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What is health food

What is health food

Food is a very important part of our lives. In addition to the hours we spend per day eating, the food we eat influences our health.


Our food is fundamentally based on our preferences and our aversions, they are the basis of the elaboration of our dishes. Why do we eat certain foods and reject others? In the consumption of the food they influence a great variety of factors, some of social, others of religious type, other cultural ... It suffices to remember that in our culture there are foods that are considered taboo, as for example the lobsters or the beetles, And that in other countries are consumed without any kind of aversion.

On the other hand, it is necessary to take into account that in the human being the act of eating is more than nourishing, since we do not eat exclusively to maintain our vital signs and our metabolic routes. Human feeding is a complex process in which biological, social and cultural aspects are intermingled.

Through the different articles that appear in this section we will help you to choose your diet in a rational way, which will help to maintain a healthy and balanced diet. Correct dietary habits can prevent the onset of numerous diseases, as experts estimate that up to 70% of chronic diseases are directly or indirectly related to diet and lifestyle.
Initially, some concepts are developed on the elements that are part of a healthy and balanced diet for adults and adults.
Spatial attention is given to breakfast, because of its importance for health as the first meal of the day.
Then a meal is analyzed through the different elements that compose it: first course, second course and third course or dessert.

Finally, a short dictionary of food is offered.


What do you prefer first course Rice, macaroni, potatoes or a varied salad

Cereals (rice, wheat, corn) are the basis of human nutrition worldwide, as they provide the complex carbohydrates our body needs for energy. Also, cereals should be alternated with vegetables, which provide the mineral, fiber and vitamins.

As for potatoes, they are tubers belonging to the farinaceous group because of their carbohydrate content; Having a high concentration of water, have fewer calories than other farinaceous.

These foods are the first dish of the Mediterranean gastronomy, they are nutritious of easy digestion and suitable for the whole family. What should predominate, cereals or vegetables Those who require less energy should consume less cereal and a higher proportion of vegetables in the first course. It is recommended that the saturated fat and cholesterol content of a first course is very low.

In the following articles we will explain in more detail the nutritional characteristics of all these components.

Breve diccionario de los alimentos

Ascorbic acid: vitamin C.
Folic acid: vitamin B group.
Linoleic Fatty Acid: this is an essential fatty acid that is present in the oils of the seeds.
Fatty acid linolenic acid: essential fatty acid present in soybean oil.
Fatty acids: constituents of fats. Unlike the fats are in liquid state at room temperature.
Monounsaturated fatty acids: there is only one double bond in its chemical structure (eg olive oil).
Polyunsaturated fatty acids: there are several double bonds in their structure (eg sunflower oil).
Oleic acid: monounsaturated fatty acid present in olive oil.
Omega-3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids present in certain foods (nuts, fish, seed oils).
Saturated fatty acids: there are no double bonds in their structure, they are in the solid state at room temperature (eg butter).
Additive: substances added to foods to improve organoleptic characteristics or to promote their preservation.
Platelet aggregation: accumulation of platelets in vessel walls.
Alanine: one of the non-essential amino acids.
Food: any elaborate, semi-processed or natural substance intended for human consumption.
Prebiotic food: it can not be digested by our body, but stimulates the growth or activity of certain living microorganisms.
Prebiotic food: live microorganisms that exert beneficial effects on certain foods (Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria).
Transgenic food: genetic engineering has been involved in its production, after modification of some genes.
Functional foods: when adding or removing some of its ingredients have been modified.
Amino acid: structural unit of proteins.
Antibody: molecule produced by the body that is able to neutralize an antigen
Antioxidant: substance responsible for aging and cell damage.
Biotin: vitamin that belongs to the vitamin B complex.
Calorie: amount of heat to be applied to a gram of water so that its temperature increases by one degree centigrade.
Organoleptic characteristics: qualities of food that can be perceived through the senses.
Carcinogen: substance capable of developing the appearance of cancer cells.
Cardiosaludable: food that protects us from the onset of cardiovascular diseases.
Carotene: red or orange hydrocarbon present in carrots, tomatoes .. It is a provitamin that is converted into vitamin A in our body.
Casein: protein contained in milk.
Celiaquía: A disease characterized by gluten intolerance, a protein present in some cereals.
Colorants: additives added to food in order to enhance their natural color. They can be natural or artificial.
Freezing: food preservation treatment at temperatures below 0 ° C, ideal temperature is -18 ° C.
Preservatives: substances that are added to foodstuffs to protect them from biological alterations.
Dehydration: a method of preserving food that consists in reducing its water content below 13%
Disaccharide: carbohydrates consisting of two monosaccharides.
Boiling: process by which the food, during a variable time, is subjected to a temperature of 95-105 ºC.
Sweetener: substance that confers a sweet taste on food, is used as a substitute for sugar.
Sterilization: food preservation process that involves applying high temperatures (115-130 ºC) for 15-30 minutes.
Fiber: substance present in certain foods of plant origin.
Phospholipids: compound that contains in its chemical composition fatty acids, phosphoric acid and a nitrogenous base.
Fructose: carbohydrate present in some fruits.
Glucose: simple carbohydrate, the main energy source of cells.
Hemoglobin: protein that is responsible for the transport of oxygen.
Water-soluble: substance that can be dissolved in water.
Hypercaloric: contains a high energy value.
BMI: Body mass index, is obtained from the weight and size of a person.
Lactose: enzyme that converts lactose into glucose and galactose.
Lycopene: substance present in the tomato and that is responsible for the red color.
Light: applies to foods that have a reduction of at least 30% of their caloric value.
Liposoluble: substance that can dissolve in lipids or fats.
Metabolize: is the process by which a substance becomes a simpler.
Myoglobin: protein present in the muscle and responsible for the red color of the muscle, because it has the capacity to store oxygen.
Monosaccharide: simple carbohydrates, within this group are glucose and fructose.
Trace elements: chemical elements indispensable for the correct functioning


