Food and nutrition in Australia
The beautiful orchards of Australia produce citrus fruits, grapes, melons, berries, apples, and cherries. Australian dairy products are world famous - many types of cheeses are exported globally. The beautiful shellfish are exported so fast it can be hard to buy oysters and lobsters on the west coast!
After immigrating to Australia, newcomers often change the way they cook and eat. They may not have access to the ingredients they had in their country of origin; they might like new types of food they've never eaten before; or they might start buying convenience foods such as frozen dinners and fast food because it's cheap, tasty and quick!
But it's important not to let nutrition suffer in exchange for convenience. A lot of pre-packaged and fast food is high in fat, sodium (salt) and sugar. Adding too many of these food will damage your health over time.
It is a good idea to focus on home cooking so that you know exactly what ingredients go into your meal. Australians are very lucky to have a wide range of top quality fresh fruit and vegetables at low prices compared to a lot of other western countries.
If you don't have the time to cook at home, there are always healthy takeaway (takeout/fast food) options in Australian towns and cities; many of them run by migrants. Try to avoid the high-fat, high-sugar foods of the large fast-food chains.
Look in your local newspaper or ask around in your neighbourhood for cheap and healthy takeaway food outlets. Nowadays there are great healthy takeaway options such as sushi, gourmet salads, and soups that offer quick and delicious food choices!
Websites such as Eatability, Urbanspoon, and Eat Streets feature reviews of affordable restaurants and cafes, mainly in Australian capital cities. Eating guides such as Cheap Eats, Everyday Eats, and the Good Café Guide are available at most newsagents and bookshops.
The National Health and Medical Research Council has published dietary guidelines for Australians of various ages. It emphasises the importance of eating fruits and vegetables, whole grains and lean dairy and protein.