People are very much conscious about their diet nowadays and hence go on a diet every year to lose weight and be healthier. According to a study, it is said that around 45 million Americans are dieting in a year and spend billions annually on weight loss products. They use different methods like using diet pills, different diet plans, and can go as extreme levels as well.
What a healthy diet looks like?
A healthy diet should consist of more healthy foods like lots of fruits, vegetables, omega 3 enriched nuts, beans etc. Also, at the same time, you should cut down on any sweet or sugary foods. Going onto a diet can benefit both physically and mentally.
The truth is any diet will work if we stick to it whether your preference is Paleo, 5:2 or even vegetarian, the majority of diets, with the exception of strict juice fasts or not eating altogether will usually give good results. Dietary habits form the basis of any one person’s diet and as such if these habits become healthy ones, our diet becomes healthy overall.
Lets first know about the Pros of doing a diet :
Losing weight can help to reduce the risk of various chronic conditions like
- heart disease
- non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus
- poor bone density
- some cancers
A healthy diet helps to prevent dementia and cognitive decline. There is a study from 2015 that discovered nutrients and foods that protect against these adverse effects
- omega-3 fatty acids
- vitamin D, C, and E
- Reducing the consumption of alcohol and caffeine can help to ensure heart health. According to figures published in 2017, 92.1 million people in the U.S. have at least one type of cardiovascular disease. The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, states that up to 80 per cent of cases of premature heart disease and stroke can be prevented by making certain lifestyle changes like increasing in the levels of physical activity and eating healthy foods. The magic vitamin E prevent blood clots, which can lead to heart attacks. Following foods contain good levels of vitamin E:
- sunflower seeds
- green vegetables
Improved gut health
The colon has naturally occurring bacteria, which play important roles in metabolism and digestion. Diet low in fibre but high in sugar and fat alters the gut microbiome, increasing inflammation in the area. But a diet rich in vegetables, fruits, legumes, and whole grains provides a combination of prebiotics and probiotics that help good bacteria to grow in the colon.
Reduced cancer risk
- An unhealthy diet is responsible for obesity, which increases a person’s risk of developing cancer. But diets rich in fruits and vegetables help to protect against cancer.
- Many phytochemicals found in fruits, vegetables, nuts, and legumes act as antioxidants, which protect cells from oxidative damage that can cause cancer. Those antioxidants include lycopene, carotene and vitamins A, C, and E.
A healthy diet can help a person with diabetes to:
- Keep the blood pressure and cholesterol within levels.
- prevent or delay complications of diabetes
- lose weight, if required
- manage blood glucose levels
Basic Rules to stay healthy and fit apart from following a diet.
- Drink at least 10glasses of water on a regular basis
- Try cutting down on sugary and fried food consumption try to cut sorts of packaged foods and start home-cooked and fresh foods instead
- Try doing at least 30mins of exercise 5days a week
- sleep well for at least 7hrs a day
- Try taking deep breaths to keep your stress under control
Decide on the sustainable plan
- It’s your body, your life. You need to plan and decide first then look for a dietitian or nutritionist to guide on a plan which is sustainable. But yes you need to trust on yourself that you can follow and dietitian for their knowledge
- You need to follow a healthy diet as you need to understand that every fancy diet sometimes creates a nutritional imbalance to give short term result which causes side effects too in the long run. As a nutritionist, my suggestion is since we are a commoner hence try to stick to a balanced sustainable diet that has no expiry date. Also, look for sustainable gradual weight loss, not like 20kgs in 2months. Stick to the diet plan provided to you by a qualified dietitian for at least 2 months to see the effect.