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Nutrition Tips and Guidelines

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Nutrition is among the most important factors for human growth and healthy wellbeing, serving as a power fuel enabling us to move. The types of food individuals consume should be integrated, diverse, and appropriate in terms of quantity, in order to avoid several health problems, such as heart diseases, diabetes, cerebral hemorrhage, bone porosity, types of cancer, etc. In addition, the habits followed by an individual throughout his life begins early in his childhood stage, therefore, it becomes difficult to change them at a later stage. Therefore, it is important to have children brought up on proper eating habits.

Many of us believe that food is among the pleasurable joys of life, yet it is necessary to realize that several things affect human health such as; food and sporting habits, genetics, occupation and physical and mental environment.

Therefore, here are a set of important nutritional food tips and guidelines catered for different age groups such as children and school students, pregnant women, diabetic patients, adolescents, athletes and the elderly.

First: Children

Most mothers are looking for reasons as to why their children abstain from eating at school.  Here are a few suggestions to help you fuel your kiddo's young brain and body.

  • Dairy products: various types of cheese, low-fat milk, low-fat yoghurt, sweets made of milk and rich in calcium and vitamin, or mixed with orange juice;
  • Fruit: fresh fruits; e.g. orange, grape, strawberry, blue mulberry, pears, apple, dried fruit, and natural juice.
  • Vegetables: small carrots, small tomatoes, celery, green pepper, cucumber.
  • Full grains, full cream bread, pastry, corn pastry, biscuit.
  • Soft protein: lima beans, hazelnut, seeds, turkey, chicken slices, tuna fish, chilled soft meat, pistachio, jam and butter.

Second: School Students

School boys and girls make up one of the most sensitive categories that are vulnerable to malnutrition diseases. So it is important to pay attention to improving their eating habits and behaviors both at home and school. This can be achieved by providing the following proper nutrients:

  • Ensure that they have meals a day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner;
  • They should consume 3 portions of milk or any dairy products every day;
  • A glass of milk in the morning or evening.
  • Two pieces of cheese or yogurt in the morning or evening.
  • A glass of milk porridge in the afternoon.
  • They should eat at least one portion of meat, seafood, or poultry, or a plate of lentil or beans or any other type of legumes.
  • Minimizing the quantities of fats eaten; for instance, removing chicken skins, using small quantities of cooking oil, eating boiled or grilled food instead of fried food, and reducing quantities of fast-food intake.
  • Eating one source of starchy foods; e.g. bread, macaroni, yam, rice, or corn.
  • Eating a plate of salad or vegetables, and at least 3 portions of fresh fruit per day.
  • Eating large quantities of high-fiber foods, which are found in the grains and their products, in vegetables and fruit as well.
  • Being keen  on eating vegetables and fruits making them a primary source of daily food, as they contain large quantities of water, vitamins, salts, minerals, and fibers, all of which play a great role in strengthening a healthy body.
  • Reducing quantities of sweets, chocolate, and chips eaten, as they contain large quantities of sugar, salts and fats which accumulates fats in the body. If there is no way to avoid eating them; they should be eaten in small portions after the main meal.

Third: Pregnant Woman

Pregnancy has many dimensions, as it is not limited to a case where a woman becomes pregnant and then simply gives birth to male or female baby. Rather, a matter of a body having a new soul and giving life to a new body. Therefore,  much attention is required to keep both bodies protected against all types of harm. But how can this be achieved?

  • The pregnant woman’s process of paying great attention to her health is among the important elements of a proper pregnancy. For example, where there is deficiency or shortage in food elements, this would  inevitably double during the pregnancy and breastfeeding period. So when a woman is thinking of becoming pregnant, both wife and husband should divert serious attention to their health. In this context, it is advisable to lead  a healthy lifestyle and proper food habits, and give up, for instance, smoking.
  • Eating varied and integrated food is very important to increase calories which are found in carbohydrate-rich food. It  fuels the body with vitamins, proteins, and mineral salts necessary for proper nutrition. Further, consuming large quantities of dairy products, meat, full grains, and fresh vegetables helps the pregnant woman get the food elements necessary for her pregnancy’s requirements.
  • Important sources of protein recommended are red meat, seafood, poultry, eggs, cheese, and dairy products, while vegetarians  are advised to eat assorted grains; mixed nuts and pistachio, and eggs on a daily basis.. As vitamin B-12 is hardly found in vegetables, but is often found in meat, pregnant women following vegetarian diets often have deficiencies in this vitamin.
  • Eating mineral salts which are found mainly in pistachio, sunflower seeds, plant buds, seaweeds and seafood, also contain high quantities of vitamin B-12.

Fourth: Diabetic Patients

There is no other disease for which the treatment depends on regular, proper food to such a degree as diabetes. Proper nutrition is half the battle towards recovery.

A diabetic patient should know that determining the quantities of basic elements in the food eaten is a very important matter and that such elements include starchy food, proteins, and fats, while the specific determination of these elements must be made by diabetes physicians as per the needs, activity, and growth of the body.

Although many foods are valuable for diabetic patients, there are certain foods that are more valuable than the others, given the nature of the disease and type of treatment recommended. So, the patient should eat fat-free meat, preferably boiled or grilled food. Skin-free seafood and poultry are the best types of meat for diabetic patients, particularly boiled and grilled seafood as well as poultry.

Diabetic patients should compare the different types of food, consume skim milk and cheese, and oils (corn and sunflower oil) instead of butter and ghee. It would be sufficient for the diabetic patient to eat one egg every two days if he is old in age, while young patients can eat more than one egg. Eating vegetables, fruits, and legumes is very important  in a diabetic patient diet, while drinks, jams, and sweets eaten by diabetic patients should be free from sugar and animal fats. They can also eat rice, macaroni, and pastry as substitutes for bread, preferably the types made specifically for diabetic patients.

