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How to Incorporate Essential Nutrients in Your Daily Diet?

Incorporating Essential Nutrients in Your Daily Diet
Ensuring your body receives essential nutrients is challenging these days. How many times have you decided to follow a healthy lifestyle and eat nutritious food?
Any success??
The resolution to follow a healthy lifestyle and eat a balanced diet often remains unaccomplished.
In this blog, let us demystify a balanced diet, how it works, and what foods we can add to our meals to make them balanced.

What Is A Balanced Diet?

A balanced diet includes all the required macronutrients for the proper functioning of the body. From growth to digestion to metabolism, all body functions need optimal nutrition.
You must include the below-given list of foods for a nutritious and balanced meal.
  • Fresh Fruits
  • Green Vegetables
  • Whole Grains
  • Millets
  • Nuts & Seeds
  • Lean meat
  • Dairy products
  • Cheese

Calorie Intake

Calories refer to the units of energy in food. This energy is used to fuel all bodily functions. On average, an individual requires 2000 calories daily to manage a healthy weight and metabolism. However, this varies from one body to another. Our lifestyles have evolved, and our jobs have chained us to a sedentary lifestyle.
It also differs based on gender, lifestyle, age, activities, etc. Refer to the chart below for the calorie intake guidelines.
This doesn’t translate to binge eating heavy junk food. The calories we gain from fried, processed food are empty and mostly contain trans fats, carbs, cholesterol, and sodium in harmful amounts much higher than required.

Foods Rich in Empty Calories

  • Fried Chicken
  • Rich Desserts
  • Burgers
  • Pizzas
  • Hotdogs
  • Bacon
  • Sodas
  • Fries
  • Chips/ Crisps
  • Canned Juices
  • Noodles
  • Biscuits/ Cookies/ Rusks
  • Famous brands and branches of fast food
  • Restaurant Foods
The point to note here is restaurant food. Let’s compare a homemade pizza to a restaurant salad. You might be ordering a safer option thinking of your balanced diet resolution, but who’s to vouch for that salad?
Most of these salads are made using inorganic veggies containing artificial colors and various chemicals sprayed to keep them fresh. Any junk food cooked at home from scratch will contain healthy ingredients and fresh non, non-greasy oils.
For optimum nutrition, you need to limit your intake of empty calories and choose homemade healthy meals.

Importance Of A Balanced Diet

A balanced diet is essential to provide nutrients to your body to work effectively. A body that lacks proper nutrition is more prone to lower immunity and energy levels.
Had days when you felt exhausted and rained out by the end of the day?
Or
Feel those aches in your feet or back with restlessness?
The answer is nutrition.
Malnutrition can lead to various diseases like:
  • Lethargy
  • Dizziness
  • Weakness
  • Blood pressure fluctuations
  • Heart diseases
  • Diabetes
  • Orthopedic problems
  • Vertigo
  • Fainting
Hence, all doctors suggest a nutritionist for all health problems!

Foods To Eat For A Balanced Diet

A balanced meal includes vitamins, minerals, calcium, zinc, protein, carbohydrates, fats, starch, fiber, iron, potassium, sodium, etc. A balanced meal must include:

Green Vegetables

Leafy green vegetables are a rich source of vitamins, minerals, calcium, and other nutrients. Seasonal vegetables are readily available, affordable, fresh, and rich in micronutrients your body needs for the season.
Some vegetables you must include in your diet are:
  • Capsicums
  • Beans
  • Cluster beans
  • Carrots
  • Spinach
  • Broccoli
  • Potatoes
  • Bitter gourd
  • Bottle gourd
  • Beetroot
  • Eggplant
  • Pumpkin
All vegetables have different food values that are important for many body functions.

Fruits

Fruits are a fantastic way of adding nutrition to your diet and make a perfect snack and breakfast item. Again, always pay attention to the seasonal fruits, which are readily available, and the healthiest food items.
Fruits are rich in sugar but are also the healthiest desserts, as they contain natural sugars that burn and provide energy to the body.
Some must-eat fruits are:
  • Bananas
  • Berries
  • Mangoes
  • Watermelons
  • Plums
  • Apricots
  • Tomatoes
  • Oranges
  • Citrus fruits
  • Apples
  • Guava
  • Cherries
  • Kiwis

Protein Rich Foods

Proteins are vital for nutrition, aiding muscle repair, growth, and overall body functionality. Numerous foods are rich in protein, making them accessible in daily meals.
Animal Protein: Nutritious animal-based protein sources include:
  • Beef and Lamb: Examples of red meats
  • Chicken and Turkey: Popular poultry choices
  • Oily Fish: Such as salmon and sardines
It’s advisable to choose fresh, unprocessed meats, as consuming processed meats may raise the risk of cancer and other health issues due to added preservatives and sodium.
Plant-Based Protein: Plant-based proteins offer excellent nutritional benefits, including fiber and other essential nutrients. Some examples are:
  • Lentils
  • Beans
  • Peas
  • Almonds
  • Sunflower Seeds
  • Walnuts
Soy products like tofu and tempeh are great meat alternatives, providing high protein levels and other nutrients.

Calcium Rich Foods

Calcium is an essential nutrient for the structural growth and development of bones. It also aids in muscle recovery and heals damaged tissues and ligaments. The best way to add calcium to your diet is by incorporating dairy, tofu, beans, yogurts, flaxseeds, and spinach. In case of acute calcium shortage, you can also opt for supplements.

The Bottom Line

We have already established the importance of nutrition in the body and how malnutrition can lead to various diseases and health issues. Health and nutrition is a commitment that requires dedication and constant choice of healthy foods over junk food cravings. Remember, it is a baby step towards a healthy you, and once you get there, it is a fantastic feeling of contentment.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, nutrition is the main cause of dizziness, weakness, vertigo, and low energy levels.
Yes, a balanced diet is the best way to nourish your body with nutrients. If in case you suffer from extreme malnutrition then your healthcare provider may prescribe some health supplements.
A balanced diet includes a variety of foods from all the food groups to ensure the body gets all the essential nutrients it needs to function properly.
On average, an individual needs around 2,000 calories per day, but this can vary based on age, gender, activity level, and overall health.

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