In the recent times, the world has fallen in love with the phenomenon of eating healthy. A meal that may look simple to you can contain hundreds of calories which would prove tough to get rid of even with our busy lifestyle. You want to eat healthily but with an increasing amount of our food being sugar-laden and processed, you start asking yourself the question whether the food you are consuming all along is real or not. Luckily there are many ways you can determine whether your food is healthy and contains the right amount of nutrients. The next time you buy groceries, check whether they are naturally best fresh since fresh food is usually healthy. Below are listed a few more questions that you can ask yourself if you want to eat a balanced diet.
1. Is it grown in the ground?
When choosing what to buy, think whether the item is grown in the ground or not. Of course, everything is indirectly grown in the soil such as donuts, which are made from flour, which is made from wheat, which is grown in the soil but that does not make eating donuts on a regular basis healthy for you since they are also processed. If you want to take care of your health, you should select a food which is closer to its natural state as much as possible since it would not have to be processed too much. Choose plant-based foods and grains such as quinoa, rice, and barley along with vegetables, fruits, and nuts. Not only are they less processed but also rich in natural fiber which is beneficial for your digestive system and helpful in reducing heart problems. A lot of nutrients also help to deal with inflammation and reduce the chances of cancer.
2. Can you name everything listed on the food label?
The next time you visit the supermarket and think about putting random eating stuff in the trolley, check the label first. There would be many ingredients listed on it and if you cannot recognise most of them, better put the item back. The label may contain certain ingredients which would be bad for your health and would nullify the good things in the food. Try to be a good label reader so that you can find out if there are not any complex types of sugar present and look out for preservatives, food colorings, etc.
3. Was the animal healthy before it was slaughtered?
If you are a regular meat eater, checking the health of the animal is a good way to see if your food is healthy. If the animal was sick or treated with hormones there is a good chance that traces of it would be still in the meat and eating that might affect your health in the long run. Try to gain access to the slaughterhouse from where you buy your meat and check the conditions before buying the meat. Another important aspect is to always buy organic food. Eating it would increase the quantity of omega-3 fatty acid which is healthier for you compared to omega-6. Another advantage of eating organic food is that you can rest assured that it is not as processed when compared to regular food.
4. Is fat healthy for my body or not?
Although the general perception about fats among people is heavily tilted toward the negative side but not all types of fats are bad for your body. Your body requires a certain proportion of fats to stay healthy. Everyone knows that not eating hydrogenated oil and fried foods is healthy, but you also want to limit foods processed with vegetable oil. You should instead look for unsaturated fats such as fatty fish and olive oil or use coconut oil. These types of fats are beneficial for your health and would make you healthy. You should try to limit eating saturated fats as not only are they unhealthy but also increases the cholesterol levels in your body and increases the chance of heart problems. Regular exercise is necessary for meat lovers if they want to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
5. Is there spice or extra salt in my food?
It is quite common to use salt in packaged food to add flavour but the inclusion of too much salt can cause problems. Not only does excess salt cause problems like bloating but it also increases blood pressure. Bloating is a common issue among people and yet most of them do not take steps to cut their salt intake. An easy way is to prepare your food from scratch like soups, pizza, sauces, and salads. This way you can control the quantity of salt you add to the food which is healthier for you. Too much spice can also cause problems such as inflammation which would have a harmful effect on your body. Try to add a limited amount of spices to your food so that you can have the necessary flavours but with appropriate levels of spice. However, adding the right amount of spice and salt is beneficial for your health as they have antioxidant properties. Thyme, ginger, garlic, and turmeric will add flavour to your food without adding too many calories.
Always remember to ask yourself the above-mentioned questions if you want to maintain a balanced lifestyle and eat a healthy diet. Try to drink as much water as possible because it is good for your health. These questions will always help you to select the best possible food available in the market which would lead you to a good lifestyle. If you feel that you cannot take appropriate amounts of nutrients or are unsure about yourself, you can visit a nutritionist who can help you prepare an appropriate schedule, or you can seek help online.