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Overseas Health Insurance News: All diets 'must be balanced'

Expatriate international healthcare insurance policyholders planning to lose weight might wish to ensure any diet they commence is balanced.

Journalist, nutritionist and author Dr Carina Norris said this is "essential", even for people trying to minimise their calorie intake.

Healthy eating will always need "moderate amounts of the good unsaturated fats" that can be found in foods such as fish and olive oil, she continued.

People who are reducing their dairy consumption – perhaps due to lactose intolerance – will have to discover "alternative sources of the calcium needed for healthy bones", which include certain tinned fish, beans, lentils, other pulses, milk substitutes, seaseme seeds and green, leafy vegetables.

It is essential that men and women ingest the major food groups – carbohydrates, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals and proteins – regardless of the kind of diet they are going on or any allergies they have, the doctor asserted.

However, treats such as crisps and chocolate bars can be replaced with raw foods, which she argued can help individuals to resist the urge to consume these goods.

A diet consisting of uncooked vegetables makes people "better able to resist unhealthy snacks" by filling their bodies with fibre.

This balances blood sugar levels, reduces hunger and keeps the digestive system healthy, the expert claimed.

"Raw food diets are generally full of fruit, vegetables, nuts and seeds", she noted, calling these items "highly nutritious" and saying they are not eaten often enough by most members of the public.

Compounds referred to as phytochemicals – which occur in these foodstuffs – can "help protect us from cardiovascular disease and certain cancers", she claimed.

Oregon State University described these substances as "chemicals from plants that may affect health, but are not essential nutrients".

The institution noted there is "ample evidence to support the health benefits of diets rich in fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains and nuts", but said information suggesting phytochemicals have any efficacy is "limited".

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