Need-to-know tips for healthy eat­ing

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS -

Ques­tion: I am an ac­tive 24-year-old, with a mainly plant-based diet, who con­sciously watches the types of food I put in my body. Over the past few years I have seen a dra­matic dif­fer­ence in the thick­ness of my hair (hair loss), a change in nail qual­ity and the feel­ing of con­stant tired­ness. I was won­der­ing if you had any sug­ges­tions that I can in­cor­po­rate into my dayto-day living to im­prove my over­all health. Thanks, Ni­cola.

Hi Ni­cola, the symptoms that you are de­scrib­ing can be at­trib­uted to iron, zinc or pro­tein de­fi­ciency.

When fol­low­ing a plant based diet with small (or no) amounts of an­i­mal pro­teins you need to en­sure that you are get­ting ad­e­quate amounts of th­ese nu­tri­ents.

In­creas­ing your in­take of or­ganic lean red meat (beef or lamb) and eggs will help you achieve a higher ab­sorp­tion of th­ese nu­tri­ents.

Oth­er­wise in­creas­ing the fol­low­ing plant-based sources will help too: Iron: Leafy greens, broc­coli, dried apri­cots, pump­kin seeds. Zinc: Sesame seeds, pump­kin seeds, sun­flower seeds, cashews. Pro­tein: Lentils, chia seeds, quinoa, brown rice.If you wish to ex­clude an­i­mal prod­ucts from your diet com­pletely then it can be help­ful to see a qual­i­fied prac­ti­tioner who can mon­i­tor your di­etary in­take of th­ese nu­tri­ents and help you to sup­ple­ment if nec­es­sary. Ques­tion: Can I get your help on tips and ex­am­ple week plan­ner for how to eat healthy while on a bud­get. I have $140 to feed two peo­ple a week. Many thanks, Jo.

Hi Jo, $140 per week for two peo­ple is more than enough to pur­chase whole foods that serve your health.

When shop­ping, fo­cus on fill­ing your shop­ping cart with plants – plenty of in­sea­son veg­eta­bles, some fruit, legumes, eggs, small amounts of meat and fish, and nuts and seeds.

A diet high in plant foods and low in pro­cessed foods and an­i­mal prod­ucts saves money and is great for your health. It is of­ten the pur­chase of foods like fizzy drinks, pack­aged snack foods, take­away cof­fees and other con­ve­nience foods that can tip the bud­get, and th­ese foods don’t of­fer nu­tri­tional value for their price.

If you can, try to shop lo­cally at farm­ers’ mar­kets or fruit and vege stores to get deals on lo­cal and in-sea­son pro­duce. Try to pur­chase meat in bulk and store it in the deep freezer for use in slow-cooked casseroles through­out the win­ter. When you slow cook meat you don’t need the more ex­pen­sive cuts.

In­clude some meat-free meals each week, too, lower your food costs.

to

Make sure your shop­ping trol­ley con­tains plenty of plant-based pro­duce. Libby to ask.dr­libby@ fair­fax­me­dia.co.nz. Please note, only a se­lec­tion of ques­tions can be an­swered.

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