The Important Building Blocks to Healthy Eating
Here are foods for healthy eating on a daily basis:
- Glucose from carbohydrates provides fuel for the brain and not as adequate supply leads to tiredness, irritability and lack of concentration.
- Chose complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains which provide both glucose and fibre. Fibre is essential for over all health.
- Amino Acids from proteins provide the building blocks for tissue building, neuropeptides and neurotransmitters, the molecules of emotion that allow the cells and systems of the body to communicate. A lack of protein has shown to contribute to depression, loss of motivation, anxiety and poor memory.
- Maximise your protein intake in terms of legumes, tofu , of fish, eggs, and for a less extent, nuts, seeds and whole grains.
- Fats can be either saturated or unsaturated. Saturated fats are generally denser and more stable in terms of cooking, e.g. meat, dairy and egg. Also, coconut and palm oil also contain more saturated fat and are therefore more stable.
- Unsaturated fats are less dense (liquid) and are more open to rancidity and instability. However, monounsaturated fats are more stable, i.e. olive and its oil, peanut and its oil, almonds, rapeseed, pecans and avocados. Polyunsaturated fats are even less stable and are mainly vegetable oils such as corn oil, canola and flax seed
- Essential Fatty Acids are converted into prostaglandins which are involved in many functions of the body including hormonal balance and controlling inflammation and maintaining blood pressure and regulating neurotransmitters. A lack of these have been associated with depression, ADHD, learning difficulties and behavioural problems
- How much should I eat - Consume 7% Omega 6 (hemp, pumpkin, sunflower, sesame), 7% Omega 3 (fish and pumpkin and flax seed), 7% monounsaturated (olive oil, peanut, pecans and avocado) )and 6% saturated fat (dairy, eggs or meat) a day
Vitamin and minerals
Work together with all the above to ensure all are working properly and functioning effectively.
Deficiencies are associated with poor concentration and attention, depression, irritability, confusion, lack of motivation and anxiety.
In fresh plant foods have been shown to reduce oxidative stress in the body.
Are found in plant based food, especially soy and flax, provide fibre and antioxidants have shown to benefit those with cardiovascular disease and regulate hormonal activity, especially in terms of hormonal cancers
These are cholesterol based compounds found in plant based foods that have been linked to lowering cholesterol.
Antioxidants which have been linked to reducing the harmful effects of free radicals in the body