Why eat healthy?
Why eat healthy?

Benefits of Eating a Healthy Balanced Diet

Healthy eating doesn't mean starving yourself or enduring bland, flavourless foods. A well-balanced diet can include plenty of tasty and nutritious food that works wonders for your body and your mind.

There's really no end to the benefits of eating healthy, but here are the top five reasons to include more nutrient-rich foods in your diet, which can lead to surprising and rapid improvements.

1. You'll live longer
Vegetarian and low-meat diets have been demonstrated to extend life expectancy and reduce nutrient deficiencies that can damage the immune system. Poor diets greatly increase the risk of chronic diseases, including cancer, diabetes, heart disease and obesity, which can be reduced by taking in more protein, vitamins and minerals.

Calcium in dairy products, dark green leafy vegetables and fortified foods helps to keep teeth and bones strong, while diets rich in fruit, vegetables and nuts and low in fried foods help to retain optimal blood flow to the brain and prevent Alzheimer's disease.

2. You'll have more energy
If you often feel tired or sluggish during the day, a balanced diet will help you to feel more energetic. Healthy proteins such as lean meat, poultry and fish and unprocessed carbohydrates in fruit and vegetables are slow to digest, so your energy levels will remain more stable throughout the day.

3. You'll feel happier
The benefits of a healthy diet aren't only physical, but psychological as well. Bananas contain around 10 milligrams of dopamine, a natural mood booster, while foods rich in vitamin C, omega-3 fatty acids and magnesium can help to control levels of cortisol, the stress hormone. That's not to mention the self-esteem boost that comes from getting in shape.

4. You can lose weight
Even if weight loss isn't your primary goal from improving your diet, you'll find it's much easier to maintain a healthy body weight when you leave behind high-calorie processed and sugary foods. As long as you eat a healthy amount of whole grains, fruits and vegetables each day, with smaller servings of meat and dairy, you should feel satisfied without turning back to junk food.

5. You'll save money
It's a damaging misconception that it's more expensive to eat healthy food. You could actually make significant savings by cutting out unhealthy soda drinks and fatty snacks from your budget, reducing portion sizes and avoiding expensive medical bills in the long term. Cutting out soft drinks alone can save the average household $850 a year.

Healthy eating advice in Coolangatta
If you're looking for dietary advice or personal nutritional consultations for adults or children, speak to the experts at Great Ideas in Nutrition, an award-winning health practice now open at The Strand Coolangatta.