A Dietician Says These Are The Five Foods You Should Be Eating Every Single Day

We get the healthy eating lowdown from dietician Orla Walsh.


The world of healthy eating can be a minefield sometimes, with conflicting advice coming from all different directions. Low-fat or full-fat? Count calories or ignore them altogether? Eat gluten or cut it out?

To try and simplify things a bit, we decided to ask a nutrition expert one very important question – what are the five foods we should aim to fit into our diet every single day?

Dietician Orla Walsh is working with Uncle Ben’s to create #HealthyPlate recipes using the Uncle Ben’s Rice & Grains range, so she was the perfect person to ask. Here’s her top five…

Nuts and seeds for fibre
Sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, walnuts… A good variety of nuts and seeds every day is a great way to give your diet a boost of fibre, healthy fats and plant protein. “They’re the ideal snack,” says Orla, who recommends one or two handfuls a day.

Her pro tip for measuring a handful? “You should be able to place the seeds in the palm of your hand, close your fist fully and shake them around.”

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Wholegrains for slow-release energy
Keep your energy and mood stable all day long with fibre-rich wholegrains. “Grains should look as similar as possible to how they appeared when they came out of the ground,” advises Orla. So that’s a no to a crusty baguette and a big YES to rice and quinoa.

Stuck for time? Orla’s go-to is the Uncle Ben’s Rice & Grains range, which can be heated in the microwave in two minutes.

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Dairy for calcium, iodine and post-exercise recovery
Dairy gets a bad rap in the clean eating world, but Orla recommends two to three servings a day (and the milk in your morning latte does count as a serving – win!). “Milk, cheese and yoghurt are a great source of iodine, which helps make the thyroid hormones that regulate our metabolism.”

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Beans, peas and lentils to fight cancer
It’s not just Orla – even the folks at the Irish Cancer Society recommend three to four servings of beans, peas or lentils a week to protect against cancer and lower cholesterol. “I love swapping butterbean mash in for potato mash,” says Orla. “Rinse and drain a tin of butterbeans, blitz them with some seasoning in the blender, and heat up.” Sounds yummy.

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Berries for a naturally sweet high-fibre treat
A¬†handful of berries is a perfect “low sugar, high-fibre” snack, says Orla, who adds that berries have a brilliant calorie to fibre ratio. Win.

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For more nutrition tips, recipe videos and advice on how to make your own #HealthyPlate, be sure to like Uncle Ben’s Ireland on Facebook!