In nutrition, the diet is basically the sum total of the food ingested by an organism or individual over a period of time. The purpose of a diet is to limit the quantity of calories that are ingested and to control the amount of calories that are calories and not fat. This implies that the dieter should limit the amount of calories that he/she consumes. It is also necessary to consider the macronutrient composition of the diet, since it affects the way the body processes the diet. For example, in case of diets low in protein and higher in fats, the body will have an inappropriate way of breaking down the dietary protein while causing weight gain.
A diet should be nutritionally balanced in order to maintain health. Eating too much fat is harmful for the body. Therefore, it is important to choose the right types of foods and not simply eat anything. There are five major groups of foods and these include carbohydrate, protein, vegetables, fruits, dairy products and fats.
Carbohydrate contains the main component of the diet i.e. glucose. Most people believe that carbohydrates are the main source of energy for the human body and so are essential for a diet. However, the diet should be well balanced in terms of containing enough carbohydrates. Some important sources of carbohydrates are pasta, rice, breads and cereals.
Proteins are the main source of energy for the body. Fats, on the other hand, add to the fat content of the diet and are considered bad for the diet. Some of the fats that are commonly recommended as a part of the diet are olive oil, safflower oils and margarine. Fruits are a good addition to the diet and are rich in fibre and other nutrients. Vegetables also make up a significant part of the diet and so are whole grains, beans and nuts.
Dairy products include milk, cheese, yoghurt, cream, butter and curds. Fruits and vegetables are the best natural fat burners. They help reduce the fat content of the diet and are a vital part of any diet. The best way to cook them is by steaming or grilling them.
When following any diet, it is very important to adopt a sensible eating habit. This will not only help in reducing your weight but will also improve your health. The best way to begin with a new diet is to adopt one for two weeks. This will give you a good chance to see how the diet works and will help you make the right changes gradually. If you find it uncomfortable to go back to your old eating habits, you can take the help of a dietician.