Beginners Guide For Nutrition

Mar 19, 2011
Beginners Guide For Nutrition

Some basic tips for Beginning a Good Diet

Learning to Eat Well, A Beginner’s Guide

Making the choice to take control of your diet can be an overwhelming task.  There are so many conflicting reports on what exactly the definition of healthy eating is that you may be wondering which dietary recommendations are the correct ones to follow.   One site will tell you that you need to reduce your protein intake in favor of carbohydrates while another will tell you the exact opposite.  To sort through all of this information, you may need to get some assistance from a licensed dietitian or other health consultant.  However, you can get started on making positive changes in your diet by following the basic guidelines reported in the Harvard Men’s Health Watch article, Nutrition 101:  Good Eating for Good Health.

First, any diet that tells you to focus on one food group in favor of another is bad news.  A well balanced diet comes from choosing a variety of foods from all of the food groups.  What you need to focus on are the proportions that you are choosing from each group.  Fats should be kept to a minimum while the bulk of the diet is full of healthy proteins and carbohydrates. 

Second, watch your intake of sodium, focusing on less than 2300 mg per day.  Considering the average Chinese food serving has this much sodium in one dish, you may have to start out slowly in making changes that will satisfy your taste buds as well as your nutritional needs.  Salt is a very flavorful ingredient, and some will have great difficulty learning to cut back while still enjoying these food choices.

Finally, don’t be overly critical of yourself if you make mistakes and slip up on your food choices every once in a while.  Couldn’t resist that piece of chocolate cake?  It’s not as big of a deal as you think when looking at it in the grand scheme of things.  A diet that stays on track most of the time will eventually even itself out.  As long as you get back on track, that one piece of cake is not going to sabotage your efforts.

Learning to take control of your diet doesn’t have to be complicated or frustrating.  By making simple changes in your diet gradually, you will soon be well on your way to changing your body, lifestyle, and overall health.  No longer will you be considering your diet a diet, but will soon start to see it as a way of life.

Works Cited

Nutrition 101: Good eating for good health.  Harvard Men's Health Watch, Jul2009, Vol. 13 Issue 12, p6-8, 3p, 1


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Daily Meal Plan

Egg, white only, cooked : 6 white : 99 cal
Oatmeal, cooked, instant, fat not added in cooking : 1 cup, cooked : 226 cal
Raspberries, red, raw : 1/2 cup : 30 cal
Banana, raw : 2 medium (7" to 7-7/8" long) : 217 cal
White potato, home fries : 1/2 cup : 134 cal

Calories: 706   Carb=121g Prot=35g Fat=12g

Snack 1
Peanut butter and jelly sandwich : 1 sandwich : 330 cal
Carrots, raw : 170.1g : 73 cal
Meal replacement or supplement, liquid, predigested protein : 2 fl oz : 139 cal

Calories: 542   Carb=59g Prot=47g Fat=15g

Rice, white, cooked, instant, fat not added in cooking : 2 Typical Serving : 216 cal
Apple, raw : 1 medium (2-3/4" dia) (approx 3 per lb) : 81 cal
Olive oil : 1 tablespoon : 119 cal
Tuna, canned, water pack : 3 oz : 99 cal

Calories: 515   Carb=68g Prot=26g Fat=15g

Snack 2
Almonds : 1/5 cup : 166 cal

Calories: 166   Carb=5.8g Prot=5.6g Fat=15g

Broccoli, cooked, from fresh, fat not added in cooking : 1 Typical Serving : 22 cal
Beef steak, broiled or baked, lean only eaten : 1/2 sirloin steak (yield after cooking, bone and fat removed) : 238 cal
Rice, white, cooked, instant, fat not added in cooking : 1 cup, cooked : 160 cal

Calories: 419   Carb=39g Prot=41g Fat=10g

Snack 3
Banana, raw : 1 medium (7" to 7-7/8" long) : 109 cal
Meal replacement or supplement, liquid, predigested protein : 2 fl oz : 139 cal
Flax seeds : 4g : 20 cal

Calories: 268   Carb=29g Prot=37g Fat=1.9g

Total Calories: 2616   Carb=321g Prot=192g Fat=69g

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