The Benefits of a Healthy Diet
Everyone knows that eating right can help you lose and maintain a healthy weight, which probably makes you feel better about your appearance. But looking slimmer and fitting into your favorite clothes are just the outward, visible benefits of healthy eating.
In fact, a healthy diet can actually lower a person's risk for disease. A healthy diet is one that is rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and nonfat dairy products. Health officials also recommend watching calories to prevent weight gain, limiting alcohol, and cutting back on foods that are high in salt, saturated fat, trans fat, cholesterol, and sugar.
A healthy diet may help in the following ways:
- - Eating a low-fat diet can lower your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, and diabetes. It may also prevent certain types of cancer. (Low fat foods include whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and low-fat.)
- - Limiting saturated fats can reduce your cholesterol levels and lower your risk of heart disease and high blood pressure. (Saturated fats are found in animal products such as fatty meats, cheese, cream and butter.)
- - Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, (which are found in foods like fish, nuts, soybeans, and flaxseeds), may protect you against heart disease
- - Reducing trans-fatty acids may help you lower your cholesterol
- - A diet rich in fruits and vegetables provides antioxidants that can lower your risk of heart disease, cancer, and high blood pressure