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  LiveWire / Teen Forums / Health, Hygiene & Fitness / Viewing Topic

A guide to healthy eating.
Replies: 17Last Post Mar. 16, 2010 12:59am by roflfuckyou
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How To Eat Healthier!
(Predecessing topic.)

Disclaimer: No one here is a nutritionist. This sticky is simply our own advice, coupled with information from various websites. Before undertaking any sort of diet you MUST consult a health professional.

Losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight seems to be something that plagues most of us. A crash or temporary diet is never the answer, a complete lifestyle change is. Don't change your eating habits for three months, only to go back to how you were. If you do that, the weight you lost will pile back on and you'll be right back at stage one. Changing your usual diet to a healthier one you can stick to for the rest of your life will allow you to lose weight and maintain it easily. The key to weight loss and maintenance is: Burn off more calories than you consume.

(click to go to that post.)
Benefits to a healthy diet.
The extreme side to unhealthy eating.
Popular fad diets.
Diet myths.
Healthy weight.
Healthy lifestyle choices.
Calories and kilojoules.
How to read food labels.
Nutrients.
Beverages.
Breakfast, lunchtime, dinner, desserts and snacks.
Serving sizes.
Dietary supplements.
Pregnant women, kids and the elderly.
On a budget.
Tips that will help you along the way.
Links.

Post edited at 1:55 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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BENEFITS TO A HEALTHY DIET  

 The benefits to a healthy diet can sometimes be taken for granted and not noticed in every day life. That's because we don't feel most benefits that come with healthy eating. When eating a balanced, healthy diet our body is provided with the essential components it needs in order to help you sustain and long, and relatively healthy life. Some of the more obvious benefits people associate with healthy diets are:  
 - Managing your weight.  
 - Normal bowel movements.  
 - Normal energy levels allowing you to go about your day easily.  
 - Healthy looking skin, teeth and hair.  

 Some benefits that we don't realise we're getting through a healthy diet are often the most important ones. Things such as:  
 - Reduced risk for stroke.  
 - Reduced risk for type 2 diabetes.  
 - Protection against cancers of the mouth, stomach and colon-rectum.  
 - Reduced risk of coronary artery disease.  
 - Decrease bone loss.  
 - Decrease the likelihood of developing kidney stones.  
 - Low cholesterol.  
 - Aids a healthy pregnancy.  

 It becomes clear when seeing a loved one suffer from a stroke or a heart attack due to an unhealthy diet just how important eating well really is. And let's face is, nearly every person knows someone who is suffering from at least one of the health complications mentioned above. Obesity isn't the problem; it's the diseases and conditions that are caused because of obesity that are the killers.

Post edited at 1:04 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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THE EXTREME SIDE TO UNHEALTHY EATING.

You may have seen or heard about teenagers resorting to starvation in order to lose weight. This has numerous down sides such as causing the stomach to shrink over time, lost energy and depression or mood swings. Not to mention starvation is unsustainable, and you will more than likely whack on any weight you lost (and probably even more!) when you stop. If you under eat to the point of anorexia nervosa, you could suffer from the following:

Health risks of under eating and starvation (anorexia nervosa):
- Amenorrhea (loss of menstrual cycle for more than three months).
- Dry skin and hair loss.
- Erectile dysfunction.
- Infertility.
- Hypothermia.
- Electrolyte imbalance.
- Muscle wasting.
- Death.

Another common eating disorder among teens is bulimia nervosa, when a person binges (over eats) on food, then purges it. Purging doesn't have to be vomiting; it can also be through the use of laxatives or diuretics. Bulimia nervosa is an unhealthy rollercoaster, which will inevitably end with the person in a lot of pain and in the hospital.

Health risks of bulimia nervosa:
- Inability to have normal bowel movements.
- Peptic ulcers.
- Muscle wasting.
- Tooth decay, discoloration and cavities.
- Callused fingers.
- Oesophagus damage.
- Cardiac arrest.
- Depression and anxiety.

The opposite of anorexia nervosa is binge eating. This is when a person eats a lot more than what their body actually needs. A person will binge eat because they find comfort and emotional support in food. 25-30% of Americans struggle with emotional eating.

Health risks of overeating or binge eating:
- Obesity.
- Type 2 diabetes.
- High blood pressure.
- High cholesterol levels.
- Heart disease.

If you think you, or someone you know, may suffer from one of these (or other abnormal, dangerous eating patterns) you should get in contact with an adult and a health professional.

Post edited at 1:38 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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POPULAR FAD DIETS.  

 Fad diets are those popular diets everyone is talking about and everyone is giving a go (most give up or don't see results). There have been numerous fad diets over the last century, ranging from a breathing diet to a diet where you ingest parasites. The common trend with these fad diets are that they promote amazing weight loss and quick results. They often have a celebrity endorsement or claim that numerous celebrities have used it to prepare for their new movies where they need to lose weight fast. Most of these claims are smart marketing, and you shouldn't let a celebrity sway you to partake in a new fad that could potentially damage your body.  

