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An Unhealthy Diet can Lead to Poor Quality of Life

From Leigha Messner RDN, LD, CNSC, Lead Clinical Dietitian at Lee Health

Nutrition is an essential aspect to a healthy lifestyle. An unhealthy diet contributes to approximately 678,000 deaths each year due to nutrition- and obesity-related diseases, such as heart disease, cancer and type 2 diabetes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Today, many people’s diets consist of too much sugar, trans fats and saturated fat, and more sodium than fruits, vegetables and dietary fiber. The health of your body reflects what you put into it.

Implementing a good eating plan will not only protect you from chronic diseases but can also aid in weight management, strengthening your immune system and delaying the onset of aging.

When it comes to nutrition, there isn’t one eating plan that’s right for everyone. A diversified, balanced diet can vary depending on age, gender, lifestyle, degree of physical activity, locally available foods, and dietary and food customs. The key to developing a healthy plan involves eating balanced proportions of nutrient-rich foods from all five food groups, including whole grains, fruits and vegetables, protein, dairy, and fat and sugar.

Making a commitment to a healthy diet and achieving your nutrition goals can be a struggle for some people. Getting the help of a registered dietitian can help improve your odds of success. A registered dietitian is someone with a degree in dietetics, human nutrition, public health or a related field from an accredited college or university and have completed a dietetic internship and passed the national registry examination.

Registered dietitians work in hospitals, schools, public health clinics, food industry, research, nursing homes and beyond. They are the nutrition experts that can translate nutrition and food science into practical solutions and help individualize and tailor plans to your specific needs.

Whether you seek the advice of a registered dietitian or decide to go it alone, implementing a healthy eating plan is beneficial for a healthy lifestyle. Ultimately, improving your diet can help you have more energy and control any medical conditions you have leading to an overall better quality of life.