A balanced diet, along with a healthy lifestyle, helps you ward off many leading chronic illnesses and diseases.
Food preferences determine dietary intake and behaviors. Such preferences persist from early childhood into later life. Establishing preferences for healthy foods from a young age can improve diet quality.
How exactly does a healthy diet improve your health? How does what you put into your body prevent certain life-threatening illnesses like heart disease, stroke, diabetes and osteoporosis?
Your common questions have been answered by Dietician (Dr) Shaffali Lakhanpal, MD, MSC (DFSM), Total Nutrition Diet Clinic.
Importance of Diet and Nutrition to Disease Prevention-
- Heart Disease: Maintaining blood pressure, cholesterol and weight under control are important components in the prevention of heart disease. Good eating habits are a way to keep the numbers healthy. Focusing the diet on whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and proteins, as well as limiting sodium and foods high in calories, are good thumb laws.
- Obesity: The frightening fact is that obesity is becoming very common in teenagers. Dietary behaviours that are formed more often than not in childhood lead to adulthood. That’s why it’s important to instill a healthy diet and nutritional practices in today’s youth. The prevention of obesity is crucial to ensuring that children have the right amount of nutrients and foods from major food groups.
- Diabetes: The best way to avoid type 2 diabetes is by eating a low-fat, well-balanced diet. Other dietary tips include lower fat consumption to less than 30% of calories and saturated fat consumption to less than 10% of calories. To prevent this lifelong disease, adding high-fibre foods to a diet regimen is also necessary.
- Cancer– Obesity raises the risk of cancer. A lot of foods can really help to prevent it. Leafy greens, rustic vegetables, fruits, whole grains and even green and black tea all help to protect against cancer of different forms. However, there is not one single food for cancer prevention.
- Osteoporosis: A diet without vitamin D and calcium can improve osteoporosis. A diet that includes specific food types is recommended to keep bones safe and solid. This includes the low-fat varieties of calcium-high and vitamin D-enriched foods. Fortified calcium products such as orange juice, cereal and soja are a healthy way to increase the amount of calcium in a diet.
The health benefits which come from healthy diets are not denied. It would immediately reduce the risk for extreme, life-threatening illnesses by integrating a healthier diet into your lifestyle, so why not give it a try?