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Why raise the issue of healthy eating?
- The Scottish population is still consuming too much saturated fat, salt and sugar and not enough fruit and vegetables, oil-rich fish and fibre (NDNS, 2014).
- This diet increases the prevalence of overweight and obesity and risk of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease and Type 2 Diabetes.
- The WHO estimates that 31% of ischaemic heart disease and 11% of strokes can be attributed to low fruit and vegetable intake.
- Only 1 in 5 adults meet the 5 a day fruit and vegetable consumption and 1 in 10 adults report eating no fruit or vegetables.
- Vitamins and minerals, in fruits and vegetables, can help prevent disease and boost the immune system. This can help patients with a lung condition prevent chest infections or fight them off more quickly.
- Soluble fibre in fruit and vegetables reduces the amount of cholesterol absorbed by the intestine and therefore can help to reduce the amount of cholesterol in the blood.
- Reducing the saturated fat in your diet can reduce high blood cholesterol, which can reduce the risk of another Heart Attack or Stroke
- Eating less salt can help to reduce blood pressure, which can reduce the risk of another Heart Attack or Stroke
- Eating a healthy diet can help improve symptoms of Heart Failure and can prevent other conditions.
- Excess sugar causes dental caries and weight gain.
- A healthy diet can help keep blood glucose at a safe and healthy level without the need for other types of treatment for Type 2 Diabetes.
How to raise the issue of healthy eating?
The Eatwell plate shows how much of what we eat should come from each food group. This includes everything eaten during the day, including snacks. Please use this tool to establish whether the patient has a healthy diet or if they would benefit from further support.
A healthy diet should include:
- Eat at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day
- Base meals on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates; choosing
wholegrain versions where possible
- Have some dairy or dairy alternatives (such as soya drinks); choosing lower fat and lower
- Eat some beans, pulses, fish, eggs, meat and other proteins (including 2 portions of fish
every week, one of which should be oily)
- Choose unsaturated oils and spreads and eat in small amounts
- Drink 6-8 cups/glasses of fluid a day
- Choose foods lower in fat, salt and sugars
Please click this link to access further information about the Eatwell Plate
Alternatively please click link for Healthy Eating Questionnaire
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