If you are trying to eat a healthy balanced diet, you may find yourself frustrated by the food temptations you encounter throughout the average day. It seems like everyone wants you to eat unhealthy food, doesn't it? Your coworker brought in brownies to celebrate his birthday; your best friend wants to go out for beer and wings because it's Friday night; the girls want to go out for martinis and cheesecake on Saturday. How do you find room to fit in the healthy foods you know you should eat? Eating healthy is a challenge for most of us, especially those who honestly don't know what constitutes a healthy diet.

For those who grew up with their moms sending you off to school with a pop tart for breakfast and a Hostess cupcake and pack of Pringles potato chips in your lunchbox, you may have a skewed view of what a healthy balanced diet looks like. Many Americans think fried and high-sugar foods belong in every meal, when in reality our bodies only need very small amounts of fat and sugar.

A healthy balanced diet should be made up primarily of fruit, vegetables, and grains. You need to prioritize eating these foods as whole foods. Eating french fries does not register as equal to eating a potato. Supplement your meals with a lean meat or seafood, cooked in such a manner than it still somewhat resembles the original cut of meat. That means don't fry it or bake in a sea of butter; try broiling, grilling, baking, basting or sautéing your cuts of meat. If you want to use a sauce, make sure the sauce itself it made with relatively healthy ingredients, such as heart-healthy fats, and the food is marinated or accented by the sauce, not drowning in the sauce.

Try to limit your fat intake to 20-35 percent of your daily food intake, making sure those fats are mostly heart-healthy fats. Because most of us prepare many of our grains, vegetables and meats with the use of fats or oils, most of us consume more fat and oil than we realize in a day.

If you want to fit sugary or fat-filled desserts, candies, cookies or pastries into your diet, you will need to eat whole grains, whole fruits, whole vegetables and lean meats for your other meals. If you eat processed foods that are already laden with fat and sugar, you will not be able to add classic American desserts into your diet and truly call it healthy.
   copyright fitstop fitness for women 2010
WHAT IS A HEALTHY BALANCED DIET?
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