Balance is absolutely key. If you can balance your plate right and keep your portion control in check, you can be confident that you’re giving yourself, and your family, a really great start on the path to good health.

You don’t have to be spot-on every day – just try to get your balance right across the week. If you eat meat and fish, as a general guide for main meals you’re looking at at least two portions of fish a week, one of which should be oily (such as salmon, trout or mackerel), then splitting the rest of the week’s main meals between brilliant meat-free plant-based meals, some poultry and a little red meat. An all-vegetarian diet can be perfectly healthy, too.

DON’T FORGET TO DRINK WATER

And super importantly, make sure you drink plenty of waterOn average, our bodies are 50-60% water, and being properly hydrated really is essential to life. 

Glass_of_Water_7087_preview-3

EATING FOR ENERGY

So, back to the balanced plate – what does it mean in real life? We all need energy – in the form of calories – to move, so that our organs function, and for growth, repair and development.

Of course, everyone is different, so our requirements vary, but a lot of research has gone into energy balance, so these UK guideline figures are a really useful place to start:

Screen Shot 2016-07-18 at 5.00.18 PM

Just remember that what we eat always needs to be considered in relation to gender, age, build, lifestyle and activity levels, so use your common sense and tweak meals according to your family’s needs.

ENERGY INTAKE

Current guidelines recommend that generally we should consume our energy in the following amounts each day:

  • 20% at breakfast
  • 30% at lunch
  • 30% at dinner
  • 20% for snacks and drinks

This is the framework I’ve worked to in Super Food Family Classics, and it matches the one I used last year in my book Everyday Super Food, too. When I was writing that book, I was also studying for a nutrition diploma and had the privilege of meeting lots of incredible scientists, professors and experts in their field in order to share the most useful and accessible info out there with you, when it comes to health, nutrition and wellbeing. It was all fascinating stuff, and totally informed my new book, so if you want a recap, please check out my top tips on how to live well to recap what the philosophies are. I’ve broken it down into bite-sized nuggets, for you to digest, so you can feed yourself and your loved ones really well.

51VFqBcVJTL._SX396_BO1,204,203,200_

Extract adapted from Super Food Family Classics by Jamie Oliver, published by Penguin Random House Jamie Oliver Enterprises Limited (2016 Super Food Family Classics). Cover photography by Paul Stuart.

 


Tags

dietary, health

More

  • Bette

    Do you think, guidelines or no, that we mightn’t be better eating 30% of our energy at each of breakfast and lunch, and restricting our supper calories a bit? I know there’s reality to deal with, but seems to me it would be most optimal to fuel ourselves higher for day work than night sleep.

  • Janet Linda Darbey

    Grains are not healthy for everyone, this is old fashioned advice that is out of date

  • Kevin Einstein

    WHOLE grains are very healthy for everyone.

  • Kevin Einstein

    I eat soy pasta or whole wheat pasta. No breads that are white or sugar. I eat half a potato with skin or sweet potatoes are over the top fibrous. My a1c was 11.9 and is now 6.2 following the kind of eating that Jamie advocates.