 The reason why we're so drawn to fad diets, though, is because most of us want quick fixes. We don't like a long process, and when something promotes a three day rapid weight loss, we're inherently drawn to it. I'm not saying these fad diets won't make you lose weight, chances are if you stick to the usual strict program you will lose weight. Maybe not as much as they claim, but you'll still more than likely lose weight. However, once you stop the diet and go back to way you were before, you'll stack the weight you lost (and possibly more) back on.  

 This is the fundamental problem with dieting. Most fad diets involve a certain good group being cut out, while another is increased. But that isn't the way the body was designed, and if the elimination of the food group (such as carbohydrates or meat) isn't sustainable (which it isn't, because that isn't healthy) then it isn't a good diet, and only works for temporary weight loss. If you are serious about eating healthy, losing weight and actually maintaining a healthy weight then your new "diet" needs to be a permanent, long term change that is sustainable.  

 Some popular fad diets that have taken the world by storm include the following:  

 The Atkins Diet. This is a low carbohydrate and high protein diet. The theory is when you cut out carbohydrates, your body is forced to burn its fat stores. The problem with this is that it has a lot of unwanted side effects, such as dizziness, nausea, tiredness, insomnia and bad breathe. And those are just the short term effects. Long term effects may include (science has yet to confirm they are definite possibilities... but why risk it?) heart disease, kidney failure, cataracts, osteoporosis and so on. Scientists aren't even sure if low carbohydrate diets burn fat. The Atkins diet also allows you to eat saturate rich foods, like cheese and cream. Not to mention, with a diet so high in meat you can get pretty bored. Waking up to bacon every morning isn't as fun as it may sound on paper.  

 The South Beach Diet. This diet is initially a low carbohydrate diet, but it slowly reintroduces carbohydrates after the extremely restrictive first phase. This diet is based on the GI (glycaemic index) diet. This diet will leave you feeling weak and weary in the first two weeks due to the restrictions on carbohydrates. You wont be eating ANY fruit or vegetables in two weeks (how could that be healthy?) and eliminating carbohydrates means you'll be missing out on a lot of nutrients. The recipes for this diet can be pretty time consuming and complex, the South Beach diet is hard to stick to, and there is a chance of cardiac, liver, bone and renal abnormalities. Sound like a day on the beach?  

 The Lemon Detox Diet. This is one of the most popular detox diets, and like all detox diets, are unsustainable and potentially harmful. Nutritional deficiencies are the scariest thing with detox diets. The fact that this diet is liquid based, means the body is forced to use its fat and protein stores in the body that may ultimately reduce your muscle mass, and because of the lack of amino acids, you may never be able to get that muscle back. Your metabolism may also decrease making it harder to lose weight in future, and most weight loss on this diet is water weight. This diet is so restrictive you're almost 100% likely to put the weight back on. And you have to drink salt water daily too, ick!  

 Diets are meant to be enjoyable, healthy and balanced. Not a struggle to last the first week and something that makes you totally miserable. This is why fad diets suck!

Post edited at 1:09 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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DIET MYTHS.

The less I eat, the more weight I'll lose./Skipping meals will help me lose weight. No, it doesn't work like that. If you deprive your body of enough food, it will go into survival mode and cling onto any fat stores you have. This will make it extremely hard to lose weight. Eating properly and eating enough will be easier and you'll be able to lose more weight, and maintain it. Also, depriving your body of the essential nutrients will cause yourself a lot of damage, and you'll get quite sick.

If the ads on TV say 14 pounds in a week, then it must be true. No. Don't be fooled by celebrity endorsed products advertised on TV. The weight loss they advertise is the MAXIMUM weight loss possible or seen in their trial runs. You may only lose 1 pound, or maybe none at all. Don't rely on expensive products to do 1/8th of what you can do the healthy way.

Potatoes and carbohydrates make you fat. No, carbohydrates are the body's preferred source of energy that will keep you going. Low carbohydrate diets in the long term have shown to have minimal weight difference to a diet with moderate intake of carbohydrates.

Chocolate is bad for me. lol. Dark chocolate is high in antioxidants which are GOOD for you. Antioxidants get rid of free radicals that do your body harm. Dark chocolate can even lower your cholesterol and assist in reducing your risk of heart disease. Chocolate also releases endorphins which helps make you feel good.

A LITTLE bit of dark chocolate now and then is good for you. Just don't eat too much.

All fat is bad. Believe it or not, there are good fats, and your body does need a certain amount of the good fats if you want it to be healthy. Good fats have proven to help defend your body against diseases like cancer. The good fats include monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats found in nuts, olives, avocados and certain oils (olive oil and canola oil). There's also omega-3 fatty acids found in some seeds, vegetables and fish. Omega-3 fatty acids are so crucial in the diet, fish is recommended to be eaten many times a week.

I'm not lazy, I just have a slow metabolism. Slow metabolisms are pretty rare, and it's been proven that the fatter you are, the higher your metabolism when you rest as you need more Calories to keep your body going. There are certain things that can slow your metabolism down throughout the day (like not eating breakfast) but having a naturally slow metabolism shouldn't be a problem.

