In the nutrition field, diet is the total amount of food ingested by an organism or individual. This food consumption is then broken down into components like essential fatty acids, minerals and vitamins, which are used by the body for proper functioning. The composition of the diet includes a mixture of proteins, carbohydrates, fat, and other nutrients. One should be cautious when eating foods rich in calories since excessive calories can lead to obesity and other health complications.
The first component of a prudent diet is not to over indulge in sweets because it contributes to obesity. The second component of a prudent diet is to be careful with the amount of fat consumed. A diet should include fat from animal source sources such as butter, cream, and meat. A less preferred fat is vegetable oil. Sweeteners such as sugar, brown sugar, and fructose should be limited or completely eliminated from the diet.
Another important factor in a balanced diet is food quality. Foods that contain nutrients in appropriate amounts are more likely to provide the desired amount of vitamins and minerals. Some foods are also high in calories and weight gain. Examples of these are bakery items such as breads and pastries, potato chips, and cookies, candies, and other sweets, fast food, and snacks such as nuts, chips, and candy.
Eating foods in their natural proportions, rather than processed or packaged versions, is another way of achieving a low fat, balanced diet. Foods that are high in fat, sugar, and salt should be consumed in moderation. The diet should also include foods that are rich in vitamins and nutrients, such as whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and lean meats.
One good example of a nutritious yet low fat meal is a grilled chicken breast. Chicken breast can be cooked with a sauce of lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, and sundried tomato. A four ounce serving of chicken breast can have up to eighty calories, which are a lot of calories for a meal. However, the healthy, nutritional value of the sauce makes up for the amount of calories that the meat may contain.
Low fat, low-calorie diets are usually coupled with a low-sugar diet. The reason for this is that the combination of a diet rich in fat and sugar reduces the amount of insulin that would normally regulate the glucose levels in the blood stream. As a result, blood sugar levels rise resulting in body weight gain. A diet consisting of a lot of sugar results in excess fat deposits in the body and an increased risk of diabetes. A low-sugar diet usually consists of foods that are rich in fiber, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
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