Nutrition is an indispensable condition for the existence of life. It consists in the intake of nutrients and energy necessary for the functioning of all systems. From how and what plants, animals or humans eat, their growth, development, health and quality of life depend. That is why it is important that from the moment of its inception, any organism receives everything it needs. For humans, these are: water, carbohydrates, proteins, fats and a variety of nutrients.
Not all adults get proper nutrition. The menu of most people, not surprisingly with an abundance of products in stores, according to the Organization for International Cooperation and Development (OICD), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), consists of bread, cereals, etc. food from grains and seeds.
Moreover, about 1/8 of the population of our planet today is starving, and this is 842 million people, mainly inhabiting the countries of the Pacific region, Asia and Central Africa. If you put them together, you get the combined population of the entire European Union, Canada and the United States. Most of the hungry live in rural areas, but in the cities there are quite a few people who are undernourished.
In the Caribbean and Latin America, hunger was curbed at the end of the last century, and the number of food insecure people in the region decreased. But just like in the 20th century, at the beginning of this century, according to FAO statistics, hunger continues to spread throughout the world.
In parallel, the polar problem of nutrition is developing — the number of people with one of the degrees of obesity or overweight, whose body mass index (BMI) exceeds the permissible values, is multiplying. It would seem that these people should inhabit prosperous countries with developed economies, but in practice the situation is somewhat different: obesity has spread in countries whose citizens have an average level of income. They already have plenty of cheap, low-quality, processed food, but they still don’t know how to organize proper nutrition.
Nutrition for women
A woman’s health and beauty depend on how well the woman’s diet is composed and balanced. The work of all organs and systems, the effectiveness of all metabolic, hormonal processes in the body can be regulated by diet.
Healthy nutrition of a woman is a guarantee not only of her well-being, labor productivity, etc., but also the opportunity to produce viable offspring, to give the necessary nutrition to the child. If at childbearing age a woman receives insufficient essential nutrients, is deficient, for example, in iron, B vitamins and other nutrients, the very possibility of conception is “in question”, difficulties with bearing are guaranteed, and the birth of a healthy child, without any complications and pathologies, is almost impossible.
Nutrition for pregnant women
The nutrition menu of a woman during the period of bearing a child should be calculated taking into account the growing needs for carbohydrates, proteins, fats and the entire spectrum of biologically active substances that enter the body with food.
Just think about it: today, around 20 million babies around the world are born every year with signs of mental retardation and malformations due to the fact that the mother’s nutrition during pregnancy was insufficient or incorrect.
This does not mean at all that the expectant mother is obliged to eat “for two”, as people like to say. The calorie content of the diet of pregnant women, the balance of nutrients and nutrients is calculated according to the needs of the mother and child. The optimal diet for pregnant women today is made up of the best nutritionists and specialists in the field of clinical nutrition.
And not always the caloric content of the diet of those who are expecting the birth of a child is growing. It happens that in order to reduce or stop the weight gain of a woman, even during pregnancy, it is necessary to reduce the energy value of her diet.
Nutrition for nursing mothers
It is not enough to give a child life. It is necessary to provide it with nutrition that will allow it to grow and develop properly.
If a newborn receives mother’s milk, recognized by the medical community as the best food for children from birth, it gives the baby up to six months everything necessary for life, active growth, and successful development. If it is impossible to breastfeed or if the mother is not lactating, the newborn has to be given special baby food.
Nutrition for women during menopause
During menopause, it is important for a woman to follow proper nutrition, monitor the balance of energy intake and calorie consumption, and also include foods in the diet that help regulate hormonal levels, contain phytoestrogens that gently correct menopause symptoms.
In the list of the most useful foods during menopause, foods that are rich in:
fiber – vegetables, fruits, leafy greens, whole grains, beans, seeds, nuts, seaweed, etc.
polyunsaturated fatty acids — sea fish, nuts, seeds, grains, vegetable oils, etc .;
calcium — fish, lean meats, dairy products of normal and reduced fat content, leafy greens, legumes, nuts, seeds, whole grains, etc .;
magnesium — leafy greens, seaweed, nuts, etc.;
tocopherol or vitamin E — vegetable oils, brown rice, leafy greens, avocados, legumes, etc.;
boron — figs, raisins, prunes, asparagus, strawberries, peaches, etc.;
vitamin C — fresh or frozen fruits and berries, leafy greens, vegetables.