"Low fat" or "fat free" foods help you lose weight. Don't be fooled by clever marketing. Low fat or fat free doesn't mean it's Calorie free. And anything less than "97% fat free" isn't actually low fat at all. A product can be low in fat but still high in sugar or salt. Make sure you check all the nutritional values before buying into products.

If I quit smoking I'll gain weight. Nicotine does have an effect on the metabolism, but it's so small it shouldn't impact your weight really at all. When people quit smoking, their downfall usually is attempting to stop cravings by emotionally eating and finding comfort foods. Not everyone does this, which is why not everyone puts on weight when they quit. If you chew on sugar free gum, or use patches and quit-smoking products, you should be fine.

These weight loss products say "natural", therefore they must be 100% safe and healthy. Wrong wrong wrong wrong. Natural products can still be dangerous to your health. Don't be fooled. ALWAYS consult a health professional before investing your health in products.

Post edited at 1:55 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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HEALTHY WEIGHT.  

 So you know you aren't at a good weight, you know your body needs to be healthier, but how do you know what your healthy, ideal weight is? The main, and most popular, way to determine your ideal body weight is the BMI calculator. You can find BMI calculators all over the Internet. A healthy BMI for a person over 18 years old is between 18.5 and 25. Any higher than 25, you're considered overweight, and any lower than 18.5 you're considered underweight. This is a very basic guide though, and people with a lot of muscle mass (like body builders) or pregnant women should not rely on a BMI as a healthy weight indicator.  

 An even simpler way of determining whether or not you're overweight to the point of health problems is through waist circumference. For men, if they measure more than 94cm around their waist (or 'pot belly') then they're considered to be in risk of health problems and any larger than 102cm is a substantial increased risk of health problems. As for women, 80cm or more is considered to be an increased risk, and 88cm or more is a substantial increase in risk.  

 However, the best way to find out what YOUR unique ideal weight is is to head down to your local doctor and ask them to give you a number. That way you'll be able to work towards it, and maintain your weight around that number knowing it's the right number.

Post edited at 1:17 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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HEALTHY LIFESTYLE CHOICES.  

 Your health isn't all about the foods you eat. A healthy lifestyle involves many other things too. While diet may be one of the most important factors, it isn't the only important factor. If you want to be healthy, you need to look at all facets of your life and recognise the traps you've fallen in to.  

 - Excessive alcohol consumption.  
 - Smoking.  
 - Lack of exercise.  
 - Too much sun exposure.  
 - Not enough sun exposure.  
 - Mental health such as stress and depression.  

 These factors and more can play a major role in your health and weight loss. Regular check-ups at your local GP will help ensure you're on the right track. Genetics also play a big role in health, and checking up on your family history of conditions and diseases could give you a heads up on anything nasty you may have.

Post edited at 1:19 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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CALORIES AND KILOJOULES.

The difference between kilojoules and Calories.
Calories and kilojoules measure the same thing: energy.

Kilojoules are the universally accepted unit of measurement for energy. Nowadays, kilojoules are used to measure the amount of energy entering our body (through food), and Calories measure the amount leaving our body (through exercise). Many people, however, count Calories as a way of measuring how much food we put into our bodies. Counting Calories can be dangerous, but if done correctly can help you on your weight loss journey. If you plan to count calories it's better to plan your meals a day ahead so you know exactly what is being put in your mouth, and you don't fall short by dinner time with only 50 Calories allowed and nothing that small to eat (and you're pretty hungry!).

How many Calories/kilojoules are we allowed per day?
Your daily allowance of Calories and kilojoules depends on your age, gender, health and weight. Males tend to need more energy input, while the severely overweight people tend to need more energy input as well.

The rough recommended daily intake of calories are:
Gender..........Age..........Calories..........Kilojoules.
Male..............19-50..........2550C..........10,710KJ
Female..........19-50..........2000C...........8,400KJ

Post edited at 1:41 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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HOW TO READ FOOD LABELS

Food labels are those tables that are on every piece of food packaging. It tells you the quantity of various nutrients the food contains PER SERVE. A packet of biscuits may have 10 serves, so if you see only 10 Calories on the back, that's only for the serving size, not the entire packet. Only seven nutrients must be listed on the nutrition information panel, but if the product claims to be low (or high) in something else (e.g. cholesterol) then it must list that also.

The nutritional information panels must include:
- Serving size and number of servings per package.
- Energy content.
- Fat, protein and carbohydrate content.
- Sodium content.
- The name and content of any nutrient or biologically active ingredient about which a claim is being made.

Energy

Energy is measured in kilojoules and about 8500kj to 11,000kj per day is the average recommended guide for a healthy diet, but this number changes depending on your weight, age, gender, and physical activity levels. For a whole meal, whether it is breakfast, lunch or dinner, total energy should ideally be between 1200kj and 2400kj. Snack foods should total no more than about 300kj to 500kj per serve.

