Balanced Diet: The Key to Long-Term Health
As the new year begins, many of us make resolutions to improve our lives. One of the most effective ways to enhance our overall health is by adopting a balanced diet that includes three meals and snacks each day. A diet rich in nutrients can reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as obesity and heart disease and provide energy to approach everyday tasks with vigor.
Contrary to popular belief, a balanced diet doesn't have to be bland and unappetizing. Many delicious options are full of nutrition. In this article, we will explore what constitutes a balanced plate of food and how to incorporate it into our daily diet.
A Balanced Plate: What's on it?
The Harvard School of Public Health recommends that a balanced plate consists of half vegetables and fruits, a quarter whole grains, and a quarter healthy protein. Vegetables and fruits can be a variety of options, such as apples, blueberries, tomatoes, and carrots. Whole grains include whole wheat, quinoa, oats, and brown rice, which are richer in minerals and nutrients than white rice. For protein, options include chicken, steak, salmon, eggs, cheese, and nuts. You can add a small amount of vegetable oil for flavor, but be mindful of food allergies and sensitivities when choosing ingredients.
Drink Water: Stay Hydrated
It's also important to stay hydrated by drinking water. Our bodies are mostly water; replenishing this essential element can help maintain a clean immune system and prevent dehydration. To promote hydration, reduce your intake of sugary drinks like Coke and Pepsi and aim to drink 15.5 cups of water per day for men and 11.5 cups per day for women.
Healthy Grocery Shopping
Grocery shopping can also play a crucial role in maintaining a balanced diet. To start, make a grocery list of all the food items you want to purchase ahead of time to avoid impulse buying unhealthy options. When looking at nutrition labels and ingredient lists, avoid packaged foods that contain sweeteners, refined grains, or highly processed oils. Instead, focus on ingredients that align with your grocery list and nutritional needs.
The Benefits of a Balanced Diet
A healthy diet not only improves your physical health but can also lead to improvements in stress management, sleep quality, and reducing alcohol consumption. Additionally, consuming nutritious foods can decrease stress and inflammation in the body. While many habits contribute to a healthy lifestyle, a balanced diet is a great place to start. Our GoLively app can help you track your progress as you work towards a healthier you. Preview it today and start your journey towards a balanced diet and improved health.
Living It Up Anywhere
The idea of living your best life can be done anywhere, at any time, and all it really takes is a mindset shift. Take it one core lifestyle habit at a time, whether that is eating healthy and less, daily exercise, quitting bad habits, getting a routine checkup, or being positive. Take a chance today to Live It Up!