May 9, 2022
The Most Important Nutrients to Include in Your Diet
If you know you want to be healthier but aren’t sure how to start, here are a few tips. You should aim to get certain nutrients from your diet because they’re essential for overall health and wellness. Here is a brief overview of some of the most important nutrients you need and what foods provide them.
There’s no question that protein is essential for good health, but many people consume too much or too little. Different paleo professionals recommend different amounts of protein-based on your goals. But I generally like to stick to around 104 grams of protein per day.
Approximately 16% of the average person’s body weight is protein. This nutrient is important for growing and maintaining muscle tissue and building every cell in the body. Proteins contain various amino acids. Your body can manufacture some of these amino acids on its own, but there are some that you must get from the foods you eat. Healthy sources of protein include:
- Fresh fish
- Lean poultry and other lean meats
- Venison (deer)
- Seeds and nuts (especially almonds, cashews and hemp seeds)
- Vegetables (especially artichokes, portobello mushrooms and Brussels sprouts)
These foods are delicious and can help you meet your protein needs. The body does not use protein for energy unless absolutely necessary, but it does use it as a building block for all body tissues.
Yes, you can eat carbs on a paleo diet! Carbohydrates are important for fueling your body and helping your brain and nervous system function optimally. The key is to make sure your carbs come from healthy, whole food sources. Excellent sources of carbohydrates include:
- Alfalfa sprouts
- Bean sprouts
- Leafy greens
- Sweet potatoes
There are many other healthy sources of carbohydrates you can consume, but it’s essential to watch your total intake. In addition, it’s important to determine whether you feel best on a very low carb diet or a moderate carb diet.
Many people cringe at the word “fat,” but you will not get fat from eating the right kinds of fat. Healthy fats are very important to consume for your health. Eating healthy fats such as the type found in salmon and nuts may help decrease your risk of heart disease and balance your blood sugar. Here are some of the best sources of healthy fats:
- Vegetable oils (such as avocado and olive oil)
Healthy fats contain omega-3 fatty acids, which can help lower inflammation in your body and lower your risk of certain diseases.
You may not think of water as a nutrient because it contains zero calories, but it’s the most important nutrient you can consume! Without water, you wouldn’t survive very long. Your body needs water to facilitate all of its internal processes. If you’re drinking enough water, your urine should be clear or almost clear and should have very little odor.
Vitamins are powerful antioxidants and can combat premature aging. More importantly, vitamins can reduce your risk of developing various diseases and boost your immune health. Here are some excellent sources of vitamins:
These are just a few of the healthy foods you can eat that are jam-packed full of vitamins.
Most of the foods in the above list for vitamins are also good sources of minerals. Minerals strengthen the bones, help regulate your metabolism and assist with many other body processes. If you sweat a lot, you need to be very careful to replace sodium, potassium and magnesium in your body through the foods and drinks you consume.
When building the ideal Paleo diet plan, make sure you include all of these important nutrients. Your body requires each of them to function properly and achieve optimal health.