The Advantages of Eating Healthy Food
Weight control is a common reason that you might consider eating healthily. Although following a balanced diet can help you lose weight or maintain a healthy weight, this is only one benefit. Those who follow a healthy, well-balanced diet reduce their risk of chronic diseases, such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Aim to consume a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains and unsaturated fats.
Weight Loss or Maintenance
Use fruit, vegetables, lean protein and whole grains to replace high-fat, high-calorie foods. Staying within your required calorie range is vital for achieving and maintaining a healthy weight. The fiber in whole grains, fruits and vegetables help fill you up faster and keep you full longer than foods that are loaded with sugar. The longer you are satiated, the less likely you are to exceed your ideal calorie range.
Sugary foods, such as white bread, fruit juice, soda and ice cream, cause a spike in blood sugar. While your body can handle occasional influxes of glucose, over time this can lead to insulin resistance, which can go on to become type 2 diabetes. Complex carbohydrates, such as whole grain bread, oatmeal and brown rice, cause a slow release of sugar into the bloodstream, which helps regulate blood sugar.
Decreased Risk of Heart Disease
Regularly consuming high-fat foods can increase your cholesterol and triglyceride levels, which can cause plaque to build up in your arteries. Over time, this can lead to heart attack, stroke or heart disease. Eating a moderate amount of healthful fats such as those found in olive oil, avocados, fish, nuts and seeds helps protect your heart.
Decreased Cancer Risk
Fruits and vegetables are loaded with antioxidants, which are substances that seek and neutralize potentially damaging cells called free radicals. Free radicals contain an uneven amount of electrons, making them highly unstable. As they seek out and steal electrons from healthy cells, they can cause damage. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals by donating one of their electrons, turning the free radical into a stable molecule.