What is healthy eating?

The average man needs about 2,500 calories a day and the average woman around 2,000. Most of us eat more than this. You may be surprised to find out how many calories are in the most common foods you eat every day.

Eating healthily is all about balance. At least a 1/3 of what you eat should be fruit and veg. Proteins such as meat, fish, eggs and pulses should be a smaller proportion, as should milk and dairy products. The smallest part of your diet should be sugary food and drinks.

Try and eat at least 5 portions of fruit and veg a day. The 5 a day planner can help you work out meals for the week and make sure you get your 5 a day.

Avoid crash diets

Crash diets are not the best way to lose weight and keep it off – aim instead to switch to an approach that builds healthy eating into your lifestyle. If you are too strict with yourself you are likely to fail and some fad diets – or constant on-off dieting – could actually harm your health.

Some people try to live by the 80:20 rule – eating healthily during the week and taking a more relaxed approach to food at the weekend. This can work as long as you are disciplined and get back on top of the healthy eating and exercise routine.

Tips for healthy eating

NHS Choices provides some practical tips on healthy eating. These include eating more fruit, veg and fish, cutting down on fatty and sugary foods, and eating less salt.

Most people don't drink enough during the day, which can cause headaches, tiredness, and mood swings.  The NHS recommends drinking between 8-10 glasses of fluid per day - almost as much as a large bottle of coke. They also have more advice on staying hydrated on their website.