Health Tip – Being Food Fit – 10 Tips to a healthier U

1. When at the grocery store, fill your basket with vegetables and fruit to prevent chronic disease. Pick the dark green, orange, yellow and red fruits and veggies. Research has shown that vegetables and fruit are packed with vitamins and minerals that are important for good health. (If you are over 50 it is recommended to have 7 servings/day).

*Also did you know that the healthiest foods in the grocery store are on the perimeter, that’s right, the junk food is usually in the middle, staying on the perimeters of the grocery store keeps you food smart.

Here is a really good link to Health Canada’s Website and the Canada Food Guide for Healthy Eating – http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/food-guide-aliment/index-eng.php

2. Health tip number two is water and U – On average your body is 60 – 70% water according to different resources. Water helps you think clearly, regulates your body temperature and keeps your bowels healthy and regular. It is recommended that women have 9 ounces of water and 12 ounces for men. Staying hydrated is so important for good health.

*Please discuss your recommended water intake with your doctor first especially if you have heart, kidney, liver or adrenal disease.

3. Pump up your protein is tip 3 – Protein not only repairs your muscles, skin, and nails it also maintains your immune function. Protein also helps you if you have been ill or just had surgery. Adults over 50 should have 2.5 ounces or 75 grams of protein/day. Refer to the Canada food guide for serving size and examples; it is downloadable from the links that I have provided.

4. Keep your bones strong – If you keep them strong it prevents osteoporosis – Osteoporosis is when your bones are fragile and have lots of porous holes in them, this puts you at increased risk for a bone fracture.

Your bones grow until early adulthood that is why it is so important to eat healthy as a teenager especially if you’re female. Living in Canada according to Dieticians.ca puts us at risk for not having enough vitamin D. You need enough Vitamin D and Calcium to prevent osteoporosis.

Examples of food with calcium are: milk, yogurt, cheese, and salmon with bones.

Vitamin D from comes from sunlight, egg yolks, fatty fish, fish liver oil.

Dieticians.ca is a great resource for videos and information from dieticians about recommended Vitamin D and calcium intake.

Here is a specific link to our Canadian Dietician Views – http://www.dietitians.ca/Dietitians-Views.aspx

5. Fill up on Fibre – it has been shown to decrease your cholesterol and keep you regular. It also decreases heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers. Most Canadians get half the fibre that they need.

It is recommended for women to get 25 grams of fibre per day and 38 grams/day for men.

Some good examples of fibre would be whole wheat breads, wheat cereals, oatmeal, barley, beets, and carrots.

6. The facts about Fat – One good strategy to decrease heart disease is to decrease your saturated fats (fats that come from animals). Processed trans fats come from vegetable oils that have been hydrogenated; these are good to stay away from as well.

7. Decrease your salt intake – this will help in decreasing your blood pressure, high blood pressure can lead to heart disease. Recommended salt intake is 5ml per day (1 teaspoon). I personally struggle with decreasing my salt intake. Some things I have tried that have helped are experimenting with other seasonings such as garlic, lemon juice, and dried herbs.

8. Tip 8 is try to avoid calorie dense/empty foods to snack on such as potato chips, sweets, and baked goods. Avoiding fast food is best but if you find yourself at a fast food restaurant, you can still choose from the healthy menu.

9. Don’t cope with strong feelings using food. Emotional eating can damage your body. Eat to fuel/strengthen your body and not to satisfy your cravings.

10. The final tip 10 is to take control of your portion size. Monitor your food portions. Tell yourself that I am not concerned with clearing my plate and I will stop eating when I am full.

Once again here is Health Canada’s website and the Canadian food guide (They also have a guide for First Nations, Inuit and Metis in the link below)

http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/food-guide-aliment/index-eng.php 

Love My Life and yours especially when we are eating healthy,

Peter Eppinga M.D. (AKA Dr. Pringles to some 4 year old girls lol).