A recent 2017 study took a look at the healthiest countries around the globe. Out of 163 countries New Zealand was the 19th healthiest. While this isn’t a terrible score there’s definitely room for improvement. So we decided to take a leaf out of the books of the healthiest countries and get inspired by their food.
While diet wasn’t the only factor that came into play within this study it also took into account clean drinking water, tobacco use, and life expectancy.
But diet is a factor so we thought it would be interesting to have a little look into their food secrets and what they’re eating to stay so healthy.
When it comes to a long life Italy is the place to be! This country came in at number 1 for having the healthiest people. While this may come as a surprise as we think of all the carbs involved in eating pizza and pasta, the secret to their healthy diet is vegetables and lots of them. The Italian diet features a lot of vegetables which are drizzled in extra virgin olive oil.
Using olive oil in your meals has a lot of health benefits and is a healthier alternative to use instead of vegetable or canola oils. The access to fresh produce and lean meats also contributes to the usual Italian diet.
Iceland & Switzerland
Both number two and three on the list went to Nordic countries. The diet here is similar to the one in Italy in terms of lots of fresh produce. But because of the colder climate and the need for more calories the Nordic diet is rich in fatty fish, root vegetables, and seasonal fruit. The staple diet for Nordic countries is oily fish, like salmon and tuna, high fiber wholegrain breads, root vegetables, and local berries; lingonberries, cloudberries, and bilberries.
Coming in at number four is Singapore. In Singapore people eat a wide variety of noodles, curries, and stir fries. This is usually washed down with herbal teas. The three main parts of the Singaporean diet are noodles, rice, and seafood.
There is a deep food culture in Singapore with a common greeting being, “have you eaten?”, the diet in Singapore is extra interesting as there is a lot of cultural fusion within the meals. There is heavy influence from Chinese food as well as, Malay, Indian, and cross-cultural.
And coming in at number five was our cousins from over the ditch. The secret to the Australians diet is they eat a lot of fresh fruit. The normal Australian will eat three meals a day and picnics are very common. But although this is the fifth healthiest country it does still have problems with obesity.
These top five healthiest countries food secrets are interesting as they are quite diverse. Some go against what we would assume was healthy such as eating a large amount of calories and carbohydrates. However, one food secret all these countries have in common is using lots of fruit and vegetables, as well as homegrown meals.