Food pyramid and the importance for the family

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Philippe Gloaguen
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Fonte: shutterstock

A healthy and correct diet

The importance of following healthy eating habits

Follow one healthy and proper nutrition in family, helps not only children to grow well, but it keeps us fit and allows us to prevent the risk of some pathologies.

Often, our lifestyle is characterized by an unbalanced diet and an increasingly widespread sedentary lifestyle. These habits lead us to live in a situation of "apparent" psycho-physical well-being, but which often does not correspond with the state of health. The imbalance between the caloric value of the ingested food and the lack of energy expenditure, manifests itself with the risk of various diseases such as obesity, metabolic, cardiovascular diseases and cancer.

To guide adults and children towards healthier eating behaviors, born the food pyramid. This is a graph that shows us the necessary proportion of each food group: water, fruit and vegetables, starchy foods, animal proteins, fats, sweet foods.

In this article

  • What is the food pyramid
  • The culture of food
  • How the food pyramid is made
  • Children and nutrition education

The Mediterranean diet is GOOD. Here because

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The more Mediterranean you eat, the longer you live. Also, those who eat "med" get sick less. This diet protects against various diseases: cardiovascular ones before ...

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What is the food pyramid

Food pyramid and Mediterranean diet

La food pyramid was conceived in 1992 by the US Department of Agriculture, and was revisited and updated in 2005 with major changes, and is therefore called "new food pyramid ". For many of us who come from a Mediterranean-type gastronomic tradition, the food pyramid is nothing more than what we have always called "Mediterranean diet". 

The foods located at the top of the pyramid are the ones that should be consumed in small amounts, while, while in the lower part the foods that must be consumed are indicated more frequently and in larger quantities.

The culture of food

The new food pyramid highlights the importance of healthy lifestyles and respect for a food culture.

The salient points are three:

  • It is important the food choice; cooking must be an important activity, and it must be fun and relaxing;
  • It is good to choose local and typical products, choose fresh foods, seasonal foods, little or no processed foods. This ensures that we receive the maximum amount of substances and nutrients, and also respect for the environment;
  • Physical activity is crucial;
Read also: Healthy diet for the whole family

How the food pyramid is made

At the base of the pyramid are represented i foods to be eaten more frequently. On the top of the pyramid we find the foods to be consumed from time to time and in small quantities, to prevent health problems and obesity. These foods include sweets, carbonated drinks, butter and red meat. Refined cereals should also be avoided (white sugar, white flour, pasta) in favor of whole grains. 

  • Acqua. The body of an adult requires at least 2 liters of water per day. Drinking the right amount of water is necessary for the elimination of toxins from vital organs and to transport nutrients to the cells. Symptoms of dehydration include headaches and dark pee.
  • Cereals and derivatives. Unrefined (wholemeal) ones, which contain more fiber, are preferred.
  • Fruits and vegetables. A good consumption of fruit and vegetables (both raw and cooked) allows the right amount of vitamins, minerals and fibers, which facilitate intestinal transit.
  • Healthy vegetable fats and oils. Since it is impossible to cook without using fats, we are careful to choose them. Extra virgin olive oil is the healthiest oil: it contains polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Going up along the pyramid we find foods to be eaten less frequently.

  • Legumes. Beans, peas, chickpeas and lentils are plant foods with a protein content. Their fiber content is important.
  • Fish. Fish contains omega 3, which are essential fatty acids.
  • Dairy Products. Milk and cheese are a source of calcium, potassium and substances useful for staying healthy.

Children and nutrition education

Talking to the little ones about the food pyramid is a way to explain to them the importance of proper nutrition and the properties of each food

Food education it must be undertaken from the first years of the child's life. The food preferences of the child are often influenced by those of the parents, and it is therefore important that they are a lead by example, so as to promote the correct growth and development of the child. 

Fonte: shutterstock

What does the new food pyramid foresee?

  • Lots of vegetables and little meat
  • More low-glycemic index foods (whole grains) and fewer refined grains and derivatives
  • Use more "good" fats (oily nuts in shell, such as pine nuts, almonds and walnuts, fish, extra virgin olive oil)
  • Less complex sauces and more use of aromatic herbs and flavorings
  • A good alternation of hunger and satiety: better to prefer many simple and small meals within 24 hours
  • A fair variation of foods over the course of the week
  • At least one and a half liters if not two of water a day: you must drink often and in small doses, limiting or eliminating sweet and carbonated drinks
  • Few desserts at the table (being able to allow no more than a couple of small portions a week of simple and unprocessed sweets)
Read also: The importance of having breakfast with children

  • child diet
  • 1-2 children years
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