Healthy through balanced nutrition

A balanced diet not only keeps you healthy, but also promotes well-being and can help prevent disease. Our little 1×1 of proper nutrition therefore provides you with the necessary basics to establish a healthy eating pattern.


Table of contents

A balanced diet pays off in many ways. Not only does it reduce the risk of chronic diseases, but it also strengthens the immune system and well-being and increases performance. But what exactly does a healthy diet look like and how realistic is its implementation?? This article describes the basics and provides practical tips for optimizing your diet and quality of life.

Energy balance

Every human being needs energy to survive. Even if you were to spend the whole day lying down, your lungs, muscles, digestive tract and brain need energy to maintain vital processes. How much energy or. The number of kilocalories (colloquially known as calories) the body needs depends on individual factors such as gender, body shape, height, weight, age, activity and genetics. Keeping body weight constant is therefore based on a simple calculation: If you take in just as much energy as he or she burns, you can thus keep your body weight constant. If you want to lose weight, you should either eat less energy than your body burns (calorie deficit) or burn more energy – for example, by exercising.

Quantity and quality

In terms of calories, therefore, it makes no difference whether you eat exclusively two frozen pizzas in one day or get your energy from, for example, an oatmeal-berry curd breakfast, a chicken salad for lunch and a chickpea curry in the evening. The quality of the nutrients makes the difference. While pizzas consist mostly of fat, sugar, additives and some protein, a balanced day with three different meals provides additional fiber, vitamins and important minerals that positively influence health.

Tip: Choose nutrient-dense foods that contain energy as well as other valuable nutrients such as fiber and micronutrients.

In a balanced diet, it is not the quantity, but rather the quality of the food that is important. / twenty20photos


Nutrients in the diet can be divided into macro- and micronutrients. In addition to their chemical structure, these differ mainly in their energy content. While all three macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins and fats) provide calories to the body, micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) do not provide us with energy.


Carbohydrates are one of the three energy-providing macronutrients in the diet. Chemically speaking, carbohydrates are chains of sugar or. Glucose molecules. There are short-chain carbohydrates that taste particularly sweet and can be absorbed very quickly by the blood. Long-chain carbohydrates, on the other hand, take much longer to break down and convert, causing blood sugar levels to rise more slowly and in a more controlled manner. This type of carbohydrate is found mainly in vegetables, whole grain products or starchy products. The long glucose chains must first be broken, which can be done by boiling water or enzymes in the body, for example. In the right size, these molecules can then be used and slowly bring blood glucose levels to rise, eventually leading to an insulin release . Insulin is a hormone which, with the glucose uptake of the cells, ensures that the sugar level in the blood drops again. Short-chain carbohydrates and a very high, rapid rise in blood glucose levels usually cause too much insulin to be secreted. This results in too much sugar being drawn from the blood into the cells, causing blood sugar levels to drop too low. This slight hypoglycemia can then signal to the brain that the body needs new energy quickly and, if necessary, lead to unwanted craving attacks. In a healthy diet, long-chain carbohydrates are therefore preferable for the blood sugar level and one’s own health.

Tip: Choose long-chain carbohydrates (z.B. vegetables, whole grain products) to prevent cravings.

Long-chain carbohydrates allow insulin levels to rise slowly and thus provide more sustained satiety . / nd3000

Foods with long-chain carbohydrates usually also have other health benefits. Often provide additional vitamins, minerals and fiber, making them highly nutritious foods. Dietary fibers are indigestible food components that cannot be used as energy, but have a positive effect on the intestinal flora, the immune system, cholesterol levels and blood pressure. Fiber-rich foods include whole grains and vegetables, as well as legumes, amaranth, oatmeal and fruit. These, even in small amounts, can increase your daily fiber intake.

Tip: Replace low-fiber foods with whole grains, vegetables and legumes, and try to include five hands of fruits and vegetables daily.


Proteins serve as building blocks for tissues, enzymes and hormones, are means of transport (for oxygen, for example) and help the immune defense system. Protein-containing foods do not necessarily have to be of animal origin, such as meat, dairy products and eggs, but are also very usable in vegetable variants for muscle building and cell regeneration. Legumes are particularly suitable here, but also oatmeal, soy, tofu, amaranth and nuts. Incorporating plant-based protein sources into your diet also has positive effects on cholesterol levels, blood lipids, and blood pressure due to increased nutrient density.

