Why Healthy Living is Important
Why Healthy Living is Important
We eat food for many reasons, most of which are connected with our physical well being. When we eat food, it is not only absorbed into our bodies; it also gives energy to the cells that use it. Energy is the fuel that allows us to move from one place to another and keeps us going. The food that we eat gives energy to the cells and tissues of our body, which is why we need food to live.
Food is any material taken from the earth to provide nutrition to an organisms. Food is generally of animal, plant or fungi origin, and is made up of vital nutrients, including vitamins, proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. This nutrient combination is combined in order to make food that can sustain the physical needs of a living being. Animal products such as meat, fish, poultry, eggs and dairy produce foods that are rich in protein and other nutrients that provide energy to the body and enable it to grow and thrive.
Animal fats, whether they come from red meat, poultry or milk, are also rich in vitamins A, D, E and K. These vitamins are essential to life, and without them, we would quickly become fatally ill. Fatty acids found in meats such as beef, pork, lamb, duck, goat, cheese, butter and game meats (such as deer, turkey, bison and seals) provide many essential fatty acids to the body, which are vital for cell to cell communication.
Plant foods, such as fruit and vegetables, are naturally rich in vitamins and minerals that are necessary for healthy living. However, some plants are more nutritious than others. Fruits and vegetables must contain a sufficient amount of vitamins, carbohydrates, fiber, calcium, iron and antioxidants in order to provide their benefits. Deficiencies of any of these nutrients can result in an unhealthy body, and contribute to chronic disease and premature death. Omega 3 fatty acids found in oily fish are particularly important for maintaining a healthy heart.
Fibre is one of the most important nutrients, because it assists the body in absorbing other nutrients and eliminating waste products. Carbs provide energy, but are also converted into sugar. Therefore, a diet that is rich in carbohydrates contributes to obesity, which is one of the leading causes of long term illness and premature death. A diet that is high in sugar, on the other hand, can contribute to the development of diabetes, a precursor to many serious diseases. The best dietary fibre sources include fruits and vegetables, legumes (such as beans), nuts, seeds, whole grains and oat bran.
A healthy diet that is rich in nutrients and which consists of a wide variety of foods from different food groups can be effective in reducing weight and improving health. For those people who do not eat a lot of fresh food, incorporating a variety of locally grown fresh foods into their daily meals can be beneficial. For those with difficulty eating healthily on their own, whole grains and legumes make an excellent, nutrient-rich alternative to junk food. By substituting junk food for some of your favourites, you can improve your health and lose weight!