#MassyMethodMondays: Everything You Need To Know About Eating A 'Balanced Diet'

Balanced Meal Facts
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When it comes to having a healthy body all year around, balance is the key. Following a diet that provides your body with the nutrition it needs to function properly will help you stay healthy and lean throughout all four seasons.

Trends and popular diets that restrict you from a particular food group can leave you feeling deprived and force you to quit on your healthy habits. A healthy diet has a variety of nutrient dense foods that includes whole grains, leafy greens, fruits, lean proteins, and good fats. Keeping a balance of all major food groups will help you feel satisfied, nourish your body with everything it needs, and help you maintain long-term results.

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Food is energy. If energy isn’t used, our bodies will store it in the form of fat for future use. A healthy diet will be based on a person’s caloric intake. This number is based on age, gender and physical activity.

The following examples of caloric intake are based upon U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) guidelines:

•   Children ages 2 to 8: 1,000 to 1,400 calories per day.

•   Active women ages 14 to 30: 2,400 calories per day.

•   Sedentary women ages 14 to 30: 1,800 to 2,000 calories per day.

•   Active men ages 14 to 30: 2,800 to 3,000 calories per day.

•   Sedentary men ages 14 to 30: 2,000 to 2,600 calories per day.

•   Active men and women over 30: 2,200 to 3,000 calories per day.

•   Sedentary men and women over 30: 1,800 to 2,200 calories per day.

According to the Institute of Medicine, adults should get 45 percent to 65 percent of their calories from carbohydrates, 20 percent to 35 percent from fat, and 10 to 35 percent from protein.

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