The Importance of Healthy Foods

Food is the fuel that our bodies use for energy. The three main sources of fuel are carbohydrates, protein, and fat. The
body changes them into glucose for energy or stores them as fat. A car uses gas
for energy—we use glucose! Eating a balance of healthy foods that contain carbohydrate, protein, and fat every
day will help your blood glucose stay in balance and keep your weight where you
want it to be.

Today most people are to accept as a fact that “to be healthy” a well-balanced
diet is required. They want what’s best for their live. Healthy foods are an
important issue because healthy eating is important to good health. There are
lots of reasons to eat healthy foods, here are just a few:

·        
For energy and vitality to live

·        
To grow at a healthy
rate

·        
To help keep blood
sugar or glucose levels in balance—not too high or too low

·        
For weight control

·        
To control of blood fats and prevention of heart
disease

·        
To keep the body
working properly

·        
To help the body avoid
other health problems caused by diabetes

Good nutrition is an important part of healthy foods. Many causes of disease
are related to poor nutrition, including heart disease, diabetes, overweight
and obesity, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, and
certain cancers.  Poor nutrition can also
impact day-to-day life by affecting concentration and work performance. For
children, a poor diet can have a significant effect on proper growth and
development.

People who want to follow a healthier eating plan
should try to:

·        
Increase the amount of
fruits and vegetables eaten as part of an everyday diet.

·        
Buy fresh produce in
season for the best prices.

·        
Select canned fruits
and vegetables as a convenient way to include more produce in the diet. Look
for fruits canned in light syrup or natural juices.

·        
For vegetables, choose
“No Salt Added” versions if sodium intake is a concern.

·        
Choose frozen fruits
and vegetables, which are available year round and are rich in important
nutrients.

·        
Choose whole grain
products when possible. Look for “Whole Wheat Flour” or “Whole Wheat”
as the first ingredient on the nutrition facts label.

·        
Include up to three
servings of fat-free (skim) or low-fat (1-2%) milk and milk products each day.

·        
Select lean meats,
poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts as quality protein sources.

·        
Focus on choosing food
items low in saturated fats, trans-fats, cholesterol, salt (sodium), and added
sugars.

·        
Use proper serving
sizes for all foods to prevent excess calorie consumption. Information on the correct serving sizes for each food
group is available at The Food Guide Pyramid.

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