What Healthy Eating Plate Looks Like
This is from the Harvard Healthy Eating Plate.
Make most of your meal vegetables and fruits – ½ of your plate
Aim for colour and variety, and remember that potatoes don’t count as vegetables on the Healthy Eating Plate because of their negative impact on blood sugar.
· Vegetables and fruits are an important part of a healthy diet, and variety is as importantas quantity.
· No single fruit or vegetable provides all the nutrients you need to be healthy.Eat plenty every day
Go for wholegrains – ¼ of your plate.
Whole and intact grains—whole wheat, barley, wheatberries, quinoa, oats, brown rice, and foods made with them,such as whole wheat pasta—have a milder effect on blood sugar and insulin thanwhite bread, white rice, and other refined grains.
Choose whole grains instead of refined grains.
Whole grains offer a “complete package” of health benefits, unlike refined grains, which are stripped of valuable nutrients in the refining process.
All whole grain kernels contain three parts: the bran, germ, and endosperm. Each section houses health-promoting nutrients. The bran is the fibre-rich outer layer that supplies B Vitamins, Iron, Copper, Zinc, Magnesium, antioxidants, and phytochemicals. Phytochemicals are natural chemical compounds in plants that have been researched for their role in disease prevention. The germ is the core of the seed where growth occurs; it is rich in healthy fats, vitamin E, B vitamins, phytochemicals,and antioxidants. The endosperm is the interior layer that holds carbohydrates,protein, and small amounts of some B Vitamins and minerals.
Protein power – ¼ of your plate.
Fish, poultry, beans, and nuts are all healthy, versatile protein sources—they can be mixed into salads, and pair well with vegetables on a plate. Limit red meat and avoid processed meats such as bacon and sausage.
What Is Protein?
Protein is found throughout the body—in muscle,bone, skin, hair, and virtually every other body part or tissue. It makes up the enzymes that power many chemical reactions and the haemoglobin that carries oxygen in your blood. At least 10,000 different proteins make you what you are and keep you that way.
Healthy plant oils – in moderation.
Choose healthy vegetable oils like olive, canola,soy, corn, sunflower, peanut, and others,and avoid partially hydrogenated oils,which contain unhealthy trans fats.Remember that low-fat does not mean“healthy.”
When it comes to dietary fat,what matters most isthe type of fat you eat. Contrary to past dietary advice promoting low-fatdiets, newer research shows that healthy fats are necessary and beneficial forhealth.
· “Good” unsaturated fats — Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats — lowerdisease risk. Foods high in good fats include vegetable oils (such asolive,canola, sunflower, soy, and corn), nuts, seeds, and fish.
· “Bad” fats — trans fats — increase disease risk, even when eaten in smallquantities. Foods containing trans fats are primarily in processed foods madewith transfat from partially hydrogenated oil. Fortunately, trans fats havebeen eliminated from many of these foods. Please check the label!
· Saturated fats, while not as harmful as trans fats, by comparison with unsaturated fats negatively impact health and are best consumed in moderation. Foods containing large amounts of saturated fat include red meat, butter, cheese,and ice cream. Some plant-based fats like coconut oil and palm oil are also rich in saturated fat.
· When you cut back on foods like red meat and butter, replace them with fish, beans, nuts, and healthy oils instead of refined carbohydrates.
Drink water, coffee, or tea.
Skip sugary drinks, limit milk and dairy products to one to two servings per day, and limit juice to a small glass per day.
The red figure running across the Healthy EatingPlate’s placemat is a reminder that staying active is also important in weight control.
Harvard T H Chan School of Public Health - The Nutrition Source-Healthy Eating Plate
Please note that this is not a meal plan for everybody.Those with medical conditions require individualised meal plan from a dietitian/nutritionist or their physician.