251212 Modifying your diet to be healthier

Modifying your diet to be healthier

When you have a balanced diet that is high in nutrients and fiber there is no danger in occasionally eating a hamburger or having an ice cream cone. However, if you are finding it hard to resist eating everything in sight or are making poor choice, here are a few steps to guide you along in making these adjustments.

An easy start is to keep your portions moderate, especially when eating high calorie foods. You may have noticed that serving sizes have gotten larger over the years. Pay attention to what you order and eat only what you need; not the whole plate. Start out with an appetizer instead of the full meal. Stay away from anything on the menu that has been supersized.

Eat from a variety of different foods. Several positives result from doing so. It makes it more certain that you get all of the nutrients and other yet to be identified substances from this assortment of food and helps give you all the possible disease fighting possibilities of these foods. Additionally, eating this way limits the exposure to harmful pesticides and other toxins in and on the food.

Putting a focus on high fiber foods such as those from the vegetable family, fruits, legumes and all the whole grains provides your body with good carbohydrates. This is a triple bonus for your health because they are filling, nutritious, and generally low calorie. These high fiber foods are a source of vitamins, minerals and other potentially valuable phytochemicals[1][1] that are necessary in a healthy diet.

The importance of a high fiber diet lies in the fact that fiber slows the absorption of the carbohydrates, which in turn lessens the effect of the carbohydrates on your insulin and blood sugar.

[1][1] http://www.phytochemicals.info/

What are phytochemicals?

Phytochemicals are non-nutritive plant chemicals that have protective or disease preventive properties. They are nonessential nutrients, meaning that they are not required by the human body for sustaining life. It is well-known that plant produce these chemicals to protect themselves but recent research demonstrate that they can also protect humans against diseases. There are more than thousand known phytochemicals. Some of the well-known phytochemicals are lycopene in tomatoes, isoflavones in soy and flavanoids in fruits.