Protein.

There isn't really a recommended level of protein per 100g as protein isn't overly harmful in excess amounts. However, talking to your doctor about the amount of protein you eat daily is recommended as people with certain diseases could be putting their health at risk with too much protein.

Fats.

It is recommended that the fat content be no more than 10g per 100g of food. Men should only be having about 90g of fat per day, and women 70g. The saturated fat should only make up 35% at most of this total. This guide may help:
- 10g to 15g per serve for a main meal;
- 5g per serve for a breakfast food;
- Less than 5g per serve for a snack food.

Healthy foods high in fat like avocados and cheese should be eaten in moderation.

Sugars (listed under carbohydrates).

It is recommended that you avoid foods with more than 15g of sugar per 100g of food. If the food contains fruit, however, 15g is of sugar is acceptable. Foods with less than 10g of sugar per 100g are considered a good choice.

Sodium.

2300mg of sodium (salt) is the recommended intake for the average adult. Foods with more than 120mg of sodium per 100g should be avoided or eaten in moderation.

Post edited at 1:43 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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NUTRIENTS.  

 Vitamin A  

 Vitamin A is essential for healthy eyes, and growth and bone development. Strong hair, teeth, skin are also some of the benefits, while it aids reproductive functions and helps treat skin disorders including aging. You can find vitamin A in the following foods:  
 - Eggs  
 - Carrots  
 - Pumpkins  
 - Broccoli  
 - Dark leafy greens  
 - Mangos  

 B Vitamins  

 There is more than one vitamin B. Collectively they are called the vitamin B complex, and consist of 8 vitamins. They are:  
 -- Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)  
 -- Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)  
 -- Vitamin B3,(Niacin, includes nicotinic acid and nicotinamide)  
 -- Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)  
 -- Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)  
 -- Vitamin B7, also Vitamin H (Biotin)  
 -- Vitamin B9, also Vitamin M and Vitamin B-c (Folic acid)  
 -- Vitamin B12 (Cyanocobalamin)  

 You can read about their functions and where to find them here.  

 Vitamin C  

 Vitamin C is needed to make collagen, and is essential for repair and growth of tissues in your body. Vitamin C assists in healing wounds and maintaining bones and teeth. You can find vitamin C in:  
 - Cabbage  
 - Green peppers  
 - Oranges  
 - Tomatoes  
 - Brussels sprouts  
 - Strawberries  

 Calcium (mineral)  

 Calcium is essential for strong, healthy bones and to help your blood cot. If you're frequently suffering bone fractures, muscles pains or spasms, or growth retardation in children, you may be deficient in calcium. Calcium can be found in:  
 - Spinach  
 - Turnip greens  
 - Mustard greens  
 - Yogurt  
 - Mozzarella cheese  
 - Cow's and goat's milk  
 - Peppermint leaves  
 - Broccoli  

 Carbohydrates  

 Carbohydrates are the primary source of energy for your body. Under carbohydrates are starches and sugars. Sugars consist of fructose, glucose, lactose, maltose and so on. Starches are complex and take a long time to digest. Good sources of fibre include:  
 - Beans and legumes  
 - Carrots  
 - Oat bran  
 - Barley  
 - Cabbage  
 - Whole-wheats  
 - Rice (not white)  

 Chlorine (mineral)  

 Chlorine is needed to help regulate the acid in your body and water balance. Chlorine is found in salt and foods containing salt.  

 Vitamin D  

 Vitamin D is essential for the absorption of calcium in the body, it also helps maintain the correct levels of calcium and phosphorus in the blood. Aside from manufacturing vitamin D through sunlight, you can find vitamin D in:  
 - Dairy products  
 - Fish  
 - Margarine  
 - Oysters  

 Vitamin E  

 Vitamin E is an antioxidant that protects your body against free radicals. Vitamin E also helps your body use vitamin K and assists in the formation of red blood cells. You can find vitamin E in the following foods:  
 - Wheat germ  
 - Corn  
 - Nuts  
 - Seeds  
 - Olives  

 Fatty Acids (omega-3)  

 Omega-3 fatty acids are so important in a healthy diet. The benefits of having a diet rich in omega-3 are plentiful. It can reduce the risk of you becoming obese, helps prevent cancer growth in cells, keep your blood from clotting excessively, lower the amount of fat in your blood and so on. Science is showing us every day how important omega-3 is. Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in:  
 - Salmon  
 - Flax seeds  
 - Walnuts  
 - Scallops  
 - Shrimp  
 - Cauliflower  
 - Cabbage  
 - Tuna  
 - Tofu  
 - Soybeans  

 Fibre  

 High fibre foods help maintain bowel regularity, normal blood sugar levels, cholesterol levels and assists in maintaining a healthy weight. High fibre foods include:  
 - Cauliflower  
 - Broccoli  
 - Raspberries  
 - Unrefined, whole grain cereals/breads  

 Folate (vitamin)  