Nutrition for older women
When a woman passes the menopause and crosses the threshold of old age, her quality of life directly depends on what kind of nutrition she receives. A balanced and varied diet, made taking into account the objective state of the lady, the existing characteristics of her health, possible systemic pathologies and individual contraindications, can reduce the risks of developing metabolic disorders, cardiopathologies, type 2 diabetes mellitus, obesity, senile dementia and many other diseases associated with advanced age. age.
Moreover, a healthy diet gives a real opportunity to delay the aging of the body, to prolong an active life.
Nutrition for men
The “strong” half of humanity needs more high-calorie nutrition than the “beautiful” half. For example, a man of working age should consume an average of 700 kcal more than a woman.
Nutrition of men of working age: professional features
Professional activity leaves its imprints on the nutrition scheme, the energy value of food and men’s menus. Naturally, working at an office desk, at a computer, requires fewer calories than the hard physical labor of road workers or miners. If for the first category, engaged in mental work (employees, economists, engineers, etc.), it is enough to receive 2700 kcal per day, then the energy value of the nutrition menu of the second category of men who work physically (loaders, agricultural workers, etc.) should be about 4500 kcal.
For those who actively train, there is a special sports nutrition that allows you to meet energy needs and needs for the main building material of muscle fibers — proteins.
Nutrition for older men
With age, the physical activity of a man decreases, the rate of metabolic processes in his body slows down, which means that the need for energy from food decreases. Nutrition should become even better than in youth. The first place in importance is not the calorie content of the menu, but certain food requirements. Any food source should serve not only to meet the requirements for essential nutrients, but also to help reduce the risks of certain diseases, including:
type 2 diabetes;
The most important factor ensuring the development, growth and life of the child is proper nutrition. If the diet is balanced, gives enough energy, meals are regular, babies and older children actively grow up, learn about the world, learn new things, are healthy and happy.
For children of different ages, their own nutrition calendar and the optimal calorie content of the daily menu are provided, and special health-improving diets have been developed. After all, nutrition per year is significantly different from the menu of a preschooler, and the diet of a primary school student is different from the diet of a teenager with health issues. Public catering, as a system, also pays great attention to the needs of children. A child, starting from toddler age, is often forced to spend a long time and eat outside the home. There are special catering establishments that are focused on preschoolers and schoolchildren.
At the same time, it is bitter to realize that in economically disadvantaged countries:
about 146 million children are underweight;
more than 140 million are deficient in carotenoids;
800 thousand — die annually from an acute shortage of zinc in the diet.
Infant Diet: Nutrition Calendar
A newborn who has come to life is not yet adapted to the rather harsh conditions of existence, in comparison with those that were created for him in the womb. The nutrition of the child during this period is also undergoing great changes. The kid has to learn to “get” his own food with the help of adults. At this young age, there are only two menu options: mother’s milk or special baby food.
In the first weeks of life, the daily nutrition calendar allows the child to adapt to new environmental conditions.
The first difficulties are possible. For each type and power scheme, they can be “their own”.
It can be difficult to organize regular breastfeeding, especially if a woman has become a mother for the first time, she has no experience of breastfeeding, milk is produced irregularly due to the effects of birth stress, or there are other difficulties with lactation.
Not always certain baby food is suitable for a baby who is bottle-fed. Considering that only in Moscow today every third child is born with an allergy or food intolerance to certain products, it becomes clear that the nutrition of a child who, for whatever reason, cannot receive mother’s milk, must be selected taking into account individual needs, possible health characteristics and contraindications.
In the nutrition menu of breastfed babies from 6 months, and for those who are bottle-fed — from 4–5, new products that are common for adults are gradually appearing.
Meals per year
The menu of a one-year-old child is still not the diet of an adult. The food in the year is quite varied, but not all foods that adults or preschoolers consume are allowed. In addition, there is a limited set of acceptable food processing methods, and all food must be pre-purified.
The food calendar by day is no longer needed. Changes happen about every month. Therefore, caring parents use the standard monthly nutrition calendar for young children. It is designed and formulated by the best nutritionists and specialists in the field of baby nutrition, taking into account the functional characteristics of babies of different ages, energy needs and needs for certain nutrients and nutrients.
