dietetic and Nutrition Unit 011 2 140 158