Whether it is incorporating a better diet for health reasons, to lose weight, or just to lead a healthier lifestyle in general, one’s diet can be subject to changes. But while eating healthily might come at a high cost when it comes to taking out, these changes can be made at home. Not only does it cost less, but you are also able to customise it accordingly to your palate.
From simple rules like filling up your plate with an array of colours to filling your plate with more greens, there are so many small tips to make this transition quick and seamless. After all, healthy eating is all about balance, and there are many healthy combinations that you can choose from!
A balanced diet consists of eating foods from the five food groups: protein, dairy, healthy fats, fruits and vegetables, and starchy carbohydrates. Each of these food groups provides the minerals and vitamins that our bodies need to function efficiently. While having all these in every meal is unlikely, it’s good to set a goal and aim to achieve it across the day or week. To give you some idea, check out the importance of each food group:
Fruits and Vegetables
The proverb “an apple a day keeps the doctor away!” means that fruits and vegetables are an essential part of a healthy, balanced diet. These types of food are high in fibre and packed full of vitamins and minerals, which play a part in keeping your body healthy. Research shows that fruits and vegetables should make up just over a third of your diet, so it’s wise to eat the rainbow and embrace a variety every day.
An easy way to track your fruits and veggies intake is to ensure that it comprises around half of your plate. You should aim for at least five portions of different fruits and veggies every day - roughly around 80g of each.
Protein provides your body with the building blocks of the body - amino acids. The human body needs amino acids to constantly build and renew cells, and a healthy balanced diet should make up one-eight of your plate. Like fruits and veggies, the different types of protein supply your body with a variety of vitamins and minerals needed to stay strong and healthy.
There are plenty of foods to get protein from, so it’s important to vary your protein sources. Aside from eating fish and meat, it’s recommended to include vegetarian sources such as beans, eggs, pulses, nuts, tofu, and seeds. In choosing meat, keep in mind to buy lean meats and limit your intake of processed meat and MSG in your diet.
Starchy Carbohydrates should make up roughly one-third of your plate since this is the main source of energy of the human body. There are different types of starchy carbohydrates, and it’s important to know which are the healthier options and should be a part of your plate.
This food group includes potatoes and grains such as rice, barley and wheat. Keep in mind that when choosing starchy carbohydrates, if possible, go for wholegrain to maintain digestive health and provide more minerals, vitamins and fibre. Research has shown that eating whole grains reduces health risks like heart disease, stroke, and type-2 diabetes.
Dairy is an excellent source of vitamins, proteins, and minerals. This food group is commonly known as a source of calcium, a nutrient needed for strong bones and healthy teeth. When choosing your sources of dairy, opt for low-fat or fat-free options - however, know that fat-free flavoured yoghurts often contain sugar to boost flavour. Choosing non-dairy options are also a good option for those that are lactose intolerant.
Fats are essential, and the human body needs a small amount of them to protect its organs and absorb specific vitamins to grow. Since fats are high in energy, it’s important to be careful about the type of fat and the amount of fat you ingest. It’s recommended to have a maximum of 70g per day for adults with no more than 20g of saturated fat.
Saturated fats are often found in pork, beef, chicken skin, coconut oil, cheese, and butter. This type of fat should be taken in the limit as too much of this puts you at higher risk of stroke and heart disease. To keep your heart healthy, you can swap saturated fats with unsaturated fats found in seeds, vegetable oils, nuts and fish.
It is essential for us to live our best lives, starting from what we put as fuel into our bodies. This is even more prevalent, especially for households that have children or the elderly at home, where a healthy diet is central to helping and strengthening them. But what about families that aren’t able to look into their daily meals?
This is where Love, Tingkat! comes in. We are a home-cooked food delivery option that opts for healthier ingredients, uses less salt & oil, and have a zero MSG menu. Healthy meals don’t get any easier than this as we deliver straight to your doorstep. Check out our Tingkat delivery menus and we’ll be happy to feed you and your family today.