Nutrition in a year undergoes monthly small but important changes. Many foods appear in the diet:
crackers, biscuits, bread;
lean meats, poultry, fish;
vegetables, leafy greens;
various varieties of pasta, cereals.
There is a list of undesirable foods that often cause allergic reactions and food intolerances, since the body of a one-year-old baby simply does not have the necessary enzymes to digest them. From nutrition per year should be excluded:
chocolate and ready-made sweets;
caviar and seafood;
exotic fruits, etc.
Preschool child nutrition
Healthy nutrition for boys and girls of preschool age is selected according to the characteristics of development, physical activity, and taste preferences.
Already in 2013, according to the statistics of the World Health Organization (WHO), about 42 million children under 5 years old in different countries of the world were overweight. Therefore, it is important to control the nutrition of each child so that the calorie content of the daily diet corresponds to the energy costs of preschoolers.
The preferred diet plan, in which, in addition to the three main meals, there are three “snacks”:
second dinner (optional).
This diet, provided that the diet is balanced and allows you to meet the energy needs of the body, maintains the optimal rate of metabolic processes, prevents nutritional disorders.
Nutrition for schoolchildren
In 2014, according to WHO statistics, almost 40% of the world’s child population (under 18) were overweight. 13% registered one of the degrees of obesity.
At the same time, developing countries remain, in which today up to 11 children die of hunger every minute. During the year, a terrible number is recruited — about 6 million.
Adults should supervise the nutrition of a school-age child. It is important that a balanced and sufficiently high-calorie diet allows him to grow, develop physically, improve cognitive functions, study, play sports, etc. The home menu should be tasty and varied, include high-quality proteins, “slow” carbohydrates, vegetable fats.
Public catering plays an essential role in maintaining the health of children, since many schoolchildren are forced to have lunch, and sometimes breakfast, snacks, outside the home: at school, summer camp, sanatorium, etc. If a child is well fed in the school canteen, he simply will not wants to snack on a chocolate bar, chips or a hamburger.
Therapeutic and preventive nutrition
For the treatment and prevention of various pathological conditions and syndromes, a set of measures is provided, among which a healthy diet occupies an important place. Treatment tables, developed in the 30s of the last century by one of the founders of dietology in the USSR, Professor Manuil Isaakievich Pevzner, are still recommended in Russia for feeding patients with various diseases. There are fifteen Pevzner health diets in total, and each of them meets the needs of certain categories of patients.
Goals and objectives of a healthy diet
Therapeutic nutrition by day is one of the non-drug therapeutic methods of conservative treatment. It is used for a variety of diseases.
The purpose of a healthy diet is:
reducing the risk of developing pathology;
improvement of the clinical picture of the disease;
reducing the severity of pathological symptoms;
Who is therapeutic nutrition
If you are absolutely healthy, this is not a reason for messy eating. Everyone needs to try to eat healthy meals, beware of fast food and processed food.
However, there is a category of citizens who require a special, reverent attitude to the diet. For them, proper nutrition, a menu that has certain restrictions and accents, is a way to maintain shaky health, reduce the risk of developing systemic pathologies, relieve unpleasant symptoms, and eliminate relapses of diseases. It is for these people that systems of therapeutic and preventive nutrition or health-improving diets according to Pevzner have been developed.
What kind of nutrition is indicated for this or that person is decided by the therapist or medical specialists.
How to make a medical nutrition menu
The nutrition menu for the treatment and prevention of certain pathologies involves the observance of several fundamental principles:
the choice of products is limited to the list of those allowed for a specific disease;
all food must be organic;
certain food processing methods are allowed;
fried and smoked dishes are not shown to absolutely everyone;
ready-made confectionery, sweet soda, processed foods and semi-finished products are not recommended;
a nutrition calendar is compiled by day;
there is an optimal nutrition scheme during the day;
the optimal calorie content of the menu is calculated;
healthy recipes are recommended.
At the same time, the duration of the diet, the nuances of nutrition by day, recipes for healthy dishes, etc. are selected taking into account the individual characteristics of patients, based on an assessment of the objective state and data from laboratory tests of each.
Ready meals for patients with various systemic pathologies
Today, it is possible to adhere to a wellness nutrition calendar not only within the walls of medical institutions or at home, but also at work, in restaurants, etc. Special catering establishments develop special lines of products and dishes for patients with various pathologies, for example:
food intolerance to gluten;
allergies to dairy products, etc.
