You are what you eat: the importance of a healthy diet

Mohi Choudhury discusses the importance of a healthy, balanced diet.

Mohi Choudhury
10th October 2019
Health is Wealth Image: Nick Younson for The Blue Diamond Gallery
Breakfast being the most important meal of the day is constantly shoved down our throats, but many of us, myself included at times, have not paid worthy attention to this meal, or neglect it completely.

Are you one of those people that wakes up and detests the thought of immediately putting food into your mouth? Is breakfast not appealing? I am not declaring that you must enjoy breakfast. What I am saying is that you should eat it. It takes a while to get accustomed to eating a healthy breakfast consistently if you are not used to it, but if you keep neglecting it, it is you that will suffer immeasurably. A coffee alone, unfortunately, does not amount to eating a healthy breakfast. Food is the fuel that runs the body and the brain. 25% of the calories are burned by the brain. Something with protein and fats is a fantastic way to start your day. Cheese, peanut butter, eggs, oats, and many other foods are nutritious and can be incorporated into your diet. Avid meal skippers often cite lack of time as a constraint, but you can start small.

"The first thing you should do when you get up is eat"

Waking up at the same time every day can highly compliment eating habits as it helps you keep a steady circadian rhythm. Upsetting that can lead to emotional dysregulation which might prompt bad eating habits. This is particularly important if you suffer from anxiety as you may be more prone to have an unstable circadian rhythm. Ideally, the first thing you should do when you get up is eat. Or you can be like me and wash your face first. Eat an oat bar or a banana if you are desperate. It is not a full meal but it sure is a lot better than eating nothing. You will not believe how much of a profound effect eating a healthy breakfast consistently can have on you.

Image: Ella Olssen for Flickr

The great thing about good habits is that they propagate. So, if you are paying healthy attention to breakfast, chances are that your efforts will filter through to subsequent meals. While microwave meals are a convenient fix for when you are rushing, they are not a substitute for cooking from scratch. They are often overloaded with salt, sugar, and don’t taste all that great in the long run. If you are pressed for time (who isn’t?), consider meal prepping or make one-pot meals (shoving all ingredients into a pan). You do not have to be perfect. You can eat junk food, but if you value your life, try not to do it most days of the week. The ‘Tasty’ YouTube channel is a fantastic recipe channel with a variety of meals and many of them are straightforward to make. They also taste great, by the way. There are plenty of small but important ways you can easily improve your diet. Replace soft drinks with water, limit red meat and alcohol intake, and eat a balanced diet that contains essential nutrients such as protein, vitamins and minerals and dietary fibre.

"A nutritious diet can benefit both your health and academic grades"

The food you eat can have an impact on how your mind and body work, so a nutritious diet can benefit both your health and academic grades. If you are making any drastic changes to your diet or suffer from allergies, be sure to speak to a doctor first. Bon appetite.

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