- Mediterranean Diet: The Mediterranean diet is based on the diet typically followed by the people in the Mediterranean region. It involves high consumption of fruits, vegetables, bread, potatoes, beans, nuts, and seeds.
- South Beach Diet: If you want to follow the South beach diet, you must exclude potatoes, fruits, bread, cereal, rice, pasta, carrots, and corn from you diet for the first two weeks. But after that, you can continue with a few of the above items, but most of them should still be avoided.
- Zone Diet: Dr. Barry Sears came up with the idea of the Zone diet. It aims at consuming calories from carbohydrates, proteins, and fats, but in a balanced manner.
- Atkins Diet: For the Atkins diet, rich foods like steaks, eggs, bacon, cheddar cheese, etc. are allowed but carbohydrates should be completely avoided. The Atkins Diet is quite a controversial diet since the foods that are allowed in this diet are devoid of any nutrition and the person who will follow it will be exposed to a host of health hazards. This has been testified by the American Medical Association’s Council on Food and Nutrition.
But as individuals, different people have different dietary requirements. Again, factors like age, body type, level of physical activity, and gender determine the amount of food that a person should consume. A balanced diet can be incorporated as three main meals in a day. Make sure you are adding variety in your diet by including plenty of fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables are the main sources of vitamins and minerals which help keep your heart and body healthy. Along with these, make sure that you also include low-fat dairy products. If you want to add meat in your menu, opt for lean meats, poultry, and fish. Again, if you want to have a vegetarian diet, opt for cottage cheese and soybeans.
Well-balanced Diet Menu
Start your day with one cup of strawberries, half cup of cottage cheese, and a large spoonful of sunflower seeds. If you want, you can substitute low-fat cottage cheese for cottage cheese made from whole milk. Eat this with a multi-grain toast. You can also go for an omelet made of two eggs with mushrooms, tomatoes, spring onions, and shredded cheese as a filling. Add an apple and a glass of water and voila! You have a wholesome breakfast ready.
A well-balanced lunch can consist of a salad made of dark green lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower, and tomatoes. Add two teaspoons of walnut oil and a few pieces of organic meat. You can also eat this as a filling for rolls or tortillas. Similarly, you can follow the same idea for making other types of salads like potato, tuna, and even a pasta salad.
For dinner, take half a cup of whole wheat pasta, a quarter cup of organic marinara sauce and a few pieces of turkey. Now add two cups of cooked green vegetables. Just saute them lightly in two teaspoons of flax oil. You can add tofu instead of the turkey as a vegetarian option.
Between breakfast, lunch, and dinner, many people prefer to have mid-morning and evening snacks to satiate their periodical hunger pangs. So if you are one of them, some healthy options could be apples, walnuts, tofu, carrot sticks, pumpkin seeds, sliced cheese, whole grain crackers, lean chicken breasts, etc. But remember to measure out the quantities before you take a helping of any of the above mentioned foods.
To make your balanced diet meal more effective, try to eat a minimum of four small meals a day including snacks. Try to have fresh and low-fat foods as much as possible, and eat them slowly. Avoid foods that are high in fats and calories like cakes, pastries, candy bars, pies, burgers, pizzas, etc. Along with consuming a balanced diet, do also indulge in exercises, drink lots of water, and get plenty of rest and sleep.