Tips For Healthy Living—Nutrition

By Unknown - September 22, 2017


The adage, "You are what you eat" is true to some extent. Bad eating habits can increase your risk for heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, obesity and many types of cancer. Eating right can help lower your chances of developing certain health problems. But don't believe claims that certain foods or special diets provide a "fountain of youth" or cure conditions like cancer or arthritis.

   Most people don't eat properly. They eat foods containing too much fat or cholesterol, and too many calories. If you do not eat a balanced diet, you may not be giving your body the nutrients it needs.
   Nutrition is complex. Nutrients depend on each other. For example, vitamin C makes it easier to absorb the iron in foods. Long-term use of large amounts of the mineral zinc can cause a deficiency in copper and iron because zinc interferes with the absorption of copper and iron. Large doses of vitamin A and iron can be toxic. That's why self-diagnosis and mega-dosing with specific vitamins or minerals can end up doing harm instead of good.
   So what can you do when it comes to good nutrition? In a nutshell: Eat a well-balanced diet, wibreastfeedingounts of a variety of foods. Get plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables and avoid fat and sugary sweets.

    Ten Rules for Healthy Eating
Most people don't want to count calories or grams or figure out the percentages. The following guidelines
can make healthy eating a little easier.
 1. Eat a variety of foods.
 2. Eat only enough to maintain a healthy weight for your height and frame.
3. Choose foods low in fat, saturated fat and cholesterol.
4. Eat or drink no-fat or low-fat dairy
products, except young children, who
should have whole milk until about age two and then whole milk or 2% milk. 
5. Choose lean cuts of beef, pork, fish, chicken and turkey.
 6. Eat many fruits and vegetables, especially those that are fresh or frozen instead of canned.
 7. Choose fiber-rich foods like whole-grain breads and cereals, oat bran and beans.
 8. Use sugars only in moderation.
 9. Use salt and sodium only in moderation.
 10. Drink alcoholic beverages only in moderation. That means no more than one drink a day for women and two for men.
   
       What about supplements?

Many people take a multivitamin and mineral supplement every day. Most doctors agree there's nothing wrong with this. But if you're healthy and usually eat a balanced diet, you don't need supplements.
   If you're pregnant or breastfeeding, your doctor will probably recommend that you take vitamins. Women who are considering pregnancy are advised to take 0.4 mg of folic acid each day, which may help prevent certain birth defects. But be sure to talk to your doctor before you take anything if you're pregnant.
  Women who are at risk for osteoporosis may want to ask their doctors about taking calcium supplements to build up their bone density.
     Vitamin and mineral supplements can become dangerous if you decide to take "mega-doses," or large amounts, of specific vitamins and minerals. Vitamin A and iron, as mentioned above can be toxic or even fatal if large doses are taken over time. Other vitamins and minerals can have unpleasant side effects if too much is taken. For example, too much vitamin C can cause diarrhea.
Although vitamin and mineral deficiencies can cause a wide variety of symptoms, most people don't suffer from these deficiencies. If you feel you may be at risk, talk to your doctor.

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