I came across an interesting article online about 5 nutritious habits of the planet’s healthiest countries. Chances are you are already aware of these habits but a reminder can never hurt. In brackets I’ve listed the countries which are known for applying such practices.
1) Eat plenty of produce and whole grains (China & Greece): In such places, veggies & legumes are the main meals whereas meat is the garnish.
2) Savor leisurely dining (France, Spain, Greece, Japan): This is an extension of mindful eating: Rather than eat out of necessity, take the time to savor the scent, texture and flavor of food.
3) Practice portion control (France & Japan): It’s crazy to think that an average meal in France is 25% smaller than one in America and soft drinks are 52% larger than in Paris. It’s not enough to just eat nutritious foods- portions need to be accounted for too!
4) Eat a variety of unprocessed, fresh foods (Italy, France, Greece, Japan, United States): With various shopping spots available in these countries like butchers, bakeries, and greengrocers, it’s easy to eat meals made with unprocessed ingredients. As a result, such meals provide more fiber, fewer calories, saturated fat, trans fat and of course less added sugar and salt.
5) Spice up your plate (India, China, Thailand, United States): Small amounts of various herbs and spices have shown to provide an array of benefits. For example a study revealed that consuming half a teaspoon of cinnamon twice daily significantly lowered blood sugar and cholesterol levels of type-2 diabetes subjects.
Interesting stuff, eh! Although India was only featured in the last category, I can vouch for it being an easy place to maintain a nutritious diet and overall healthy lifestyle. To see how it’s possible in a country that lacks Whole Foods and where walking is rarely a mode of transportation, check out my guest post on Parita’s blog.