“I am what I eat”. More than a saying, it’s a truth and it’s scientifically proven!
We eat above all for pleasure but we must not forget that the food we eat must contain the nutritional intake necessary for our body. This is how we protect our health by maintaining the proper functioning of our immune system.
We can summarize the basics of a healthy diet in 3 words: balanced, varied and moderation. Let’s take a closer look!
In medicine, nutrition and dietetics, the kilocalorie (kcal) and the kilojoule (kJ) are the units of measurement expressing the amount of energy provided by all the nutrients contained in food.
Since 1978, the official international unit has been the kJ, but the kcal is still widely used in everyday language. The conversion is not simple since 1 kilocalorie (kcal) corresponds to 4.185 kilojoules (kj).
Thus 1 g of carbohydrate or protein provides 4 kcal or 16.7 kJ, 1 g of lipid 9 kcal or 37.6 kJ and 1 g of alcohol 7 kcal or 29.2 kJ.
When it comes to food, balance is key. Eating well and staying healthy requires some knowledge of your body.
Balance your weight by matching the food you eat with the physical activity you do. Calculate your body mass index to know your ideal weight in relation to your height. The number of kilojoules or kilocalories needed is different and specific to each person depending on their lifestyle (sporty, sedentary, etc.), their age but also their sex.
Choose healthy, whole and fresh foods (fruits, vegetables, fish, etc.) your body needs them. Cut back on the processed foods you eat for pleasure (confectionery, processed fat and sugar).
Each food has different nutritional values. So we zap bolognese pasta every lunchtime and we incorporate rice, lentils, cabbage, peas but also white meat, fish… in short, a variety of foods to provide the nutrients and energy the body needs to function at full speed! And of course, we favor seasonal products.
Foods are classified into 5 groups according to their nutritional components:
- Dairy products, which mainly provide calcium and protein
- Meat, fish and eggs, for protein and iron
- Fats, for fatty acids and fat-soluble vitamins
- Cereals, starches, pulses for carbohydrates and fiber
- Fruits and vegetables for vitamins, fiber, minerals and water
As part of a balanced diet, it is recommended to draw one or more times from these food groups each day.
Everyone has already heard this famous phrase “you must eat at least 5 fruits and vegetables a day”. But what is 1 serving? A portion is the equivalent of 80 to 100 grams of the food in question. For example: 1 medium sized tomato, a handful of cherry tomatoes, 1 handful of green beans, 1 bowl of soup, 1 apple, 2 apricots, 4-5 strawberries, 1 banana…
From day to day, choose different foods to prepare great meals and enjoy a wide range of nutritional benefits.
Eat in moderation
You can indulge yourself in small pleasures but in moderation because in general they are high in kilojoules and low in nutrients. This is a real challenge since the least healthy foods are often the quickest and easiest option.
And as part of a healthy diet, eat your fill, but you have to be able to determine when what you eat is no longer necessary and becomes “delicacy”.
And the drinks?
Drink enough water, every day to hydrate your body. Limit your consumption of sugary drinks and alcohol. If you are a soda addict, choose light or sugar-free products. A sugar spike is even bad for your blood sugar.
Simple and healthy recipe ideas
Try our healthy meal ideas that are ready in half an hour!
Broccoli, carrot and walnut salad
Cut the broccoli and cook it in a pan of salted water for 5 minutes. Drain it and reserve it. Peel the carrots, cut them and add them to the broccoli. Prepare a vinaigrette with olive oil and lemon juice to dress the salad. Finally, chop a handful of walnuts and add it to your plate.
Spaghetti with scrambled eggs, mushrooms and prawns
Cook the spaghetti in a pan. Heat a frying pan with a little oil. Fry a clove of garlic. Fry the washed and drained mushrooms for 10 minutes. Add the peeled prawns. Add the beaten eggs and stir the mixture well.
Lentil salad with hummus and almonds
Boil then drain a bowl of lentils, and set them aside. Prepare the hummus. Once you have the desired texture, add it to your lenses. Chop a handful of almonds and put it on top. Add a little salt and virgin olive oil.
Quick vegetable broth
Wash and peel an assortment of vegetables such as celery, carrots, leeks and turnips and cut them into small pieces. Fry an onion and leeks in a pan with a drizzle of oil until golden. Add the rest of the vegetables and sauté for 5 minutes. Cover with water and add aromatic herbs such as thyme or bay leaf. Cook over low heat for 15 minutes. Salt and pepper to your taste.
Tuna stuffed avocado
You will need an avocado, a can of tuna in oil, pepper and a little mayonnaise. Cut the avocado in half and empty it of its flesh after removing the pit. Mix all the ingredients and for a nice presentation, fill the avocado halves with the filling.