What are you going to drink for dessert Fruit, custard, pudding or ice cream


It should not be forgotten that the main supply of vitamins and minerals in our diet are the fresh fruits and, above all, the mature ones of each season. The vitamin requirements of our body will be covered if we consume 2-3 pieces of fresh fruit per day. Along with an adequate consumption of vegetables and vegetables. A vitamin deficiency can lead to numerous diseases. So, fruit should be one of our main choices as dessert

In the following articles we will explain in more detail the nutritional characteristics of all these components and we will analyze the main differences that exist between them.

All people can agree on the need to have a healthy diet to achieve a better state of health. But: What is healthy eating.What foods include the ideal diet


The first thing to say is that there is no ideal diet for all people. It is necessary to individualize, since we must take into account the existence of diseases, weight, height ... However, we can establish general guidelines that are useful for the vast majority of people:
Maintain meal times from one day to another.
Do not skip any food.
Distribute food in 4 or 5 meals a day.
Eat more often but smaller amounts.

In the first place it should be noted that 4-5 meals should be made throughout the day, and that in all of them the amount of food should be moderate. It is recommended to start the day with a hearty breakfast, to continue with a lunch of vegetables and vegetables, a very light snack and, finally, to dismiss the day with a dinner based on varied and abundant fruits.

Breakfast, which should provide the energy you need for morning activities, may consist of cereals, yogurt, honey, fresh fruits and a few nuts.


The lunch will be made from vegetables in salads, using exclusively in the dressing the olive oil. The salt will always be used with restrictions, for this reason we will remove the salt shaker from the table. If we avoid excessive salt intake we will contribute to prevent kidney failure and high blood pressure, diseases common in the elderly.

The snack should consist of a fruit juice, a yogurt, an infusion and one or two whole-grain crackers.

Finally, the dinner should consist of several kinds of fruit, which will be taken in abundance. Before going to bed, you can have a glass of hot milk with honey.

In any case, food must provide us with the necessary nutrients to obtain the necessary energy and thus be able to develop daily activities.

That is precisely vegetarianism, in consuming only natural products and vegetable. These people eliminate meat in any form and products of animal origin, such as eggs and dairy.

These people are deficient in some nutrients, such as essential amino acids, vitamin B12 and iron, which are found mainly in animal products.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, since the body has been 7-9 hours on an empty stomach. Drinking only coffee when you wake up and not eat is not a good breakfast, as it can be harmful to your health. Breakfast should be 25% of the daily caloric intake.

To have good health it is very important to have healthy breakfasts. What does it consist on? They should include a dairy product, a fruit and a cereal. You should avoid taking bakery products as a rule, since all they bring are sugars, calories and fats.

Particular care must be taken with cereals, since there are some that carry honey, chocolate or caramel, which may imply an excess in the intake of sugars. It is advisable to opt for unsweetened natural cereals. The muesli has the advantage that it can contain nuts, which contribute potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and calcium.

As a general rule it is advisable to take semi-skimmed dairy products, in case there are problems with sugars (diabetes) it is advisable to sweeten foods with saccharin.

Because its high amount of fiber contributes to the satiety of the food, helping to maintain a low calorie regime that allows to avoid being overweight.


Because of chlorophyll, vegetables are rich in magnesium, and most contain high amounts of potassium and little sodium. They contain lots of pro-vitamin A or beta-carotene (intense color vegetables) and vitamin C, making them essential in balanced diet.
It should be borne in mind that the preparation of the vegetables in salads have advantages in relation to cooking, since the partial destruction of water-soluble vitamins (due to the heat treatment) is avoided, otherwise the cooking water is discarded Eliminate vitamins and minerals.

These losses can be minimized by cooking with little water or, if possible, by steam; Cooking with less time and more pressure (pressure cookers) or if vegetables are introduced in boiling water.

Legumes are one of the most complete foods that exist, since apart from its energy component (starch) has a protein percentage (20%) very similar to that of meats. To this group belong the beans, lentils, chickpeas, peas, beans, lupine, soy, almorta and carob.

