Don’t expect to remain healthy if you do not have a balanced diet.

You cannot eat whatever you like and stay in good health. Look around you next time you go to the supermarket and try to guess how many people have a truly balanced diet. You are unlikely to see anyone who is suffering from malnutrition or starvation but you may see some who eat more than they need to. You are much more likely to see people who eat too much of the wrong kinds of food.

Firstly, you must eat the right things. So you should be eating the following food substances:

  1. Carbohydrates,
  2. Proteins,
  3. Fats,
  4. Vitamins,
  5. Mineral salts, &
  6. Fibre.

Secondly, you must eat the right amounts of each kind of food. So you should know why you eat these things:

  • Carbohydrates give you the energy you need to move and grow,
  1. too much and you will get fat,
  2. too little and you will feel tired,
  • Proteins are essential for growth and repair,
  1. too much and you will get fat and might make a lot of urine,
  2. too little and you will not grow properly, wounds will not heal,
  • Fats contain fat soluble vitamins,
  1. too little and you will not get all the vitamins you need,
  2. too much and you will get fat,
  • Vitamins are required in small amounts, but they keep you healthy, you need:
  1. A
  2. B1, B2 etc up to B12,
  3. C
  4. D
  5. E
  • Minerals like Calcium and Iron are essential:
  1. Calcium is necessary for teeth, bones, muscles and nerves,
  2. Iron is needed to make the haemoglobin in your blood,
  3. Iodine is needed to control how fast your body works,
  4. Sodium, Potassium and Chlorine are needed by muscles and nerves.
  • Fibre is not digested, so you can eat as much as you like, but you must eat some,
  1. If you do not eat fibre your bowels will not work properly.


So, what should you eat ?

  • Carbohydrates include sugars and starch. Starch is found in:
    1. Bread,
    2. Cake,
    3. Potato,
    4. Biscuits,
    5. Pasta, &
    6. Rice.
  • Sugars are also carbohydrates; they are found in:
    1. Fruits,
    2. Sweets,
    3. Sugar Cane,
    4. Sugar Beet, &
    5. Milk.
  • Proteins are found in:
    1. Meat,
    2. Fish,
    3. Eggs,
    4. Peas,
    5. Beans,
    6. Lentils, &
    7. Milk.
  • Vitamin C is found in:
    1. Fresh Fruit (especially citrus fruits), and
    2. Fresh Vegetables.

I hope that you will be able to remember most of the facts on this page, but you must memorise the definition of a balanced diet. Write it on a small index card. Put the red words on one side of the card and the blue ones on the other. Add the card  to your revision pack.

A balanced diet is one which contains carbohydrate, protein, fat, vitamins, mineral salts and fibre in the correct proportions

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