A balanced living diet is a healthy diet. To function correctly, our body needs all the nutrients from food, namely protein, carbohydrates (sugars), and fat, plus vitamins and minerals. Balance is the secret to maintaining a reasonable weight and having the best chance of staying healthy.

Here is some advice for a balanced diet for healthy living.

1. Balanced living diet; Reduce your intake of sugary foods

Limit your intake of sweets, cakes, sweets, sweet drinks, and sugary drinks. For desserts or snacks, try yogurt, fruits, or nuts (such as walnuts, hazelnuts, and salted almonds), and try drinking water or unsweetened tea.

2. Balanced living diet; Reduce your intake of processed foods

Among these foods are sausages, cakes, biscuits, burgers, and fast foods, which are high in fat and salt.

3. Balanced living diet; Choose the right fats

Eating fat is essential to be fit and healthy. But beware, this does not mean eating fries, pizzas, and other fried foods at all meals! We must limit the trans fats present in this type of food and responsible for bad cholesterol. Conversely, foods rich in good fats should be favored: omega 3. You can find them in fatty fish such as salmon, trout, herring, cod, mackerel, walnut and linseed oils, rapeseed or hemp, nuts, chia seeds, cabbage, and also eggs.

4. Balanced living diet; Do not exceed your caloric needs

Our diet is often too rich for our needs, which depend on the physical activity provided during the day, sex, and age. As a rule, to respect the quantitative food balance, one meal is sufficient in quantity when you reach the feeling of satiety.

5. Balanced living diet; Eat less meat

Even if our consumption decreases more and more each year, we still eat too much meat. We recommend limiting yourself to 500 g per week for beef, lamb, and pork. The recommendation is even more drastic for cold cuts, only 25 g per day (the equivalent of half a slice of ham).

Conversely, we should eat fish at least twice a week, alternating fatty fish (salmon, trout, sardines) and lean fish (cod, sole, ray, sea bass). On the other hand, we avoid preparing them smoked, salted or fried, or even cooked at very high temperatures because they no longer have great nutritional value.

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6. Balanced living diet; Reduce salt intake

Foods that contain large amounts of salt might increase blood pressure. High blood pressure has no apparent symptoms, but it may cause a heart attack or stroke.  Avoid adding salt when cooking food, and even to food on the table. If you need spicy food, use pepper and other seasonings.

They often add salt to prepared and processed foods, including bread, cereal, and broth. Reading nutrient labels (usually placed behind the packaging) can help you control the amount of salt added to food. Look at the numbers for 'salt per 100g':

High amounts of salt are over 1.5 grams (0.6 grams) per 100 grams.

Low amounts of salt are 0.3 grams (0.1 grams) or less per 100 grams.

7. Balanced living diet; Eat more legumes

Currently, we consume an average of 11g per day, which is still too little. Legumes are a great source of fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals; they protect against diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Therefore, we do not hesitate to program chickpeas, broad beans, split peas, white or red beans, and lentils on the menu more often.

8. Balanced living diet; Eat a lot of fruits and vegetables

Most of your diet should consist of a variety of fruits and vegetables. Doing this is easier than you think, as you can eat fresh vegetables or use them as a snack to prepare fruit and vegetable juices or smoothies. Also, remember to incorporate as many vegetables into your diets as possible.

9. Balanced living diet; Eat more whole grains

If we find cereals almost everywhere in our diet (flour, bread, rice, pancakes, breakfast cereals, pizza, pasta), it is more interesting to favor whole grains. They are much more satiating than the others and make it possible to avoid snacking; they contain more vitamins and minerals and improve digestive comfort. Finally, they would have a real impact on reducing chronic diseases such as diabetes or cardiovascular diseases.

10. Balanced living diet; Reduce your intake of fried foods

Fried foods in abundant oil or margarine, such as samosas, are high in fat, as this may lead to weight gain and an increased risk of diabetes and other health problems. Try to steam, roast, boil, and grill foods instead.

11. Balanced living diet; Eat regularly and in moderate amounts

Maintaining reasonable quantities of food will enable you to enjoy eating a variety of foods while maintaining a balanced diet. Controlling food intake, choosing low-calorie foods, and reducing overeating. Eating light meals can help you curb the appetite and stave off hunger.

12. Balanced living diet; Drink enough

It is essential to drink 1.5 liters of water a day, or more in hot weather, more intense physical activity, or illness. It can be in many ways: hot drinks, juice, broth ... Sodas, too high in sugar, should be in moderation.

13. Balanced living diet; Move

No need to engage in intensive activities; a little walking each day or climbing stairs, cycling may be enough, but the important thing is to do a little each day.

What benefits are there in eating a balanced diet?

A balanced diet has an essential role in our health. It decreases the risk of developing certain chronic diseases and thus increases life expectancy; in other words, a balanced diet for healthy living.  Indeed, food provides the necessary energy for our cells' proper functioning and allows our body's harmonious development. This is why it is essential to watch what you eat, both in terms of quality and quantity.

Originally published on Live Positively.