Diet for patients with the most common pathologies
Fifteen Pevsner treatment tables offer a daily nutritional calendar for patients with almost any disease, grouped according to special needs and limitations. For example, diet No. 13 is recommended in the acute period of most infectious pathologies. When the disease recedes a little and recovery begins, the menu and nutrition calendar change somewhat, diet No. 15 is prescribed, which is distinguished by great variety and freedom in choosing healthy dishes.
The Diet of Patients with Cardiopathologies: The Best Food Sources
Various disorders of the circulatory system today are the main cause of premature death of people around the world. Therapeutic and preventive nutrition can significantly reduce the risk of developing arterial hypertension, atherosclerosis, coronary disease and prevent such acute conditions as heart attack and stroke, most often taking human lives.
The diet of each of us, especially if the threshold of maturity has been passed, should be made up of natural products that optimize metabolic processes, the functionality of the circulatory system, the health of the heart and blood vessels:
nuts and seeds;
lean meats and fish;
natural dairy products;
unrefined vegetable oils, etc.
It is important that proper nutrition is balanced, and its calorie content does not exceed energy needs.
Any unhealthy food source is excluded:
products of deep processing;
fatty animal products.
Salt and sugar are limited as much as possible.
Healthy nutrition of obese patients
Since a non-communicable obesity epidemic is “raging” in the world, which, according to WHO experts, covered more than 600 million people in 2015, the prevention of this pathology is very important. To combat excess weight, special systems and nutrition schemes developed by the best nutritionists are used. Doctors help draw up a comprehensive weight loss plan that includes a range of measures, including:
individual nutrition calendar;
fitness training program;
taking vitamins and dietary supplements;
beauty treatments, etc.
Diet for type 2 diabetes
Carbohydrate metabolism disorders, metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes mellitus are among the most common pathologies today. For the prevention and treatment of disorders of carbohydrate metabolism, special nutrition is used.
The basis of the diet is the restriction in the menu of “fast” carbohydrates, which include:
some sweeteners, such as fructose;
A healthy alternative to refined sugar and starch, “slow” carbohydrates that are high in dietary fiber are excellent sources of nutrition. For example:
berries and fruits with a low content of fructose in the composition;
leafy greens, etc.
Patients with diabetes and those at risk of developing metabolic syndrome should also limit their intake of any animal fats. To compensate for their deficiency and maintain an optimal balance of nutrients, food should be enriched:
vegetable oils with a high content of polyunsaturated fatty acids, such as olive, linseed, sesame, walnut, etc.;
farmed and wild-caught fish;
whole grains, nuts, seeds.
Diet for diseases of the digestive system
Since the human digestive system consists of several organs, each of which can be at risk of developing a number of special pathologies, the nutrition of patients with different diseases of the gastrointestinal tract can have significant differences.
What is allowed for patients with hyperacid gastritis and gastroesophageal reflux is not suitable for those who suffer from low acidity of gastric juice.
In acute pancreatitis, daily nutrition is not shown, which is recommended in the remission stage or after the acute symptoms have subsided.
An attack of acute appendicitis involves the introduction of strict restrictions that are inappropriate in the case of prolonged constipation.
Which food to choose is decided by the therapist or gastroenterologist on the basis of a detailed examination, laboratory tests, taking into account possible complications and contraindications. For example:
for chronic pathology of the gallbladder, a treatment table No. 5 according to Pevzner is prescribed;
with diarrhea, healthy nutrition is indicated in accordance with diet No. 4;
if the disease is accompanied by constipation, table number 3 is recommended.
Nutrition of patients with pathologies of the urinary organs
Several therapeutic and preventive diets according to Pevzner are intended for patients with various diseases of the urinary system, depending on:
type of pathology;
the nature of the disease;
severity of symptoms.
Improving nutrition by day in combination with other therapeutic measures allows you to relieve acute symptoms in a short time, prevent relapse, and stop the development of the disease.
As a rule, restrictions apply to:
processed foods and semi-finished products;
fast food dishes;
and some foods that contain chemicals that can cause certain types of kidney stones.
There is no one universal recipe for nutrition for everyone. But there are general principles that are suitable for everyone, regardless of gender, age, occupation, physical activity and existing systemic pathologies.
