IELTS Speaking Part 1, 2 and 3 - Talking about Food and Health

IELTS Speaking Part 1  Talking about Familiar Topics

What’s your favorite food?
I like eating all sorts of spicy food, and one of my favorite food is fruit salad. I like this food because it is healthy and tasty. Well, it is probably the only healthy snack that I like. It is best to eat fruit salad when the weather is hot. The main ingredients of fruit salad are cucumber, pineapple, mango, papaya, and jicama. Fruit salad is often eaten with some kind of sauce, or commonly known here as sambal. The sauce has savory flavor which perfectly blends with the sweet fruit and fresh vegetables. We can also eat fruit salad with spicy sauce. The food is usually sold by street vendors, and it is very cheap.

Have you always liked the same food?
Not really, I eat this kind of food when I’m in the mood. Like I said, fruit salad would be my first option when the weather is hot, and I feel like eating something fresh. When it rains, I prefer eating food that will keep me warm, like fried rice or chicken noodle. I like trying different types of food, so normally, I will try different menu each day. I even like trying extreme food sometimes, like food that is extremely spicy or food that is rare. I have ever tried fried snails out of curiosity. It’s not like the strangest food or anything, but it’s definitely the most unusual food I’ve ever eaten. Surprisingly, it tasted really good, I wouldn’t mind trying it again.

Is there any food you dislike?
Yes, I don’t like eating salad. Not salad that I previously talked about. Indonesian salad still has sweet and savory flavors. I went to United States back in 2015, and I once ordered salad for breakfast. To my surprise, the salad is tasteless, I don’t really like it. I ended up ordering some more food, because I couldn’t finish my salad. Besides tasteless food, I don’t really like eating food that tastes too sweet. Even if I still eat it, I will just take a bite and that’s it. 

What is a common meal in your country?
Food in my country is spicy and colorful. As one of the most culturally diverse nations, my country has a lot of traditional food. I haven’t tried them all because there are too many of them. Despite the various traditional food we have here, the people usually eat rice, vegetables, a lot of eggs and meats. One food that you can always find in our menu is rice. People from other countries find it a little bit odd that we eat rice all the time. We are not used to eating bread or anything like that, because people here prefer eating food that is spicy or savory, but not sweet. People in different parts of the world may have sandwich for breakfast, bagel for lunch, and pizza for dinner. But people in my country will just eat rice for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It’s funny how food other than rice will mostly be snack in here.

Do you have a healthy diet?
No. I like eating different types of food, but it’s not necessarily healthy food. I mean, the food is oily and contains a lot of fat, because that’s how I like it. I don’t eat enough vegetables or drink enough milk so, I wouldn’t say I have a healthy diet. Sometimes I buy street food because they taste really good. I’m not sure about the hygiene of street food, they may contain preservatives or non-nutritive artificial sweeteners. Not many people eat healthy food here, either because they can’t afford it or they don’t like it.

What do you think of fast food?
Fast food is bad for your health, but it’s really tasty. Neither the food nor the beverage is healthy. The chicken is not organic, there is no vegetables in it, so the food is less nutritious. When going to a fast food restaurant, people would normally order soda. I don’t think soda is good for our health. We need to keep our body hydrated and we have to eat a lot of plain water, not soda. Fast food usually contains preservatives that could potentially be harmful for our health, if consumed on daily basis. I don’t have a healthy diet, it doesn’t necessarily mean that I’ll eat any food without considering the health risks of consuming such food. I eat fast food when there’s no other option, or when I really really want it. 

IELTS Speaking Part 2  Cue Card

Something you have started recently and it is good for your health

You should say:

What it is

When you have started it

Why you started doing it

Explain how it is good for your health

Recently, I start working out regularly. Since graduated from college, I don’t have much time to work out because I have to work and I won’t come home until 16.30 PM. What makes it worst is the fact that I also have sleep deprivation problem. When I was in college, I play futsal with my friends, I join the karate club, I go swimming once a week and jog every afternoon. Now that I have a lot of paperwork to do, I rarely do physical activities. I just sit in front of computer all day. The work sometimes keeps me awake at night, I start having trouble sleeping. No longer withstanding the unhealthy life I’ve been living for two years, I decided that I will do more exercise on weekend. It’s been a month that I’ve been doing this. Every Saturday and Sunday morning, I would jog around my neighborhood. In the afternoon, I also walk around the park with my dog, Edgar. This is not some serious physical activities, but it’s been helping me with my insomnia. I sleep better at night and I feel healthier because I can have a good rest after working out.

