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Eating Healthy – A Beginners Guide

It’s important to monitor what you eat, it affects your quality of life and health. Even though eating healthy is simple, the dieting trends have confused. In reality, these dieting trends cause you to miss the basic nutrition you need.

Why Eat Healthy?

Many serious diseases can be linked to poor diet .

For example, if you try to eat healthily it can reduce your chances of heart disease and cancer. A healthy diet can improve your brain functions to physical performance. In reality, food affects all your cells and organs (3,4,5).

Balancing Calories and Energy

It’s not necessary to control calories but calorie control plays a key role in weight control and health (6,7).           

If your calorie intake is more than you burn then store them as body fat or new muscles. If you take fewer calories than you burn every day, you will lose weight (8).

Understanding Macronutrients

There are three macronutrients, carbohydrates (carbs), proteins, and fats.

These nutrients are important and required in large amounts. These are some of the foods within each macronutrient group:

  • Carbs: Found in all starchy foods such as pasta, bread, and potatoes. Also includes juice, sugar, fruit, and dairy products. Four calories per gram.
  • Protein: Mostly found in fish and meat, legumes, eggs, dairy. Four calories per gram.
  • Fats: Found in seeds, nuts, butter, oils, cheese, fatty meat, and oily fish.

The amount of macronutrients you need depends on your personal preferences and lifestyle.

Understanding Micronutrients

Micronutrients are required in small amounts and they include vitamins and minerals.

Some of the most common micronutrients:

  • Iron: Mostly known for carrying oxygen in the blood. It also improves immune and brain function (9).
  • Magnesium: It is involved in over 600 cellular processes, which include muscle contraction, energy production, and nervous system function (10).
  • Calcium: important for the development of teeth and bones. Also an important mineral for your heart, muscles, and nervous system (11,12).
  • Potassium: it’s important to control fluid balance, blood pressure, and the function of your muscles and nerves (13).All Vitamins: All the vitamins from A to K are very important for every organ and cell in your body.

All these minerals and vitamins are important for survival so you should make sure to consume them in your diet.

The number of micronutrients to be consumed daily differs for everyone but if your diet contains real food such as animals and plants, then you might not need any supplements to fulfill your micronutrient need.

Eating Whole Foods is Necessary

About 80-90% of the time you should consume whole foods. Whole foods are described as natural and unprocessed foods which only contain one ingredient.

If a product is made in a factory is most probably not a whole food. Mostly whole foods are nutrient-dense and provide with lower energy density. It shows that they have fewer calories and more nutrients per serving than processed foods.

 If you look at the processed food they have very little nutritional value and are also called empty calories. Consuming them in large quantities is linked to obesity and other health issues.

Summary

The food that you eat affects your quality of life and health. Many serious diseases can be linked to poor diet. A healthy diet can improve your brain functions to physical performance. In reality, food affects all your cells and organs. It’s not necessary to control calories but calorie control plays a key role in weight control and health. You need macronutrients in large amounts, they include carbohydrates (Carbs), proteins, and fats. They can be found in pasta, bread, fish, meat, nuts, butter, and oils. Micronutrients are required in small amounts and they include vitamins and minerals. They include Magnesium, Iron, Potassium, Calcium, and all Vitamins. Also about 80-90% of the time you should consume whole foods. Whole foods are described as natural and unprocessed foods which only contain one ingredient.

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