What to eat to stay healthy, how to cook food, how much water to drink? Know everything

Ananya Shroff
15 Min Read

Nowadays everyone is becoming a health expert by making reels on Insta or creating a channel on YouTube. In such a situation, the common man gets confused about what to eat? How to eat? But don't worry, clear your confusion related to food etc. here.

The country's two big institutions ICMR and NIN have recently issued 17 detailed guidelines on this. It has been said in these that diseases caused by bad eating habits, which we call non-communicable diseases (diseases that do not spread by touch etc.), are in the first place.

Today we are telling you what you should eat and what not to eat to stay healthy and fit, what is the correct way of cooking and eating and how much water you should drink daily.

How to cook pulses and vegetables?

  • It is better to lightly steam the vegetables instead of boiling them. This does not destroy the nutrients present in the vegetables.
  • Nutrients are retained even when cooked in the microwave. Yes, but cook food in glass or microwave-safe ceramic utensils, not in plastic utensils.
  • Although the colour of vegetables, especially leafy vegetables, often changes when cooked covered, the nutrients in them generally remain intact.
  • High temperatures are often used when roasting. This leads to loss of nutrients.
  • By cooking food properly, the body gets the right amount of nutrition.
  • By repeatedly washing rice, pulses etc with water, the nutrients present in them get reduced.
  • Vegetables and fruits should be washed before cutting. Washing after cutting can destroy their nutrients.
  • Vegetables and fruits should be eaten immediately after cutting.
  • To ferment the grains, soak them completely in water for 12 hours at room temperature. Do not keep them in the fridge. After this, drain the water. Then cover them with a cotton cloth soaked in water. Keep in mind that this cloth should be covered in such a way that air can pass inside.
  • Avoid deep frying food. This usually destroys the nutrients present in the food.
  • Do not add baking soda separately to vegetables and pulses to cook them quickly. This increases the amount of sodium (like salt) in them.

The right way to eat vegetables

  • Eat 4 medium or small bowls (as needed) of seasonal and local green vegetables every day. Eat 2 bowls of vegetables at lunch and 2 bowls at dinner.
  • If green leafy vegetables are added to any of these meals, it would be even better.
  • While cooking vegetables, take care not to use too much oil.
  • These vegetables are an excellent source of fiber. They also fulfill the deficiency of micronutrients. They are an excellent source of iron.
  • Seasonal and local vegetables, leafy vegetables, root vegetables (carrots, radishes), tubers (potatoes, etc.)
  • By eating them alternately, we get almost all types of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fibre.
  • The share of vegetables and salad in the total daily diet should be up to 45 percent i.e. 400 grams.

What utensils should you cook and eat in?

  • Clay pots are best: Clay pots require very little oil. They are not only eco-friendly but also retain the nutrients of the food.
  • Stainless Steel: It is used in most homes. Generally, it does not react with any kind of food items, so it is considered safe.
  • Metal utensils: We cook food in many types of utensils. Among these, aluminium, iron, brass or copper utensils are prominent. Keeping acidic foods (pickles, chutney, sambar and sauce) in them can cause harm.
  • Teflon coated utensils: If these utensils are heated beyond 170 degrees Celsius, they can cause harm. Especially when an empty vessel is heated, poisonous fumes emanate from it.

How to eat

  • Under no circumstances should we get more than 45% of energy (calories) from cereals and millets. Currently we generally get 50 to 70 percent of energy from cereals. This is too much.
  • We should get 14 to 15% energy (calories) from pulses, meat, etc. We get 6 to 9% energy from pulses, meat, eggs, etc., which is quite less. We should take at least 14% energy from protein sources every day.
  • We should take up to 30% energy (calories) from oil, ghee etc.
  • Whereas we can get 8 to 10 percent energy (calories) from milk, curd, oilseeds and dry fruits.
  • If there is a lack of green vegetables in our diet then anemia can occur.
  • If there is less salad or fiber in the diet, then constipation can be a problem. Along with this, there can also be a deficiency of many types of vitamins and minerals.
  • If the amount of fat, sweets, packaged foods etc. in the diet is high then problems like cholesterol, BP etc. are possible.
  • In any situation, we should consume only 20 to 25 grams of sugar per day.
  • Packaged items that contain added sugar or fat etc. should be avoided.
  • If you want to eat nuts, oilseeds, fish, chicken, eggs etc. then do not choose only 1 or 2 of these things. Eat them in different ways so that you can get all types of proteins, fats, vitamins and other nutrients.

How much and how to eat fruits?

  • Eat seasonal and local fruits every day. These days it is the season of watermelon and papaya. So definitely eat them. Jamun season is about to come. Jamun is very beneficial for sugar patients. It is also an alternative to apple. If you do not have sugar then you can eat at least 1 mango every day.
  • Eating 1-2 fruits daily is sufficient.
  • Do not eat the same type of fruit every day. For example: 2 days a week apple and orange, 2 days guava and papaya, berries, 2 days watermelon and mango, 1 day pear and seasonal fruits etc.
  • Fruits are an excellent source of micronutrients (those needed in small amounts). They are also a good source of fiber and antioxidants.
  • The share of fruits in the total daily diet should be 10 to 11 percent i.e. 100 grams.
  • These can be eaten raw i.e. as salad or even cooked.

