What Makes Food Healthy or Unhealthy?
Why Is Healthy Food Good for You?
Healthy food contains natural nutrition, dietary fiber, heart-healthy oils and muscle-building protein not found in processed food that has been loaded down with sodium, preservatives and sugar. Choose whole, fresh foods, and you will get all the vitamins, minerals and other nutrients needed for proper cell function, lasting energy and strong bones.
Good Carbs for Energy
About half of your dietary calories in a healthy diet should come from carbohydrates. Good sources of healthy carbs are whole-grain foods, fresh fruits and vegetables. Whole-grain breads, cereals and pastas, as well as brown rice, contain complex carbs that supply long-lasting energy, because they take longer for your body to process. Fruits and veggies supply quick energy with simple carbs that must be renewed daily, and they don't have the empty calories, sugars and sodium found in processed snacks.
Fiber for Proper Digestion
You need plenty of fiber for proper digestion, which is found in fresh produce as well as whole-grain foods. MayoClinic.com states that for a 2000 calories-per-day diet, you need about 38 g of fiber to stimulate bowel function and keep your digestive system healthy. Processed foods and refined-flour bread and cereal products remove healthy dietary fiber during milling. Even if white bread and processed cereals state they are enriched with extra vitamins and minerals, they still lack necessary fiber.
Protein for Muscle Health
Good protein will supply the building blocks for strong muscles without endangering your health with too much cholesterol-building fat. The Harvard School of Public Health states that you will get plenty of protein from fish with much less fat than that found in red meat. Other healthy, low-fat sources of protein include poultry, nuts, seeds and legumes. Fatty fish such as salmon, trout and herring also supply heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.
Vitamins and Minerals
Get your vitamins and minerals in abundance by eating fresh fruit and veggies. MayoClinic.com states that by beginning a food shopping trip in the fresh produce aisle, you will prioritize full nutrition. Select a full spectrum of colors in fruits and veggies, and you will get a wide variety of vitamins and minerals. Fresh, whole foods are a better source of nutrition, water-soluble vitamins and minerals than relying on artificial supplements. Low-fat dairy products supply fat-soluble vitamins A, K, D and E as well as calcium for strong bones.
Healthy and Unhealthy Foods
In honor of National Nutrition Month, 95210 is discussing the facts behind “healthy” and “unhealthy” foods.
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear of “healthy” foods?
-Green food items (spinach, lettuce, and zucchini)
-Not microwavable (Homemade)
Your personal response and sentiment of healthy foodstuffs is most likely represented by the above mentioned words. In this post, we will attempt to discuss and dispel some of the myths associated with eating healthy, provide a list of food items that are healthy and affordable.
What makes a food healthy?
Healthy food is a description given to foodstuffs that are nutritionally balanced. Nutritionally balanced foods have the ability to provide us with essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber and proteins which can provide us with energy and makes us feel full for a longer period of time in comparison to unhealthy foods.
Fruits and vegetables are examples of healthy foods that are rich in micronutrients such as vitamins and minerals. For this reason, it is recommended that we consume 5 or more fruits and vegetables daily. It is important that we follow this dietary recommendation as the lack of vitamins and minerals in our diet can lead to a host of health problems. For example, vitamin C deficiency can make us vulnerable to illnesses such as the common cold as vitamin C is needed for strong immune system. Vitamin C can be found in fruits such as grapefruit and oranges and vegetables such as chili peppers and kale. Buying in season and locally grown produce is an affordable alternative to eating healthy. Additionally, buying frozen vegetables and fruits is equally as nutritious as fresh produce. Minerals such as calcium, magnesium and iron are also important for essential functions of the body. For example, calcium which is found in milk is needed for maintaining healthy bones and teeth.
Protein is also important for a balanced diet as protein molecules are needed for all cell functions in our body. Proteins can be incorporated in our diet by consuming beans which are relatively inexpensive and by eating fish, eggs and lean meats (chicken). Buying in bulk (family size) can be an affordable alternative as per unit cost of items is usually reduced. Fiber is another important component of balanced diet as it is needed for digestion and feeling of being satisfied with the meals. Whole grains, breads, and vegetables are all excellent sources of fiber.