 Folate supports cell production, allows nerves to function properly, helps prevent osteoporosis bone fractures and can even help prevent dementias. Folate can be found in:  
 - Spinach  
 - Asparagus  
 - Cauliflower  
 - Pears  
 - Blueberries  

 Iron (mineral)  

 Iron is also an essential mineral in a healthy diet. Iron helps your body produce energy, keeps your immune system strong and helps distribution of oxygen throughout your body. It also helps with healthy skin, bones and hair. Iron rich foods include:  
 - Spinach  
 - Turmeric  
 - Lentils  
 - Brussels sprouts  
 - String beans  
 - Molasses  

 Vitamin K (vitamin)  

 Vitamin K allows your blood to clot properly, protects bones, and can provide possible protection against liver and prostate cancers. Vitamin K can be found in:  
 - Spinach  
 - Greens beans  
 - Asparagus  
 - Broccoli  
 - Green peas  
 - Carrots  

 Magnesium (mineral)  

 Magnesium assists in relaxing the nerves and muscles, building strong bones and keeping your blood circulating normally. Magnesium rich foods include:  
 - Spinach  
 - Broccoli  
 - Molasses  
 - Sunflower seeds  
 - Sesame seeds  
 - Peppermint  
 - Celery  

 Potassium (mineral)  

 Assists in the functioning of nerves and muscles. Helps maintain the acid-base balance in your body and electrolyte levels, as well as lowering your risk of high blood pressure. Potassium can be found in:  
 - Spinach  
 - Bananas  
 - Eggplant  
 - Crimini mushrooms  
 - Broccoli  

 Sodium (mineral)  

 Sodium assists with muscle contractions and nerve function. It's also crucial in maintaining the water balance in your body, and acid-base balance. Sodium is found in salt, and foods that contain salt.  

 Zinc  

 Zinc helps balance your blood sugar, stabilise your metabolism, prevent a weakened immune system and even supports your sense of smell and taste. Foods high in zinc include:  
 - Spinach  
 - Basil  
 - Pumpkin seeds  
 - Asparagus  
 - Beef  
 - Yeast  
 - Lamb

Post edited at 1:23 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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BEVERAGES.  

 Alcohol.  

 Alcohol is not healthy, but most of us have social lives and so we can't cut it out completely. It's advised to have at least two days a week where you don't consume alcohol, and to limit your alcohol to only a few standard drinks when you do drink. Overdoing it to the point of losing consciousness isn't fun or healthy.  

 Excessive alcohol consumption can result in many nutrition problems, such as:  
 - Obesity.  
 - Vitamin and mineral deficiencies.  
 - Gut bleeds.  
 - Fatty liver.  
 - High blood pressure.  
 - Malabsorption of fat.  

 Tea and coffee.  

 Some of us can't survive without our morning coffees, but in fact our body doesn't need it. If you've gotten to the point where you can't live without it, you've become addicted to caffeine. Getting to the point of addiction is never good for you, but that doesn't mean you need to cut out coffee or tea from your diet. There are pros and cons to caffeine consumption, and it really is your decision as to whether you'd like to drink it.  

 Coffee and tea are rich in antioxidants and polyphenols, which is why some experts recommend drinking it. Others argue whether it's essential to drink, and if it makes that big a difference if you don't. At the end of the day it all comes down to how much you drink and how reliant you become to caffeine. Pros and cons to drinking tea and coffee can be found here.  

 Fruit juice.  

 Fruit juice can be extremely high in sugar, and it ultimately provides no nutritional benefits over whole fruit. Fruit juice is especially bad for you if you're already overweight. Squeezing and juicing your own fruit and vegetables will ensure no added sugar or salt. Whole fruits are still better, but fruit smoothies and a glass of naturally squeezed juice is always nice. Just make sure you avoid those packages, sugar loaded fruit juices from supermarkets. They can be detrimental to diets and to your health.  

 Water.  

 Water is absolute essential if you want to be healthy. You can't not drink water. Your body is full of water, and without it you will die. It's recommended that the average person should drink 8 glasses of water a day. Carrying a drink bottle around with you during the day can help you achieve that. Drinking water is essential if you want to live a healthy life, and if you want to lose weight.  

 Sometimes thirst can be mistaken for hunger, causing you to eat more. Dehydration can also slow down one's metabolism. Drinking the recommended daily volume of water has been shown to significantly ease joint and back pain. Drinking water also decreases the risk of colon cancer, breast cancer and bladder cancer. Water has an unimaginable numbers of advantages.  

 Soft drinks and energy drinks.  

 Soft drinks are not good for you. Period. They provide no nutritional benefits, and your body ultimately could do without them. Many people switch to diet soft drinks thinking they're healthier, when really they bring along their own cons as well. Some people call soft drinks "cancer in a can" or "diabetes in a can". Side effects from drinking soft drinks include:  
 - Calcium loss in bones.  
 - Make bones weak and brittle.  
 - Nerve damage.  
 - Diabetes.  
 - Soft drinks have been linked to oesophageal cancer.  
 - Acid reflux.  
 - Increases hunger.  
 - Dehydration.  
 - Back and joint pain.  

