Fiji Time: 12:46 AM on Tuesday 20 March

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Eat well, train well, live long

Dawn Gibson
Monday, May 05, 2014

THE whole balance argument about maintaining a balanced lifestyle which consists of eating well, exercising regularly and resting your body, is an age-old one and there's a reason it has been around for so long — it could not be closer to the truth.

Supermarkets have made access to unhealthy, often unnatural snacks so convenient that eating apples or fresh pawpaws from your gardens is almost no longer considered a "snack".

Junk food has slowly but surely wriggled its way into our daily lifestyles, but maybe we can change this.

The Consumer Council believes this needs to begin from homes, but applies firmly to everybody, everywhere.

"Children who eat a well balanced diet are active, alert, focused and they also grow up to be healthier adults," council CEO Premila Kumar said.

Mrs Kumar suggested mixing sugars with proteins, some fats, fibre and sodium during the day.

"People need energy food to support them in their active life such as a banana, apple or orange.

"Fat isn't all bad. In fact, we need fat in our diet for energy and vital functions such as brain and cell function and the body's absorption of nutrients. Examples of snacks that contain healthy fats are avocados, cashew nuts and peanuts.

"Sugar contains energy but very few nutrients. It also contributes to tooth decay so people should stick to natural food that contains sugar."

She suggested that people try to include a few sources of fibre in their snacks such as wholegrain bread, and fibrous fruits and vegetables.

"Ensure you drink enough water in a day and not sweetened fizzy drinks."

She said such advice needed to be taken into account even when doing something as basic as packing your child's lunch for it to have an effective positive impact on their lives and on Fiji as a whole.

"The Consumer Council of Fiji stands by the slogan 'Say No to Junk Food, Making Parents Responsible in Fiji' and is urging parents to ensure their children take healthy food at all times and avoid junk food."

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