Surprising Benefits of a Healthy Diet

Surprising Benefits of a Healthy Diet

Dietary needs vary, but a healthy diet generally consists of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, and lean meat or other protein sources. You probably already know that eating healthy food helps keep your weight in check, and you may also know that practicing good nutrition can help you fend off cancer, heart disease, depression, addiction, and other serious medical issues. A poor diet is currently ranked as the leading cause of premature death in the United States. In addition to helping you maintain your ideal weight, potentially prolonging your life, and preventing health issues, a nutritious diet is linked with surprising benefits.

Clear Skin

It turns out Mom was right when she told you to ditch the junk food if you wanted your acne to go away. Fast food, such as french fries and chicken nuggets, are often prepared in vegetable oil. Vegetable oil is high in omega-6 fatty acids that can cause inflammation within your body, which can potentially result in dermatological issues.

Omega-3 fatty acids can help reduce inflammation. You can find omega-3 in fatty acids in fish such as salmon or albacore tuna, as well as in walnuts, algae, and acai berries. Antioxidant-filled foods, such as blueberries and cranberries, also help fight inflammation, so incorporate these into your diet if you want clear, smooth skin.

If you feel your skin is too oily, ask yourself whether you’re consuming a lot of sugar. High-glycemic foods make your blood sugar increase quickly and your pancreas reacts by producing extra insulin, which in turn increases sebum production from your sebaceous glands. Examples of high-glycemic foods include white potatoes, white bread, and sugar-filled snacks.

Luscious Locks

Do your tresses look more like the before pic in a hair care advertisement? You can wash your hair regularly and load up on high-end styling products, but you may be wasting your time if you have poor dietary habits.

Failing to follow a nutritious diet can make your hair greasy, thin, dull, or brittle. You may even lose some of your hair or find that it breaks easily when you attempt to brush it or pull it into a ponytail. Before you head to the salon for extensions or spend a fortune on expensive hair care products, consider revamping your diet.

As mentioned above, high-glycemic foods aren’t a friend to your skin. The same is true for your hair, as loading up on foods high in sugar may result in a greasy scalp. You should also limit or restrict your consumption of dairy products, fried foods, and high-fat meats if you want healthy hair. Just make sure not to completely eliminate fatty foods from your diet; this may cause your hair to become dry or and promote breakage. Fuel your body with healthy fats, such as olive oil and avocado.

Mental Clarity

Do you find it hard to get through the day without caffeine? Are memory issues making it difficult for you to accomplish important things at work or in your personal life? An unhealthy diet may be the culprit.

One study found a possible link between poor dietary habits and cognitive decline. Even without reading the study, you may have noticed that certain foods make you feel sleepy or mentally groggy. You may find it hard to focus after eating foods high in sugar, fat, or salt. Your body has to work hard to digest unhealthy foods, which can make it hard to focus on tasks that require a lot of brainpower. So, as you’re adjusting your diet, make sure you take time to exercise your brain through the use of games, learning something new, or developing a fitness routine.

Harvard Health Publications recommends eliminating unhealthy foods from your diet for two to three weeks to see how you feel. During this time, keep a written or digital log of how you feel physically and mentally each day. Keep in mind you may initially feel worse as you eliminate processed foods because your body is used to them.

Benefits for Seniors

A healthy diet is vital for seniors; without proper nutrition, the risk of developing age-related illness significantly increases. The golden years are a crucial time to stick to healthy eating habits in order to maintain strong bones and muscles, decrease inflammation associated with health problems, and prevent and treat cancer and disease.

If you’re a senior, make sure you’re consuming a balanced diet containing the right amount of nutrients for your body, such as omega-3 fatty acids, potassium, calcium, and iron. If healthy eating is new to you, attaining the proper diet may require guidance from a nutritionist, which may be covered under your health insurance. Medicare Part B and some Medicare Advantage plans cover nutrition-related services. And some providers offer Advantage plans that cover wellness programs. It’s a good idea to review your current plan to determine whether you have these benefits, and if not, look into obtaining an alternative plan.

Good dietary habits may help you keep the number on the scale at an acceptable level, but that’s not the only benefit. Reduce the unhealthy foods you consume so that you can enjoy benefits such as mental clarity, clear skin, and a healthier lifestyle in your golden years.

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