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Health benefits of eating well

Health benefits of eating well

A balanced diet provides all of the following:

  • The energy you need to stay active throughout the day.
  • The nutrients you need to grow and repair, helping you stay strong and healthy and prevent diet-related illnesses, such as some types of cancer.

Staying active and eating a healthy, balanced diet can help you maintain a healthy weight.

Deficiency of some key nutrients, such as vitamins A, B, C, and E, zinc, iron, and selenium, can weaken parts of your immune system.

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Type 2 diabetes

Maintaining a healthy weight and eating a balanced diet low in saturated fat and high in fiber found in whole grains can help reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Heart health

Eating a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products can help lower your risk of heart disease by maintaining blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

High blood pressure and cholesterol can be a symptom of too much salt and saturated fat in your diet.

Eating a serving of oily fish, such as salmon and trout, each week can help reduce your risk of heart disease. The high levels of omega-3 fatty acids in oily fish are good for heart health.

Strong bones and teeth

A diet rich in calcium keeps teeth and bones strong and can help slow bone loss (osteoporosis) associated with aging.

Calcium is generally associated with dairy products, but you can also get calcium from eating:

  • Sardines, salmon, or canned salmon (with bones)
  • Dark green vegetables, such as kale and broccoli
  • Calcium-fortified foods, such as soy products, fruit juices, and cereals

Since vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium, be sure to go outside (your body gets vitamin D from the sun) and eat plenty of foods that contain vitamin D in your diet, such as oily fish and fortified cereals.

How to control your weight

Eating a healthy diet that includes lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and a moderate amount of trans fat, meat, and dairy can help you maintain a stable weight. Getting a good variety of these foods every day leaves less room for foods high in fat and sugar, one of the main causes of weight gain.

Along with exercise, eating a healthy diet in the right proportions can also help you lose weight, lower cholesterol levels and blood pressure, and lower your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.