Beth Battaglino Cahil: Hi! I am Beth Battaglino Cahil, Executive Director of HealthyWomen. What does it take to eat a nutritious diet? It's the same thing you've been hearing through years, 'Balance,' meaning; eat a variety of healthy foods from all food groups. I know with the busy lives we lead today, with working and taking care of our families that making time for good nutrition can be hard. Here are some tips that can simplify the process. First, when you're selecting food, remember this simple rule. Eat as close to nature as possible, by that I mean choose fresh fruits and vegetables and whole wheat grains. Check the nutrition label on the package and select items high in fiber content. The rule is, the more natural and the less processed, the more fiber it is likely to have. You should strive to eat 14 grams of fiber for every 1000 calories you eat. Dr.
Peeke: Fruits and vegetables are fabulous sources of fiber, in additional; they pack a punch when it comes to nutrients and micro nutrients that your body really needs. These are vitamins, and minerals that you need for every biochemical reaction in the human body.
Beth Battaglino Cahil: In addition to these healthy foods, women should eat 5 ounces of lean meats each day for protein as well as nutrients like iron and zinc. If you are not a big meat or fish eater, try eggs, nuts, peanut butter, and beans to get your fill. Women also need 3 cups of milk or dairy products each day. When choosing milk, go for fat free or low fat milk, or yogurt. Cheese also is a good source of dairy. If you are a Lactose intolerant, follow a vegan diet or just sensitive to dairy, add other calcium rich foods to your diet, such as, leafy green vegetables like Kale and ton of greens. Now, let's talk about the things we need to limit. We all hear a lot about reducing fat intake. It's important to remember that our bodies do need healthy fats, which do many positive things, like maintaining the integrity of our cell walls, the healthy appearance of our skin and hair, and protecting our internal organs. The key is to limit fat intake, especially saturated and trans fats. Salts and Sugar are two things all women need to watch. Studies show that the average American eats more than three times as much sugar as she or he needs.
Peeke: Did you know that the biggest culprits are actually sodas and sugary beverages? For instance, this one can of soda contained 8 teaspoons of sugar and that's way more than your allowance on a daily basis for any sugar that we should be consuming.
Beth Battaglino Cahil: In addition to eating right, drink plenty of water. I'm sure you've heard it before, drink 8, 8 ounce glasses of water each day. It's true and it's important. Also eat regularly throughout the day. If you skip breakfast and eat lunch on the run, you will be ravenous in the afternoon and may overeat. Finally, you need to include physical activity in your life. Look for ways to increase your activities of daily living at home and at work. This can be as simple as a walk at lunch time during the workday or a stroll with a friend, or your dog, or try taking up a new activity, like running, biking, or tennis. Current guidelines suggest 30 minutes a day, at least 5 days a week doing some type of physical activity. For more great tips and how to maintain good nutrition, visit HealthyWomen.