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10 timeless healthy eating rules to remember

What you will learn in this article

  • 10 simple rules for healthy eating that you can adhere to in everyday life - and that are recommended by reputable health organizations.
  • Delicious recipe tips for every rule.

Table of Contents:

Are the rules of healthy eating constantly changing?

I have Nutritional science has been studying and working as a specialist editor for everything to do with food and cooking for several years.

People around me - and sometimes people I don't know very well - often confront me with the following statement:

Diet rules are constantly changing. New ones are always being added. I don't even know what to stick to anymore.

Perhaps you have already thought that and you are unsettledwhich recommendations you should use as a guide.

I can reassure you: Die basic nutritional recommendations remain essentially the same. I'll tell you about them in this article. Once you memorize these rules, you will benefit from them for a long time.

But where does this feeling come from, that the rules of healthy eating are constantly changing?

From my point of view, the irritation of many consumers comes from the fact that they are using the wrong sources Orientate: Using unreliable advice books, "women's magazines" & Co.

The subject of “healthy eating” sells well - especially in combination with "Diet" or "lose weight quickly". Correspondingly, many authors who are not specialists try to make money with it.

I don't want to pretend that they lie (at least only some do), but at least they often fluff individuals research results to new rules, although they have no general significance.

Who turn his knowledge out sources from reputable sources, quickly realizes: Well-founded scientific recommendations rarely change suddenly. Sometimes little things are added, but at a very leisurely pace.

Only when the need for possible changes scientific has been proven, these are included as recognized guidelines.

So you can relax breathe - and ignore the latest "dietary rules" that flicker on your news feed or jump at you from the front pages of relevant magazines.

In this article I will explain to you what you can really stick to.

You can trust our 10 timeless rules for a healthy diet. They are based on renowned specialist societies such as the German Nutrition Society and the World Health Organization (WHO).

Nutrition rule 1: Drink enough - water

Why? Adequate hydration in the form of unsweetened drinks is the basis of a healthy diet. Drinking enough is important to keep your circulation, metabolism and other body functions upright.

How do I do that? As an adult, drink at least 1.5 to 2 liters of fluids per day. No more is necessary, as you also consume water in the form of foods such as vegetables (plant-based milk) or salad. Exception: If you sweat a lot because you do sports or it is hot, you should drink more than the recommended 1.5 to 2 liters.

Which drinks are suitable?

Recipes for varied drinking fun

Our Infused Water Lemon-Cucumber-Mint and our Infused Water Pomegranate-Mint prove how delicious drinking can be. Likewise, the subtly sweetened green iced tea with raspberries.

Instead of buying sweetened, powdered ready-made teas à la “Hot Lemon” when you have a cold, prefer homemade varieties like our ginger-lemon tea.

You can drink this delicious green iced tea with raspberries with a little agave syrup all day long. Photo: SevenCooks

Nutrition rule 2: cook fresh, eat seasonally & buy organic

Why? A healthy diet consists of high quality foods. After all, every cell in your body comes in direct or indirect contact with your food.

Why organic? Organic foods are subject to stricter rules - they therefore contain fewer pollutants (pesticides, heavy metals, toxins) than conventionally produced foods.

Why seasonal? Fresh, seasonal food from the region, straight from the field and without long transport routes contain more nutrients than storage and import control rooms.

Tip: Use a seasonal calendar to see which fruits and vegetables are in season. Outside of the season you can use frozen food.

When seasonal foods die basis your diet, you can supplement your menu with selected exotic species such as banana, ginger or coconut without a guilty conscience.

Why fresh? Industrially processed ready meals mostly contain artificial additives such as flavors, colors, flavor enhancers and sweeteners. When you cook yourself, you have control over what ends up in your food.

Seasonal recipes

The right one for every month:

Diet rule 3: Prefer vegetables and fruits - in a colorful mix

Why? Vegetables, fruits and lettuce are valuable sources of micronutrients and fiber. This will keep you full in a healthy way and also benefit the immune system, digestion and cardiovascular system. You get the best mix when you put together your menu in a colorful way.

