Base your meals on starchy carbohydrates
- Starchy carbohydrate foods include potatoes, bread, pasta, rice and noodles.
- Where possible choose wholegrain or higher fibre versions with less added fat, salt and sugar, or leave the skins on potatoes.
- Did you know? Starchy carbohydrate foods contain fewer than half the calories of fats per gram.
Eat lots of fruit and veg
- Eat at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day as they contain different combinations of vitamins and minerals.
- Fresh, frozen, tinned, dried and juiced all count but remember unsweetened fruit juice and/or smoothies should be limited to 150ml per day in total and dried fruit should be limited to about 1 tablespoon (30g) per day and eaten with a meal.
- You could try grating vegetables like carrots and courgettes into a Bolognese sauce or add lots of vegetables to homemade tomato sauce and blend.
Eat more fish, including a portion of oily fish
- Aim for at least two portions of sustainably sourced fish per week, including a portion of oily fish (a portion is approximately 140g cooked weight).
- Oily fish, such as sustainably sourced salmon, sardines, mackerel and trout, are one of the only natural food sources of vitamin D, which is important for bone health. Oily fish is also our main source of omega 3, which is important for heart health.
- Choose from fresh, frozen, smoked and canned fish, but remember smoked and canned fish may contain high levels of salt, so check the food labels to choose the varieties lower in salt.
Cut down on saturated fat and sugars
- Swapping saturated fat, found in butter, ghee, chocolate, cheese and fatty cuts of meat, with unsaturated fat, found in vegetable oils, nuts, seeds, oily fish and avocado, can help lower the level of cholesterol in your blood.
- Too much sugar, especially between meals, can increase risk of tooth decay and will add extra calories so cut down on sugary foods and drinks like cereals high in sugar, cakes, biscuits and sugary drinks. If you get a sweet craving you could try having fruit on yogurt instead, helping you to achieve your 5-a-day!
- Use food labels to help you choose foods lower in saturated fat and sugars by choosing varieties with more green and ambers on the front of pack label.