There are seven main types of nutrients needed by the human body. They are carbohydrates, protein, fat, vitamins, minerals, fiber and water.
If you want to change your body, you need more than an energetic exercise program. Improve your nutritional level through some dietary adjustments to optimize your body, mind and health. Don't know where to start? Here is how to use the seven nutrients to achieve lifelong health.
A micronutrient that is vilified by many, yet it is essential to fuel your body. You can get your caloric intake from whole grains, vegetables, beans, and fruits. Carbohydrates take longer to break down which will help you with hunger management and prevent you from unnecessary snacking. When carbohydrates are consumed in excess they will be converted to adipocytes or better known as fatty tissues.
Another important component in your diet, especially if you are attempting to build muscle mass! Up to 30% of your daily caloric intake comes from proteins such as eggs, fish, soya bean, poultry, among others. Since it is a macronutrient, your body is constantly assembling, breaking down, and using the protein you have consumed! For this reason, you must consume enough protein each day to replenish what your body has already used.
No, we are not talking about the greasy fat you find in fried food or trans-fat. We are talking about the good fats, unsaturated fats, which, are found in natural sources such as avocados and nuts. These are highly beneficial fats that protect our heart, unlike bad fats. Fat is an essential nutrient to protect the organs such as the heart and boost absorption of nutrients.
These are micronutrients meant to keep us at our full potential, but we only need to take them in small doses. The essential Vitamins are A, C, D, E, and B vitamins. Each vitamin has its unique properties, and it is important to know that no one food has all Vitamins included which is why a healthy balanced diet is highly important. Supplement vitamins are usually taken when someone has a restrictive diet.
Yet another micronutrient essential to keep your body balanced and healthy. There are seven essential minerals: sodium, iron, potassium, calcium, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus. Sodium is essential to our diet, it is found naturally in nuts, vegetables, meats, and others. You should know that sodium should be consumed carefully, and certain sources of sodium should be avoided such as processed foods.
Fiber is naturally found in fruits, vegetables, and grains; there are two types: soluble and insoluble fiber. Both types of fiber are essential for a healthy and balanced life. Soluble fiber is found in plants, it helps us lower LDL cholesterol, and insoluble fiber helps prevent bowel problems. Wholemeal foods are always the better option to get the most fiber out of a meal. Lentils, potato skins, peas, beans, and brown rice are all fiber-rich foods.
It is no surprise that water is one of the main nutrients needed to have a balanced lifestyle since 70% of our body is made up of it. Water assists with absorption, digestion, and excretion, it is also essential for the homeostasis or regulation of our body’s temperature. Water is a joint lubricant to our bodies, so it is important to drink and replenish all the water used by our bodies daily. We lose on average about 1.5 liters of water daily, if it is not replenished, dehydration can occur rapidly. Daily water intake varies, as a child cannot be drinking as much as an adult would be. On average, the recommended amount is at least 6-8 glasses of water a day to keep your body running smoothly.