How do I do that? Follow the rule “5 a day”: 3 servings of vegetables and salad and 2 servings of fruit. You can find more information in our food pyramid.

Such a food pyramid shows you how much of which food you should eat. Here is the link to download it.

Put your dishes together from bright colors, then you benefit from a variety of valuable plant substances. For example, mix green broccoli florets, red tomatoes, yellow peppers and have blueberries for dessert.

Colorful recipes with lots of vegetables and fruit

A small selection of colorful dishes:

Not just something for the eye, but also for the body: Buddha-Bowl. Photo: SevenCooks

Diet rule 4: prefer high-fiber whole grains over white flour

Why? Whole grains provide your body with filling, digestive fiber and an extra portion of minerals and vitamins.

In contrast to white flour products such as baguette, light pasta and white rice, your insulin level is significantly less stressed.

The reason: Whole grains contain less starch, which is broken down into sugar in your body. This will also help you lose weight or maintain weight.

In addition, it sinks risk for diabetes mellitus type II, for colon cancer, lipid metabolism disorders and cardiovascular diseases.

How do I do that?

  • Take at least every day 30 grams of fiber made of oatmeal, whole grain bread and Co. - in a mix with high-fiber vegetables, salad, fruit and legumes.

  • Replace light-colored pasta and white rice more often Whole wheat pasta and brown rice. Parboiled rice is also a good alternative to conventional rice, as the valuable outer layers of the grain are pressed into the inside of the grain using a special technique.

  • Prefer for sandwiches, sandwiches and Co. Whole grain bread, Crispbread or wholemeal toast.

  • When buying whole grain bread, make sure that it is not white flour products colored with malt or sugar syrup, but rather real wholemeal bread acts.

Tip: Inquire at the bakery or note the list of ingredients. In many organic bakeries there is a large selection of wholemeal bread, where you can also get finely ground, nutritious wholemeal spelled bread.

For more information, read our article: Tips for buying bread: What to look out for at the bakery.

Are you on a gluten-free diet? You can use whole grains like rice, millet, and specially processed gluten-free oatmeal. Amaranth, buckwheat and quinoa, which are also known as pseudograins, are also rich in fiber.

Useful sources of fiber from grains:

  • Whole grain bread
  • oatmeal
  • Whole wheat pasta
  • Brown rice
  • Green kernels
  • bulgur
  • millet
  • Amaranth, buckwheat and quinoa

Quinoa keeps you full for a long time and has a positive effect on your insulin levels. Try our quinoa breakfast bowl. Photo: SevenCooks

Recipes for more whole grains in your life

A selection:

Such a Caesar sandwich with whole grain bread is healthy and nutritious. Photo: SevenCooks

Diet rule 5: look for good quality protein

Why? Every cell in your body depends on a sufficient portion of protein. However, protein sources can vary greatly in quality. A high biological value is important.

How do I do that?

  • Prefer herbal Protein sources such as legumes or pseudo-grains and supplement these foods with low-fat dairy products such as yogurt, eggs, fish and lean meat in organic quality if necessary.

  • Legumes like beans, peas or lentils do not only contain essentials amino acids, but are also rich in fiber and micronutrients such as calcium or iron. Since not only fiber but also protein is very filling, legumes are an ideal ingredient for figure-friendly meals.

  • tofu is not only a valuable protein supplier with an extra portion of essential amino acids as part of a vegan diet.

  • Also Whole grain cereals, Amaranth, buckwheat and quinoa, potatoes, mushrooms, nuts and almonds provide valuable amino acids - best combined.

Suitable protein sources:

  • Legumes plus cereals (e.g. pasta with lentils, chilli with rice)
  • Grain plus dairy product (e.g. porridge, muesli, cheese bread)
  • Legumes plus pseudograins (e.g. tofu with quinoa)
  • Potatoes plus dairy product (e.g. jacket potatoes with quark, mashed potatoes)
  • Mushrooms with pseudograins (e.g. cream mushrooms with quinoa)
  • Pseudo grain with dairy product (yogurt with amaranth)

Recipes with high quality protein

A selection:

As in this vegan chickpea sandwich, chickpeas are high in protein. Photo: SevenCooks

Diet rule 6: prefer vegetable fat

Why? Because your body only needs small amounts of fat, it is of high quality. However, only a few vegetable oils and fatty sea fish meet this requirement. A high content of omega-3 fatty acids plays a major role here. Edible oils are also a valuable source of fat-soluble vitamins.

