When it comes to eating a healthy and balanced diet, it is a concept that can be very broad. We know that there are some healthier foods than others , but when it comes to balancing daily meals, it is difficult to know in what proportions we should consume certain foods or what would be the best way to combine them with each other to achieve a healthy diet, which contributes to keep our health in optimal conditions.
What would a healthy dish be like?
Thus, although for years the so-called food pyramid model has been followed, which showed the amount of food that was healthier to consume throughout the week, currently, there is a method that is more effective: it is the so-called ‘healthy plate ‘.
As proposed by the School of Public Health TH Chan of Harvard (United States), this technique is based on Mentally divide the plate of food into various fractions , to get an idea of how much food we consume and how to mix them .
Remember that it is not always possible to include all the elements of the food in the same plate, for example, if you have a soup. However, it is a guideline to understand the recommended proportions and, above all, the need that the variety should be in each meal, and not only throughout the week. (To make it a little easier … Here is a selection of healthy recipes to enjoy with the family !!)
In addition, these are some ideas to keep in mind when making your dishes healthier:
Half plate for fruits and vegetables
It is clear that fruits and vegetables must be the basis of our diet and, therefore, the foods that occupy the most space on our plate. In fact, they will account for half of it. Keep in mind that almost three quarters of this half dish will correspond to vegetables and the other quarter to fruits. It is not about eating just a few spinach and only one banana, but about giving a little color to the dish by combining fruits and vegetables with each other. However, each color means that this food has specific characteristics, so the more varied the dishes, the more nutrients we will obtain. Finally, keep in mind that potatoes or sweet potatoes would not be included in this category, due to their high levels of carbohydrates.
Cereals yes, but whole grains
The next quarter of this plate of healthy food will be devoted to “whole grains,” that is, foods like rice, bread, and other cereals, which remain a critical part of the diet. Of course: they should be consumed preferably in their whole version , avoiding instead white rice, non-whole wheat and other unrefined cereals, which are less recommended carbohydrates.
The last quarter of the plate should be used, of course, for protein. Of course, they must be healthy proteins, that is, reducing as much as possible saturated fat, red and processed meats (sausages), etc. Thus, foods such as fish and poultry are more recommended. Likewise, it should not be forgotten that pulses are also a great source of protein and should be included in this category often. They don’t always have to be physically separate categories, we can also create combinations. For example, a plate of lentils with a lot of vegetables and a little brown rice , or make this same combination with a salad, to which we can also add some fruit.
Don’t forget the water
When talking about the food plate, it should also include a glass of drink. In this sense it must be remembered that it is necessary to drink enough water every day, and that this glass of water should not be replaced by sugary drinks or soft drinks . Also, you should not drink more than one glass of juice (without added sugar) per day, and do not exceed the consumption of milk.
Opt for vegetable oils
Whether for cooking or seasoning, choose vegetable oils like olive oil . Conversely, partially hydrogenated oils, which contain unhealthy fats, should be avoided.
A good diet is not enough
Finally, it must be remembered that, although a healthy diet is essential to lead a healthy life, it must be accompanied by other habits such as moderate daily physical exercise and avoiding toxins such as tobacco and alcohol .