What are the Most Important Food Types and Nutrients for a Healthy Lifestyle?
When planning to stick to a healthy lifestyle, your focus should be supplying your body with proper nutrition. It is important for your body to receive all the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients necessary for it to function optimally.
The best way to do that is to stick to a healthy diet. Start planning your snacks and meals and make sure they contain low-calorie and nutrient-dense foods. When making adjustments on your diet, prioritize the following essential food types:
- Beans or legumes and vegetables
- Grains and cereals, mostly high-cereal fiber varieties and whole grains
- Lean meat and poultry, eggs, fish, nuts and seeds, and tofu
- Milk and other dairy products, like cheese and yogurt – Focus on eating those with mostly reduced fats
Healthy foods that you should include in your diet are usually grouped together as they tend to offer the same levels of key and essential nutrients. For instance, milk and dairy products have protein and calcium as their key nutrients. Fruits, on the other hand, are excellent sources of Vitamin C.
The Fundamental Nutrients of Healthy Eating
When deciding on the foods you can include in your diet based on the major food groups and types mentioned earlier, your goal should be to receive all the nutrients needed by your body. Among those you should focus on are foods that can give a good supply of the following:
This is a vital nutrient with its ability to supply you with energy as well as adequate support for your cognitive function and mood. High-quality protein is even more crucial as you age. However, it does not necessarily mean you should consume too much of animal-based products. Keep in mind that there are also various plant-based sources of protein, like lentils, peanuts, chickpeas, and beans.
Your diet should also consist of foods rich in healthy and good fats that can protect your heart and brain. Omega-3 is one type of healthy fat that can help boost your emotional and physical health. Aside from that, healthy fats can trim your waistline. Some great sources of healthy fats are avocados, whole eggs, cheese, fatty fish, chia seeds, and nuts.
Load up on dietary fiber, too. You can get it from beans, nuts, fruits, veggies, and grains. By supplying your body with enough fiber, you can remain regular while preventing stroke, diabetes, and heart disease. It also contributes to weight loss and better skin health.
Eat calcium-rich foods, too. Aside from preventing osteoporosis, calcium can also help you stay away from sleeping disorders and difficulties, depression, and anxiety. It is also crucial to give your body a sufficient supply of Vitamins D and K as well as magnesium as these nutrients make it possible for calcium to function at its best.
Note that carbs are among the primary sources of energy for your body. Just make sure that you focus on getting the unrefined and complex type that comes from fruits, whole grains and veggies, instead of refined carbs and sugar. Focus on healthy carbs and reduce your intake of pastries, white bread, sugary foods and drinks, and starches. By doing that, you can avoid a rapid increase in your blood sugar as well as fat buildup and energy and mood fluctuations.
Sticking to a healthy lifestyle is possible by following a varied and well-balanced diet. Ensure that your diet consists of various foods from the major food groups every day. Choose those that can supply your body with its needed key nutrients. Your body will surely thank you for all the good things you offer it.