Food is often described as fuel. But food is much more powerful than that.
Food is actually sort of like a script – it tells the actors in our bodies how to perform. When we eat, we are really delivering messages – do this, release that hormone, don’t release that one! It’s like the biggest, busiest film set you can imagine. Lights, camera, action!
Food has a massive impact on our brains and mood and it is actually something we can take care of for ourselves. However, it’s easy to fall into patterns of unhealthy eating when you’re stressed, low or busy, like during exams.
What do you need to be healthy?
- Carbohydrates (sugars and starchy food), for energy
- Proteins, for building muscle
- Fats, for energy and making cell walls
- Fibre, to keep the gut healthy
- Vitamins and minerals, for a wide range of functions
- Water, to flush out waste products.
Get the balance right
- at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day
- basing meals on higher fibre starchy foods like potatoes, bread, rice or pasta
- have some dairy or dairy alternatives (such as soya drinks)
- eat some beans, pulses, fish, eggs, meat and other protein
- choose unsaturated oils and spreads, and eat them in small amounts
- drink plenty of fluids, preferably water (at least 6 to 8 glasses a day)