Having a healthy diet should include different types of food. Eating a large variety of foods helps you maintain a healthy and interesting diet that provides a range of different nutrients to the body.
Don’t avoid healthy fats!
You can find two types of healthy or unsaturated fats; monounsaturated fats – provided by olive oil, canola oil, avocado, almonds – and polyunsaturated fats like omega 3. These fats can help reduce the risk of heart disease and lower cholesterol levels when they replace saturated fats in your diet.
Include all 5 food groups into your diet. Foods that are grouped together provide similar amounts of key nutrients. These five groups are vegetables and legumes/beans, fruit, lean meats, and poultry (including fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds, and legumes/beans), grain (cereal) foods (mostly wholegrain and/or high cereal fiber varieties), and milk (including yogurt, cheese and/or alternatives, mostly reduced fat). It is also important to choose a variety of foods from within each food group because different foods provide different types and amounts of key nutrients.
Food variety is everything!
Eating a varied, well-balanced diet means eating a variety of foods to make your meals interesting; that way, your diet won’t bore you.
Treat yourself occasionally!
Eating foods that do not fit into the five food groups because they have low levels of important nutrients is important, too. These foods are called ‘discretionary choices’ and they should only be eaten occasionally. Foods like ice cream, fried foods, processed meat, sweetened drinks, etc., tend to be too high in either calories, saturated fat, added sugars, added salt, or alcohol.
Eating a wide variety of healthy foods promotes good health and helps protect against chronic disease. It will always be the right way to find a balanced lifestyle.