What Is a Balanced Diet?

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No more clichés. Having a balanced diet is indeed synonymous with the pleasures of the table. It is not a question of "depriving" oneself but on the contrary of having varied meals by following a few simple rules. If we had to summarize balanced nutrition in 2 points, it would be the diversity in the plate and the regularity of the meals.

What Is a Balanced Diet?


A balanced diet with an adapted caloric intake

At all ages of life, our diet must provide a caloric intake proportionate to our energy expenditure. It must also be sufficiently varied and well distributed throughout the day to provide all the elements necessary for the proper functioning of our body.

The caloric intake must of course vary according to age, corpulence, general condition, etc.

As an indication, here are the average values of recommended caloric intake:

the average values of recommended caloric

Kcalorie = 1 000 calories

What is a balanced plate?

  • Protein intake: meat, fish, eggs, cheese (V P O)
  • Vegetables: raw or cooked (2/3 of the plate).
  • A starchy food intake: pasta, rice, potatoes, legumes, cereals... (1/3 of the plate)

And a few examples of the calorie intake of some foods (to which should be added, if necessary, the calorie intake of the seasoning) :

  • 100 g of bread, 285 Kcalories,
  • 1 apple, 54 Kcalories,
  • 100 g of butter, 760 Kcalories,
  • 100 g of camembert, 310 Kcalories,
  • 100 g of tuna, 175 Kcalories,
  • 100 g potatoes, 85 Kcalories,
  • 100 g lettuce, 14 Kcalories,
  • 100 g of peas, 67 Kcalories,
  • 100 g cucumbers, 12 Kcalories,
  • 100 g melon, 62 Kcalories, 

3 meals a day for a balanced diet

For good food hygiene, it is advised, as much as possible, to regularly make 3 meals (plus a snack for children, teenagers, and the elderly). Do not skip meals to avoid cravings!

Eating a real breakfast, without too much fat, is essential to start the day well and avoid snacking in the morning. It is recommended to limit the consumption of alcoholic beverages and the frequency of "good meals", which are generally too rich.

A varied diet

Food is divided into 5 main categories: meat, fish, eggs; dairy products; cereal and starchy products; vegetables; fruits.

Une alimentation diversifiée doit comporter chaque jour au moins un aliment de chaque catégorie en respectant quelques règles simple : 

  • Consume at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day.
  • Limit the consumption of fats, especially saturated fats (pastries, pastries, cold cuts, butter, sauces, cheese, whole milk, fatty meats...).
  • Increase the consumption of slow sugars, in the form of wholegrain cereals (wholegrain or cereal bread, rice, pasta, wholegrain semolina ...).
  • Eat meat, fish, and other seafood or eggs once or twice a day, favoring lean meat and fish consumption.
  • Limit the consumption of pastries, sweets, and sweetened beverages.
  • Limit the consumption of alcoholic beverages to 2 glasses of 10 cl wine per day for women and 3 glasses for men.
  • Water is the only essential drink, to be consumed without moderation: at least one and a half liters per day, as is or in the form of hot drinks! 
  • a portion being approximately the equivalent of a tennis ball or a closed fist. You can eat two apricots but only one apple (medium) for one serving of fruit.

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