What is a balanced diet?
A balanced diet is one of the most commonly heard names in the fitness and nutrition industry. What exactly does the diet mean and what are the ingredients that should be included in these diets? Furthermore, what is the proportion in which each food has to be available in order to make the food balanced?
These are some of the most commonly asked questions related to a balanced diet. The answer is not very simple because the definition of a balanced diet differs based on a number of factors. The standard definition of a balanced diet is that it is diet that helps in perfectly healthy living by providing all the necessary nutrients in optimum proportions.
What are the factors affecting balanced diet?
There are two main factors that affect balanced diets – place of residence and physical condition of a person. A person living in a cold country requires sugars and carbohydrates to be able to fight the cold. But the same amount of carbs and sugars in the diet of a person living in a hot place can cause obesity. So, a balanced diet has to be customized based on the place. Another very important aspect of a balanced diet is the physical condition of a person. A person who has a high rate of metabolism needs a different kind of diet when compared to a person with low rate of metabolism.
Basic ingredients that is required in a balanced diet
Any balanced diet has to provide all the basic nutrients to the body such as carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals. Furthermore, different foods have different qualities and quantities of a particular nutrient. Every meal should include 40% of carbohydrates, 30% proteins and 20% healthy fats. The remaining 10% should consist of all kinds of vitamins and minerals. Trace minerals such as magnesium, iron, calcium, potassium and zinc and vitamins such as A, B, C, D, E, K, B6, B12 and many others should form a part of daily meals. You can choose a different food each day to supplement these nutrients to the body.
A balanced diet always comprises of healthy fats. In order for the body to stay healthy, fats that are monounsaturated ones are essential. Omega-3-fatty acids are examples of such fats. Consuming polyunsaturated fats can also be good for the body and does not cause harm. However, saturated fats such as hydrogenated oils can be very dangerous to the body since they are high in bad cholesterol. So, when you prepare a balanced meal, prepare it using monounsaturated fats.