 Energy drinks are designed to increase energy and increase physical performance. The main ingredients in energy drinks are caffeine, taurine and glucuronolactone. The biggest issue coming to our attention regarding energy drinks is that the high volumes of ingredients are causing heart conditions and cardiac arrest. It's advised that you only have ONE CAN of an energy drink per day. Even the energy drinks states that on the back.  

 Too much caffeine from energy drinks, as it's pretty easy to have more than one in a day, can cause:  
 - Headaches.  
 - Nausea.  
 - Hallucinations.  
 - Sleepiness.  
 - A rise in blood pressure.  

 Milk.  

 Milk is known for its role in bone and dental health. It contains many different nutrients, and a 250mL glass of milk is recommended per day. Milk is one of the main sources of calcium and should be included in your daily diet. Milk can help protect against or reduce the risk of:  
 - Tooth decay  
 - Osteoporosis  
 - Type 2 diabetes  
 - Colon cancer  
 - Blood pressure  
 - Bone health  
 - Respiratory problems  

 Skim milk and reduced fat milk is always preferred, but when it comes to weight loss, full cream milk won't make that much of a difference to your progress. Both cows milk and goats milk are enriched with nutrients, so it's up to you which you drink. And for those lactose intolerant, small sips of milk during the day will not cause you much damage, or you can buy lactose free milk or soymilk.  

 Sports drinks.  

 Sports drinks are primarily made for elite athletes who need to keep up their electrolyte levels. But due to their bright colours and celebrity endorsements, the sports drinks appeal to a much wider audience. If you aren't doing some type of high intensity physical activity, then drinking sports drinks simply adds kilojoules and Calories. Sports drinks replace lost electrolytes and add carbohydrates after a person has completed a high intensity performance to avoid dehydration. They ARE a healthier alternative to soft drinks, but unless you're in need of hydration, they're definitely something to avoid.

Post edited at 1:24 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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BREAKFAST, LUNCH, DINNER, DESSERTS AND SNACKS.

Now that you have all the facts and have seen the unhealthy side to dieting, let's look at a healthy diet and some easy ideas that take the work out of being healthy. A really good tip is to make lunches, snacks and dinners in excess so you can freeze some for other nights. That will save you time, and make you less prone to ordering out!

Breakfast.

"Breakfast is the most important meal of the day" sound familiar? Well believe it or not, it's actually true. Those who eat breakfast are more likely to have a normal weight and be able to maintain that weight easier. Breakfast literally means "break the fast" due to the lack of eating during the night which can be 8 hours.

Some suggested breakfast food:
- A bowl of low GI, low sugar and low sodium muesli with milk and even some chopped up fruit.
- A glass of water, milk or fruit juice
- Wholemeal, rye or multigrain toast with avocado (I recommend this!)
- Porridge or oatmeal with added nuts and fruit (add some flaxseeds too).
- Fresh fruit (such as a banana or apple)
- Thick breakfast smoothies.
- Vegetable omelette using the egg whites only.
- Low fat yogurt and mixed berries.
- Fresh fruit salad.
- Low fat cottage cheese and fruit.

Things to avoid:
- Cereal. Most cereals with the fun coloured packaging contain A LOT of sodium and A LOT of sugar. They taste great, but they don't make you feel full and you sugar crash before lunch.
- Coffee. Some of us can't function without coffee, but you don't need it to start the day. Instead, try a green apple. They've been proven to wake you up more than coffee!
- Those big, fat packed breakfasts like egg, bacon, sausages and pancakes. Its okay to eat like that once a week (or even better, once a fortnight), but anymore and you'll be packing on the weight and feeling lousy all day.
- Pancakes and white breads.
- Breakfast bars or muffins.


Lunch.

Lunch is the most inconvenient meal of the day, especially if you work or go to school. You either buy it, or bring it. The recommended thing to do is bring it - pack it the night before. That way you save money, and you aren't tempted by the goodies at the café!

Suggested lunch meals
- A salad or salad sandwich with lean white meat (tuna or chicken). Bringing it is more economical but most cafes sell them too.
- Soup. Bring those tins/packets of soup that only need 2 minutes in the microwave.
- Raw vegetables, such as carrot sticks, celery sticks, cucumbers.
- Mashed up boiled egg sandwich with wholemeal or wholegrain bread.
- Vegetable sushi handrolls (you can make these yourself!)
- Left over dinner from the previous night (assuming it was healthy).
- Mountain bread wraps with grilled chicken, baby spinach and roasted pumpkin.
- Lamb and nectarine salad.
- Minestrone soup with lots of chunky vegetables.

Things to avoid:
- Those pre-made Lunchables
- Fast food
- Processed food (Kraft Dinner, Chief Boy-R-Dee, etc)
- Cookies and cakes.
- Processed meats and cheese sandwiches.


Dinner.

It is a good idea to plan this with your family, so you are eating something you all like. Try not eating the same thing twice in a week and leave one day of the week for a fun meal like pizza or take out.

