Many Americans are in a constant struggle to maintain their weight. In the US, over two-thirds of adults and one-third of children are obese or overweight. Obesity is related to a range of health problems, including high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and even some cancers. As we age, our metabolism slows down which makes weight loss even more difficult. Here’s How to Know What You’re Really Eating
But not all calories are created equal. A high nutrient diet will help you lose weight much faster than a low-nutrient diet. That’s because high nutrient foods keep your body full longer which helps you feel satisfied while keeping cravings at bay.
They also help your body live longer by boosting your immune system and providing key nutrients that can’t be obtained by only eating junk food. And what’s more satisfying than putting good food into your body? This blog post shares some helpful tips for understanding and increasing the nutrients in your diet!
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How to Know What You’re Really Eating: Understanding Food Calories and Nutrition
To lose weight, you have to eat fewer calories than your body burns. This is where most diets fail because they’re not focusing on what the body needs. They’re focused on cutting back and depriving one’s self of certain foods instead of making healthy changes in their diet. When trying to lose weight, more is better when it comes to nutrients such as protein, fiber, and good fats.
Additionally, you should focus on eating nutrient-dense foods that are high in micronutrients and antioxidants such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and healthy fats (for example coconut oil). These types of foods provide essential nutrients that can’t be obtained by eating only junk food.
The next step is understanding how many calories are needed for different activities. You burn calories every day by just living your life. For example:
A 150-pound person would need 1,800 calories a day to maintain their current weight
A 180-pound person would need 2,000 calories a day to maintain their current weight
A 200-pound person would need 2,400 calories a day to maintain their current weight
Good Diet = Good Health
A diet consisting of high nutrients is key to good health. As you age, your metabolism slows down which makes weight loss difficult. High nutrient foods are important for the body’s overall health and help you maintain your weight by keeping you full longer.
In order to lose weight, it’s important to eat a higher nutrient diet than a low-nutrient diet. Putting good food into your body will help keep you satisfied while fighting off cravings and providing essential nutrients that can’t be found in junk food only.
Understanding Nutrition Labels
One of the most important things about understanding nutrition is knowing what you’re actually eating. Unfortunately, many people are not aware of what their food ingredients are. But understanding nutrition labels is just one way to educate yourself.
Here are a few tips for decoding nutrition labels:
Nutrition labels break down how much protein, carbohydrates, fat and sugar your food contains.
To determine if a food has a high or low glycemic index, look at the number to the right of GI (glycemic index). Foods with a low GI have a lower impact on blood glucose levels and have an advantage over foods with a high GI.
What Are Nutrients?
The nutrients in food that your body needs to operate and stay healthy are called macronutrients. They are made up of protein, carbohydrates, and fats.
Protein is found in meat, poultry, fish, eggs, nuts, beans and lentils.
Carbohydrates are the main sources of energy for your body. The most common types of carbs are whole grains like rice, breads and cereals.
Fats provide your body with energy as well as essential fatty acids that it needs for good health. Avocados and plant-based oils also contain essential fatty acids.
Types of Nutrients
Protein is a vital nutrient that can help you lose weight. Protein is also an essential macronutrient that provides the building blocks for your body. A high-protein diet will help to boost your metabolic rate, increase muscle mass, and control your appetite.
Carbohydrates are the most common source of energy for the body, so it’s important to know the difference between good carbs and bad carbs. Good carbs are those that have a low glycemic index.
Glycemic index is a measurement of how quickly a carbohydrate raises your blood sugar levels. Foods with a high glycemic index spike blood sugar quickly which can lead to feelings of fatigue, hunger, and cravings. High glycemic foods also increase a person’s insulin response which can lead to weight gain and other health problems.
Here are some good carbs:
Whole grains (oatmeal, brown rice, etc.)
Unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk
Nuts and seeds
Legumes such as beans
Fats are a type of food that can be either healthy or unhealthy depending on how you eat them. Fats are in many foods we eat, such as oils, nuts, avocados, and salmon. They contain high levels of the essential fatty acids omega-3 and omega-6 which play an important role in our body’s health. In contrast, saturated fats (found in red meats) are linked with heart disease and obesity.
So how do you tell if a fat is healthy or not? If a fat has less than 5 grams of total fat per serving then it’s considered low-fat/healthy. If it has more than 20 grams of total fat per serving then it’s considered high-fat/unhealthy.
A good example of healthy fats are Avocados.
Avocados are a good source of monounsaturated omega 3 fatty acids. Compared to other fruits, avocados contain about 0.66g of sugar and 1.8g of carbs for each 100g /serving. Because of having a low glycemic index score, avocados do not raise blood sugars.
Consuming avocados is a great way to boost health. Also, avocado is 60% fat. However, it is not the bad fat you are thinking of. It has fiber that can keep blood sugars stable.
Yes, healthy fats are good fats. In fact, doctors suggest an avocado per day (before or after a workout) to keep cholesterol levels down. In addition to having high-calories, low-carb content, avocados have extra nutrients that your body requires.
Vitamins and Minerals
Vitamins and minerals are necessary in order for the body to produce hormones and enzymes that keep it running smoothly. They also aid in digestion by assisting with the absorption of essential nutrients from food as well as synthesizing proteins needed for tissue growth and repair.
There are many other benefits from eating vegetables besides providing essential vitamins and minerals to the body. Vegetables contain fiber, which is important for proper bowel movement and the prevention of certain cancers. They also contain antioxidants, which can help prevent certain diseases and conditions such as cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s disease.
Vitamins and minerals are important for the good functioning of our immune system, digestive system, and nervous system. They also aid in the formation of bone-building materials. Food sources rich in vitamins and minerals include eggs, dairy products, vegetables and fruit, nuts and grains. Vitamins A, C, D, E, and K are often found in high levels in dark leafy green vegetables like kale. Vitamin B12 is found primarily in animal-derived food sources like eggs; however those who don’t consume animal products can supplement their diet with vitamin B12 supplements.
Minerals are essential for your body to function properly as they help facilitate nerve impulse transmission and energy metabolism. They also play a role in bone health as well as cognitive functions such as blood clotting. Minerals such as magnesium help your body use insulin more effectively which helps regulate blood sugar levels which can have significant effects on weight loss efforts.
For people who are struggling with their weight, it’s important to understand how calories affect different nutrients so that you can make changes accordingly to what is going into your body on a daily basis.
Adding More Nutrients to Your Diet
The easiest way to increase your nutrient intake is by adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet. Veggies are an excellent source of fiber, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other nutrients that can help you live longer. Remember that healthy eating isn’t just about weight loss–it also helps you maintain a healthy body weight over time.
One way to make vegetables more satisfying is by roasting them! Roasting vegetables allows them to absorb more flavor and become tender. Make sure to use a little bit of oil or cooking spray when sautéing vegetables as this will help them cook more evenly.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the low-carb diet safe?
This diet could cause low blood pressure, kidney stones, constipation, nutrient deficiencies and an increased risk of heart disease. Strict diets like keto could also cause social isolation or disordered eating. Keto is not safe for those with any conditions involving their pancreas, liver, thyroid or gallbladder.
What vegetables should I eat?
There are many vegetables you can enjoy. Some of the most common vegetable options are broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, artichokes, and kale. All these vegetables are great choices if you are looking to switch up your diet and add some variety.
Nutrition is one of the most important topics for modern health, and now more than ever, it’s important to know the facts. A few small changes in your lifestyle can make a big difference and reduce health risks. So, reduce your portion sizes, cut out sweet treats and alcohol, meet recommended guidelines for exercise, and increase your intake of fruit and vegetables