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A Healthier Diet, a Healthier You

By Len Canter
HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, Nov. 22, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- With more and more research uncovering the best foods for health, people are learning how important it is to focus on food quality to prevent weight gain and live longer.

There are many approaches to consider. For instance, findings show that a diet high in fiber, especially from fruits and vegetables, can lower stroke risk. Following a DASH-style diet -- which is rich in whole grains and low in red meat -- boosts heart health by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol. And the Mediterranean-style diet, which uses olive oil as the primary fat and encourages mostly plant-based foods, is another great choice for longevity.

Principles from each of these diets can be combined to raise the overall quality of your diet and help you meet health goals. In fact, a Harvard study found that simply eating more whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and fewer sweetened beverages and less saturated fat can reduce type 2 diabetes risk by about 20 percent.

People also need to know what's not healthy and should be avoided. Another Harvard study identified key culprits -- potato chips, processed and unprocessed red meat, as well as sugar-sweetened beverages. Starches, refined grains, fats and sugars all lead to weight gain, while increasing high-quality foods can actually help you eat fewer calories overall because they're more satisfying.

One interesting finding is that the healthiest diets are made up of a rather small range of good-for-you foods. And the concept of eating whatever you want if you do so in moderation isn't the sound approach it was thought to be.

Boosting diet quality starts at the supermarket. Focus on the perimeter where you'll find produce, low-fat dairy, seafood and poultry, rather than the aisles where packaged and process foods are stocked.

More information

Learn about the benefits of the DASH diet from the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

Copyright © 2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved. URL:http://consumer.healthday.com/Article.asp?AID=738478

Resources from HONselect: HONselect is the HON's medical search engine. It retrieves scientific articles, images, conferences and web sites on the selected subject.
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The list of medical terms above are retrieved automatically from the article.

Disclaimer: The text presented on this page is not a substitute for professional medical advice. It is for your information only and may not represent your true individual medical situation. Do not hesitate to consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting a qualified healthcare professional.
Be advised that HealthDay articles are derived from various sources and may not reflect your own country regulations. The Health On the Net Foundation does not endorse opinions, products, or services that may appear in HealthDay articles.


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