Suggested Dinners:
- Garden salad: Baby spinach leaves, tomatoes, avocado, cucumber, grated carrot, red onions, mushrooms, lentils, sweet corn and grilled pieces of chicken with low fat dressing.
- Sweet corn and zucchini fritters.
- Potato, corn and chicken patties with a garden salad.
- Grilled capsicum, eggplant, carrots and pumpkin with a grilled piece of chicken or fish.
- Wholemeal bread with a salmon and vegetable patty.
- Baked baramundi (or any other type of fish) with grilled vegetables.
- Chick pea and chicken salad.
- Vegetable quiche.
- Poached mussels with Lebanese cous cous.
- Beef or chicken stir fry.
- If you're going to eat red meat, try kangaroo meat or another type of low fat meat (If you live in the states try Bison/buffalo). Chicken and fish is always better though.

Things to Avoid:
- Deep fried food. Baked is better.
- Food containing that bad kinds of fat, i.e. trans and saturated fats.
- Fast food, take-out, and processed food
- Frozen meals. They're quick, but they provide no nutritional benefits and leave you feeling hungry.


Snacks.

Have you ever been told snacking is bad? Whoever told you that is either phrasing their statement poorly or repeating poorly phrased information from somewhere else. Snacking is really encouraged when you're maintaining a healthy lifestyle. The important thing is you don't snack on rubbish. You snack on healthy foods that are really good for you and will make you happy, not feel guilty you ate it. Let's face it, sometimes we get the munchies between meals, and at 3pm when it's three hours away from dinner you want to claw your face off.

Suggested snacks:
- Carrot, celery, cucumber or capsicum sticks.
- Cherry tomatoes and cubed, low fat cheese.
- Sliced melon (rock melon, watermelon, cantaloupe etc).
- A bunch of grapes.
- Seeds and nuts.
- Celery and carrot sticks with low fat cream cheese.
- Apricot yoghurt slice.
- Sweet yoghurt and fruit slices.
- Savoury zucchini loaf.
- Low fat muffins.
- Low fat smoothies.
- Heat some pita bread up till crispy and eat with low fat dips.

Things to Avoid:
- Chips and crisps.
- Doughnuts, cakes and pies.
- Chocolate and lollies/candy.
- Chocolate biscuits.
- Thickshakes and milkshakes.
- Fairy bread.
- Breakfast cereal. Lots of people eat breakfast cereal as a snack - if it isn't good for you at breakfast it isn't good for you at any other time of the day!
- Avoid putting whipped cream on your healthy snacks. Try low fat yogurt instead.

Desserts.

Desserts can potentially be the most dangerous meal when it comes to over indulging. However, don't feel guilty if you over indulge once in a while. Cravings come and we can't always ward them off. Having a big piece of chocolate cake doesn't mean you shouldn't eat for the next few days - it's totally fine. Don't overdo the restricting.

Suggested desserts:
- Low fat sorbet ice cream.
- Fruit salad.
- Low fat smoothie.
- Yogurt and fruit.
- Baked or pureed fruit.
- Frozen yogurt (this is a great idea because it will take you longer to eat which will fill you up!)

Things to Avoid:
- Double, triple, 8 types of chocolate cake. Small pieces of cake are fine every now and then, but choose wisely.
- Full fat ice cream. There's no need to eat full cream when there's a low fat option.
- Avoiding using whipped cream on your healthy options. Try yogurt instead.
- Ice cream cakes.
- Pies and puddings.

Post edited at 9:43 am on Mar. 13, 2011 by roflfuckyou


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SERVING SIZES.  

 Sometimes eating the healthy things isn't good enough. If you eat two plates full of "healthy" food, it isn't quite as healthy anymore. This is because it's considered healthy it's of an appropriate size.  

 This is the recommended serving sizes according to: http://www.gastro.net.au/diets/healthydiet.html  

 Breads, cereal and pasta:  
 Serve size: 1 slice bread or 1/2 cup cooked or ready to eat cereal  
 Recommended per day: Bread and Cereals: 5 serves  

 Vegetables:  
 Serve size: 1/2 cup cooked vegetables, 1 small potato or 1 cup salad  

 Recommended per day: Vegetables: 5 serves  

 Fruit:  
 Serve size: 1 medium piece of fruit, 1 cup cooked or canned fruit or 1/2 cup juice  
 (choose juice less often)  
 Recommended per day: Fruit: 2 serves  

 Meat, fish, poultry, eggs and legumes:  
 Serve size: 70-100g cooked meats, 1/2 cup cooked legumes, 2 small eggs, 1/3 cup nuts  

 Recommended per day: Meat, fish, poultry: 1 serve  

 Milk, yogurt and cheese:  
 Serve size: 1 cup (250 ml), 2 slices (40 g) cheese, or 200 g yogurt  
 Recommended per day: Milk, soy milk, cheese or yogurt: 2 serves

Post edited at 1:25 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS  

 What is a dietary supplement?  
 According to the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act, a dietary supplement is a product (other than tobacco) that  
 - Is intended to supplement the diet;  
 - Contains one or more dietary ingredients (including vitamins; minerals; herbs or other botanicals; amino acids; and other substances) or their constituents;  
 - Is intended to be taken by mouth as a pill, capsule, tablet, or liquid; and  
 - Is labelled on the front panel as being a dietary supplement.  

