We eat less fruit and olive oil, and more candies and prepared dishes. How to reverse the trend?

Varied, to avoid monotony and because nutrients are spread in food unevenly; Balanced, so that it contributes the necessary quantity; Adaptable, because throughout life we go through different stages, in which nutritional needs vary; and sustainable, to squeeze the virtues of the season's food. These are the four basic principles for following a good diet, a summary of the theory we find in the nutrition handbooks. But, in practice, do our daily menus meet those requirements? The answer is no.

According to the food consumption report in Spain 2017, which collects the latest food data offered by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and food, the trend is to bet on food with little nutritional value. The information reflects that, with respect to the previous report, it decreased the consumption of olive oil and rose the sunflower, which we eat less fresh fruit (3.5% less than the previous year), vegetables (a 4.1% less) and more ice creams, cakes (7.5% more) and prepared dishes ( 4.8% more). It is not a good way if the goal is to ingest all the nutrients we need, a goal that anyone who wants to preserve an iron health should aspire to. But perhaps we lack inspiration. Fortunately, the dietitian-nutritionist Christian cunning, member of employability of the official College of Dietitians and nutritionists of the Valencian Community, along with the dean of the College of Dietitians-nutritionists of Murcia, Luis Hidalgo Abenza, Han Designed for us some examples of a varied and balanced daily menu with which to start reversing this undesirable nutritional trend. They are just the beginning of the road to a more complete diet, but the longest of trips begins with a small step.

Comemos menos fruta y aceite de oliva, y más dulces y platos preparados. ¿Cómo invertir la tendencia?

White Breakfast with cereals (from the good ones)

How about a nice glass of milk or a vegetable drink with oatmeal for breakfast? Are you too far away from your customs? You can also try to have a glass of skimmed milk with defatted cocoa, whole grains and a piece of fruit. In both cases, this breakfast will provide significant amounts of fiber and protein, thanks to oat flakes and whole grains. Vegetable and dairy drinks can provide calcium, if the first is enriched, or phytoestrogens, by means of a soy drink. And it's worth taking into account that cow's milk has a greater amount of fat-soluble vitamins If we choose the whole one, although food guides recommend low-fat dairy.

In any case, vitamins are a micronutrient that must be ingested throughout the day, not only at breakfast. "They are an example of substances that are not synthesized in sufficient quantity by the body, therefore , it is important the consumption of foods that are rich in these micronutrients. We can find these compounds on a varied diet, but fruits and vegetables are foods that bring a lot of vitamins. So are blue fish, which contain fat-soluble vitamins, and seeds, as well as nuts, which have also decreased their consumption. This type of food, in addition to providing vitamins, provide us with other essential nutrients, the famous Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids, essential for the correct functioning of the organism, "explains the dietitian-nutritionist Christian Mañas.

Comemos menos fruta y aceite de oliva, y más dulces y platos preparados. ¿Cómo invertir la tendencia?

Mid-morning, no snacks

The first mistake we make when designing the menu is to think that everything we put into our mouth feeds. There are some foods that provide calories, but they do not contain quality nutrients, and those are the ones we have to start out of the dish or at least consume occasionally. "Within this group of foods are snacks (mainly fried in low quality oils), processed foods, as the case of prepared dishes (which contain large amounts of salt and poor quality fats), and pastries or Confectionery (with large amounts of sugars). Not forgetting the alcohol in its different variables (beer, wine and distilled beverages), which provide what is known as empty calories, "says cunning.

And if we resort to these options is not because there are other equally tasty and healthier. For example, one can give an account of a sandwich of wholemeal bread with humus made with extra virgin olive oil (a real alternative to chorizo sandwiches). Or eat a toast of about 60 grams with tomato and olive oil with ham, three pieces of nuts and an infusion. These options provide an amount of high quality carbohydrates, which avoid the peaks of insulin because they are integral, which will keep us satiated for longer. This, coupled with the amount of humus fiber and the nutritional quality of olive oil and nuts, gives us fiber (which seems to be a fundamental element in the prevention of numerous diseases) and quality fats.

Comemos menos fruta y aceite de oliva, y más dulces y platos preparados. ¿Cómo invertir la tendencia?

Nutrient combination dish to eat

Eating vegetables in salad provides a great variety of vitamins and minerals, and resorting to legumes will increase the amount of carbohydrates present in the central meal of the day. In addition, they are fiber-rich foods and therefore more satiating, and have an important protein content. Some of these nutrients have been shown to have a higher quality than others, so they are said to have a high biological value.

Cottage cheese and salmon are two examples of the source of this type of nutrient. In the case of fish, these nutritional qualities must be added to their content in essential fatty acids. These concepts are translated into menus as appetizing as healthy, which can take different forms. One could have a bean salad with cottage cheese and smoked salmon, followed by a piece of fruit for dessert. You can also opt for something more classic, like a varied salad and a stew, or a dish of legumes, with some pasta or rice, accompanied by a piece (about 30 grams) of rye bread. In both menus the fruit is non-negotiable.

In any case, do not lose sight of these recommendations are an estimate, because, without having variables such as the weight of the person, the pathologies that may suffer, allergies, intolerances... Dietitians-nutritionists can't give you the perfect menu. This nuance serves Christian tricks to remember that "any dietitian-nutritionist has to pose a diet according to these variables to be truly effective and healthy. For example, the quantities of the menus should be adjusted according to the individual, because a person who does several sessions of physical exercise a day will not require the same amount as a sedentary ".

Comemos menos fruta y aceite de oliva, y más dulces y platos preparados. ¿Cómo invertir la tendencia?

Light (and green) snacks and dinners

Yogurt with fruit or nuts like walnuts, together or separately. This combination has a better nutritional quality than any processed food that can be found in the biscuits and pastries section of the supermarket. What do you know little? Then put some cinnamon on it, and wait for dinner. Because this snack is quite satiating, you will come with less hunger than you would have if you opt for options rich in taste and poor from the nutritional point of view.

For dinner, vegetables are the protagonists in the menus of the two dietitians-nutritionists. An example of the menu for the last meal of the day is a delicious grilled vegetable with potato and white fish on the grill with spices (between 120 and 150 grams, depending on the type of fish) and extra virgin olive oil. Another option, vegetables cooked to the taste of the diner, between 120 and 150 grams of meat or eggs and a piece of bread. In both cases, you have to add a seasonal fruit to finish the day.

These dinners provide vitamins and minerals from vegetables, as well as white fish and meat, along with quality proteins that, in case of following a vegetarian or vegan diet, could be replaced by tofu. The potato provides complex carbohydrates to have energy and satiate us longer. As for the fruit, both food and dinner is preferable to eat in its natural form, avoiding juices, since we will obtain a greater amount of fiber, in addition to the vitamins and minerals present in these foods.