What makes a healthy diet healthy?

By jigsaw Latest Reply 2012-02-12 15:34:35 -0600
Started 2012-02-10 07:45:35 -0600

There are so many opinions on this subject, and it can be very confusing. Many DC members express informed opinions that are backed by experts. It can be so unhealthy and even downright dangerous to take advice that is not scientifically backed, when it comes to diet. To add to the confusion, there is also much controversial info that originates from experts. I would like to focus on what you believe is a healthy diet and and why. Maybe we can clear up some of the misconceptions out there. What do you believe makes for a healthy diet?
Below is a paragragh taken from a link that I thought might be helpful.

"The Best Diets for Healthy Eating and Best Diets Overall rankings overlap significantly. Both give especially high marks to DASH, TLC, Mediterranean, Mayo Clinic, and Volumetrics. "The ones that get high scores in safety and in nutritional value—they're very similar to each other," says Andrea Giancoli, a registered dietitian who serves on U.S. News's expert panel. The recurring theme across the diets that excelled in healthiness is adequate calories supplied by a heavy load of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains, a modest amount of lean protein, nonfat dairy, healthy fats, and an occasional treat. Plants are the foundation and the menu is always built around minimally processed meals made from scratch."

11 replies

jigsaw 2012-02-12 15:34:35 -0600 Report

Any one trying to get off their meds with diet, should do it with professional guidance only. I'm referring to making sure your getting all your nutritional needs met. It's possible to have good bg contol without good nutrition.

Young1s 2012-02-10 20:24:13 -0600 Report

I grew up hearing that the food pyramid was the way to go to for balanced, (and therefore I assumed) healthy eating. I'll be the first to tell you that wasn't how many of my meals looked like growing. We were fed what we could afford. But my mother made sure that there was always a starch, vegetable and some kind of meat (hated liver night) at dinnertime.

When I became a mother, the pyramid had been adjusted a couple of times but it was basically the same premise. Now I won't lie and say that I followed it to the letter for every meal, but there was always something from every food group in the fridge or cupboards. I thought I was doing good with that at least.

Since being diagnosed I try to do better about offering a balanced diet for myself and my family, at least at breakfast and dinnertime. These are the meals that I have the most influence over due to my husband working, my oldest two are college students so who knows what they eat during the day and my youngest two eating lunch at their schools. One of the things I noticed very early on is that I'm buying more fresh fruit because it goes so quickly. During the summer, I had to actually portion the grapes out, in individual baggies, in order for everyone to have a fair share.

jigsaw 2012-02-11 06:58:27 -0600 Report

Diabetes has had more impact in my choice of foods in recent years. I had my dietician give me a list of healthy choices as well as suggested balanced meals. I use this info as a guide to insure ( hopefully ) that I am getting all the essential nutrients. Certainly variety is a key. It's amazing how so many of us become more aware of healthy food choices once diagnosed with diabetes. At least this is one positive thing about this nasty companion that stays with us throughout our lives.

Young1s 2012-02-11 09:22:33 -0600 Report

That's one of the things I'm taking from it. It makes for a longer shopping trip sometimes, but it is so worth it to be healthier. It makes me feel good that I am consciously making the right choices for us. Just wish I could have done it prior to D…but hindsight is 20/20 and dwelling on the shoulda, woulda, coulda's is counterproductive.

Nick1962 2012-02-11 16:22:16 -0600 Report

Gotta agree with you there! Shopping is more intense now, but we've had cashiers comment on how healthy we've been eating. That's always a little warm fuzzy. As far as hindsight, everything happens for a reason I believe. Had you eating healthy before, you would have denied us the pleasure of meeting you here!

Nick1962 2012-02-10 15:34:25 -0600 Report

I agree completely with the excerpt from the article, but vary on one point. Dairy.
It’s been debated and published often that humans were not designed to consume dairy after nursing age. We humans are the only living animals that consume milk of other species, even beyond weaning. There is a reason lactation stops in animals. It’s because we’ve reached an age at which solid more substantial foods are required for growth. After all, a cow’s milk is produced for, go figure – a baby calf. A human baby’s needs are far different, and this is clearly evident in the health differences between breast fed vs non-breast feed babies.
While even non-fat dairy is a great source of protein and calcium, it tends to throw off the balance because it actually floods our system.
Does that mean I’m dairy free? No, but I have cut it down considerably and feel much better.

A few links for what they’re worth.

jigsaw 2012-02-10 17:03:23 -0600 Report

I did not drink milk for a few years because of sugar spikes. My dietician did include an occasional glass of milk in my current meal plan which I adhere to.
I have come accross info pertaining to cows milk and its consumption by human infants. It certainly has merit, and I agree with it. Thanks for the info.

Nick1962 2012-02-11 16:16:59 -0600 Report

Used to be a big milk drinker, but I can count on one hand how many glasses of milk I've had since '82 - even then it was just because I had a major crave for chcolate milk. Since the wife and I are both following the same food plan, a quart of milk here expires before we can use it. I use it in cooking only, and she may use it the few times she eats oatmeal. I think over time us humans have acclimated to dairy, but since about 2/3 of the worlds adults are lactose intolerant, I still have to question whether it should be a dietary staple.

MEGriff1950 2012-02-10 14:04:15 -0600 Report

You are correct jigsaw, because of our BG problem most of us cannot eat enough food in order to meet our daily nutritenial requirements. Mays posted a link for an online program that helps you track nutrition, exercise and weight loss. It looks like it focuses on weight loss but it might be something you wish to check out. Here is the link that Mays posted http://www.nutrimirror.com/resourcesprintlog.php

jigsaw 2012-02-10 16:31:44 -0600 Report

Thanks MeGriff1950… very informative link! Actually I didn't mean my link to voice my opinion as much as I meant it to be food for thought. I do happen believe it contains good info though.