It is not for nothing that the saying goes: food and drink keep body and soul together. Today, healthy nutrition is a major issue. Yet even scientists, despite extensive research, still don’t agree 100% on what healthy eating really means. We’ve compiled the expert advice on healthy eating for you, debunking the biggest nutrition myths and researching some great, healthy recipes for you.
"Versatile" is the magic word, which is also recommended by the German Nutrition Society, i.e. rich in various vital nutrients. A combination of different foods such as fruit, vegetables and cereals is particularly important, because they provide important fiber, vitamins, minerals and also carbohydrates, which the human body needs on a daily basis.
Many nutritionists refer to the food pyramid, which shows the essential needs of different groups of people, but does not show individual needs. Factors such as age, body size and lifestyle are not taken into account. This is where personalized nutrition can help, because it takes into account precisely these factors. But genes can also be responsible for the fact that some people react negatively to foods that help others. So-called nutrigenomicists deal with the connection between nutrition and genetic material (genome). They argue that our diet has a greater impact on us than any other environmental factor. Chinese medicine also shares this view and assumes that nutrition is our most important "medicine".
Why vegetables and fruit are so important
Fruits and vegetables contain so-called secondary plant compounds that may prevent cancer in humans, reduce cardiovascular disease and prevent cell damage. In addition, they provide us with important vitamins that the human body cannot produce itself. Vitamins play an important role in our metabolism and strengthen our immune system and well-being. A lack of vitamins can lead to serious health consequences. Dietary fiber is also found in adequate amounts in plant foods. They support our bowel function and have a positive effect on carbohydrate and fat metabolism. Nutritionists therefore recommend eating a variety of fruits and vegetables five times a day.
Meat – our daily vegetable
With a per capita consumption of about 60 kilograms per year, the consumption of meat has declined in recent years, but German citizens still consume more than twice as much animal protein as recommended by experts. If one goes by these recommendations, the consumption of sausage and meat products should not exceed 300 to 600 grams per week. Too much animal fat, unlike healthy vegetable fats, stresses metabolism and over-acidifies the body.
Whole grains instead of white flour and wheat
As a general rule, choose whole grains over refined white flour. A large number of vital nutrients are lost in the production of white flour, u. a. 60% of dietary fiber, 50% calcium, 70% iron, 80% magnesium, 99% chromium, 90% vitamin E and 90% vitamin B1. All useful nutrients are therefore not to be found in white flour. It contains a lot of carbohydrates, and because of the low fiber content, the starch in the flour is quickly converted into sugar in the small intestine. In addition, the substances found in wheat have been shown to trigger addiction. So rather reach for alternatives when choosing flour, such as rye flour, spelt flour or amaranth.