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Type 2 diabetes

The pancreas does produce insulin but cells stop responding properly to the insulin. It is often linked to obesity and lack of exercise and taking more exercise, losing weight and eating a carefully balanced diet can often control or even reverse type 2 diabetes.

Balanced diet

A diet which contains the correct amounts of carbohydrates, proteins, lipids, vitamins, minerals and fibre to provide your cells with the resources they need.


Energy producing organic compounds which are made of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. Examples of food containing carbohydrate are rice, pasta, bread and potatoes


A polymer made up of amino acids joined by peptide bonds. The amino acids present and the order in which they occur vary from one protein to another.


Material which cannot be digested in the gut, needed to provide bulk which enables food to move through the digestive system.

Balanced Diet

A balanced diet is required for healthy living - but what foods are needed for you to have a balanced diet? There are seven essential substances for a healthy diet - carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals, fibre and water; several are usually present in any food substance which can make it difficult to eat the right amounts of each substance. See just how difficult it can be by using the interactive activity.

Do all people have to eat the same foods?

Do they need the same amount of food?

Getting your diet and exercise balance just right so that you stay healthy is a challenge we all face. And many people don't get the balance right - they end up by being overweight, or undernourished and may suffer from heart disease, Type 2 diabetes or other 'lifestyle' diseases.

The Balance Diet activity helps you learn what types of food provide the essential vitamins and minerals needed for a body to function well as well as the quantities of carbohydrate, protein, fat, fibre and water that each of the six different characters should eat each day.

different types of food