Balanced Diet definition

What is Balanced Diet

Balanced diet are diet that contain all food items from all the major food groups. There are five main food groups which are grains, dairy, fruits, vegetables and meat and meat alternatives.

The key to a healthy balanced diet is variety. You need to eat food from all the different food nutrients to ensure that your body is getting the nutrients, vitamins, and energy it requires to function properly and be healthy.

How to achieve a balanced diet

In order to achieve a good balance diet, each meal needs to have all the different food groups. The snacks in between should also reflect that. Reaching for some veggie sticks, or a piece of fruitis a much suitable option than fighting with the vending machine.

Fruit and vegetables

These should make up about a third of your daily diet and can be eaten as part of every meal. General Food Guide recommends 7-8 servings of fruit and vegetables in a day. But what is a serving? A single fruit, such as pear, apple, peach, orange, etc. count as a single serving. Some strawberries, a handful of raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries also count as a serving. Frozen, dried, or canned fruits and vegetables also count towards your everyday intake.

Starchy Carbohydrates

Starchy Carbohydrates should also constitute about a third of your diet and contains the starchy carbohydrates that are the body’s main source of energy.

When selecting food nutrient from this food group, select unrefined carbohydrates over those that have been refined, as they will constitute the whole of the grain. Wholegrain foods are rich in fibre and other nutrients that have many health benefits.

Milk and dairy foods

Milk and dairy foods should be consumed in moderation because of their too much saturated fat content, but they are important source of calcium, which are significantfor healthy bones and teeth. Endeavor to select the low-fat or reduced-fat version

Meat, fish, eggs and beans

This food group comprises both animal and plant sources of protein, which is a main functional and structural component of all cells. Protein provides the body with between 10 and 15 per cent of its dietary energy, and is needed for growth and repair.

Foods and drinks high in fat and/or sugar

This group makes up the least section include foods that should only be eaten sparingly because, although they’revital energy source, they contain very few nutrients and are often known as ’empty calories’.

This group should only be eaten as occasional treats, or to increase the palatability of other significant foods (such as a scraping of spread on bread, olive oil on salads, or a sprinkle of sugar on some tart fruits).

Benefits of a balanced diet

Below are the advantages clearly states the importance of a balanced diet.

More Energy

A big shot of carbs all at once will give you a quick energy rush followed by a period of sluggishness. All protein and no carbs will leave you without energy as well. Eating a proportional amount of carbs, protein, and fat with a meal and keeping your portion sizes reasonable ensures that you have even energy to draw from through the day.

Good Health

Over the long term, any diet that’s too heavy on one thing to the exclusion of others – whether that’s low fat, high protein, or high fat – is setting you up for failure and bad health. You’ll miss out on certain nutrients if you don’t get a variety of different foods in your diet.

Prevention against diabetes

Intake of carbohydrates more than required can cause diabetes mellitus in you. The end product of carbohydrates is glucose, which can give rise to hyperglycemia which will ultimately result in diabetes. On the other hand if you are reducing the intake of carbohydrates it can lead to a condition called hypoglycemia, so make sure you go for a balanced diet which gives the right amount of everything.

Prevention of many illnesses

With a proper well planned diet you can ensure that you are not becoming a victim of malnutrition. A deficiency in protein can cause kwashiorkor in many children which hampers their growth during the formative years. Apart from these some of the diseases caused due to lack of nutrition are beriberi, scurvy and colorblindness and many more. So it is very vital to enjoy a well-balanced diet.

Stay in shape

Lastly the cosmetic part of a balanced diet cannot be denied. If you want to stay fit and beautiful, you should maintain a balanced diet.