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2024 Practical Tips for a Healthier You (endorsed by the World Health Organization) | by A HEALTHIER YOU! | Jan, 2024

2024 Practical Tips for a Healthier You (endorsed by the World Health Organization)

A Healthier You starts today!

Healthy eating is often at the top of one’s New Year’s resolutions list, followed by starting a new habit.

There’s no better time to work towards a healthier habit, a healthier you..

A ‘healthier you’ starts with adopting a healthier diet.

Key recommendations from World Health Organization includes balancing energy intake and expenditure, limiting total fat, saturated fats, and trans-fats, reducing free sugars, and keeping salt intake below 5g per day.

It has been well documented that for adults, a healthy diet includes fresh fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, whole grains, and cutting back on sugar, fat, and salt.

Here are some Practical Tips for a healthy diet:

Fruit and Vegetables:
• Aim for a minimum of 400g (5 portions) of fruits and vegetables daily to lower the risk of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) and ensure sufficient dietary fiber.

• Increase fruit and vegetable intake by consistently including them in meals, consuming fresh produce as snacks, opting for seasonal varieties, and diversifying choices.

Fats:

• Limit total fat intake to below 30% of total energy to prevent unhealthy weight gain and reduce the risk of NCDs.

• Decrease saturated fats to less than 10% and trans-fats to less than 1% of total energy intake, replacing them with healthier unsaturated fats, particularly polyunsaturated fats.

• Reduce saturated and industrially-produced trans-fat consumption by choosing cooking methods like steaming or boiling, using oils rich in polyunsaturated fats such as olive or avocado oil, opting for reduced-fat dairy (or non-dairy alternatives) and lean meats, and avoiding baked and fried foods.

Salt, Sodium, and Potassium:

• Cut down on salt intake to less than 5g per day (equivalent to 1 teaspoon).

• Be mindful of hidden salt in processed foods, and limit the use of high-sodium condiments. Avoid having salt or high-sodium sauces on the table (such as ketchup or tomato sauce), decrease consumption of salty snacks, and choose products with lower sodium content.

• Increase Potassium intake by incorporating fresh fruits and vegetables into your diet to counteract the adverse effects of elevated sodium on blood pressure.

Sugars:

• Reduce free sugars intake to less than 10% of total energy, with additional health benefits achieved by aiming for less than 5%.

• Lower the risk of dental issues and unhealthy weight gain by limiting the consumption of sugary snacks, candies, and sugar-sweetened beverages.

• Opt for fresh fruit and raw vegetables as snacks instead of sugary alternatives to promote better cardiovascular health.

Remember to check nutrition labels for sodium content in processed foods and make informed choices to support your overall well-being.


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