Health Nutrition & Nutritional Advice For Health and Wellbeing
It is possible to spend hours, days, even months or years understanding nutrition, how it relates to you individually and how you can use it to improve your own nutrition and well-being!
Most of us want to lose some weight, look younger, feel better and stay healthy in order to improve our vitality and general health. We read endless articles and news about what the new superfood is and why we need it. But do you really ever get that? Have you ever really understood what a vitamin, mineral, antioxidant or free radical is, why we all need them (or don’t) and what the effects can be when we don’t have them?
As a human being, whether you like it or not, you will change with age, stress, environment and circumstances, which means your dietary needs must change too! Additionally, holding on to unwanted toxins in stressful situations and in life itself makes a difference in how we feel and how we look.
What is this article about? In this article, I want to explain in the simplest way possible why eating healthy is vital to your life, well-being, energy, looks, children, and future. what vitamins and minerals actually are and what we need them for; how the environment affects us (like it or not) and what you can do to improve your health and well-being on an individual level.
What is healthy eating?
Healthy eating sees what you eat as a way to improve your health. It is important to understand that you are what you eat, so it makes perfect sense to optimize your diet to get the most of your true health potential!
So, taking this one step further, let’s see that poor nutrition can be detrimental to our health and prevent us from reaching our true potential both emotionally and physically! As intelligent people (really!) do we make important decisions about our own health through what we consume? We are becoming more and more aware that diet and nutrition really is the key to real health potential and well-being.
What is a vitamin?
Vitamins are micronutrients that are essential for human nutrition. Most vitamins cannot be manufactured by the human body and must therefore be obtained from foods and dietary supplements. Some vitamins are fat soluble and some are water soluble.
Fat-soluble vitamins are mainly found in fatty foods such as animal fats, vegetable oils, dairy products, liver and oily fish. These fats are stored in the liver and adipose tissue for future use and where you need them. These vitamins are vitamins A, D, E and K. Too many fat-soluble vitamins can be harmful.
Water-soluble vitamins are found in fruits, vegetables, and grains. Unlike fat-soluble vitamins, they can be destroyed by heat or exposure to air; They can also get lost in the cooking water (that’s why some raw foods every day can really improve your vitamin intake and therefore your health potential). This means that cooked foods, especially cooked ones, lose many of these vitamins. The best way to keep as many vitamins in the food as possible is to eat them raw, lightly fry or steam them, gently grill them, or heat them very strongly at a low temperature for an extended period of time, each of which contributes that the water-soluble vitamins are contained much better.
Water-soluble vitamins are: vitamin B6, B12, C, biotin, folic acid, niacin, pantothenic acid and riboflavin & thiamine.
What are minerals?
Minerals are essential nutrients that our bodies need in varying amounts to function optimally. Mineral nutrients are of two categories: the main essential elements are: calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, iodine and potassium; and the trace elements such as: copper, cobalt, manganese, fluorine, iodine, chromium, selenium and zinc. All of this has to come from food, as the body cannot produce it itself and can only maintain its mineral balance for a short time.
Minerals are found in varying amounts in a variety of foods such as meat, grains (e.g. bread), fish, dairy products, vegetables, fruit (especially dried fruit) and nuts.
Minerals are necessary for three main reasons, a) to build strong bones and teeth, b) to control bodily fluids inside and outside cells, and c) to convert the food we eat into energy.
The trace minerals are also essential nutrients that your body needs to function properly, but these are required in much smaller amounts. Trace elements are found in small amounts in a variety of foods such as meat, fish, grains, milk and milk products, vegetables and nuts.
What is a free radical?
Like it or not, free radicals are produced as a result of normal life and bodily functions such as inhalation, and it is common for the body’s natural defense system to neutralize the free radicals produced. With these processes of making and removing them, free radicals can’t do much damage most of the time as the body is always dealing with them, but there are times when free radicals can and do overwhelm our body’s defense mechanisms hence damage to cells that can lead to disease and disease.
Times when this can happen can be due to high stress levels, excessive drinking, shock and injury, UV exposure, death, divorce, travel (especially long-distance), and exposure to pollution.
But all is not lost yet! It is increasingly believed, researched and proven that a healthy diet can and does play an important role in protecting against such free radical damage as we treat free radicals with antioxidants.
What is an antioxidant?
An antioxidant is the body’s natural defense against free radical damage, in other words, what we need to prevent free radicals from damaging our cells!
If you just look at good and bad, antioxidants are good and free radicals are bad guys. Antioxidants are our friends and are ingested through our diet! Because of this, of course, we need to be more and more aware of what we eat and what we need to get from our diet. Some of the antioxidants we need are vitamins C and E, selenium and beta-carotene. These can help prevent damage to our body cells and repair damage that has already occurred!
So antioxidants are knights in shining armor, right? They fight and defeat the attack of free radicals and thus protect us from aging too quickly or unnecessary diseases!
Although antioxidants are naturally produced in the body, it can be depleted by circumstance, diet, stress and unfortunately with age, so it’s becoming more important to be more aware of where you’re getting them from and to replenish yourself! Eating lots of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and nuts can provide all the antioxidants your body needs.
So you see – diet and health are closely related, aren’t they – even if you just want to slow down your aging process. Surely avoiding unnecessary illnesses must also be high on the list and sparking a desire to improve your health and life through your diet!
I don’t think you need to get anal or get bored, believe me, but below I list top foods that can make your life better for you! BUT – remember that you must use your own instinct and intuition to feel and know what is right for you! What is right for the goose is not right for the gander!
A Carrots, spinach, greens, dried apricots, watercress, tomatoes, mango, red and yellow peppers
B’s grains, currants, green leafy vegetables, wheat germ, mushrooms, avocado, banana, nuts, vegetables, yeast and soy for B12 (or a supplement for B12)
C Leafy greens, broccoli, cabbage, green peppers, parsley, potatoes, frozen peas, oranges, blackcurrants
D SUNLIGHT ON YOUR SKIN – fortified cereal or soy milk, non-hydrogenated margarine
E Olive oil, peppers, tomatoes, wheat germ, tahini, nuts and seeds, avocados
K Green leafy vegetables, seaweed, seaweed, molasses, lentils, peas
IRON Tofu, Beans & Legumes, Spinach, Cabbage, Wheat Germ, Whole Grains, Parsley, Prunes & Dates, Dried Apricots, Pumpkin Seeds, Millet, Black Molasses
CALCIUM Tofu, Tahini, Leafy Greens, Parsley, Watercress, Broccoli, Rutabaga, Almonds, Brazil, Figs, Soy Milk (Enriched)
ZINK whole grain products, whole grain rice, lentils, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, almonds, wheat germ, tofu
Iodine seaweed, seaweed, green leafy vegetables
MAGNESIUM Green leafy vegetables, soybeans, cashews, almonds, broccoli, whole grains, wheat germ, bananas, plums
Phosphorus, whole grains, wheat germ, pinto beans, chickpeas, pumpkin seeds
SELENIUM & potatoes, yeast extract, Brazil nuts, strawberries, tomatoes and much more
POTASSIUM fruit and vegetables…
Others may contain fluorine, copper, cobalt, chromium and manganese – all of which would be abundant in a healthy, balanced diet!
There are also oils, proteins, carbohydrates and fiber – but that’s another article!
Have fun eating, researching and living!
Thanks to Helena Bingham