What is Health?
Health (noun) The state of being free from illness or injury.
We all need to eat and to drink. Why? To maintain our health. Nutrition plays a vital role in developing and maintaining physical, mental and social well being to create Optimal Health. Nutrition provides our bodies with energy as well as the essential nutrients to build and maintain our body’s cells. It’s important to understand nutritional knowledge and to eat a healthy diet to reduce the risk of the body forming life-threatening chronic diseases that are synonymous with a westernised diet including cardiovascular (heart) disease, diabetes, stroke, hypertension and some forms of cancers. In fact obesity in Australia has overtaken smoking as the leading cause of preventable death. The cost of preventing these illnesses from occurring is substantially lower than the price for treatment.
So what constitutes a healthy diet? The Australia Dietary Guidelines and the Australia Guide to Healthy eating provide that answer with up-to-date advice on the amounts and variety of foods we need to consume to maintain health. By following these guidelines ensures there is enough essential nutrients in your diet to lower the risk of chronic diseases, and make you look, feel and enjoy life better. The Australian Dietary Guidelines provide 5 essential guidelines for better health and well being. The Guidelines as follows:
To achieve and maintain a healthy weight, be physically active and choose amounts of nutritious foods and drinks to meet your energy needs.
Provide your body with a variety of nutritients to grow, support and maintain muscles strength and weight. Get regular check-ups from your gp, and keep physically active each day.
Enjoy a variety of nutritious foods from the five food groups
Eat plenty of different coloured fruits and vegetables; lean meats,eggs and poultry; whole grain and Hi-fibre cereal foods; milk, yoghurt and cheese preferably in reduced fats and plenty of fresh water.
Limit intake of foods containing saturated fat, added salt, added sugars and alcohol
Limit intake of food high in saturated fats, such as pies, cakes, processed meat burgers, fried foods, savoury snacks and replace with foods that contain predominantly saturated fats such as oils, avocados and butters. Limit intake of drinks containing added sugars and caffeines; Limit alcohol consumption.
Encourage, Support and Promote Breastfeeding
Breastfeeding provides babies and infants with essential nutrients for growth and development, while producing many health benefits for the mother as well.
Care for your food; prepare and store it safely
By preparing and storing foods correctly and safely you minimise the risk of food borne illness and bacteria.
The Australian Dietary Guidelines was our first topic of study in my course and it provides the essential basics for a healthy nutritious diet, so it seemed fitting to begin my first blog with information regarding the Eat for Health Guidelines. Click the link below to find more information on the Eat for Health website!