Healthy eating requires you to eat a number of nutrients every day. In fact, there are 40 different nutrients you need to ingest in order to keep your body healthy. That’s a lot of nutrients you need to know about! Luckily, you can break down all of these nutrients into smaller categories in order to keep them organized in your mind and make sure you get all of the foods you need.
First and foremost, everyone needs water in order to live a healthy life. Without water, we become dehydrated, and eventually die. You lose water when you sweat and through daily bodily functions, so water must be replenished. Drinking about 8 glasses a day is recommended. Of course, water is found in food as well as in drinks, so you can get your 8 glasses by eating foods like watermelon.
Of course, we need much more than water every day to survive. Another group of nutrients we can’t do without is proteins. Proteins are found in foods such as meat, eggs, and soy products. They provide the amino acids needed to build muscle tissue as well as help make some of the hormones in our bodies. Red blood cells and hair is also made from protein.
Along with proteins, a body also needs adequate amounts of fats and carbohydrates in order for us to have enough energy during the day. Fats are primarily used for energy during intense activity, like exercising, while carbohydrates are primarily used for energy during less intense activities, like standing, sitting, and other movements. Both the fats and the carbohydrates that we eat in a day can be stored for later use as fat, so it is important to eat enough for energy, but also important to regulate intake in order to stay slim and healthy. In the event that you are not eating enough fats and carbohydrates, your body can also provide itself with fuel from proteins.
Vitamins and minerals are also important nutrients for our daily lives. We get these from fruits, vegetables, milk, and most natural sources of food. Some of our foods, such as bread products, can even be enriched so that we get more vitamins and minerals in our bodies. There are dozens that you need to ingest regularly, such as iron, thiamine, vitamin C, and vitamin D. If you are eating a healthy diet, you can most likely get enough vitamins and minerals from your foods, but you can also take vitamin supplements to make sure that you are getting the right amounts you need to maintain body function. Supplements may also be available to help with other nutrients as well, so if you are worried, talk to your doctor about how you can be sure to be eating a healthy amount of nutrients.
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Our articles should be used for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to be taken as medical advice. If you’re concerned, consult a health professional before taking dietary supplements or introducing any major changes to your diet.
Evangeline has taken part in competitive sports since a young age. As a qualified RYA Dinghy Instructor, she understands the importance of proper nutrition for fuelling extreme and endurance sports, especially due to her experience in Team GBR Squads and captaining and coaching her University first team.
In her spare time, Evangeline loves running – especially marathons. On the weekends, you’ll find her taking on water sports or hiking up a hill. Her favourite evenings are spent taking on a HIIT session or squats in the gym before digging into some spicy food and a ton of vegetables – yum!
Find out more about Evie's experience here.