Eat well

As the saying goes, “You are what you eat” and we know a good diet is essential for good health and well-being.

A good diet is a balanced diet - one that contains a variety of food from each of the different food groups in the right proportions for your health needs.

What we eat affects both our physical and mental health - our energy levels, ability to concentrate, risk of chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes and obesity.

So it's worthwhile taking the time to follow some simple guidelines, shop sensibly and learn to enjoy preparing and eating food to ensure we give our minds and body the fuel it needs.

Top tips

    1. Eat five a day - that's five portions of fruit and vegetables (five in total, not each!) - fresh, tinned, frozen, dried and juiced all count.
    2. Have some oily fish every week - salmon, mackerel, tuna, etc.
    3. Cut down on the “bad” fats in your diet. Don’t rely on fast food and takeaway meals.
    4. Have a high carbohydrate breakfast to start the day - you need to refuel your body after fasting the night before - wholegrain cereals are the way forward.
    5. Choose plenty of other starchy whole-grain and low GI foods - brown bread, brown rice, brown pasta, etc.
    6. Try to eat regular meals and pack a healthy snack to refuel the brain as well as the body. Choose options that are lower in fat, salt and sugar when you can.
    7. Go easy on the caffeinated and sugary drinks.
    8. Keep your alcohol intake within sensible levels - one to tow units a day for women, three to four for men - units, not drinks!
    9. Enjoy your food! Treats can fit into a healthy balanced diet.
    10. Drink plenty of fluid - two litres a day - water (tap is just as good as bottles - less expensive and no nasty plastic to throw away), juice, squash all count.

Diet MOT workshops

Research shows that diet affects not only our physical health but how we feel, think, learn and behave. About 60% of people say they follow a healthy diet but food surveys show that the actual figure is much, much lower. With so many fad diets and "superfoods" thrust in your face it's easy to get confused.

To bring a bit of clarity and make it all that much more palatable we run 'diet MOT' sessions covering the main aspects of a healthy diet. These interactive sessions enables you to assess how good your current diet is, compare it with the most recent research on diet in mental and physical health and set some realistic practical goals to improve it.

For further information email John Wilford (john.wilford@bristol.ac.uk).

The eatwell plate

Use the eatwell plate to help you get the balance right - as recomended by Public Health England.

Download a copy of the eatwell plate booklet (PDF, 1,318kB) to read in your own time.

Farmers market

A regular monthly farmers’ market takes place on the second Tuesday of the month from 11 am to 3 pm outside the Indoor Sports Centre.