The diabetic patient should also eat extra quantities of starchy food if they exercise intensely and sustain dynamic activity that compensates for the quantities of sugar lost, and to avoid deficiencies of blood sugar.

Fifth: Athletes

The optimum food for athletes is not significantly different from the food consumed by an ordinary person. Yet there are certain modifications to have the food eaten in parallel with his/her needs in terms of the needs of activity, growth, and circumstances in which the sportsperson exercises.

Outlined are some tips for athletes to consider:

  • Breakfast: is one of the most important daily meals in the life of people in general and athletes in particular. The absence of this meal causes low activity and vitality in the morning.
  • Nutrition of athletes should depend on a proper basis with respect to the type of sports activity involved. Improper nutrition causes early diseases for athletes and impedes their ability to make any progress and achievements desired.
  • An athlete who participates in sports activities that require long endurance times, needs appropriate quantities of carbohydrates to provide him with the energy needed while training and practicing this activity. Deficiencies in providing them with proper food containing carbohydrates results in deficiencies in energy, thus causing early fatigue and weariness while participating in the sports activity. So, considerable attention should be paid to the type of food provided to an athlete as per the nature of sports activity pursued.

Sixth: Young Adolescents

Nutrition experts often recommend that adolescent girls eat 1800-2400 calories a day, as per the level of physical activities they do, so girls who exercise at high levels of activity or sports require more calories. The daily food diet for girls should further depend on specific percentages of different elements, such that the rate of proteins in food is 20%, while carbohydrates should reach up to 55%, in addition to 25% fats. As for food fiber, it is necessary for the girl to consume 26 grams a day plus 1,300 mg of calcium, and a maximum of 1,500 mg of salts a day.


General Tips for Adolescents

  • Avoid or rather reduce the quantities of food rich in saturated fats,particularly fried potatoes.
  • Eat healthy breakfast each day.
  • Change improper food habits slowly and gradually, until you are able to reach the entire level of a healthy balanced food diet permanently in your day-to-day life.

Seventh: Elderly People

Feeding elderly people well is considered very important because many of the diseases that afflict the elderly are closely connected with malnutrition; whether this leads to being overweight or to a significant loss of weight. This occurs at a time when aging leads to changes in organs’ functions and body performance. This emphasizes the importance of taking due care with respect to good nutrition. The following includes advice and instruction that are highly important for the elderly:

  • Minimize eating saturated fats existing in lean meats, butter, oil, cream to keep lower risk of heart diseases, arteriosclerosis and fatness.
  • Minimize eating sugar and sweets such as cakes, ice creams and chocolates.
  • Focus on eating good quantities of fibers such as brown bread, whole grains, pulses, vegetables and fruits to provide the body with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that increase the body’s immunity and resistance against disease as well as constipation.
  • Avoid extra quantities of salts or any substances containing excessive amounts of salts such as canned foods, pickles and olives in order to avoid hypertension and kidney problems.
  • Consume extra quantities of water and liquids. it is necessary to have only moderate amounts of tea and coffee as these are a major source of caffeine and reduction helps to avoid insomnia and osteomalacia (softening of the bones).
  • Consume extra amounts of milk and low fat dairy products in order to keep bones healthy.
  • Try to  have 5 light meals a day instead  of 3 main meals in order to avoid indigestion.
  • Have an early dinner to avoid any sleeping troubles because of tympanites (“gas”).
  • Eat extra amounts of fish as these are low in fat and rich in omega-3 fatty acid.

General Food Advice and Instructions that must be remembered:

  • Eating extra quantities of almonds:It is preferable to eat almonds between daily meals and upon feeling hungry as almonds are rich in nutrients that a daily food diet may lack.
  • Adding cinnamon to coffee: Add half a teaspoon of cinnamon in your daily cup of coffee.  This will help reduce cholesterol levels in the blood and help the body use insulin more effectively. Thus it is very good for people suffering from diabetes to have it on a regular basis.
  • Add a half teaspoonful of black cumin to a cup of free-fat yogurt on a daily basis, if possible.
  • Be careful to eat vegetables and fruits at a rate of three rations a day because they reduce the risk of heart attacks at a rate of 70%
  • Drink a cup of green tea every day as it prevents oxidization in the body cells and minimizes the possibility of cancer. For even better results, it is preferable to drink it concentrated without sugar.
  • Eating fish once a week. Nutritionists recommend eating two portions of fish per week, but eating just one can help improve brain chemical substances as fish is good for both heart and brain health.  
  • Benefits of  drinking Water:
  • It prevents occurrence of superlative inflammations in the summer.
  • It helps in urine production which is considered an process of proper urinary tract cleansing.
  • It prevents nephrotoxic(a poisonous effect of some substances, both toxic chemicals and medication, on the kidneys.

When to drink water?

  • Doctors advise to drink water anytime of the day, but not drank for at least one hour before and after eating, as well as avoid drinking excess amounts.
  • You should drink water when thirsty, morning hours before breakfast and between meals. The recommended amount of water to drink is 3liters per day.

General Food Advice and Instructions that must be remembered:

  • It is recommended to drink water every 15-20 minutes during exercising
  • Eat food rich with fibers early in the morning to avoid over eating during the day
  • It is recommended to eat a light breakfast if you are planning to exercise within an hour of your meal
  • Eating nuts before your main meal will limit your food intake to a smaller portion
  • Avoid eating large portions of food before exercising to prevent body cramps
  • Make sure to eat food rich with carbohydrates 2-3 hours before exercising to avoid fatigue and to enhance performance.

We wish you an ideal diet and a healthy life!