Body energy, muscle building, tissue regeneration, bones repair, and blood making are essential functions in our bodies.
Through these functions, our bodies stay in good shape and health.
Yet, these functions have guardians watching over them.
These guardians are nutrients.
Protein, fat, carbohydrates, fibers, vitamins and minerals are important nutrients that sustain our bodies.
Nutrients and Our Bodies
Protein helps our body in building and repairing its muscles, bones, skin and other tissues as well.
Carbohydrate is our main source of energy.
Fat is our secondary reservoir of energy.
Vitamin A prevents us against infection and protects our eyes.
Vitamin B catalyzes nutrients burning to fuel our bodies.
It is also responsible for the self-repair of our bodies through building and repairing its tissues.
Vitamin C increases iron absorption, as well as our body’s immunity.
Vitamin D allows for calcium absorption and acts as a body hormone.
It prevents us from depression, fatigue, and weakness.
Iron is used in the manufacturing of our red blood cells, which carries oxygen to all our body organs.
Without it, we are constantly tired, with decreased energy levels.
Fiber absorbs toxic wastes from digested food and facilitates digestion.
And as simple as it sounds, not all people have access to what their body needs.
As per the World Health Organization, 45% of deaths among children under the age of five is related to malnutrition reasons.
462 million adults are underweight.
17 million children are severely wasted.
1.9 billion adults are obese.
47% of children under five are anemic, due to iron deficiency.
Early childhood blindness as a result of vitamin A deficiency opts for 190 million pre-school children.
Zinc deficiency and improper growth opt for 4% of deaths among pre-schoolers.
60% of children in Afghanistan have impaired growth because of vitamin deficiency.
Besides, chronic fatigue, Osteoporosis, muscle weakness, and poor immunity are all side effects of malnutrition.
Not only that, but more serious diseases like diabetes, hypertension, heart diseases and some types of cancer are also threats of malnutrition.
Reasons for Malnutrition
Is malnutrition caused by poverty only?
Truth is, malnutrition is a threat for both developed and under-developed nations.
Although poverty is a contributing factor to malnutrition, it is not the only factor.
United Stated spend around $15.5 billion yearly on medical costs for malnutrition.
Malnutrition could arise from eating disorder, drug abuse, medication effect, digestive diseases or could simply arise from insufficient nutrient intake as per our body needs.
This insufficiency is either because we eat too little or too much!
Yes, overweight is also a form of malnutrition.
If you are taking in too much energy, yet, too little nutrient, then you are at the risk of obesity.
About one-third of U.S. adults suffer from obesity, as well as 17% of children, that is 12.5 million children.
A good nutrition plan is one that includes all needed nutrients on its list.
A plan with vegetables, fruits, proteins, antioxidants, healthy fats, whole grains, fiber, and plenty of water.
Surprisingly, a good nutrition plan starts with pregnancy.
The first 1000 days in a child’s life at his mother’s womb are very important to his growth and has a huge impact on the quality of his health.
So, what is the plan?
A good plan would include breakfast, lunch, and dinner with two snacks in between.
However, it is what you eat in these meals that makes all the difference.
It is very important to watch over your energy intake of each meal while consuming the right nutrients at the same time.
2000 calories are the recommended energy intake for women, while 2500 is for men.
As for nutrients, protein intake per day should be 50 grams for women versus 55 for men.
Carbohydrates intake should not exceed 260 grams for women and 300 grams for men.
Sugar should be consumed in 90 grams for women and 120 for men.
Fats intake is 70 grams for women versus 95 grams for men.
Yet, to plan your meal you must keep these considerations in mind:
- Include one portion of carbs in each meal, this means rice, pasta, bread, cereal or potatoes
- Include a portion of protein in every meal as well, as protein helps you to feel full
- Include healthy fats in your meals to stay full
- Cheese, nuts, popcorn could be used as snacks
- Include fiber in your meals
- Consume a lot of vegetables and fruits every day
Eat protein for breakfast.
It takes longer to digest than carbs thus it keeps you fuller for a longer time and gives your metabolism some good morning work.
Eat something that gives you some energy to keep going.
Nuts, banana, or peanut butter are good.
Divide your lunch between protein and starchy carbs.
Carbs boost your energy to keep going.
Fruits are a good mid-afternoon snack, as they satisfy your sweet cravings.
Combine healthy fats with carbohydrates.
And of course, always color your plates with vegetables.
But are there any special preferences for a good nutrition plan?
Food Rich Nutrients
Although it is very important to make sure our nutrition intake satisfies the demands of our bodies, yet, no one minds a shortcut.
Food rich nutrient is a shortcut to staying healthy.
Coming in all shapes and colors, food rich nutrient could be:
Nothing is as mouth-watering as that orange delicious fish.
Salmon is king when it comes to nutrition.
It contains a good amount of omega-3s fatty acids.
A 100 gram of salmon contains 2.9 grams of omega-3s, magnesium, potassium, vitamin B and vitamin D altogether.
This is useful for calcium absorption and bone formation, psychological well-being, as omega-3s fight depression and anxiety, brain health, eye health, muscles, and boosts energy.
As potassium helps the walls of our blood vessels to relax aurend hence directly impacts our muscles function.
As for magnesium, it helps regulate our blood pressure, blood sugar and nerves function.
Speaking about potassium and magnesium nothing beats potatoes in its richness of potassium and magnesium.
Not only that, but potatoes include vitamin B, vitamin C as well as iron.
