Everybody wants to look their best by shedding excess calories and reaching their ideal body weight. Shockingly, most people suddenly go from not exercising at all to visiting the gym every day and crash dieting. While this practice offers quick results, it does more harm than good!
With changing lifestyles, our diets have also undergone an unhealthy change. Consequently, we are straying away from a balanced diet and missing out on the various nutritional elements essential for good health. For this reason, a healthy diet chart will not only keep you in shape but also have a positive effect on your overall health and immunity.
If you are keen on losing weight, then you need a diet chart for weight loss and lots of patience! Here is a guide on what makes a balanced diet.
Every balanced diet chart must have four key nutrients – fruits and vegetables, proteins, good fats, and fibre-rich carbs. We find out the benefits of these nutrients and the proportions needed in a healthy diet chart.
Fruits and Vegetables:
Your body needs sufficient vitamins and antioxidants, and 40% of nutrients in your diet chart will come from fruits and vegetables. The greater the colour variations, the better the results.
Leafy green vegetables are abundant in chlorophyll, which fights the toxins formed in our bodies due to stressful lifestyles. Nutrients which are provided by such vegetables include calcium, omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, and more.
For a healthy diet chart, add leafy green vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, spinach and kale to your daily meals.
A healthy diet chart should include these mood-elevating vegetables! Not only do they make following a diet chart easier, but carotenoid-rich veggies can protect you from cancer and provide sufficient fibres.
Carotenoid is a pigment responsible for bright yellow, orange and red hues in fruits and veggies. Examples of such vegetables are carrots, tomatoes, pumpkins, and yellow or red bell peppers.
Fruits Rich in Vitamin C:
Your body needs vitamin C from natural food sources as it is unable to produce it on its own. It is crucial for your vision due to the presence of zeaxanthin. Vitamin C must be part of a balanced diet chart as it has anti-ageing properties and prevents weight gain.
To reap the benefits of vitamin C, you should include fruits such as oranges, lemons, strawberries, papayas, and grapefruits in your diet chart.
- Blueberries and blackberries contain anthocyanins which improve cell health and prevent cancer, heart problems, obesity and bad cholesterol.
- Pomegranates improve your metabolism and should be part of your diet chart for weight loss.
- While bananas provide you with potassium, apples should be part of your diet chart for its various beneficial effects.
- Tomatoes prevent cancer and are good for your heart.
Forget those protein shakes – get your proteins from nature! A healthy diet chart should have 25% of the nutrients from proteins. Before adding protein to your diet chart, you need to check the Thermic Effect of Food or TEF.
Meat and Seafood:
Proteins from animal sources are the most filling and reduce binge eating, so they should be part of your diet chart for weight loss. If you are looking for that elusive muscular body, then animal proteins can be an advantageous addition to your diet chart. They provide the best fat to muscle conversion, leading to a higher metabolism.
A balanced diet chart should include 40-50 mg of seafood or meat-based protein daily. Seafood, turkey, eggs, fish and chicken are the best sources for protein, along with pork or lamb. It is also important to remember that you get your supplies from a reputed vendor and ensure it is well cooked before you eat it.
Dairy products are high-quality sources when it comes to proteins. Milk products make it easy for the body to get its daily dose of vitamin D and calcium, which are essential for healthy bones. Adding milk to your diet chart can even reduce the risk of heart problems.
You can include them in your diet chart either directly as milk or products made from milk like cheese, paneer, yoghurt or butter.
Vegetables are also a rich source of protein that you can make use of in a healthy diet chart. They offer the same benefits as animal proteins, which is perfect for vegetarians and vegans. Moreover, being rich in fibre, vegetable sources of protein also help in smooth digestion and should be part of your diet chart, regardless of whether you eat meat or not.
Proteins are found in all lentils, legumes and beans. You can burn higher carbs and fats with arginine, an amino acid found in legumes. Cash in on proteins by adding seeds like sunflower, sesame and pumpkin to your diet chart.
You can’t do without carbs in your diet chart if you need energy! Carbs can be found in fibre, starch and sugar. Fibres should be the priority as they contain energy-providing complex carbohydrates, followed by moderate amounts of starch. Sugar should be avoided except in the form of fruits or honey.
A healthy and balanced diet chart should include whole grains like oatmeal, barley and similar foods. Also, including peas, nuts, beans, melons, and broccoli in your diet chart can increase fibre consumption.
Contrary to popular belief, your diet chart is incomplete without fats. Fats help in energy storage and are essential for skin, muscle and bone health. Fats can be classified into three categories – polyunsaturated, monounsaturated, and saturated. Of these, polyunsaturated and monounsaturated are very healthy and should be part of your diet chart for weight loss. Additionally, they help reduce the risk of heart diseases and lower blood pressure.
Healthy fats can be found in seeds, nuts, and avocados. Monounsaturated fats can also be found in eggs and pork, whereas seafood is among the richest sources of polyunsaturated fats. Salmon, cod, mackerel and trout have omega-3 fatty acids that are essential for skin and bone health.
If you want to watch your weight, try to limit your intake of saturated fats. Red meat, cheese, butter are some of the foods to avoid when planning a balanced diet chart for weight loss.
Take the First Step Towards Health!
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With this online nutrition course, you can customise a diet chart based on your body needs and live a much healthier lifestyle! Get started now!