What are unhealthy foods?
“Unhealthy” food is an umbrella term used to describe foods that have high amounts of calories, sodium, saturated and trans fats (bad fats.) The consumption of food items that have high sodium and fat content leads to chronic heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. For example, fast foods such as burgers and hotdogs are considered unhealthy because they contain high amounts of sodium (salt), calories, saturated and trans fats. Processed foods which are food items designed to be convenient are also an example of “unhealthy” foods as they are devoid of essential nutrients. Processed foods have extra sodium, sugars and preservatives to guarantee long shelf life. The added calories and fat are harmful to our health. In order to avoid consuming processed food, avoid shopping in the aisles of your grocery store. Instead, go around the outer edges of the store where they have the nutritious foodstuffs such as vegetables, fruits, dairy products and lean meats.
Unhealthy Food vs Healthy Food
In the battle of unhealthy food vs healthy food, eating something good for you is the clear winner. Right? The problem is that many people are confused about what is unhealthy and what is healthy. With so many questions about labels, ingredients and what is actually right for you, it can be tough to get a clear answer. Understanding the differences in food can help you make the right choices. So just keep reading to get better understanding for better choices.
Overview of Unhealthy Food vs Healthy Food
So what is healthy – and what is not? It helps to look at what the experts have to say.
1. Food List
Healthy diets are those that are made up of foods that fuel your body but don't add anything unnecessary. These include whole grains, lean protein, vegetables and fruit, nuts and seeds, and low-fat dairy. Unhealthy diets include things like saturated fat, added sugar and high levels of sodium. Healthy foods are usually all-natural; unhealthy foods are processed.
2. Nutrient Intake
Eating healthy means you get plenty of essential vitamins and minerals, something that far too many adults are lacking in the nation today. Whole grains provide fiber, dairy provides calcium, fruits and vegetables provide potassium, and lean meats can provide protein. This is just the tip of the tasty iceberg when it comes to nutrients and minerals essential to your body function. While unhealthy food can only increase your intake of sugar, bad fat, etc. that have been listed above.
3. Healthy Concern
Studies have shown that eating unhealthy foods can increase your risks of cancer and the chances of getting Type 2 diabetes. Heart disease is also a consideration. Unhealthy food can make you obese over time, and obesity can lead to a host of serious health problems. While when you opt to eat only healthy foods, you will have better weight management, increased energy levels, a boost in immunity, and a better emotional balance. All of these things can combine to create a much happier and longer life.
Some might argue that they can't afford healthy foods, and that the unhealthy foods are much cheaper. However, studies have shown that for only $1.50 per day, a person can eat much healthier options. That's a small price to pay for better health. Buying healthy things in bulk, such as whole grains, can help cut the costs down even more.
Include More Healthy Food and Less Unhealthy Food
Once you know the difference between unhealthy food vs healthy food, you might wonder how you can incorporate more good foods into your diet. After all, habits are very hard to break, and you are probably accustomed to unhealthy food – after all, it tastes great! But you can take steps to replace the unhealthy foods with the better ones.
Start by slowly replacing what you buy at the store with healthier items. For instance, instead of that large soda, buy a case of flavored water – with no added sugar, of course. Instead of reaching for the ice cream, look to the produce aisle and invest in some watermelon or other sweet fruits. Over time, you can convince yourself to eat healthier.
In the battle of unhealthy food vs healthy food, the better stuff always wins. Here are ten great foods that can get you started down the road to success.
10 Wonderful Healthy Foods
These fruits are loaded with fiber and vitamin C, both of which are essential for good health. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that can help with connective tissue, blood vessels, and helps you absorb iron.
These nuts are loaded with fiber, magnesium, iron, calcium and riboflavin, as well as a hefty dose of vitamin E. There is fat, but it's the good stuff that is kind to your heart.
These little powerhouses of fiber are full of protein and phytonutrients, too. They also have iron and potassium, and can help you feel fuller longer.
Loaded with phytonutrients, these little blue fruits help prevent disease and can guard against things like diabetes. They are loaded with fiber and vitamin C.