Lysine is involved in the protein composition of legumes, although it does in a few other essential amino acids (tryptophan and methionine), so they complement each other perfectly with cereals.
Legumes provide a significant amount of fiber, a nutrient that does not exist in meat or fish. The fibrous cover of legumes consists of water soluble vegetable fiber, which is attributed the property of producing meteorism.

What are the characteristics of monosaccharides
Monosaccharides are the simplest carbohydrates there are and can not be broken down into other smaller substances.


These carbohydrates can be assimilated directly as nutrients. This group includes glucose, galactose and fructose (the sugar of fruits). Fructose is found in small amounts in some plant foods, especially in fruit, and in honey. Galactose is hardly found in food, it is part of lactose.
The oligosaccharides are formed by the union of several molecules (between two and ten) of monosaccharides. If two molecules are joined, they are called disaccharides. Most of the sugars we take are disaccharides. This group includes sucrose (table sugar), lactose (found in milk, yogurt and dairy products that have not undergone fermentation) and maltose (barley grains).
The polysaccharides result from the union of numerous monosaccharides, between ten and several thousand. The most important for human life are three: starch, glycogen and cellulose.

Starch is also known by the name of starch and is the most frequent carbohydrate in food, especially it is abundant in cereals, legume seeds and tubers (potatoes). Starch is a true store of energy and is made up of numerous molecules of glucose linked together.

Glycogen is exclusively animal origin and is found in the liver and muscle, although it is true that there is a significant loss from the slaughter of the animal until the consumed. Oysters and mussels are foods rich in glycogen.

What do you prefer second course, meat or fish? Meats and fish are the most important constituents of our second dishes, which have great differences.


Not all meats are the same. For example, rabbit meat is white, very lean and digestive (it has very little saturated fat); Turkey meat is lean and its proteins are of very good quality (similar to chicken or veal); The veal fillet is tasty and low in fat, as well as being a good source of iron; The chicken has a white meat, lean and easy to digest ...

As for fish, the main difference between them lies between blues and whites: while white fish has a maximum of 5% fat, blue fish can reach up to 15%. The type of fat in this group is very rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are cardioprotective.

In the following articles we will explain in more detail the nutritional characteristics of all these components and we will delve into its benefits or damages for our health.


From the gastronomic point of view the meats are classified in red and white, in relation to the amount of myoglobin that they have. Red meat has a high amount of this protein, which contains iron. From the protein point of view there are no differences between red and white meats.

Meat is composed of three different types of tissues: muscular, adipose and connective tissue. Muscle tissue is the one that has myoglobin in its composition. Adipose tissue can be found as visible fat in meat or as non visible fat. Finally, the connective tissue is variable, increases with the age of the animal and with the physical exercise it performs, and is responsible for the hardness of the same.
What is the difference between different categories of meat?
The meats can be of three categories according to the fat content and the inedible part:
First: muscle tissue almost without wastage.
Second: connective tissue and visible fat.
Third: high fat content.

What are the basic nutrients of meats

Meat contains four types of basic nutrients: proteins, fats, essential chemicals and water. In general, meats have 16-22% proteins, of a high biological value, since they have the essential amino acids in large amounts.

Meat fat is characterized by being rich in saturated fatty acids and poor in unsaturated, only the lean meats of farm animals have remarkable percentages of polyunsaturated fat. As for the percentage of total fat, it varies from one animal to another. As for the chemical elements, the meats are rich in iron, phosphorus and potassium.

It is difficult to determine the caloric value of the meats, because the amount of kilocalories they provide is directly related to the type of meat.
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What are meat products

Meat products can be classified into five main groups: 1) Salted, smoked and marinated 2) Bacon 3) Sausages, charcuterie and cold cuts 4) Casings 5) Extracts and broths of meat.

Salt and smoking act as a powerful antibacterial, allowing conservation. Bacon is the fatty tissue of the pig. Sausages are meat products prepared rich in fat (up to 30%) and cholesterol, with a variable protein content.

The brains contribute a high amount of cholesterol, approximately 2%, reason why its consumption should be avoided. It is estimated that for every 100 g of brains we consume we ingest 2,000 mg of cholesterol.

How are fish different from meat

Within the term fish is encompassed to all species of marine and freshwater fauna.


The protein content is slightly lower than that of meat, about 15%, although its biological quality is similar (with the exception of tryptophan, which appears in low proportion) and its amount of connective tissue is lower than that of meat .
What is the difference between blue and white fish?
According to the amount of lipids (fats) in their composition, fish are classified as fatty or blue (equal to or greater than 10%) and lean or white fish (1-2%). Saturated fatty acids represent 15-30% of the total lipid, the rest of the fatty acids are unsaturated, including oleic acid, linoleic acid and omega-3 acids.

It should be remembered that omega-3 acids have important health benefits, as they prevent platelet aggregation and decrease plasma lipids, so they can be considered to have cardioprotective properties.
 Contact your doctor for more information. The information provided on (what the health) is of ageneral nature and for purely disclosure purposes can in no way replace the advice of a physician (or a legally qualified person) or, in specific cases, of other operators health.


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