Every culture throughout history has used food to prevent and treat disease in the human body.
Water and healthy food provide the fuel of vital nutrients which enable our body to function properly.
To help to protect your well-being the quantities and the combination of food is essential.
The foundation of a balanced diet is starchy foods like bread, pasta, potatoes, sweet potatoes, oats, rice, millet, barley, buckwheat, cereals, which should supply about half the daily calorie intake.
It benefits most when eaten unrefined as it provides more fibre, minerals and vitamins. The fruits & vegetables are best eaten fresh or frozen with some quantities of dried and can fruit. At least five servings of fruits and vegetables are recommended daily.
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The protein group includes: pulses, seeds, nuts, soy products, (meat and fish if you are not a vegetarian). In our Western-style diet, it is advisable to eat less of the protein foods and more starchy foods, fruits, and vegetables.
Eating dairy foods in moderation is a good choice, choosing the low-fat varieties of yogurt and cottage cheese, skimmed or semi-skimmed milk, fromage frais. The high-fat and sugary foods should be eaten with the most consideration of the quantity as it contains lots of fat and sugar.
All the sweetened foods, biscuits, high-fat cheese, cooking oil, butter, cream, fried food, chocolate, cakes, pastry, crisps are the food from the sugary group.
The Starchy foods are the main source of Carbohydrates.
People who eat less than 50% of these foods are more likely to have higher rates of heart disease, diabetes, obesity, stroke, cancer, bowel disorder or gallstones. Generally the more starchy food you eat the less fat and sugar you eat. If you want to loose weight remember that calories eaten as starch are less likely to be stored as body fat than calories eaten as fat. Try to substitute the fatty and sugary food like hard cheese or cake with starchy food like wholegrain bread or brown rice.
The advantage of eating more
starchy food is that they are lower in fat than any other food. If the calories eaten in the form of starchy foods are not used in an activity they are less likely to be stored as body fat. This is because it is much harder for the body to convert carbohydrates into body fat than to convert the excess fat we eat into body fat. The important thing is to choose the right starchy food for yourself, which consists of low level of added sugar and fat. Instead of buying sugary cereals, chips, buns and cakes go for the less calories but also tasty products like pancakes, scones or rice pudding.
The fibre can be divided into two categories, and both of them are needed to be healthy :
1) Soluble fibre which leads to steadier energy;
When you eat plenty of foods which is reach in soluble fibre (oats, pulses, nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables) it helps to reduce blood cholesterol, to steady energy level and stabilize the mood. It gives a gentle rise in blood sugar which lasts longer.
It is especially a great advantage for overweight and diabetic person to eat as much food that consists of soluble fibre as possible.
2) Insoluble fibre which speeds the passage of waste;
When you eat plenty of foods which is reach in insoluble fibre (cereals, grains and especially unrefined wholegrains, unpeeled fruits and vegetables) it helps food waste to pass through the digestive track quickly and more easily and also prevents constipation.
It is necessary to enjoy a wide variety of food. Eating some quantity of food which contains fat is very important and much needed for absorption of vitamins: A, D, E, and K. However, too much fat unbalances our diet, increases the risk of illnesses and leads to excess weight. The excess calories intake are most likely to be stored as body fat from eating too many fatty products.
There are three types of fat:
1) Saturated which is mostly found in solid fat and dairy products;
This sort of fat should be eaten in least quantities as to reduce raised blood cholesterol. The cholesterol is a form of fat that the body needs for manufacture of hormones and is needed in enzyme systems. Our body is able to produce the perfect quantity of cholesterol needed so we do not require the cholesterol from an animal foods we eat. A high level of blood choresterol can be a clear sign of a risk of heart attack and stroke.
2) Monounsaturated which is found in olive, sesame and rapeseed oils, avocado;
This fat can be used in our kitchen where it can be heated to higher temperatures without oxidizing. The monounsaturated fat do not lower blood cholesterol as much as the polyunsaturated but it is preferable to use the monounsatureted fat in cooking than the saturated fat.
3) Polyunsaturated which is found in nuts, walnuts, seeds, linseed, soya beans, wheatgerm or oily fish; This fat can be eaten more often as it is a source of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. They lower the risk of heart attack and reduce the blood cholesterol.
When we eat the protein in a form of low-fat and high-fibre starchy foods it gives us the lower fat intake and raises higher fibre intake in the body. The perfect daily calorie intake in a form of protein is 10-15%. The excess of protein can lead to calcium loss and unbalanced our diet.
VITAMINS & MINERALS
Most of the important vitamins and minerals needed for maintaining good health can be available only from food, except for vitamins D and K. If there is insufficiency in any of them it reduces the resistance to disease. Eating a diet of mainly high-nutrient foods is very important to obtain all the vitamins and minerals we need.
FOOD WITH MANY PROPERTIES
Onion and Garlic discourage blood clotting and help to increase cancer resistance
Carrots have antioxidant properties which leads to lower risk of heart disease, stroke or cataracts
Chilli and Artichoke help digestion
Fennel and Linseed help to balance the hormone levels
Pineapple can help to improve digestion, to heal and to reduce inflammation
“Live” Yogurt has therapeutic properties, it protects against harmful bacteria
Watercress is a good source of calcium, it helps to treat infections, can reduce cancer risk
Apple can lower blood cholesterol level, it supports resistance to illness and it helps in diarrhoea and constipation
Honey helps prevent gastric irritation, it can relieve gastric infection, may also help hay fever and related asthma Beans and Lentils may reduce the risk of heart disease, they are good source of folate and potassium, they steady blood sugar levels and they can be helpful to prevent anaemia.
IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH WITH HELP OF THE FOOD
Cold and Flu you can fight with eating dairy foods, pumpkin seeds which are rich in zinc and it can reduce the lenght of the cold and red pepper, green leafy vegetables, citrus fruits and blackcurrant which are rich in vitamin C and may kill the present bacteria.
Constipation can be relieved eating especially apples, dried apricot, vegetables, linseed, live yogurt, wholegrain pasta, bread and cereals which are rich in fibre.
High Blood Pressure can be regulated with food high in potassium like celery, fennel, parsley, pulses, sweet potatoes, dried apricots, green leafy vegetables which helps to regulate blood pressure by enabling the body to dispose more sodium. Eating garlic and oats helps to reduce raised blood pressure.
Vericose Veins; eating garlic, ginger and chilli would stimulate the circulation; drinking plenty of water and eating foods rich in fibre would prevent constipation which is one of the factor in vericose vains.
In Diabetes the helpful food would be the food which has ability to reduce blood sugar rises like onions, pulses, artichoke, oat bran and oatmeal; the food which is good source of vitamin B6 for blood sugar control: red pepper, nuts, walnuts, wheatgerm, less ripe banana.