IELTS Speaking Part 3  Discussion

How can people improve their health?
There are several things to do to improve our health, like eating healthy food, doing exercise, and getting enough rest. These things will keep us healthy, physically. Recently, more and more people pay attention to mental health as well. Some people are simply too negative, while others may be too positive. Those who belong to the negative type of person often suffer from depression and often need support from others. Some people are taking their depression to the most extreme level like self-harm and suicide, and this is very unsettling. People with a lesser degree of negativity simply does not have the energy to do things in their life, something that they deem as meaningful or important. Sometimes they find it hard to maintain social relationship as well. People with too much positivity usually suffer from what’s so called toxic positivity. They just need to accept that in real life, not everything is good. Good and bad are like the two sides of a coin, and it’s sometimes necessary for us to feel negative emotions. 

One thing that is very important to maintain our physical and mental health is our willingness to seek help when we feel like needing it. People with certain illness can sometimes avoid seeing a doctor because they assume that their illness is merely an exhaustion, or flue, nothing serious. But then they are diagnosed with a serious illness and it’s already too late. In the case of mental illness, people are usually hesitant to share their stories or to seek help because they are afraid of the judgement from others. Some might believe that sharing with others will not do them any good. It’s important for us to be more aware of our surroundings. We may have family members, or friends who need help with their anxiety or depression. Even giving a subtle encouragement actually means a lot to those who have mental health problems, so…

Do elderly people do exercise in your country?
Not many elderly do exercise in here, at least that’s what I see around my neighborhood. These people, they work really hard when they were young, so that they can live peacefully when they get old. People aged 65 or above often get comfortable with their peaceful life, unaware of various illness that threaten their health, not to mention dementia or diabetes. Well, I sometimes see older people doing exercise in their front yard, like doing yoga or tai chi kind of thing. Some of them jog in the city park. This is a very rare case though. Most elderly would rather stay at home playing with their grandchildren, which is quite understandable. I mean, doing exercise takes a lot of commitment even for a young person like me. The least thing that they can do is probably spending some quality time with their grandchildren when they get older, like gardening, walking around the park, playing frisbee, or any other physical activities. Not just sitting in their house reading newspaper or watching TV.

Do you think all illness can be prevented?
Not all of them. Some illness are genetic, I guess. Like heart disease or diabetes, for example. I read somewhere that if our parents have a diabetes, then it would be more likely for us to inherit such illness. This is also true for mental illness, I guess. Like people whose first degree family has a schizophrenia would be more susceptible. The only thing that we can do with this kind of illness is […] reducing the risks. Like we can reduce the risks of having heart disease by having a healthy lifestyle. I don’t know if we can reduce the risk of having a schizophrenia but, there may be some things that we can do about it.

Do you think that there will be less illness in the future?
No, I don’t think so. In fact, there will always be a new type of illness. Before I continue, I just want to tell you that I don’t know much about illness and how they are supposed to be treated. But I read some interesting news and articles that give me some […] some insight. So, I’ll try to explain it from the perspective of a layperson. I don’t know if there’s some kind of genetic mutation or whatever but virus seems to adapt to medication that human has developed. Like we didn’t have something called avian influenza or swine flu, those illness are like coming out of nowhere. There were not so many cases of people with HIV or other STD in the past, but now? Advancement in medical science and sophisticated technology has helped us eradicate malaria and polio, but, it is inevitable that some virus seem to be resistant to medication that we have developed. I don’t think that there will be an ultimate solution for this problem, we have to be prepared to battle a new type of […] illness.

Do you think that healthcare should be free?
No, I don’t think so. There’s nothing entirely free, the least things like education and healthcare. Well, some people have told me that, some developed countries have a free healthcare for its citizens, like completely free. I don’t believe it. Even if the country gives a free healthcare, I’m sure that the tax that has to be paid by the citizens is really high. These people can get a free healthcare because they pay higher taxes, so basically, it’s not free. In my country, health is one of the luxuries that only rich people can afford. I mean, these people would fly to Singapore to have a medical checkup, unlike the rest of us. People from the middle class society would definitely need a health insurance. Without insurance, healthcare will cost them a lot of money. As for the poor people, they can get free healthcare provided by the government. But, it’s getting more and more difficult because they are many poor people in a developing country like this, and there’s not enough budget for subsidizing their healthcare. The free healthcare won’t cover all people, some of them are still […] you know, vulnerable.

What makes a good doctor?
This is rather difficult to answer, mentioning some criteria of a good doctor. Well, I’ve met some good doctors, and one thing that I can see from them is dedication. I’ve heard a story about a group of surgeons operating a patient in more than twenty-four hours. After the operation, they just sit their sleeping on the floor, because of the exhaustion. Doing such thing to save other’s life, that’s a dedication. In my country, a good doctor can easily be found in some of the most remote areas in this country. What I mean by remote areas here is like an island in the middle of nowhere, no electricity at night, no good sanitation, no phone signal, no internet, no nothing. You have to travel there by boat to get to this kind of place, you have to walk through a densely forested areas with all the dangers that may threaten your life. These doctors are leaving their comfortable life behind, serving the community far away from home. They’re loved by the local people and missed by many so, that’s a good doctor. 

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