Among the general recommendations that relate to the choice of products and catering, the following will suit absolutely everyone:
the best food source is organic;
the most optimal diet is balanced in composition;
the most correct diet is constant;
the healthiest menu is varied;
The healthiest recipes are delicious.
Public catering and citizens’ health
Public catering is an important branch of the national economy. Numerous enterprises provide the needs of citizens in finished products and culinary products. They are conditionally divided into three main categories:
catering establishments — bars, restaurants, cafes, canteens, all kinds of kiosks of “fast” food, cooking, etc.;
catering shops — various procurement enterprises that produce semi-finished products and culinary products for sale, including bakery products, confectionery, etc.;
pre-cooked catering enterprises — produce finished products from semi-finished products.
The healthiest foods are nature-created, organic, or functional. If plant products are grown without the use of harmful fertilizers, and animals are grown without hazardous feed, we can say that they are an ideal option for human nutrition. The less culinary processing that food is subjected to, the more useful it is for adults and children.
The most dangerous for human health today are ranked:
products of deep processing, including confectionery, sausages, meat and fish semi-finished products and canned food with an unknown amount of added trans fats, refined carbohydrates and other food additives in the composition;
sweet soda containing a large number of sweeteners and disrupting metabolic processes in the body;
some fatty animal products that, according to the medical community, can provoke the development of atherosclerosis, cardiopathologies, colorectal and other types of cancer, type 2 diabetes, etc.
In addition, numerous studies by scientists have long proven that frying and smoking are the most undesirable methods of cooking that can “spoil” the beneficial properties of any natural food product.
If you dine in a restaurant or have a snack in a cafe, choose simple dishes that contain a minimum of ingredients prepared in healthy ways:
Vital vitamins, minerals and other nutrients in the diet
It is important that the diet contains all the biologically active substances necessary for human life and the effective operation of his body systems. After all, a deficiency of any of them can lead to undesirable health consequences.
Public catering often enriches our diet with biologically active food supplements. Some substances are added to finished products during their production, according to government programs.
For example, table salt, bakery products and some other products are enriched with iodine to prevent thyroid diseases, cretinism, associated with a deficiency of this important chemical element.
Meals at the workplace
Thanks to catering enterprises, today you can stick to a balanced diet, having lunch and snacks outside the home. There are restaurants, cafes, culinaries, etc. that specialize in low-calorie dishes, use only organic ingredients, and do not add potentially hazardous chemicals to enhance the taste and preserve the presentation of perishable products.
However, there is always a risk that your plate will not contain what is stated on the label or on the menu, so choose “verified” prepared food manufacturers with a good reputation.
If you cook at home, you will always know what is on your plate. And if you choose natural foods and prepare them in healthy ways, your nutrition will be the most optimal for health.
In addition, the very process of preparing delicious dishes, beautiful serving, pleasant time spent at the family table will bring moments of joy to everyone.
How to organize proper nutrition: a menu for the whole family
In order for family nutrition to be useful, it is necessary to take into account the tastes and needs of everyone when compiling the menu.
Choose dishes that both adults and children enjoy equally.
Cook with fresh or frozen seasonal functional foods available in your area to help prevent allergy or food intolerance symptoms in toddlers.
Use proven recipes, and if you are learning new ones, carefully study the ingredients and stop at those that contain only natural ingredients.
Nutrition system Prep: useful blanks
They have nothing to do with the traditional Russian “pickles-jam”. For those who have chosen homemade food, we suggest using the innovative Prep system, designed for dynamic modern people who care about their own health.
It lies in the fact that:
make a list of products in advance, planning meals for the week ahead;
buy most of the ingredients on the menu in bulk;
vegetables, greens are pre-cleaned, chopped, some are boiled until cooked, stored in food containers in the refrigerator or freezer, using as needed to prepare healthy meals for the whole family;
legumes, whole grains (e.g. quinoa, brown rice, buckwheat, corn) are pre-soaked and boiled until fully cooked, frozen and eaten as a side dish or in soups, stews, salads, etc.
Family food calendar by day
The task of planning home meals is greatly facilitated by a family calendar-menu, in which everyone can enter their own wishes for the coming week. His role can be played by a weekly journal, a kitchen note board, or a regular sheet of paper attached with a magnet to the refrigerator.
