For the latest information and advice on Coronavirus (Covid 19) visit gov.uk/coronavirus

Eat well

 

Whilst we are all fighting Coronavirus (COVID-19), it’s particularly important to maintain a healthy balanced diet in order to support a good immune system.

Making a few small changes to your diet can help lift your mood, give you more energy, stay on top of your weight, look after your health and make you feel good. The list goes on and on… eating well can even help you sleep better and improve brain function too.

To help during this time we’ve provided a list below of balanced meal options for breakfast lunch and dinner that include at last one portion of fruit and/or veg.  This list is for inspiration and you may find that you need to substitute items – we have included a range of options where possible.

Man holding grapes

Healthy meal ideas

Accept you cant change everything

Breakfast

Boiled eggs and wholemeal soldiers with small glass of orange juice

2 egg omelette with freshly grilled or tinned mushrooms and/or fresh tomatoes

Porridge or cereal topped with fruit (fresh, dried or tinned, made/served with milk)

Baked beans on brown toast with cheese

Full English – grilled bacon or ham, an egg, tomatoes (fresh or tinned), mushrooms (fresh or tinned), brown toast

Tomatoes (fresh or tinned) on brown toast with a poached or fried egg

Eggy bread (made with two eggs and brown bread) and small glass of orange juice

Smaller plate

Lunch and snack

Lunch

Cheese and tomato, salad or cucumber sandwich on bread with spread

Corned beef and tomato sandwich

Leftovers: pasta, potato salad, stir fried noodles and egg fried rice (reheated, ensure the food is piping hot and consumed no more than 2 days after cooking)

Tin of soup with slices of bread and spread

Snacks

2-3 biscuits or small slice of cake

Yogurt with fruit and sprinkle of nuts

Fruit (fresh or tinned)

Handful of nuts with dried fruit

2-3 slices of cheese

Balanced diet

Dinner

Sliced ham/cured chicken breast, new potatoes and any boiled vegetables (fresh or tinned)

Wholegrain pasta shapes with mackerel/sardine/salmon/tuna and tomato sauce with vegetables (peas/sweetcorn) and grated cheese

Corned beef hash made with onions and topped with sliced tomatoes and a ½ tin of baked beans

½ tin of spaghetti hoops on brown toast and two fried eggs

Jacket potato with baked beans and cheese or tuna and sweetcorn

Egg fried rice – cooked rice mixed with a selection of cooked veg, with an egg added at the end

Vegetable chilli and rice made with chopped tomatoes, baked beans, mixed beans, peas.  Add tomato puree, chilli powder and pepper.

Savoury rice – cook rice and diced vegetables (carrots, celery, cauliflower, peas and sweetcorn) together in a pan with stock. Add a sprinkle of dried mixed herbs.

 

Hidden sugars could be harming your child's health

See how much sugar is in your children’s drinks, breakfast cereals, yogurts and more.

Keep and eye on fat

Keep an eye on fat

Eating too many foods that are high in fat, and not being active, can make you more likely to gain weight. This can then lead to you becoming overweight or obese, which can increase your risk of cancer, type-2 diabetes and heart disease. Trimming away visible fat from meat and opting for fish or skinless chicken can help you cut out unnecessary fat.

Watch out added sugar

Watch out for added sugar

It’s surprising how much sugar is hiding in many things we eat and drink.  Too much sugar can lead to the build-up of harmful fat on the inside of our bodies that we can’t see. Eating too much sugar can also cause tooth decay. See how much sugar is in popular children’s drinks, cereals, yoghurts and snacks.

Reduce salt

Try reducing salt

Eating too much salt can raise your blood pressure. This can lead to high blood pressure, which can make you more likely to develop heart disease or have a stroke. Cutting down on salt is a good way to help reduce this risk. Remember, most of the salt we eat is hiding in foods we buy. Watch out for sausages, bacon, ham, pastries, pizza, cheese, crisps, gravy and sauces like ketchup.

Apple

Eat more fruit and veg

You should aim for at least five portions of fresh, frozen, dried or canned fruit and veg a day.  Fruit and veg are packed with vitamins and minerals to help keep us healthy.

Vitamin D

With so many people staying indoors at this time it’s important to make sure we are getting enough Vitamin D which is important for healthy bones and muscles.    Vitamin D can be found in some foods but mainly from the sun,  so for those self isolating or shielding they should consider taking a daily Vitamin D supplement.  For more information take a look here.

Family Involved

Get family involved

Eating well is important for the whole family. Preparing and making food can be a fun activity for all the family of all ages, teaching kids a life skill and helping them to make healthy choices when they grow up.

Lower fat dairy

Switch to lower fat dairy

Trying skimmed or semi-skimmed milk instead of full fat is a good way to reduce fat. Look at choosing cheese that’s lower in fat too. Remember, children should be given whole milk and dairy products until they are two years old because they may not get the calories or essential vitamins they need from lower-fat products.

Use less oil

Use less cooking oil

Reducing cooking oil can reduce the amount of fat you’re eating, and you’ll barely notice a difference to your food. Similar changes like avoiding high fat dressings such as mayonnaise or using olive or sunflower spread instead of butter can be effective too.

Go Wholegrain

Go wholegrain

Swap white rice, pasta and bread for wholegrain varieties. These varieties keep you fuller for longer and contain more fibre.

Smaller plate

Smaller plate, smaller portions

It might seem obvious but switching to a smaller plate can help reduce your portion sizes. It really does work!

Loosing weight

Losing weight makes a big difference

Losing just 5% of your body weight can have enormous health benefits. This isn’t as much as you might think. If you are 14st 5 (92kg) you would need to lose 10lb (4.6kg). If you are 20st 6 (130kg) the amount to lose is 14lb (6.5kg).

Baby

A good diet for your baby

Breastfeeding is a great way to give a baby the best start in life. Breastmilk helps babies fight off illness and infections in the first 6 months (such as diarrhoea and chest infections). Breastfeeding also lowers a mother’s risk of some serious illnesses such as breast cancer.

Balanced diet

Don't forget

Becoming underweight can also be bad for your health. So it’s better to try to eat a balanced well-rounded diet, rather than just eating less!

Find out more

 You can find out more by visiting the following websites

NHS logo

NHS

A national health website that contains a wealth of information and advice to help you eat well and feel your best.

start 4 life

Start 4 Life

Great advice for you and your baby, including information on breastfeeding.

Healthy Start logo

Healthy Start

If you’re pregnant or have a child under four years old you could get Healthy Start vouchers to help buy some basic foods.

Find out more

 You can find out more by visiting the following websites

NHS logo

NHS

A national health website that contains a wealth of information and advice to help you eat well and feel your best.

start 4 life

Start 4 Life

Great advice for you and your baby, including information on breastfeeding.

Healthy Start logo

Healthy Start

If you’re pregnant or have a child under four years old you could get Healthy Start vouchers to help buy some basic foods.

Find out more

 You can find out more by visiting the following websites

NHS logo

NHS

A national health website that contains a wealth of information and advice to help you eat well and feel your best.

start 4 life

Start 4 Life

Great advice for you and your baby, including information on breastfeeding.

Healthy Start logo

Healthy Start

If you’re pregnant or have a child under four years old you could get Healthy Start vouchers to help buy some basic foods.

Small changes feel good

See how small changes can help improve many areas of your life.