10 Steps to Proper Nutrition for Your Family

Are  you looking to improve your family’s overall health?  One easy way to do this is introduce proper nutrition in your family meals.  Below are 10 easy steps that with a little time will become second nature to you. 

1) Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables   Fruits and vegetables are low in sodium, cholesterol and fat free, and naturally low in calories.  They provide carbohydrates, vitamins , minerals and fiber.                                                                                                                                                         

2) Limit Processed Foods   Whenever a food is processed it looses some of its nutritional value.  Most processed foods also contain additives, preservatives, colorings, flavorings, hydrogenated oils and extra sugar and salt.

3) Limit Fat   Our bodies need a limited amount of fat to function properly.  Good fats are derived from nuts, seeds and olives.  Fats from animals and dairy products need to be limited.  The best cooking oils are extra-virgin olive oil and sesame oil.  Eating too much fat can damage and clog your arteries, raise your bad cholesterol (LDL) and lower your good cholesterol (HDL), and inhibit the bodies ability to regulate its vital functions. 

4) Limit Sweets   Overconsuming sugar can lead to obesity, tooth decay, depresses immunity, have been linked to diabetes, heart disease and may increase your risk for cancer. 

5) Limit Sodium   Processed foods are generally high in sodium, which increases your risk for high blood pressure and stroke. 

6) Eat a Variety of High-fiber Foods   Fiber helps reduce the risk of diabetes, constipation, some types of cancer and it can lower cholesterol.  Fiber stays in the stomach longer, making us feel full faster and longer helping us to not overeat.  Serve your children whole grains, vegetables and fruits and it will be easy to ensure they are getting enough fiber in their diet. 

7) Emphasize Plant-based foods   Most of us eat too much animal protein.  Start by introducing one vegetarian meal a week.  It is a good idea to choose lean proteins and limit red meat consumption to once per week. 

8) Drink Plenty of Water   Our bodies need a constant supply of water in order to safeguard against dehydration, constipation, fatigue and the inability to concentrate. 

9) Avoid Overeating   Eating too much of anything can lead to obesity and health risk.  Emphasize fruits, vegetables, whole grains and small amounts of lean protein.

10)Buy Certified Organic and Locally Grown Produce   Eating organic and local when available will help minimize the intake of harmful chemicals, protects our wildlife, supports sustainable farming, supports farmers to grow a greater variety of produce, maybe more nutritious for you and allows you to enjoy great taste and fuller flavors.

 

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