In addition to phytonutrients and vitamin C, broccoli contains folates and plenty of vitamin A, which is known for preserving the health of your eyes.
This fish contains fatty acids, which are good for your eyes and heart, as well as omega-3s, which protect against many things, like heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke.
An excellent leafy green, this veggie can boost your immune system and fight against eye problems, certain cancers and heart disease. It is loaded with vitamins, such as magnesium and vitamins A and C.
Beta carotene gives them the orange color, and they have a ton of fiber, vitamin B-6 and potassium. They also have low calories and keep you feeling full.
Vegetable juices are full of all the good vitamins, minerals and nutrients of veggies without the texture that some people dislike. Just make sure that the juices do not have any added sugars.
This tiny grain has lots of nutrients, including folate, zinc, potassium, phosphorous, magnesium and thiamin, just to name a few. You can also get protein, fiber and healthy fats from it.
Healthy Foods vs. Unhealthy Foods
One of the reasons people turn to raw food is because they are looking to eat more healthy food. That’s definitely one of my main reasons for giving raw food a try. (Remember that when I say raw food, I don’t necessarily mean 100% raw.)
Lately, I found myself giving out this little piece of advice: eating raw food doesn’t mean it’s necessarily healthier than other ways of eating.
HEAR ME OUT…
There are a lot of other things that go into your health, other than just the “label” you apply to your food. Maintaining healthy diets, for most of us can be tricky. So for instance, you might be eating raw food, but eating too much of it. Or you might be eating raw food, but eating too much of one category and not enough of another.
Neither of these scenarios is very healthy.
Or, you might be eating raw food but not drinking enough water, sleeping enough, or exercising enough. And then there’s your emotional and mental well being, all of which play into your overall health.
Now, let’s take a closer look at what healthy foods are.
THE HEALTHY FOODS LIST
Here is a basic list of healthy foods that most people can agree on:
- Fresh fruits and vegetables
- Fresh leafy greens
- Cold pressed extra virgin oils
- Raw nuts and seeds
- Seaweeds and sea vegetables
Now we can split hairs and argue that we should include other foods, depending on what lifestyle you follow. For instance some may want to add superfoods, others may want to add in raw dairy or meat, you get the idea.
But I think we can all agree that these are basically healthy foods. Especially fresh fruits and vegetables.
THE UNHEALTHY FOODS LIST
- Processed “white” foods like white breads, white pastas, etc.
- Refined white sugar, high fructose corn syrup, aspartame
- Addictive substances like MSG, and other “taste enhancing” chemicals
- Processed, denatured fats and oils that the body cannot deal with
Alright, so the unhealthy foods list is incomplete. That’s partly because it would take too long to include everything that might potentially be unhealthy. But it’s also because we don’t all agree on what’s unhealthy.
Some people go around telling themselves that they’ll be healthy if they eat “Everything in Moderation“. And while the adage that eating everything in moderation probably held true 100 years ago, it certainly doesn’t hold today.
There are more chemicals and ingredients that I can’t pronounce on a label for dried raisins than ever before. Dried raisins!
Imagine what’s in super processed junk foods for a minute. It’s not pretty.
HOW TO INCLUDE MORE HEALTHY FOODS AND LESS UNHEALTHY FOODS
I honestly believe that in order to eat more healthy foods we need to leave some of the unhealthy foods behind. If you’re too full from eating an entire bag of chips and a 1L bottle of Coke, then you’re not going to be inspired to eat an apple. Let alone a salad.
Letting go of foods that aren’t good for you is a lot more complex than it might seem at first. Why? Cravings. That’s why.
What Makes Food Unhealthy?
Q: What are healthy foods versus unhealthy foods?
- Lean protein—turkey, skinless chicken, fish
- Unsaturated fats—olives and olive oil, fish oil, organic peanut butter, hummus, avocados, omega-3 fatty acids
- Whole grain carbs—whole-wheat pasta, brown rice, whole-wheat bread, chia seeds
- Fiber—oatmeal, fruits, vegetables
- Simple sugars
- Enriched, bleached or refined flour
- Syrups like high-fructose corn syrup (corn sugar)
- Saturated fats—four-legged animal fat (like cows), two-legged animal skin (like chicken), coconut and palm oils
- Trans fats
Difference between Healthy and Unhealthy Foods
Everyone wants to eat delicious food and enjoy the taste of life. Apart of enjoying the food, individual forgot to focus on the quality of meal. There are multiple differences between healthy and Unhealthy foods through which you can easily decide what to choose for eating.
