What Is A Healthy Diet?

Today, there is a common belief that healthy eating is a set of prohibitions and rules that help us stay healthy and slim. And to fulfill them, we need to give up our usual lifestyle, our favorite dishes, and products. Some people understand healthy eating as the constant exhaustion of diets.

But in fact, healthy eating means feeling good, increasing energy reserves, restoring the body, improving health… and the list goes on.

The main conditions for a healthy diet are:

  1. Reduce animal fats. Use healthy oils (e.g. olive oil) for salads. Avoid trans fats.
  2. Increase in the diet of foods rich in saturated fatty acids, such as Omega3 (redfish, vegetable oils, nuts).
  3. Eating foods that contain fiber (cereals, vegetables, fruits). Eat more whole grains – whole wheat bread, whole grain pasta, and brown rice. Avoid refined grains such as white bread and white rice.
  4. Avoid frying, prefer baking. Choose fish, poultry, beans, and nuts. Limit the consumption of red meat and hard cheese. Avoid sausages, bacon, cold cuts, and other processed meats.
  5. Avoid excessively salty foods.
  6. Instead of milk, use fermented milk products (kefir, yogurt, baked ryazhenka).
  7. Eating fresh vegetable salads or fruit salads every day.The more vegetables you eat, and the greater the variety, the better. Eat more fruits of all colors.
  8. Drink water, tea, or coffee with minimal or no sugar. Limit milk (1-2 glasses per day) and juice (1 glass per day). Avoid sugary drinks.

Healthy eating pyramid and food plate.

Living in an all-season climate, growing vegetables and grain, and gardening, we have a unique opportunity to enjoy a wide variety of fruits and vegetables virtually all year round. National traditions of pickling and fermenting complement our diet in winter or off-season. The recipes of Ukrainian cuisine, which include first courses, baking, and stewing meat, poultry, and fish, provide us with useful ways to consume protein.

Of course, there are many products and dishes on the national table that should be limited, such as smoked meats and fried pancakes.

To follow the rules of healthy eating, you need to limit your consumption of the following foods: sugar, pickles, smoked meats, fried foods, fatty pork, pastry products, canned foods, and preserved foods.

Of course, a complete rejection of “harmful” foods requires a lot of effort and strong will, and such restrictions do not have to be too strict: if a piece of cake makes you feel bad, it’s okay to treat yourself. Depression is much more dangerous for the body than a cake that will help you cope with it. Trying to live stress-free, and in harmony with yourself is another important rule that shapes our healthy lifestyle.

Healthy eating – an approximate menu for the day

Breakfast. Breakfast must be nutritious and satisfying. If you eat well in the morning, you are less likely to want to snack or eat something sweet before lunch.

Various bowls of cereal are ideal for breakfast. They can be cooked with milk or water. Cooking them is simple and quick. Add fruit or nuts to the porridge and a healthy, tasty breakfast is ready. You can also make cottage cheese for breakfast. If you can’t do without sugar, add some honey, fruit, or raisins.

Cottage cheese should definitely be part of your diet. It is rich in calcium, phosphorus, B vitamins, and other useful elements.

Eating cottage cheese daily will improve the condition of your nails and hair. If you have enough time, you can make a cottage cheese casserole for breakfast. Omelets, muesli with nuts or fruit, fresh vegetable salad, and fruit are also good for breakfast. It is better to wash it all down with freshly squeezed juice.

Lunch. Lunch should be complete and balanced. If you work in an office, it is better to order a set lunch or bring it in a container from home. Lunch should not be neglected, and it is unhealthy to eat sandwiches or buns instead of lunch. It is good if your menu includes soup. Liquid food helps our stomach work better and improves metabolism. You can cook chicken, fish or meat for the main course. For a side dish – vegetables, pasta, rice, baked or boiled potatoes. For a snack, you can have fruit, a salad of fresh cabbage or beets, seasoned with vegetable oil, cottage cheese, or tea with low-fat cookies.

Dinner. For dinner, vegetable dishes, light vegetable salads, boiled or cooked in a double boiler meat or fish, pilaf, and buckwheat porridge are well suited. When preparing dinner, try to use less fat and do not overcook food so that healthy dishes do not turn into unhealthy ones. Before going to bed, you can drink a glass of kefir or ryazhenka. Sour-milk products are very well absorbed and have a beneficial effect on digestion.

Whatever menu you choose, your diet must be healthy, varied, and balanced. The optimal diet is one that contains foods from different food groups – meat, fish, cereals, vegetables, fruits, and dairy products. Try to stick to your diet, always eat at the same time, and take equal time between meals. Don’t eat too spicy foods before bed, and give up evening coffee and tea. This can activate the nervous system and disrupt sleep. A healthy diet is key to your well-being, energy, and youthful body, and always radiant appearance.

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Written by Bella Adams

I'm a professionally-trained, executive chef with over ten years in Restaurant Culinary and hospitality management. Experienced in specialized diets, including Vegetarian, Vegan, Raw foods, whole food, plant-based, allergy-friendly, farm-to-table, and more. Outside of the kitchen, I write about lifestyle factors that impact well-being.

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