What to eat? Nourishing healthy food

There are many and varied views on Healthy Nutrition. Diversity, however, may be confusing and gives us often contradictory theories about what food, how to prepare it and what to avoid. See how Bionia sees healthy, nourishing and balanced food. For the development of this model we’ve been using the so called Harvard’s Healthy Eating Plate by, but we present you a modified version, which is not the original Harvard’s model.

NB! All written in green has been modified by Bionia and is not part of the Harvard’s Healthy Eating Plate.

The basic principles laid down in the model complemented by Bionia are:

  • The more veggies – and the greater the variety – the better.

NB! Potatoes and French fries don’t count as vegetables because of their negative impact on blood sugar.

  • Eat plenty of fruits of all colors.

NB! Choose whole fruits or sliced fruits, rather than fruit juices; limit fruit juice to one small glass per day, prefer veggie juices.

  • Go for whole grains or foods made with minimally processed whole grains. The less processed the grains, the better. Prefer gluten-free grains such as: brown rice, buckwheat, millet, corn, quinoa and others. Gluten-containing cereals are spelt, wheat, oats, rye, barley and others.

NB! Whole-grain pasta and whole-wheat bread are still refined, processed grains!

  • As a healthy protein choose beans, lentils, chick-peas and peas, nuts, seeds, and other plant-based healthy protein options, as well as fish, eggs, and poultry.

NB! Limit red meat like beef, pork, lamb and avoid processed meats: bacon, deli meats, hot dogs, sausages.

  • Remember that fat is a necessary part of our diet, and what matters most is the type of fat we eat. We should regularly choose foods with healthy unsaturated fats (such as fish, raw nuts and seeds), limit foods high in saturated fat (especially red meat), and avoid unhealthy trans fats (from partially hydrogenated oils).

 

  • Concerning dairy foods, there is a very serious discussion about and against accepting them and there is still no unanimous opinion. If you choose to consume it, let it be in limited quantities (the optimal intake of dairy products has yet to be determined and the research is still developing). Choose unflavored and unsweetened milk, usually yoghurt and small amounts of unsalted cheese.

 

  • Water is the best choice for quenching our thirst

NB! Limit juice, avoid sugary drinks like sodas, fruit drinks, and sports drinks, which provide a lot of calories and virtually no other nutrients. Over time, drinking sugary drinks can lead to weight gain and increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other problems.

  • Finally, just like choosing the right foods, incorporating physical activity into our day by staying active is part of the recipe for keeping healthy. Children and adolescents should aim for at least one hour of physical activity per day, and they don’t need fancy equipment or a gym, playing outside or in nature is a perfect choice.

In Brief: Half the food in our plate should be filled with colorful vegetables and fruits and the other half to be divided between whole grains and healthy protein!

Overall, the main message is to focus on diet quality. The type of carbohydrate in the diet is more important than the amount of carbohydrate in the diet, because some sources of carbohydrate—like vegetables (other than potatoes), fruits, whole grains, and beans—are much healthier than sugar,  potatoes, and foods made from white flour.

The Healthy Eating Plate does not include sugary drinks, sweets, and other junk foods. These are not everyday foods and should be eaten only rarely, if ever.

The Kid’s Healthy Eating Plate is a visual guide to help educate and encourage children and adults to eat well and keep moving. At a glance, the graphic features examples of best-choice foods to inspire the selection of healthy meals and snacks, and it emphasizes physical activity as part of the equation for staying healthy.

The Kid’s Healthy Eating Plate is created by nutrition experts at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, based on the best available science. These principles of nourishing healthy eating are shared by Bionia and we hope to be a good and short guide to You in choosing food.

“Copyright © 2015 Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. For more information about The Kid’s Healthy Eating Plate, please see The Nutrition Source, Department of Nutrition, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/kids-healthy-eating-plate.”

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