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Eating Healthy: What Does It Mean

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Currently, one of the major trends seen today is eating healthy. Restaurants are promoting their new “green” menu with the calories listed on the side while grocery stores are adding healthy alternatives to their stock. How imperative is it that we eat healthy? Because experts in the field of nutrition overwhelmingly agree that healthy eating is vital to superior health, would it not follow that eating a consistent diet of junk food and empty calories is leading to many avoidable health issues? To further understand this topic it is necessary to look at the downfalls of not eating healthy and the benefits of healthy eating like more energy, more restful sleep, and brain development.

Most Americans eat plenty of food a day; however, much of that food is packaged, artificial food that has been stripped of its nutritional content. Even though Americans are overfed, they are severely lacking in what they need for their body to be at the top of its game. Unfortunately, though they are aware, many people do not realize the serious ramifications that will affect their body. Diets that include foods that are packed with sodium, sugar, and fat will increase blood cholesterol and weight, causing strain on the heart and body. This will greatly increase the risk of future problems like strokes, heart attacks, clogged arteries, and even depression.

When the correct nutritional food is eaten, it has been proven to be extremely beneficial to health in a variety of ways. Fruit, which is full of fiber and antioxidants, is fantastic at giving a boost of energy that is greatly needed in the morning. On the other hand, if insomnia is an issue, most fish and some fruit contain Vitamin B6 which helps make the hormone Melatonin; a hormone that experts believe aids restful sleep. Another reason why sleep patterns can be disrupted is simply because of dehydration. This is why the Mayo Clinic suggests that each person should try to drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day. Not only will being hydrated help aid sleep, experts say to drink a full glass of water before each meal, because some of the hunger one feels could simply just be dehydration.

Other than energy and sleeping better, the right food can also help with brain development and state of mind. It is incredibly vital for young children to eat the correct food for their still developing brains and bodies. Regularly eating unhealthy foods, such as foods high in sugar, can damage brain development and cause obesity, which can lead to depression. The University of Maryland Medical Center states that omega-3 fatty acids are important for the correct development of the brain’s memory functions and behavioral centers. Maryland Medical Center also states that it is important for women who are pregnant to get an ample supply of omega-3 fatty acids for a healthy growing baby and also reduce the risk of allergies in babies.

In conclusion, there is an enormous amount of research proving that a consistent diet of nutritious food, high fiber and quality fats, is good for the entire body. A diet of unhealthy food, low fiber and trans fats, will eventually destroy health and cause the foundation for serious, future health problems. Though it is alright to occasionally have a less than healthy snack, experts agree that it is better to keep a regular nutritional diet filled with the correct amount of protein, fruit, vegetables, and grains. The bottom line is, eating healthy equals being healthy.

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