Guidelines to Healthy Eating
Guideline to Heathly Eating – Part 1
Eat foods as close to their natural state as possible, these are full of nutrients essential for good health. Cut down on packet or canned food that contain additives and are low in nutrients.
Cut down on refined carbohydrates like white bread, rice and pasta and choose the wholegrain versions. Refined food is low in nutrients and high in calories and converts to sugar in your body which in excess stores as fat.
- Try to relax when eating and chew food thoroughly. Avoid eating when tired, upset, late at night or in a hurry as this impairs digestion and can result in tummy aches and upsets.
- Cut down on stimulants like tea, coffee, chocolate and alcohol as they disturb blood sugar resulting in fatigue and rob the body of vital nutrients. Green tea is an excellent alternative, the caffeine is negated by the effects of L-theanine, which stimulates alpha wave activity in the brain resulting in improved mental function and focus.
- Eat a wide variety of of food unless you have food intolerance’s. This increases your chance of getting a variety of nutrients.
- All types of sugar should be eaten as infrequently and in small amounts. Sugar provides calories empty of nutrients and can contribute to a number of health problems.
- If you eat meat, try to buy meat from animals reared naturally and use lean cuts.
- Replace margarine with butter and use sparingly. Margarine and cooking oils contain many chemicals from the manufacturing process and have a chemically altered structure that is very damaging to health. Use extra virgin olive oil or cold-pressed oils for salad dressings. If you cook with oil, use olive oil, extra virgin coconut oil or butter that are more stable to heat and less damaging to health. Heated vegetable oils create free radicals that are carcinogenic. Keep oils in the fridge to protect them from rancid.
- Eat fruit and vegetables as fresh as possible as storage decreases their nutritional value.
- Try to eat organic food where possible. So many man-made chemicals are present in the food we eat that can get stored in our bodies and lead to health problems. Organic fruit and vegetables help to cleanse your body and boost your immune system. Always wash fruit and vegetables well before eating.
- Avoid cooking at temperatures above 100C (212F). Magnesium, vitamins, vitamins C and E and some other nutrients along with enzymes can be destroyed by heat.
- The most important nutrient in your body is water. 99% of the chemical reactions in our body depend on water. It has been suggested that we drink at least 8 glasses of a day. Lack of water means we can not efficiently metabolise fats and so a large amount of waste is stuck in our system. Water also lubricates the joints and is necessary for the efficient functioning of the lungs. Try to avoid drinking too much liquid with a meal as this may dilute the digestive juices needed for good digestion. But drink plenty between meals!
- Eat essentials fats found in nuts and seeds and their cold pressed unrefined oils found in health food shops in the fridge. Eat oily fish such as salmon, trout, and mackerel twice a week. These have anti-inflammatory and anti blood clotting effects and are excellent for the cardiovascular system.
- Avoid fresh tuna, sushi, swordfish, marlin and shark as they are highly contaminated with mercury, a toxin that can interfere with nutrient balance and cause damage to cells. Refer to www.fishonline.org for lists of fish caught from the best managed sources / minimal environmental damage.