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Everything about healthy food at RijnmondFit!

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Former Olympian and Gezond010 ambassador Patrick van Luijk was a guest on Rijnmond’s new radio program: RijnmondFit! Gezond010 and Rijnmond will help all Rotterdam residents on their way to a healthy and vital lifestyle throughout the month of January. Various health experts from Gezond010 and our own Patrick van Luijk provide tips on nutrition, exercise and mental well-being via radio, TV and the website. The third broadcast of this series was all about healthy eating!

The most important meal of the day
Have a good, healthy breakfast and preferably as unprocessed as possible. Dietitian Kathleen Paal from Gezond010 partner MoveDis explains why breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Kathleen: “By eating breakfast you get your system, circulation and combustion going again. Because you start chewing, the blood flow to your brain is restored, making you more alert in traffic, at work and at school.”

“Why do we need something sweet so much?” Patrick asked Kathleen. “Breast milk is also naturally sweet, so that’s why you have an innate need for sweets,” says Kathleen. Patrick: That is why it is important when you as a baby wean yourself off breast milk, to first start with vegetable snacks instead of fruit snacks, in order to slowly wean yourself from sweets and get acquainted with vegetables.”Patrick explains how he slowly switched from tea with milk and sugar has switched to pure tea: “What is very nice to see is that we can always adapt and that we can ultimately éreal taste.” So it’s all a matter of getting used to it and learning habits!

Is fat ‘bad’?
“Fat is important for the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. Fat also helps soften stools,” says Kathleen. “The good fats are found in vegetable products, but also in fish, so that is why we recommend eating fish once a week and using liquid fats as much as possible.”

The bad fats are found in animal products such as cheese, cold cuts and meats. They often contain saturated fats that remain in your blood vessels, causing them to slowly clog up. Can you still consume dairy and meat? “Yes, but try to consume more lean products. For example, take semi-skimmed or low-fat dairy products and do not eat the fat and skin of the meat,” advises Kathleen.

Making Rotterdam healthier together
Also Inge Merkelbach, nutrition expert at Healthy’R, gave tips on air for making healthier food choices. Inge: “We make most food choices automatically: we do so unconsciously. So to break that automatism, you can, for example, choose to place unhealthy food further away, but also by making good, specific agreements with yourself. It often helps to stick to this if you tell others that you are consciously concerned with your health.”

Patrick also shared a good tip from Secretary General Erik Gerritsen at VWS: “Gerritsen said that he always puts out a bowl of peppers, carrots and cucumbers as a snack, because you are going to snack throughout the day anyway.” This way you can consciously replace unhealthy alternatives with healthier food choices.

The financial stress caused by the corona crisis makes it difficult for many Rotterdam residents to make healthier choices. Inge: “Stress makes us more likely to revert to our unhealthy behavior.” Inge also explains that Rotterdam has a lower average income level: this hinders making healthier choices when unhealthy food is cheaper than healthy food. Patrick therefore believes that things should be different: “I think it would be a good idea to reduce VAT on fruit and vegetables again, so that it becomes cheaper and more attractive to buy healthy food.”

FitVideo and healthy recipe
During the RijnmondFit series, attention is paid weekly not only to exercise, but of course also to healthy nutrition. That is why there is a new healthy recipe from Gezond010 partner every week in January MoveDis online on the Rijnmond website.

Don’t forget to watch the FitVideos with Patrick! This week: ‘the resting squat’! The only exercise that allows you to relax your back. Do you want to know how to do this exercise? watch the video here.

Finally, Patrick connected Erik to a heart monitor during the broadcast. Is his heart racing or is Erik being a cool frog? Tune in next week for the test results!

Looking ahead to January 25

Have you started 2021 healthy yet? Listen to RijnmondFit with Erik Lemmers: the fourth and final episode on Monday January 25 from 10.00 a.m. to 13.00 p.m., via As a sidekick, Patrick van Luijk will talk to various Gezond010 lifestyle experts.



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