Introduction: How to Eat Healthy

Picture of How to Eat Healthy

A healthy diet helps to prevent, or reduce the severity of, diseases such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes. A healthy diet may also help to reduce the risk of developing some cancers. Also, a main way of combating obesity and overweight is to eat a healthy diet. This leaflet gives the principles of a healthy diet.

Eat plenty of starchy foods (complex carbohydrates)
Starchy foods such as bread, cereals, potatoes, rice, and pasta, together with fruit and vegetables, should provide the bulk of most meals. Some people wrongly think that starchy foods are 'fattening'. In fact, they contain about half the calories than the same weight of fat. (However, it is easy to add fat to some starchy foods. For example, by adding butter to jacket potatoes or bread, or by adding oil to potatoes to make chips, etc.)

Also, starchy foods often contain a lot of fibre (roughage). When you eat starchy foods, you get a feeling of fullness (satiety) which helps to control appetite. Tips to increase starchy foods include:

For most meals, include generous portions of rice, pasta, baked potatoes, or bread.
For more fibre, choose wholemeal bread. When baking, use at least 1/3 wholemeal flour.
If you have cereals for breakfast, choose porridge, high fibre cereals, or wholemeal cereals (without sugar coating).
Have tea breads, and plain or fruit scones, instead of sugary cakes and biscuits.

Step 1: Eat Plenty of Fruit and Vegetables

Picture of Eat Plenty of Fruit and Vegetables

Is is recommended that we eat at least five portions, and ideally 7-9 portions, of a variety of fruit or vegetables each day. If you eat a lot of 'fruit and veg', then your chance of developing heart disease, a stroke, or bowel cancer are reduced. In addition, 'fruit and veg':

contain lots of fibre which help to keep your bowels healthy. Problems such as constipation and diverticular disease are less likely to develop.
contain plenty of vitamins and minerals, which are needed to keep you healthy.
are naturally low in fat.
are filling but are low in calories.
One portion of fruit or vegetables is roughly equivalent to one of the following.
One large fruit such as an apple, pear, banana, orange, or a large slice of melon or pineapple.
Two smaller fruits such as plums, kiwis, satsumas, clementines, etc.
One cup of small fruits such as grapes, strawberries, raspberries, cherries, etc.
Two large tablespoons of fruit salad, stewed or canned fruit in natural juices.
One tablespoon of dried fruit.
One glass of fresh fruit juice (150ml).
A normal portion of any vegetable (about two tablespoons).
One dessert bowl of salad.
Some tips on how to increase fruit and vegetables in your diet include:
Try some different types which you have not tried before. The variety of tastes and textures may be surprising. Juices, frozen, canned, and dried varieties all count.
Try adding chopped bananas, apples, or other fruits to breakfast cereals.
Aim to include at least two different vegetables with most main meals. Do not over-boil vegetables. Steaming, stir-frying, or lightly boiling are best to retain the nutrients.
Always offer fruit or fruit juice to accompany meals.
Try new recipes which include fruit. For example, some curries or stews include fruit such as dried apricots. Have fruit based puddings. Fruit with yoghurt is a common favourite.
How about cherry tomatoes, carrot sticks, dried apricots, or other fruits as part of packed lunches? A banana sandwich is another idea for lunch.
Fruit is great for snacks. Encourage children to snack with fruit rather than with sweets.
Eat plenty of fibre (roughage)

Fibre is the part of food that is not digested. It is filling, but has few calories. It helps the bowels to move regularly, which reduces constipation and other bowel problems. Fibre may also help to lower your cholesterol level. Starchy foods, and fruit and vegetables contain the most fibre. So the tips above on starchy foods and fruit and vegetables will also increase fibre. Have plenty to drink when you eat a high fibre diet (at least 6-8 cups of fluid a day).

Step 2: Do Not Eat Too Much Fat

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A low-fat diet helps to reduce the chance of developing diseases such as heart disease and stroke. It will also help you to reduce weight. The total amount of fat should be low. Also, the type of fat is important. You should not have much saturated fats such as butter, lard, dripping, and unspecified margarine. Unsaturated fats are better such as corn oil, sunflower oil, olive oil, and low fat spreads. Tips to reduce fat in your diet include the following.

Whenever possible, do not fry food. It is better to grill, bake, poach, barbecue, or boil food. If you do fry, use unsaturated oil. Drain the oil off the food before eating.
Choose lean cuts of meat, and cut off any excess fat.
Avoid adding unnecessary fat to food. For example, use low fat spreads, spread less butter or margarine on bread, measure out small portions of oil for cooking, etc.
Watch out for hidden fats that are in pastries, chocolate, cakes, and biscuits.
Have low-fat milk, cheeses, yoghurts, and other dairy foods rather than full-fat varieties.
Avoid cream. Use low fat salad cream, or low-fat yoghurt as a cream substitute.
Do not have too many sugary foods and drinks
Sugary foods and drinks are high in calories, and too much may cause weight gain. It isn't just the amount of sugar that may be bad. Eating small amounts of sugary foods (sweets etc) too often is bad for teeth. Tips include:

