Guidelines to healthy eating is like a torch light in the dark!
GUIDELINES TO HEALTHY EATING LITERALLY IS LIKE A TORCH LIGHT IN THE DARK. THE MORE THE LIGHT IS SHOWN IN THE DARK THE MORE WE CAN SEE MANY THINGS AROUND US.
First, it is a good idea to ask ourselves what constitutes healthy eating and what does not? To some extent, the answer does not need much scientific definitions. In fact, it rather requires that of common sense! With common sense we can get away with many things. Do not over eat! Eat, and do everything in moderation is a good advice! With this advice in your mind you can achieve so many things too!
Think of thousands of years ago, the primitive men used their common senses to know which fruit will be eatable or not just by looking at them. However, they didn't have much fruits to choose from but today, it is a different matter because we have thousands of different kinds of foods to choose from.
Under Nigerian context, science tells us that too much of starchy and carbohydrates diets are not very good to our health. In that respect, we think of Akpu, garri, eba, yam, rice etc. If you stop an average Nigerian to eat all these stuff, it is equally like asking an Asian not to eat chapatti!
Eating starchy and carbohydrate diets have not killed an average Nigerian as far as I knew it. While growing up in the village, we used to eat Akpu in the afternoon as well as at night or yam in the afternoon, then akpu again and again in the evenings! Who thinks about "belefos" or breakfast anyway? Only the people who live in the city can afford such luxury!
However, we live in a different world these days. Who talks about overweight or obesity any way? In a village where I came from in Ibo land the husband of a fat woman or wife is usually accorded special respect because it literally means that the husband is looking after her or a kind of belief that such a wife is well looked after by her husband in comparison with other village house wives!
Even in the Rivers state,it used to be a an honour for a prospective bride or wife to be, to be fed with nutritious fresh fishes and special diets to fatten her up for her bridegroom or husband to be! I don't know if these customs and traditions are still practiced as of today in the Rivers State in general!
My friend used to say, "Nna, if AKpu or garri you want to eat is bad, then 'baptize' it with Okra soup, bitter leaf, or seriously ogbono soup!"
To be sincere, in those days when I was a kid, foods used to be very, very bad. For example, it takes a lot of okra soup to swallow rough starchy badly fried garri in those days!
Sometimes, it will get stuck in your throat if the soup on it is not much. Nowadays you have well refined garri unlike those ancient days. This was long time ago in the 40's and 50's!
WELL, THESE DAYS YOU HAVE TO SHINE YOUR EYES OR BE CHOOSY OF WHAT YOU EAT TO AVOID OVERWEIGHT OR THE MAGIC COSMETIC NAME 'OBESITY!'
I have already written so much in this website about healthy eating.My best advice or guidelines to healthy eating is to shine your eyes and use your common sense. Nigerians who live in Nigeria have no problems about overweight or obesity especially if you are not rich enough.
The people who need guidelines to healthy eating are politicians and Lawyers including Nollywood stars.If you are a Nigerian living outside Nigeria in Europe, USA, China, Japan or Russia then, the first guidelines to healthy eating I will give you is to avoid cakes,biscuits,especially cream cakes! Avoid heavily processed foods. Do your own home cooking with everything fresh! Eat fresh fishes, fresh fluted pumpkin (UGU) leaves. Eat fresh vegetables,fresh and dried fruits. Eat Beans including their extracts like moi moi and akara with as many and assorted vegetables as you can.
Drink at least a litre of cold water every day. Take time to do some physical exercises at least 20-30 minutes a day. If you live in Nigeria, the sunshine is a healthy diet on its own. Form the habit of eating fruits three times a day as well as drinking fresh orange and pineapple juice everyday!
My special guidelines to healthy eating advice is if you have starchy or carbohydrates food you want to eat then 'baptize' it with lots of vegetables,fresh fishes etc, etc, and it will automatically become not only a healthy diet but a balanced one indeed!
Nigerian Foods customs