If you replace animal fat with vegetable oils, your cardiovascular system in particular benefits. While animal fat sources such as butter, high-fat cheese or cream should not be on your menu every day, you should use animal fat such as sausage, lard or bacon - due to a high proportion of them saturated fat and cholesterol - avoid completely if possible.

Your body also needs small amounts of saturated fats, but you do not need to specifically consume them from animal sources. High quality vegetable sources of fat, which I am about to introduce to you, are not only rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, but also contain sufficient saturated fatty acids.

How do I do that?

  • For the cold kitchen (e.g. salads and dips) I recommend you Linseed or walnut oil, an excellent source of essential omega-3 fatty acids. An additional advantage: these fat suppliers are available regionally.

  • Rapeseed oil is also the right choice for hot meals, according to the DGE, as it provides an optimal ratio of omega-3 fatty acids to omega-6 fatty acids. It is also low in saturated fat and rich in vitamin E. If you have been using sunflower oil before, replace it with rapeseed oil from the region.

  • Tip for dosage: Use about 2 to 3 tablespoons of linseed or walnut oil and 1 tablespoon of rapeseed oil daily.

  • For Italian dishes such as pasta, risotto or salads à la Bella Italia you can use linseed and walnut oil as well as rapeseed oil olive oil replace. Olives provide an extra helping of monounsaturated fatty acids and phytochemicals, which also benefit your health.

  • Avocado, olives, nuts (especially regional hazelnuts and walnuts), almonds, seeds and kernels can meet your needs unsaturated fatty acids and supplement vitamin E sensibly. While avocado is excellent as a hearty topping on bread, almond butter is ideal as a sweet alternative to butter.

  • if you fish you can occasionally supplement linseed oil and Co. with fatty sea fish such as salmon, herring or mackerel. These fish are particularly rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

  • You should avoid palm oil due to the high content of saturated fatty acids and the environmental aspect. Trans fats from fried foods such as chips or french fries should also remain the exception.

Vegetable fat recipes

A selection:

So delicious and goes well with many dishes: Homemade guacamole. Photo: SevenCooks

Diet rule 7: Reduce salt and sugar

Why? Sugar provides “empty calories” and too much of it increases the risk of tooth decay, obesity and diabetes II. Too much salt increases the risk of hypertension (high blood pressure). In turn, hypertension can lead to cardiovascular disease.

How do I eat less sugar ?:

  • Use the natural sweetness of fresh or dried fruit. Alternatively, regionally available apple or pear syrup is also suitable.

  • Avoid granulated sugar as much as possible and give preference Organic honey from your region. Avoid artificial sweeteners completely and use small amounts of sugar substitutes such as erythritol for low-calorie sweetening if necessary.

  • While finished products often contain large amounts of salt and hidden sugar, you should also avoid sweet drinks such as sugary sodas or fruit nectars and colas with sweeteners.

How do I eat less salt?

  • Use salt sparingly by adding dishes only by the pinch refined with salt.

Tip: For better dosing, skip a teaspoon and use your thumb and forefinger. This also prevents food from becoming too salty and gives you a better feeling for the right amount of salt.

  • Use the original as possible sea-saltwhich naturally contains iodine. Alternatively, you can use iodized table salt. If you have thyroid disease, you should discuss with your doctor whether you should use uniodinated salt.

  • Season dishes with fresh Herbs like parsley, rosemary, thyme or basil. While you can sprinkle mint, lemon balm, chives, parsley or basil as a vitamin-rich topping over your food at the end, add sage, rosemary, oregano or thyme during preparation.

  • Also frozen herb mixtures without additives and dried spices such as turmeric, paprika, Ceylon cinnamon or nutmeg flavor dishes in a natural way, so that you can save salt. The same goes for fresh garlic, ginger and onions.

