What exactly is a healthy diet?!
Wouldn’t life just be a hell of a lot simpler if we knew which diet was the golden ticket for weight management? If we knew what diet was going to protect us more from disease and illness? Can we answer the age old question of what exactly is a healthy diet?
The NHS Eatwell Plate is a tool used by the government to recommend to the UK nation how to achieve a heathy and balanced diet. Great, you all cheer! That was simple. Except it’s not. Because we are all so different and our internal digestive systems work in different ways. Food intolerances play a massive part in today’s society. For some of us, even with the replacements products now available on the market, these recommendations are not going to be appropriate.
What about for those of us who want to lose weight? Many of the diet and low fat foods out there have high sugar content or added sweeteners in them. You’d be better off with the “normal” version. Once you start analysing food labels it is an absolute minefield. Shakes, intermittent fasting, low-carb, no carbs. I personally know friends who have tried each of these diets. And yes, weight loss occurs, but is it sustainable long term and are these plans good for your body? I’m going to say no. The chances are you’ll be missing out on the variety of nutrients that your body needs. Side effects can include hair loss, headaches, and fatigue.
The Celebrity Influence
Celebrities and influencers can exacerbate the issue for decision making. Are they really using the products they’re shouting about? Or are they being paid to promote them? Does anybody know who to trust or believe any more? Health magazines do write ups on various fitness enthusiasts and their daily meal plans. They analyse the benefits of various supplements and fad diets. But again, we all have different bodies and routines, and we therefore all have different dietary needs. What might seem to be working to make your bestie feel fabulous could have you running for the loo or worse!
The documentaries available on Netflix regarding food chain sources and practices and diet routines are both incredibly eye-opening and daunting. Who hasn’t wanted to become a vegan for life after watching one of these? I won’t go into all the pros and cons here, it’s impossible to cover all the viewpoints accurately and without personal bias.
So, what’s the answer?
I am a true believer that organic meat and fish is better for you. To me, it just makes sense that the less chemicals you put in your body, the healthier you have to be. I would love to be a vegan, but unfortunately my digestive system doesn’t like many of the alternatives that should be eaten to meet my desired protein intake levels. I’m also a huge advocate for avoiding processed foods, but I’m not a complete saint, I just try to eat the “not so healthy” things in moderation.
My key 3 words for you to take away from this: natural, variety, balance.
Written by Becky Barrett