The Importance of a Balanced Diet

Diet is a much talked about topic, and by diet I am referring to what a person normally eats, not just the prescribed menu of foods for the purpose of losing weight. Personally, I have to admit there was a period of time (a short one) when I did not eat right because I wanted to rid myself of some unwanted curves or I just got too busy. Instead of burning calories and toning my muscles, my poor diet was burning muscles and could not get toned up. I was tired all the time and my muscles were in pain and cramping. My diet did not give me enough nutrients to sustain my daily activities which was a lot -- dancing, horseback riding and gym work-outs.

Lucky for me, my trainer diligently grilled me on what I ate and drank and hammered the importance of a balanced diet. Our body, from our organs down to the smallest cell, needs minerals and other essential nutrients in order to function correctly. This is why we need a balanced diet - so each tissue may function properly.

A balanced diet includes foods from each of the main food groups - dairy, fruit, grains, proteins and veggies. It should also have enough calories for a person’s specific age, height and weight. A good resource is the USDA’s Choose My Plate site. Here are a summary of tips:

1. Do not skip breakfast.
2. Choose foods that are low in saturated fats, salt and added sugars.

3. Try to have about 3 cups of low fat dairy a day.
4. Recommended amount of proteins depends on a person’s age and activities but generally no more than 5 to 6 ounces a day.

5. Make half your plate fruits and whole veggies.

6. You also need about 3 ounces or more carbs a day - this is your fuel so it depends on your activity level how much you would need.

7. Drink water or other beverages throughout the day. We are about 65% water so we need it for our organs to work well.

8. Lastly, vary your foods - fruits, veggies and proteins give you a lot of choices so try new things and don’t eat the same stuff day to day or week to week.

One child, one book can change the world!!

Miss Teen International 2017


Popular Posts