Recipes with little salt and sugar

A selection:

You can refine our vegan banana bread with a few chocolate drops made from dark chocolate. Photo: SevenCooks

Diet rule 8: Eat mindfully

Why? A healthy diet is not only based on nutrient-rich foods but is also largely dependent on psychological factors. The focus is on mindful eating and enjoyment.

How do I do that?

  • Take enough time to eat and don't let loud music, checking your emails or watching TV distract you from your meal. Concentrate consciously on your food and celebrate the culinary break from everyday life.

  • Prepare your food using only the ingredients that are right for you enjoyment mean.

  • Don't just set up meals loving when you are expecting guests, but also for yourself.

  • The the atmosphere eating plays an important role in terms of culinary mindfulness. Whenever possible, choose your favorite cutlery, beautiful dishes and take your meal in a place where you feel comfortable.

  • Enjoy your meal with everyone Senses and take the look, the individual flavors and the consistency was aware. Slow, conscious eating not only promotes the pleasure factor, but also increases your natural feeling of satiety.

Diet rule 9: Eat nutritious

Why? The typical “Western diet” contains too few nutrients and too many calories - as you can see not only from the overweight quota of 50%, but also from many diet-related diseases.Therefore, in order to stay healthy, you should prefer dishes with a high nutrient density.

This means that as many nutrients as possible are contained in a small amount of food.

How do I do that?:

  • Eat vegetables often as Raw foodbecause heat-sensitive nutrients are lost during cooking. Especially vitamin C, B vitamins, essential amino acids and secondary plant substances that protect the skin.

  • Buy if possible fresh Food and consume it quickly. Vitamin losses can occur quickly, especially with fruit, salad and vegetables. When buying, give preference to regional seasonal goods that contain more micronutrients than long-traveled fruit.

  • Prefer nutrient-sparing ones Cooking methods like short steaming or steaming. This not only protects sensitive nutrients, but also the aroma and color.

  • Add fresh vegetables out of season frozen goods. Raspberries, broccoli, spinach, blueberries, kale, peas and green beans are especially valuable sources of micronutrients.

Nutrient-rich meal recipes

A selection of nutrient bombs:

It doesn't always have to be fast food: this vegetable kebab is healthier and has fewer calories than the original. Photo: SevenCooks

Nutrition rule 10: Eat what you need - and what is good for you

Why? A healthy diet is largely based on general recommendations, but everyone is different - and there is no one model solution for everyone. Not only do your personal calorie requirements play a role, but also taste preferences, intolerances and your eating style.

How do I do that?

  • Find your Feel good weight out and test your personal calorie requirement. Body Mass Index (BMI) can help you, but it doesn't work for every body size. Therefore, also include your gut feeling.

  • If you are overweight: In addition to the general nutritional recommendations, make sure you have a low-calorie and intensely filling menu with an extra portion of fiber and protein. You can find detailed tips here: Healthy weight loss with pleasure.

  • If you want to gain weight: Choose high-calorie, nutrient-dense ingredients like walnuts, avocado, almonds, bananas, and whole grain cookies. Schedule snacks between meals. Detailed tips: gain weight healthily.

  • Cut out foods that are not for you taste. No matter how healthy a food is, don't eat it if you don't like it. Instead, look for a delicious alternative for you. For example, you can swap the fiber, calcium, and iron in broccoli for lamb's lettuce, spinach, and kale.

  • Avoid foods that you cannot (well) tolerate. Especially with Allergies and food intolerances. If you are unsure, a food diary, tests, if necessary, and individual nutritional advice can help you.

  • Do you eat vegetarian or vegan? Then pay attention to the plant sources of important nutrients: Omega-3 acids made from linseed oil and walnuts instead of salmon. Calcium from legumes, kale, oranges, calcium-rich mineral water or tofu instead of milk. Iron from amaranth, sesame, berries, spinach, beetroot and lamb's lettuce instead of meat.

Would you like to eat healthily in the home office too? Then click your way through our home office recipe collection.

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Cover picture: SevenCooks