Tip: Replace animal proteins with plant-based alternatives.

In addition to the quantity and quality of protein intake, timing is also crucial, as the body can only absorb a certain amount of "good protein" (approx.15-25 g) at once, while excess protein is also converted into fat stores like other excess energy sources. Therefore, the body needs not only a certain amount of proteins (according to DGE approx. 0.8g/kg body weight, slightly more for athletes), but distributed as evenly as possible over all meals to ensure optimal absorption and use.

It doesn’t always have to be meat – pulses are also a good source of protein. / antoninavlasova


The most energy-rich macronutrient in the diet is fats. They are not only energy stores and suppliers, but also essential for cell structure, hormone formation and as carriers of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E& K). As with all macronutrients, there are also differences in the quality of fats. There are two essential fatty acids, omega-3 and omega-6, which the body cannot produce by itself. "Good fats" often contain these vital fatty acids and, incidentally, usually have a positive effect on cholesterol levels. Cholesterol is a lipoprotein that transports fat in the blood. A distinction must be made between "bad cholesterol" (LDL), which brings pro-inflammatory substances into the vessels and constricts them, and "good cholesterol" (HDL), which frees the vessels from these substances and thus dilates them. With the right diet and regular exercise, LDL cholesterol can be lowered and HDL cholesterol increased. Positive for the cholesterol level are above all vegetable fats from vegetable oils, avocados, nuts, almonds but also fish. Animal fats from meat, fatty dairy products, lard and especially trans fats from prepared food and fast food should be avoided. Even small changes, such as switching from animal butter or lard in cooking to vegetable alternatives such as olive or sunflower oil, can improve cholesterol levels and consequently lower blood pressure.

Tip: Choose healthy and vegetable fats that help your cholesterol levels.

You want to know if your cholesterol level is elevated?

Your cholesterol levels say a lot about your health and should be checked regularly. Find out here what you should pay attention to and how your employer can support you with health initiatives.

Measurement of the cholesterol level


Unlike macronutrients, micronutrients do not provide energy. Nevertheless, vitamins and minerals such as iron, calcium, iodine and magnesium are essential for bodily functions. Vitamins are divided into fat-soluble and water-soluble, with different functions in metabolic processes, hormone formation and immune defense. Minerals are divided into trace and bulk elements based on their organic size and daily quantity requirements. The body needs micronutrients mainly for tissue structure, transport processes and maintenance of important organs. Through a balanced, healthy diet, the need for minerals and vitamins is usually covered.


The human body consists of about 60 percent water and needs it for transport and metabolic processes, sweat production and breathing. To regulate and control water balance, a daily water intake of 30-40 milliliters per kilogram of body weight is recommended. Water-containing foods such as salads, cucumbers, tomatoes, or beverages such as unsweetened tea and black coffee, in addition to water, can also help. To avoid empty and unnecessary calories, avoid sodas, juices, nectars and alcohol.

Tip: Try to drink two to three liters of fluid a day. It helps to drink something in the morning right after getting up and have a big bottle of water or tea ready throughout the day.

Water infused with fruit or herbs can help ensure sufficient fluid intake. / vlad_star

Sleep and stress

Healthy and sufficient sleep is essential for regeneration, cell formation and hormone balance. Too little sleep or too much stress promotes the release of the hormone cortisol. This hormone inhibits fat metabolism and therefore increases the risk of unbalanced hormone levels in the long term, associated with weight gain, diabetes and other cardiovascular diseases. To get enough sleep, it helps to find an evening routine, always go to bed at the same time and turn off the TV or cell phone about one to two hours before going to bed. Not only does this promote sleep quality, but it can also reduce stress at the same time.

Tip: Try to get six to eight hours of good sleep and reduce stress.


A balanced diet not only strengthens physical health, but also improves quality of life and performance. With simple changes to a nutrient-rich diet, you can optimize your blood pressure, cholesterol levels, metabolism and body shape. Try to eat as many important nutrients as possible and not just calories. Pay attention to the quality of macronutrients, such as fiber-rich carbohydrates, plant-based proteins and essential fatty acids. With a balanced, healthy diet, your daily micronutrient needs will then usually be met on their own. If you also manage to get enough fluids and sleep and reduce stress, your health will thank you with an increased quality of life.

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