Chad, and other African countries, is among some of the healthiest countries diet-wise. The market is a focal point of society, meaning that much of their food is fresh, free from preservatives and any unnecessary saturated fats and salt that is common in pre-packaged meals.A national dish of the county is boule, a thick porridge which is prepared with grains such as maize, millet and sorghum. Fortunately as well, the local produced okra, dried pimento, guava, mangoes, cassava, mutton, goat and fish are all rich in vital nutrients and can be seen as having some similarities to the Paleo Diet.
The traditional Greek diet is one of the most studied. It emphasizes unsaturated fats, legumes, vegetables, fish and grains. As a result, its nutritional values are very high, particularly in omega-3, from its popular ingredients of chickpeas, peppers and sardines. It also contains surprisingly little meat, which again reduces the consumption of saturated fats. Considering ‘salad’ and ‘yogurt’ are two words that usually follow ‘Greek,’ it isn’t really too surprising that this national cuisine is among the healthiest in the world.
Falafel, in particular, is really having its moment across the world’s food markets. The staple elements of the Israeli diet are not dissimilar to its Mediterranean counterparts — legumes, eggplants and olive oil. Its careful spicing adds additional flavor and also helps boost the metabolism and aid digestion. The nutritional benefits of common ingredients such as tahini and mint include a boost in vitamins A and C, calcium, folic acid, zinc and manganese. Pita bread, too, has higher nutritional values.
Three pillars of healthy eating are balance, variety and moderation, all of which are demonstrated through the Japanese diet. In some places in Japan, such as Okinawa, people often live to be over 100 years old, and their diet has a large part to play in this. The diet is rich in fruits and vegetables which are shown to have cancer-fighting properties, and staples such as yams, green tea, seaweed, soy foods and shiitake mushrooms have plenty of benefits, including being rich in iron, calcium, zinc, copper, omega-3, and antioxidants. Their eating practices only add to the health benefits, with many of the foods being steamed or quick fried, and at the dining table, many practice the art of Hara Hachi Bu, or eating until you’re 80 percent full.
In the west, you may think of Indian food to be rich in unhealthy, fried accoutrements such as samosas, popadoms and bhajis, as well as cream-rich curries. However, many of these elements of Indian food have very much been popularized abroad, whereas authentic Indian food is much more healthy. The spices that feature so heavily in Indian cooking not only give the dishes their unique flavors but also are shown to protect against some cancers, have anti-inflammatory and healing properties, and may even have an effect on preventing Alzheimer’s. Vegetable curries are a mainstay of many regions in the country and many meat-eating areas eschew pork or beef.