Seven healthy foods every man should eat
By Sean Binedell
Men do have different nutritional needs to women, due to average body sizes requiring a higher intake of essential vitamins and minerals. Despite these issues, men who follow a balanced diet can reduce their chances of developing health problems such as kidney stones, colon, prostate or testicular cancer, which typically manifest themselves between the ages of 40 and 60.
According to Leigh van Heerden campaign manager at Virgin Active, men face many health issues thanks mostly to an inactive lifestyle. “Many of the health problems that men face are linked to the lifestyles that they lead and are characterised by a lack of exercise, less-than-ideal eating habits, too much alcohol and too much stress.”
So what should you, as a man, eat in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle? Megan Bosman, a leading nutritional therapist recommends the following healthy foods for men:
- Eat fats – some are actually good for you! “Avocados have high levels of monounsaturated fats, which help to lower bad cholesterol. One average-sized avo can supply you with your daily requirement of vitamin E, protein and fibre. Avos are also known to help prevent diabetes and prostate cancer ,” says Bosman.
- Ensure you get enough protein in your diet. “Fish, like meat, is a good source of protein along with other minerals but unlike animal foods it is relatively lower in calories and unhealthy fats. Fresh fish contain fats called omega-3 fatty acids. Research has shown that these fatty acids reduce the risk of heart disease, strokes and inflammatory disorders,” explains Bosman.
- Can’t cope with the stress? Then eat eggs. “Eggs are great for those who are highly stressed or under a lot of pressure due to B12 being vital for a healthy nervous system,” says Bosman. Eggs contain minerals such as zinc, calcium and iron. They also contain essential nutrients such as vitamins A, D and B.
- To ensure that you have a healthy prostrate you should eat almonds. These nuts are a great source of vitamin E and zinc as well as magnesium, calcium, and iron. “Almonds are also great to have as snacks and for adding extra nutrients and protein to your diet,” adds Bosman.
- Spinach is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to up the antioxidants in your diet, essential in neutralizing free radicals in our bodies that cause diseases. In addition, they are packed with vital nutrients such as vitamin C, E, folic acid, calcium and potassium.
- Vitamin C is essential for the promotion of tissue and bone growth. Males need between 75 and 90 miligrams per day. Just one serving of steamed or lightly fried broccoli provides you with the daily adult requirements of vitamin C. “Broccoli is a great source of beta carotene, folate, iron and potassium, helping with the regulation of our blood pressure. Broccoli also contains certain phytonutrients which have been the topic of recent scientific studies. They have found that phytonutrients are extremely helpful in the prevention of cancer along with other diseases,” says Bosman.
- Oats should be top of the list when it comes to choosing a good breakfast. This is because they are filled with stress fighting and immune boosting zinc. “Oats also help to promote weight loss and lower your risk of heart disease,” adds Bosman. If you are on a budget, the good news is that oats are generally cheaper than most other breakfasts.
Keeping a healthy and balanced diet is important and we should all strive to eat healthily on a daily basis so that we don’t have to pay hefty medical bills thanks to our poor health. For more tips on how to boost your health check out our article on the vital health checks that all men should have.
About Megan Bosman
Megan Bosman is a nutritional therapist. Visit her website on www.SimplyNutrition.co.za.