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Why are balanced meals important?

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I always hear the having a certain ratio of carbs/protein/fat at each meal is very important. But my question is does anyone really know why? Is it less healthy to have carbs for one meal, fats for a snack, protein for another meal as long as i am still eating a healthy ratio and amount each day?

I eat oatmeal for breakfast which doesn't have much protein or fat. I know I can add fats and protein to the meal but what is the importance of doing so? Then later I may eat nuts for a snack and then chicken for lunch and veggies for a snack later on etc. Is one food group at a time not as healthy?

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As long as your food intake for the day balances out, I doubt it matters.  The problem is that most people get into the habit of relying too much on one or two groups and their meals don't balance each other out through the day.  Recommending balanced meals encourages people to work in the food groups they may not eat regularly otherwise.

I remember our dietian telling us that incorporating fats: olive oil, nuts, butter flax etc...during your with it or spreading using on top etc.... helps our bodies to actually ABSORB vital vitamins and nutrients or our bodies don't really get the most out of our food....things like vit. A D E K are absorbed when fats are incorporated into our meals.....

so balance is always's hard...i too try...good luck

Balancing meals helps balance your blood sugar. If you have mostly carbs for a meal, your blood sugar raises too much. If you have too few or no carbs, your blood sugar will be too low and it will leave you lethargic.

Francateresa also made a good point.

Also, for people who are trying to lose weight, having the right amount of carbs, protein, and fat in a meal will keep you full the longest.

But in the long run, as long as you are pretty balanced at the end of the day, it doesn't really matter. ;p

This may be repetative but. Some vitamins (A, D, E and K) are fat-soluble which is why it is a good idea to incorporate fats in your diet. If you eat a whole bunch of kale but no fat with it, your body has to work harder to get to those vitamins, so sautee that green in some yummy olive oil!

Also, balancing food is a good way to regulate glucose absorbtion and therefore blood-sugar/energy levels.

I also think, just in general with no scientific backing that when a meal has a lot of different "groups" (ie. fats/carbs/protein) it usually tastes better!


That makes sense. Thanks for everyone's replies!!

5 Replies