It is referred as the food which is beneficial for health in terms of nutrition and it also fits your body. Healthy food may be considered as organic food (pure from chemicals), whole foods and natural food etc.
The best way to describe the unhealthy food is the less nutritional food containing high amount of calories, fat and sugar. This type of food is high in protein although body needs protein but in a particular amount.
Healthy Food vs. Unhealthy Food
Examples of Foods: Healthy food is rich of energy such as fresh fruits and vegetables, leafy greens, raw nuts, sprout, yogurt and honey etc. While unhealthy food are white bread, pastas, hot-dogs, chicken roast, chips, chocolate etc.
Health Effects: By consuming healthy foods fatigue, depression, headache, joint pains, lungs problem could be resolved while unhealthy food welcomes the cardiovascular diseases (CVD), obesity, diabetes and also other chronic diseases.
Approachable: Healthy foods are not easy and convenient to reach and it needs some time to cooked for its preparation but unhealthy foods are ready made and convenient to reachable.
Pricing: As the healthy foods provide so countless benefits hence the price of these foods are three times more expensive than unhealthy food which is cheaper.
Taste Bud: Most of the people do not eat nutritional foods just because of not feeling its scrummy taste while unhealthy foods have so many varieties in taste such as cheese burger, pizza etc.
Users: In one research it is observed that 92% of participants choose unhealthy food and merely 8% of participants go for healthy food which is very low.
Energy Provider: As the healthy food provides minerals, vitamins and other basic elements which the body needs so we can say that the healthy foods are the source of energy while unhealthy foods harms the health which reveals that it is not the source of energy but a source of diseases.
By aforementioned differences it is concluded in a nut shell that people knows the pros and cons of these two categories of foods but they never try to avoid junk foods. People became addictive of junk food items although it is hazardous to health. But no doubt, healthy food is much better than junk food because it provides calories and nutrition which makes your immune system strong.
What Are the Benefits of Eating Healthy Vs. Unhealthy?
At least 2.7 million people around the world die each year as a result of not getting enough fruits and vegetables in their diets, according to the World Health Organization. Eating a healthy diet instead of an unhealthy diet can help you get all the essential nutrients you need and limit your risk for a number of health conditions.
Healthy vs. Unhealthy Diets
Healthy diets are made up mainly of nutrient-rich foods, such as legumes, fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, lean protein and nuts and seeds. Unhealthy diets are high in fat, saturated fat, trans fat, sodium and added sugars. These diets often contain a lot of processed or fast foods that are high in calories but don't contain many nutrients. People following a healthy diet watch their portion sizes so they maintain a healthy weight, since both the quantity and the quality of the food you eat is important for a healthy diet.
If you eat healthy, you are more likely to get enough of the nutrients, like fiber, calcium, vitamin D and potassium, which many Americans don't consume in sufficient amounts. Whole grains, vegetables, legumes, fruits and nuts provide fiber; low-fat diary products and green leafy vegetables provide calcium; fruits and vegetables like bananas, apricots, strawberries, avocado and cucumber are good sources of potassium; and fish, eggs and fortified milk and orange juice contain vitamin D.
Up to 40 percent of cancers may be due, in part, to following an unhealthy diet, according to BreastCancer.org. Unhealthy diets also increase your risk for Type 2 diabetes, obesity and heart disease. The World Health Organization estimates that approximately 2.6 million deaths each year are due to obesity-related illnesses.
Planning your meals ahead of time and allowing yourself a small portion of a less-than-healthy treat once in awhile can help you stick to a healthy diet. Following a healthy diet isn't the only thing that matters -- you also need to make healthy lifestyle changes to minimize your disease risk. Exercise regularly, stop smoking and drink only in moderation, if at all.