We all want to eat healthy but somehow, when it comes to choosing or planning a healthy diet for ourselves, we all got muddled. Whenever we’re doing grocery, we come across hundreds of brands of healthy food but, while picking up one from these hundreds, we make a selection based on our instincts, rather than going by some set standards of selection.
Now the question is, are there any set principles or standards for a healthy diet? Yes, there are. There are 6 diet planning principles which we should keep in mind, whenever planning a healthy meal. They all are interlinked besides having specific significance.
Adequacy means that whatever diet you are taking, is enough to provide you all your required nutrients and energy. You should be aware of your body’s nutrient requirements and plan diet accordingly to meet those requirements, if you want to the enjoy perks of healthy life. For example, if your diet is not meeting your recommended calcium needs, it’s not adequate.
Check, is your diet providing you with one nutrient in adequate amount and lacking in the other. If this is the case, then you need to balance it up. By balance I mean, your diet should provide some amount of every required nutrient, not just a few. Let’s say your daily intake of food is providing you with enough iron but lacks in fiber. Instead, it should provide a balance of both.
Your daily intake of calories should be in equilibrium with daily energy expenditure. In case you’re eating 1800kcals/day, make sure your body is using this in its activities. Both excess and lack of energy would be harmful.
Say for example, you have to choose between foods, which are offering the same amount of calories, then you should prefer the food which is offering more amount of nutrients. The food which is superior with respect to nutrients it provides is said to be more nutrient dense.
It is the key to achieve adequacy, caloric control and balance in a diet. Moderation in diet means not having too much of something. At some occasion, if a healthy individual eats a meal having saturated fat or added salt in it, in moderate amount, it will not be dangerous for health.
Your daily meal should offer food from every food group (grains, fruits, vegetables, milk, meat, legumes). Try different recipes. Don’t stick yourself to set combinations. Grab benefits from every group. As said, too much of anything is bad; every food has some negative effects too, when taken in excess. So, when you keep on adding variety to your diet, ultimately you’ll not be taking any food in excess.