Try not to add sugar to tea, coffee, and breakfast cereals. Your taste for sweetness often changes with time. Use artificial sweeteners only if necessary.
Reduce sugar in any kind of recipe. Use fruit as an alternative to add sweetness to recipes.
Try sugar-free drinks. Give children water as their main drink.
If you eat chocolate or sweets, try and keep the quantity down. Eating them as part of a meal, and then brushing your teeth, is better than between meals as snacks.
Do not eat too much salt
Too much salt increases the risk of developing high blood pressure. Government guidelines recommend that we should have no more than 5-6 grams of salt per day. (Most people in the UK currently have more than this.) If you are used to a lot of salt, try to gradually reduce the amount that you have. Your taste for salt will eventually change. Tips on how to reduce salt include:

Use herbs and spices to flavour food rather than salt.
Limit the amount of salt used in cooking, and do not add salt to food at the table.
Choose foods labelled 'no added salt'.
As much as possible, avoid processed foods, salt-rich sauces, take-aways, and packet soups which are often high in salt.

Step 3: Finaly

you can losse fat by doing sport
thanks
losa kiflemariam

Comments

RondaB1 (author)2015-09-16

Will try, on a fixed incime budget makes it difficult

WUVIE (author)2013-07-13

Wow. I can't help but to notice this is the only Instructable this person (at the time, a 19 year old young lady) has created, and yet the day it was uploaded, bam! We are all here to learn from one another, but surely we can be a bit more articulate, and a lot less harsh of others in our responses. Instructables take time to create, and for all we know, Losa's first language may not even be English.

Losa, if you are still with us, I appreciate your efforts, and the wonderful Instructable you've created with health in mind. One never knows when even the slightest thing you may have mentioned may leave a lasting impression, leading to someone making healthier choices.

Many thanks, Losa!

suayres (author)2011-06-05

Actually, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, we really need to limit our intake of carbs--even healthy carbs need to be eaten moderately, but refined ones are little short of deadly. It's true that fresh fruit is your best choice as sweets for children, but the bulk of our diet needs to come from vegetables.

farzadbayan (author)2010-08-20

Very small photos .

ikeike40 (author)2010-07-02

HI

moosetooth (author)2009-11-16

 This is a fine instructable! Thank for taking the time.

icelandinthesun (author)2009-03-27

You have some good points there. I do not get the fuss about the incorrectness of it though. Of course health does not come served on a plate per se but as the lovely poster says- eat healthy (according to this) and feel great (or at least, a bit better than if you would eat not like this at all).

lemonie (author)2009-03-19
julibelle (author)2008-09-18

This is a great thought provoking instructible, thanks losa, so much so I feel provoked to rant a bit..so do with it as you will. Everyone wants their food to 'make' them healthy. And, everyone, it seems, believes there are good foods and bad foods. If you don't keel over after eating a food it is GOOD. (corn syrup, transfats, lard, chocolate, white sugar, alcohol, psta made w white flour) Everything we ingest is dose sensitive. As Shakespere writes: 'the poison is in the dose'. If we would base our eating choices on Michael Pollan's basic: 'eat food. not too much. mostly plants. don't eat anything your grandmother wouldn't recognize as 'food.' All lives would benefit. I don't know about anyone else, but I like a few oreos occasionally, nothing beats a tamale made w lard, I prefer my pie crust with Crisco but I like my tart shells made with salted butter - mostly I like a pie/tart shell made by someone I'm familiar with....but a eating pattern dependant on them is debilitating. Too much of anything is a problem for our physical, environmental & emotional health. Just eat (purchase, consume) less of whatever you choose. Stop demonizing food, stop complicating your decisions, stop making decisions based on 'nutrition-ism', start eating fresh, plain, colorful, give your buds a chance to clean/wake up. If this is interesting at all, read Marion Nestle, Michael Pollan, Eric Schossel. Enjoy what you choose.

saites2001 (author)2008-08-12

(Foreword: I'm sorry about this, but this has been getting on my nerves for a while, and you just happen to be the object of my aggression at the moment) YOU CAN'T EAT HEALTHY! Healthy is not something you can buy in a store or make in a pan. You can't consume healthy. You also don't eat healthy foods! Is that steak healthy? Really? Because it looks pretty DEAD to me. And unless that broccoli is growing in the ground, it doesn't look very healthy either. Your HEALTHFUL foods allow you to eat HEALTHILY so that you may have a HEALTHY life. /rant You do seem to have some genuinely good points in here, though. However, eating less fat will not help you lose (not loose) weight, as you state in step 2. Eating fewer calories (unit of energy) than you expend causes you to lose weight (keep in mind that you expend calories just sitting there breathing). Fat just tends to contain a large amount of calories, and it's not especially healthful for other reasons. A small amount is important to your diet, however, so it should not be avoided completely.

joshf (author)saites20012008-08-15

Yes, "healthy" as an adverb is not grammatically correct. But users are looking for "How to Eat Healthy," so that's why we (Instructables staff) phrased the question that way. As a fellow grammar stickler, though, I appreciate your concern.

ChrysN (author)saites20012008-08-12

Perhaps you should address your rant to the instructables staff who came up with the question, rather than taking it out on losa. I think the instructable is really well done, and covers some very good points.

saites2001 (author)ChrysN2008-08-13

Yeah, like I mentioned at the beginning, many people get this wrong. It's really not a big deal, and it doesn't really distract from the instructable (which I also said seemed good).

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