The Importance of Good Food


The foods we eat provide the nutrients our bodies need to grow, heal and function. Eating a variety of healthy foods can reduce the risk for diseases and conditions such as heart disease, cancer, obesity and depression. Food can also be a source of pleasure and comfort.

A person’s diet is the total food they consume on a daily basis, including beverages and snacks. It is important to eat a balanced diet of the three main types of foods: carbohydrates, proteins and fats.

The carbohydrates in foods give us energy. They include grains, fruits, vegetables and legumes. The proteins in foods are essential for building and repairing tissues, muscles and other organs. The fats in foods keep our cells working properly and help our bodies to absorb vitamins.

Some foods are processed. Processed foods are preserved or made to taste better and last longer. They may contain added salt, sugar or fat. Processed foods usually contain more kilojoules than unprocessed or whole foods.

People should choose a variety of healthy foods, which are low in fat and sodium. They should also avoid junk or fast food and instead eat more foods such as vegetables, whole fruits, whole grains, lean meats, skinless chicken breast, fish, nuts, seeds, tofu and beans. Foods that are rich in calcium, potassium and magnesium, such as yogurt and milk, should be consumed often.

A healthy diet is one that includes all of the different foods our bodies need to function well. Vegetables are the most nutritious and should make up at least half of our meals. It is best to eat a variety of different vegetables every day.

Having good eating habits can benefit our health by helping us maintain a healthy weight, lower our risk for heart disease and high blood pressure, reduce the chance of developing certain cancers, manage diabetes and increase our energy levels. A healthy diet can also help protect against cognitive decline as we age.

When choosing a diet, it is important to take into account the environmental impact of our choices. By eating fewer processed foods, more organic fruits and vegetables, plant proteins (nuts, seeds, tofu), farm-raised chicken and eggs, wild-caught fish and limiting dairy, we can contribute to sustainability. It is also a good idea to choose foods that are low in saturated fat, trans fat and cholesterol. In addition, avoiding foods with added sugars and salt is helpful. Lastly, by selecting foods that are high in fiber, we can reduce our cholesterol and triglyceride levels. By following these simple tips, we can eat healthier and live longer.