In addition, potatoes are easy to digest and helps you feel full.
It is a low calorie food that is tasty and full of nutrients.
If you are suffering from a cold, take ginger, it elevates your immunity and helps you fight the disease.
If you are suffering from nausea, drink ginger.
If you are suffering from a chemotherapy side effect, consume ginger.
Owing to its anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory nature, ginger is the good friend of bad times.
You can add ginger as a spice, drink it alone or add it to your tea or coffee.
Coffee and ginger mix together well, and so does ginger and tea.
Since most of us have regular daily habits of coffee and tea, adding ginger is an easy step with great benefits.
If you haven’t tried that yet, then you should.
If you are iron deficient, then don’t think twice, think liver!
A 100 gram of liver contains vitamin B12, B5, B6, B2, folate, vitamin A, copper, iron, zinc, phosphorus, and selenium.
Besides its nutritional benefits, liver is tasty as well.
So, consider adding it to our dishes.
If you are looking for vitamin K, vitamin C, fiber, potassium, and folate all in one plate, then include broccoli in your meals.
Not only it is a food rich nutrient, but also low in calories.
So, you can eat a lot of it without feeling guilty.
Broccoli is a friend to many ingredients, thus, it’s easy to add it to many of your meals or even use it as a healthy snack.
That delicious sizzling white heads are a whole pharmacy on its own.
In the old days, garlic was the savior against many epidemics.
It was used against cholera, influenza, dysentery, and typhus.
It was also used as a remedy for rheumatism, cough and low immunity.
It is used nowadays, by many people as a replacement for antibiotics.
Garlic is anti-inflammatory with anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.
So, if you have an infection, then add garlic to your list of medication and you will notice the difference.
It is important to note that for fighting infections and inflammation, garlic must be consumed raw.
As once garlic is crushed or sliced sulfur’s glycosides come out of it, this component is what fights for you.
In addition to its medical properties, garlic is also rich in vitamin C, B1, B6, calcium, potassium, copper and magnesium.
Garlic has also been used as an anti-depressant owing to its stimulus effect.
So, next time you are looking for flavor with benefits try garlic.
6- Dark Chocolate
Yes, life is sometimes good.
Chocolate did turn out to be a good nutrient after all.
Believe it or not, intense cocoa is filled with iron, magnesium, copper, and manganese.
Yet, that’s not only it.
Dark chocolate is rich in anti-oxidants as well.
Owing to polyphenols component in dark chocolate, it does have anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties than exceed berries for example.
So, besides being a mood booster, dark chocolate is good for your health.
You can eat guilt free.
7- Olive Oil
A good seasoning for every dish, olive oil is of many health benefits.
Olive oil contains omega-3s and omega-6 fatty acids, as well as saturated fats.
It’s an anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant nature, and anti-microbial properties make it more than just a seasoning.
The Food and Drug Administration(FDA) acknowledged in 2004, the benefits of olive oil in reducing the risk of coronary heart disease.
It is very good for constipation, prevention of heart disease, curing a cold as well as many other benefits.
Olive oil contains vitamin K and vitamin E as well.
100 grams of olive oil makes 884 calories.
Using olive oil with salads and pasta acts as a healthy fat that makes you full.
So, consider adding more olive oil to your dishes.
A sweet vegetable with many benefits, beetroot has more than sweetness to it.
It has anti-inflammatory properties making it a good candidate for many clinical conditions.
It is a potential treatment for type 2 diabetes, hypertension and atherosclerosis.
Beetroot is also rich in nutrients as it contains iron, vitamin C, folate, manganese, potassium, and fiber.
For 100 grams of beetroot gives 43 calories, 1.6 grams protein, 9.6 grams carbs, 6.8 grams sugar, 2.8 grams fiber, 0.2 grams fat,
So, in addition to its catchy color and sweet taste, your body loves it.
Not only are they low in calories, but also a good source for protein that vegan people can depend on.
Mushroom is a rich source of vitamin D, copper, potassium, and selenium.
They are good cancer fighters and good anti-inflammatory.
They are also gut-friendly food.
For 100 grams of mushroom, there are 22 calories only!
Taste, nutrition, and health all comes in one package with Mushrooms.
Seems there is more nutrition in mushroom than it meets they eye.
In the End
Our bodies are our sacred temple and our daily ride.
We need to be good to our bodies to be able to carry us lightly wherever we want to go.
Nutrition is a key to a healthy body, as most of its functionalities depend on nutrients.
A good nutrition plan includes a body’s need for carbs, fats, proteins, water, fiber, vitamins and minerals.
A diet plan that has more calories than nutrients can eventually lead to malnutrition.
Malnutrition is a first-class world problem nowadays.
To eat well is to eat healthy and rich nutrient food.
A good nutrition plan includes three main meals and two snacks in between.
Examples to food rich nutrients are salmon, potatoes, ginger, liver, broccoli, garlic, dark chocolate, olive oil, beetroot, and mushrooms.
Food rich nutrient is food that supplies our bodies with their needed intake of vitamins and minerals.
Vitamins like A, B12, B5, B6, C, K, E, iron, magnesium, potassium, manganese, folate, omega-3s, omega-6, calcium and vitamin D are what our bodies need for survival and what this food rich nutrient has to offer.
So, if you want to take care of your body than you should include food rich nutrients in your diet.
“The human body is the best picture of the human soul” Tony Robbins.