Adults and children will be able to independently choose the products and dishes that they like best, and as you know, the most healthy food is delicious.
Family holidays: what to cook
Nothing brings a family together like a fun holiday feast. Each family has its own traditional menu for special occasions. Recipes for festive dishes are carefully preserved and passed down from generation to generation. To cook “Olivier”, many housewives wait for December 31, bake Easter cakes for Easter, delight households with lace pancakes for Maslenitsa.
If you want to keep your family’s meals healthy even during the holidays, cook with natural ingredients, adapting classic recipes. For example, in healthy baking, you can replace:
butter — yogurt;
refined sugar — stevia extract;
egg — a mixture of 3 tbsp. l. water and 1 tbsp. l. ground flaxseed;
bleached wheat flour — whole grain, buckwheat, oatmeal, rye, etc.
Meals in fasting
Representatives of several religious concessions live in Russia. All religions have their own rules for eating or abstaining from it for a while.
Fasting food for Christians is significantly different from what is customary for Muslims or Jews.
Orthodox religious tradition involves the periodic rejection of animal products. In addition, fasting food, which is called “strict”, has additional restrictions:
you can not use vegetable oil;
sweets are not allowed;
there are days to be spent on bread and water.
In some other religions, there is no prohibition on animal food, but there are restrictions on certain types of foods that are always in effect, and not just during fasts.
So Muslims and Jews do not eat pork, the meat of animals with blood. In Judaism, the prohibition also applies to camel meat, hare meat, as well as the meat of any wild animals and birds, such as an ostrich.
Followers of the Torah do not mix dairy with meat. These food groups should be consumed at least half an hour apart. Therefore, Jewish traditional cuisine does not use recipes that include both meat and dairy products among the ingredients.
Any meal during fasting is prohibited by Muslims during daylight hours. You can not eat after sunrise and before sunset. The obligatory fast falls on the month of Ramadan. There are a few extras that are of negligible duration and are not required for everyone.
Jewish religious tradition prescribes several fasts during the year, which differ from each other. For example, any food during the fast, which falls on the Day of Atonement, is completely prohibited. “Dry” fasting lasts longer than 24 hours (from the sunset of one day to the appearance of the first evening star of the next). At this time, the following instructions must be strictly followed:
do not wash;
do not apply oil to the skin or hair;
do not wear leather shoes;
do not fulfill marital obligations.
What is the danger of malnutrition
Improper nutrition is one of the main factors that can significantly worsen a person’s health and lead to the development of various pathologies: from diarrhea and anemia to obesity and cancer. Let’s talk about the most common mistakes.
Unbalanced and low-calorie diet
This is not about forced hunger, but about the conscious choice that some people make on a low-calorie diet. Often, in an effort to lose weight, we try extreme diets, express methods, or resort to fasting, without thinking about the consequences that such experiments can have on our own body.
Lack of water, energy, essential nutrients and nutrients are a threat to human health. The most dangerous shortage is the lack of water. Without it, we will “stretch” no more than 3 days. Without food, the average man will live no more than 25 days. The lack of other nutrients in the nutrition menu will affect later, but sooner or later lead to the same sad outcome.
Just like malnutrition, irregular meals provoke metabolic disorders, slowing down metabolic processes in the human body. If a person replenishes energy reserves irregularly, the metabolism begins to work for “accumulation”, creates fat reserves at every opportunity.
With irregular meals, it is impossible to control appetite. And this inevitably provokes outbreaks of “wild” hunger, overeating, indiscriminate absorption of harmful foods and other nutritional disorders.
Most processed foods contain substances called “food additives”. These include:
flavor enhancers, etc.
They are not always helpful. From the category of “allowed” some of them, thanks to the research of scientists, sometimes go into the category of prohibited ones.
In Russia, control over the use of food additives is carried out by Rospotrebnadzor. He uses the instructions and lists of prohibited additives, which are compiled by a special body at the World Health Organization, JECFA.
Some officially approved additives are potentially dangerous to human health, since in the long term, directly or indirectly, they can lead to the development of many systemic disorders. The less added substances in your usual diet, the lower the risks of developing formidable pathologies, such as:
type 2 diabetes;
some types of cancer, etc.