How much protein is needed

  • Make sure to include protein in your daily diet.
  • The human body needs only 20 types of amino acids (formed by the breakdown of proteins). Thousands of types of proteins are formed from these 20 types of amino acids (amino acids: AA). For these we need different sources of protein. For example: pulses, soybean, almonds, if you eat non-veg then eggs, fish etc.
  • Protein deficiency can cause many serious problems. Anemia is one of them.
  • On an average, a healthy man or woman should take about 0.66 grams of protein per kilogram of weight every day. Suppose if a person weighs 70 kg, then he should take about 46 grams of protein every day.
  • If the ratio of cereals and pulses in the food is 3:1, this will increase the protein content in the food.
  • If you do not eat non-veg then take pulses and soybean.
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Avoid processed food

  • Understand that to make such food items more tasty, the amount of fiber in them is reduced significantly. For this, processing is done many times. Also, sugar, fat etc. are also added to them separately. Due to this, the amount of sugar and salt in such food items becomes very high. Fat, oil, refined are also added in large quantities. Due to all this, there is a lack of essential nutrients in such food items. Neither do they contain good fiber nor are they considered a good source of vitamins or minerals.
  • Not only this, they also have a very high calorie content. Many types of colours and chemicals are also added to them. For example: cheese, sauce, mayonnaise, jam, juice, cold drinks, biscuits, cookies, cakes, pastries etc. Therefore, always try to eat as little processed food as possible.

How much salt should one eat?

  • Consuming too much salt increases the problem of high blood pressure. On an average, a person in our country consumes 3 grams to 10 grams of salt.
  • On an average, a person should take 3 to 5 grams (one teaspoon) of iodised salt every day. Sodium is found in abundance in cereals, pulses, vegetables, milk and non-vegetarian food, seafood. On the other hand, beans, bananas and dry fruits contain a good amount of potassium.
  • Processed and preserved foods should be avoided. For example: sauces, biscuits, chips etc. Keep in mind that even sweets and biscuits contain salt.

How much sugar should a person eat?

  • A normal person should not consume more than 20 to 25 grams (4 to 5 teaspoons) of sugar per day.
  • We usually take one to one and a half teaspoons of sugar in a cup of tea. If you drink 3-4 cups of tea a day, then the daily quota of sugar is completed. Then you should not eat any other sweet thing. On the other hand, if someone is a diabetic patient, then he should avoid taking sugar or keep its quantity to less than one-fourth.
  • Sugar intake should also be reduced while losing weight.

Oil/ Ghee

  • Make sure to include these types of fats in your diet. For example, alpha-linolenic (ALA)-3 PUFA (polyunsaturated fatty acids) should be included. These are mostly found in nuts (almonds, walnuts), oilseeds (mustard, sesame etc.), soybean, cereals or millets. It is also very important for brain cells and nerve cells.
  • Tuna, salmon and other sea fish are also essential for the body. Saturated fatty acids should be used as little as possible. For example: ghee, butter etc.
  • Using the same oil again and again by heating it is dangerous for health.

How much water should you drink?

  • Every day a person should drink about 2 liters i.e. about 8 glasses of water.
  • You can drink water sitting or standing, it does not matter.
  • Chlorine tablets should be used to eliminate chemicals dissolved in water. One such tablet should contain 0.5 grams of chlorine, which has to be mixed in 20 liters of water.
  • Coconut water is a good drink. 100 ml contains 15 calories. Kidney and heart patients should avoid drinking it.

Do not eat food with tea or coffee

  • Tea and coffee contain caffeine. It stimulates the central nervous system. 150 ml of brewed coffee contains 80 to 120 mg of caffeine. Instant coffee contains 50 to 65 mg of caffeine, while tea contains 30 to 65 mg of caffeine.
  • A person should not consume more than 300 mg of caffeine per day.
  • Tannin is also present in tea. Due to this, the process of absorption of iron in the body slows down.
  • One should avoid taking tea and coffee 1 hour before and 1 hour after meals.

Say no to alcohol

  • If a person takes 2 pegs (30ml each) even 3-4 days a week, he is at risk of high blood pressure and brain or heart attack. It increases triglyceride in the body.
  • This can be a major cause of fatty liver. Cholesterol and BP problems can start in the body due to fatty liver.
  • Sometimes alcohol also damages the nervous system.
  • Excessive consumption of alcohol also increases the risk of mouth, throat, prostate and breast cancer in women.

Disclaimer: This article is for general information only. It cannot in any way be a substitute for any medicine or treatment. Always contact your doctor for more information.

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