 Many people take dietary supplements as a backdoor approach to making sure the essentials are in their diet. It's true, sometimes it is hard to simply eat all the essential nutrients. However, that isn't to say you should rush to the pharmacy and buy bottles and bottles of dietary supplements. There can be side effects, they can adversely affect your health, and dietary supplements are NOT intended to cure or treat diseases.  

 The three types of dietary supplement claims.  
 - A health claim. These types of claims on dietary supplements suggest a reduced risk of a disease or health related condition.  
 - Nutrient content claim. This claim describes the amount of a nutrient or dietary substance in the product.  
 - A structure/function claim. This claim suggests an affect on the organs or systems of the body but does not mention a specific disease.  

 What information is required on a dietary supplement label?  
 FDA requires that certain information appear on the dietary supplement label:  

 General information  
 - Name of product (including the word "supplement" or a statement that the product is a supplement)  
 - Net quantity of contents  
 - Name and place of business of manufacturer, packer, or distributor  
 - Directions for use  
 Supplement Facts panel  
 - Serving size, list of dietary ingredients, amount per serving size (by weight), percent of Daily Value (%DV), if established  
 - If the dietary ingredient is a botanical, the scientific name of the plant or the common or usual name standardized in the reference Herbs of Commerce, 2nd Edition (2000 edition) and the name of the plant part used  
 - If the dietary ingredient is a proprietary blend (i.e., a blend exclusive to the manufacturer), the total weight of the blend and the components of the blend in order of predominance by weight  
 Other ingredients  
 Non-dietary ingredients such as fillers, artificial colours, sweeteners, flavours, or binders; listed by weight in descending order of predominance and by common name or proprietary blend.  

 What are the possible side effects?  
 Dietary supplements can adversely affect your health, which is why talking to a GP before taking them is a must. However, you don't have to take too much of a supplement to be at risk of experiencing a side effect. Reported side effects have been seen in people who have taken the recommended dosage, or an even lower dosage of a supplement. "Natural" does not mean it won't do any harm. Dietary supplements may interfere with other medications you're taking. They can also interfere with the recovery from surgeries, which is why it's recommended not to take dietary supplements before surgery or immediately after. Taking more than one supplement at a time can cause them to interact, resulting in problems for you. Long term damage is possible. The side effects can range from mild nausea and headaches through to death.  

 Be careful.  

 I'm thinking of taking some dietary supplements, thoughts?  
 - Talk to your pharmacist or, even better, your local GP about whether or not a dietary supplements would be worth the money and effort before you buy it.  
 - Ask them about specific side effects, and then weigh up the pros and cons.  
 - Ask if you have a certain nutrient deficiency as well.  
 - Daily multivitamins are probably the best way to go. They provide a broad range of essential nutrients in normal amounts, and if anything, I would recommend a daily multivitamin.  
 - Don't see an ad on TV about a dietary supplement and run out to buy it - research it first.  
 - "Natural" doesn't mean safe. Don't be tricked into thinking you'll be fine.  
 - Remember, dietary supplements are not intended to cure or treat diseases.

Post edited at 1:27 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


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PREGNANT WOMEN, KIDS AND THE ELDERLY  

 Pregnant or breastfeeding women.  
 When you're pregnant, you aren't only providing nutrition for your own body, but also for a growing body inside of you. For this reason a pregnant woman's diet must consist of a few different things in order to assist the baby's natural development within the womb. For this reason your kilojoule intake is increased to about 11,000 for a person on their feet most of the day, and some important nutrients such as iron, folate, iodine, zinc and vitamin c are required in increased amounts. If the mother is expecting more than one child (twins for example) the dietary requirements increase again.  

 Children.  
 Children haven't fully developed yet, and so their body differs from an adult's. For this reason their dietary requirements also differ. Children between the ages of 1 and 6 years of age need around 1500 Calories on average to sustain a healthy lifestyle, providing they are fairly active (for a child that shouldn't be too hard). Like adults, boys need more energy intake than girls, but in general Calorie counting shouldn't be necessary for a child's wellbeing.  

 The elderly.  
 A healthy, nutritious diet is important for the elderly, as it proves mental acuteness and resistance to illness and disease. Over the age of forty our metabolism continues to slow down, and due to this the elderly need a diet with fewer Calorie intake, otherwise they will gain weight more rapidly than you or I. Changes in their digestive system will also impact on their diet, for example it is more difficult to process some vitamins and minerals such as B12 and folic acid which are essential in the diet. These types of factors need to be considered when planning a diet for the elderly person.

Post edited at 1:28 am on Mar. 16, 2010 by roflfuckyou


12:58 am on Mar. 16, 2010 | Joined: June 2008 | Days Active: 2,046
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