Processed foods and semi-finished products
Increasingly, the scientific community is talking about the dangers posed by eating processed foods, semi-finished products, canned food, etc. Very often, harmful products are among the components. The ingredients stated on their labels are not always true. Unscrupulous manufacturers, in an effort to reduce the cost of production, lengthen the shelf life, improve attractiveness, use prohibited food additives. Among the “hidden” ingredients are often:
modified starch, etc.
“Fast food” or fast food has become part of the diet for many, and for some it has become the main and only food. Schoolchildren, students, office workers and many other categories of citizens, despite the fact that they periodically read or hear about the dangers of fast food, regularly use its services.
Food additives, often unhealthy, dangerous cooking methods, cheap raw materials of dubious quality — all this together is harmful to health. As a result of regular eating “fast food” develop:
type 2 diabetes;
some types of cancer.
Universal Power Scheme
For healthy people of different sex and age, there are special recommendations and nutrition systems that allow you to maintain good health, psycho-emotional state, labor productivity, vigor. They relate to the main points of the diet:
optimal calorie intake;
balanced menu for key nutrients;
the presence in the diet of vital nutrients;
number of meals;
energy value of breakfast, lunch, dinner and additional “snacks”.
How to create an individual nutrition menu by day
When planning a diet, making an approximate menu for a week or more, you can stick to a healthy diet and get all the necessary vitamins, macro- and microelements. It is important that the basis of the diet is organic products, and the menu consists mainly of homemade dishes prepared in healthy ways:
Nutritional balance in the diet
A varied menu, which contains all the main food groups, is a guarantee that the body will receive everything necessary for the optimal functioning of its systems and life.
The best nutritionists, including WHO experts, recommend planning meals so that the following approximate proportions of the ratio of essential nutrients by calorie content are observed in the daily menu:
carbohydrates — 55% (moreover, it is desirable that at least 40% are “slow” carbohydrates, fiber is the main source of nutrition);
fats — 30%.
How to calculate the optimal daily calorie intake
To determine the optimal energy value of the daily menu, you must consider:
lifestyle and physical activity.
There are several ways to calculate the optimal calorie intake for people of different sexes, ages and professions, which is called the baseline or BUK. It begins with the determination of normal body weight. It is found, given the height and type of addition. Then the optimal metabolic rate is calculated (Harris-Benedict formula). Having learned it and using the coefficient of physical activity, you can calculate the BUK.
Special tables will help determine the basic caloric content of food. They can be found on the pages of the popular medical portal Healthyinfo.
How to distribute energy value between meals
It is important not only to get energy from food regularly, but also to learn how to plan the menu in such a way that the calorie content of the main meals and snacks is optimal. One of the best options for today is considered to be 5 meals a day, in which, in addition to breakfast, lunch and dinner, there is a second breakfast and afternoon snack. However, if a person eats dinner no later than 3 hours before bed, as advised by the best experts in the field of nutrition, and feels hungry before bed, he can afford to consume a low-calorie protein product:
a piece of boiled chicken breast;
some low-fat cottage cheese.
The ratio of caloric intake of meals, if a 5‑time meal plan is chosen, is distributed approximately as follows:
breakfast — 20%;
second breakfast — 10%;
lunch — 40%;
afternoon snack — 10%;
dinner — 20%.
Morning meal should “charge” vivacity and good mood for the whole day. Therefore, do not forget to have breakfast, and choose healthy healthy meals, in which high-quality proteins will be combined with vegetable fats and “slow” carbohydrates. For example:
whole grain porridge (buckwheat, oatmeal, quinoa, etc.) with nuts and dried fruits;
natural yogurt with frozen or fresh berries;
vitamin smoothie of avocado, cucumber, leafy greens and flaxseed with fresh lime;
protein omelette with fresh vegetable salad seasoned with unrefined oil.
Regardless of which meal you choose, it is recommended that lunch be your highest calorie meal. If possible, dine at home or take homemade meals with you.
If you still have to use the services of catering establishments, choose restaurants, cafes, canteens with a good reputation, a healthy menu of organic products. Or order ready meals directly to the office.
Evening meals can often be afforded at home. We advise you to cook yourself from natural products of the best quality. Don’t forget about fiber-rich foods. Plant fibers will help optimize the functioning of the digestive system, provide nutrition to beneficial intestinal microflora, prevent constipation, atherosclerosis, etc.
