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Food

Food and eating play a very important part in all our lives. After all it’s the stuff that fuels our bodies and keeps us healthy! Much like putting petrol in a car!

We are all individual when it comes to food.

  • What we like/dislike!
  • How much we need!
  • When we like to eat!

Some people’s food intake is determined by their culture or religion. Or sometimes it’s about people’s beliefs such as choosing to be vegetarian or vegan for example.

But it’s really important that we eat a balanced diet, with the right amount needed to enable our bodies to receive all the essential vitamins/nutrients it needs to help us stay healthy and energised!

Sometimes people use their intake of food to cope with painful feelings, thoughts or difficult things that are happening or have happened within their lives.

They may start to:

  • Lower their food intake.
  • Skip meals
  • Over exercise
  • Constantly count calories.
  • Eat large amounts of food and then make themselves sick.
  • Eat lots and then starve themselves.
  • Act secretively
  • Allow themselves to only eat certain types of food.

These eating patterns can be damaging and are known as eating disorders. Anyone can be affected by an eating disorder - men, women, young people and children but it’s important to know that not everyone will have the same symptoms.

Eating disorders are about much more than food or image, they are about feelings! There are lots of reasons why people can develop eating disorders.

Here are a few:

  • Feelings of pressure/unable to cope.
  • Low self esteem/confidence
  • Relationship and friendship problems
  • Bereavement
  • Problems at school/being bullied/exam stress.
  • Sexual or emotional abuse.

Problems with food begin when it is used as a way to cope with these difficult times and the way we are feeling.

If you feel that you have a problem with food it’s important that you talk to someone you can trust and get help. Admitting you have a problem with food may seem scary at first but there is lots of help available. Recovery is different for everyone and for some it may take longer than others with good and bad days and times when giving up your eating disorder may seem scary but it really is worth it! With the right support and help it is possible to make a full recovery.

Nutrition

Nutrition is 75% key to a healthy life style and combined with a fitness regime the results can be fantastic.

Eating a nutritious breakfast helps kick start your metabolism, and when you start your day with a healthy dose of lean protein, whole grains and healthy fats, you're less likely to reach for comfort snacks later in the day.

Below are top tips to a healthy breakfasts.

Porridge Oats, Nuts/Seeds (in moderation), Fruit, Low Fat Yogurt, Blueberries, Brown Bread, Eggs, Turkey Bacon, Skimmed Milk, Salmon

Good Carbohydrate Sources include:

Sweet Potatoes, White Potatoes, Rolled Oats, Quinoa, Buckwheat, Wholegrain Tortillas, Whole Grain Bread, Apples, Beans, Brown Rice, Berries.

Good Protein Sources include:

Chicken, Turkey, Salmon, Eggs, Greek Yogurt, White Fish, Cottage Cheese, Red Meat, Fruit and Vegetables

Aim for a minimum of 5 portions of varied fruit per day.

Hydration

The human body is between 70% and 80% water so therefore it is vital to keep hydrated throughout the day using water and staying clear of high sugared drinks such as fizzy drinks and some fruit juices.

A good way to keep hydrated through the summer time would be to make a healthy ice lolly.

5 A DAY – tips for getting five portions of fruit and veg each day

Fruit and veg are a source of vitamins, minerals and fibre which may help reduce the risk of diseases like heart disease and some cancers. We all know that it’s important for us to eat a variety of at least five portions of fruit and veg each day, but how many of us actually manage it?

Luckily, it can be easier than you think to get your 5 A DAY. The great thing is that you don’t need to make a big change to your diet or do without the foods you love.

Here are some great tips to hit your 5 A DAY.


Need advice, support or information on this topic?

You can always talk to a Youth Support Worker:


Want to know more?

Beating Eating Disorders (BEAT)  - 0845 634 7650 - helping adults and young people in the UK beat their eating disorders

South Yorkshire Eating Disorders Association (SYEDA)  - 0114 2728822 - a regional charity that supports anyone affected by an eating disorder

Morelife Rotherham - 01709 722567 - Weight Management advice and activities