Second breakfast, afternoon snack, second dinner — differ from the main meals in lower calorie content, but should be healthy and balanced in composition. Healthy “snacks” help “speed up” metabolic processes and protect against eating disorders (fast food, eating processed foods, overeating, etc.).
Meals during an afternoon snack or second breakfast can be organic products. For example:
a handful of unsalted nuts or seeds;
popcorn without oil, sugar and salt;
some dried fruit, fresh or frozen berries, etc.
Did you know that in the Middle East, in the Maghreb countries, there is a wonderful tradition of healthy eating: cucumber is one of the options for a healthy snack. A vegetable cut into several parts is served without salt or sauces, as an independent snack or as a dessert.
What diet to choose for weight loss
If you are overweight and want to lose weight, you will need to rethink your eating habits to balance your calorie intake and energy expenditure, speed up your metabolism, and balance your diet.
We do not recommend resorting to cardinal methods, practicing fasting or express diets. Before you decide on a particular method of losing weight, consult with a nutritionist or nutritionist. Prior consultation is required for:
patients with systemic diseases;
children under 18;
pregnant and lactating women;
The most popular diets
Among the most popular nutrition systems for weight loss in Russia today are:
meals according to the Malysheva program;
One of the popular weight loss methods are protein diets, in which the balance of nutrients in the daily diet is “shifted” towards proteins.
Ideal sources of healthy proteins are:
whole grains, seeds, nuts;
lean meats and fish;
natural dairy products without added fats.
This method of accelerating metabolism is good for intense physical training. But not everyone can practice it. Such nutrition is especially dangerous for pregnant women, the elderly, patients with kidney pathologies, etc.
Food systems that are not just dominated by carbohydrates, as recommended for optimal balance, but other nutrients are reduced, are called “carbohydrate”. It is very important that the sources of “slow” carbohydrates serve as the basis of the menu in this case:
While many people around the world consciously choose a carbohydrate-free diet when they become vegetarian or vegan, a plant-based diet that is both a philosophy is not ideal for health. Since it is not easy to provide the body with all the useful substances, for example, calcium, B vitamins, iron, etc.
Another diet option for weight loss can be fat diets, which are practiced by some nutritionists.
The basis of the diet are sources of animal and vegetable fats. Moreover, it is important that the emphasis in the menu be placed on products containing a large amount of polyunsaturated fatty acids:
cold-pressed vegetable oils;
wild-caught fish, etc.
Changing the balance of essential nutrients in the direction of increasing the proportion of fat is not shown to everyone, so before deciding on a fat diet, consult your doctor.
The optimal nutrition system for weight loss
The easiest way is to contact a professional nutritionist. He will draw up a comprehensive plan to combat excess weight, which will include not only diet, but also fitness training, special procedures. If you do not have such an opportunity, use the advice of experts and authors of the popular medical portal Healthyinfo to create a long-term weight loss plan.
Calculation of calorie diet for weight loss
The first step is to find out the optimal calorie intake for your gender, age, type of physical activity. To lose weight gradually and correctly, it should be reduced by no more than 600 kcal.
There are special mobile applications for smartphones and tablets, “calorie counters”, which allow you to calculate the caloric content of food for weight loss.
Maintenance of metabolism
Losing weight does not mean starving. In order for metabolic processes to proceed normally, you should eat regularly, every three hours during the day, and the food source must be organic. This will help control appetite and prevent “breakdowns”, overeating, eating junk food, fast food.
You should refrain from products that are the culprits of metabolic disruptions:
refined sugar and sweeteners;
starch and bleached flour;
processed foods with trans fats;
industrially grown fish, etc.
The diet of athletes is significantly different from the menu of people leading a sedentary lifestyle. Sports nutrition involves a significant increase in energy intake. The calorie content of the diet increases according to the intensity and duration of training.
In addition, the “arrangement” of essential nutrients is changing. With active sports, an increase in the amount of proteins in the diet is required, which are the main sources of energy and building material for muscle tissue.
Today, scientists and nutritionists have developed a special sports nutrition. These are special products for those who are engaged in fitness or professional sports. In Russia, they are classified as biologically active food additives.
There are various types of sports nutrition that help to solve various problems. For example:
Just as in the case of the choice of conventional dietary supplements, before you start taking sports nutrition, consult your doctor.
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