Science has proven that good nutrition is the key to a healthier lifestyle. Nutrition plays a vital role in our overall health. From a strong immune system to better sleep to improved heart health, the right foods help your body ward off diseases and function at an optimum level. And so, to help you understand just how beneficial nutrition is, here are nine scientifically-proven benefits of good nutrition.
1. Boost Immune System
Good nutrition is the key to a robust immune system. A healthy diet packed with Vitamin C and E, beta-carotene, antioxidants, and zinc are vital in boosting your body’s defense against diseases. Most vegetables and fruits contain vitamin C, which boosts the production of B-cells and T-cells found in white blood cells. The production of these cells strengthens your immune system.
Nuts, seeds, broccoli, and spinach are rich in vitamin E. These foods are antioxidants. Antioxidants suppress free radicals, which leads to a reduction in cell damage. In turn, this promotes the body’s response to diseases and helps your body function at an optimum level.
Fortified cereals and plant-based milk are rich in Vitamin D. Vitamin D can minimize the risk of viral infections.
2. Strong and Healthy Bones and Teeth
Foods that are rich in magnesium and calcium are vital for strong and healthy bones and teeth. Low-fat foods such as cabbage, legumes, cauliflower, tofu, dark green vegetables, canned fish, and broccoli are rich in calcium. Also, the Vitamin D that we get from the sun triggers calcium production, which strengthens the bones.
Magnesium is found in seeds, nuts, and leafy vegetables. The mineral helps the body absorb calcium, which increases the born destiny and minimizes the risk of diseases such as osteoporosis.
3. Weight Management
Foods high in calories lead to obesity, which increases the risk of diseases such as poor bone density, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and even some types of cancer. On the contrary, eating foods low in calories such as lean proteins, whole grain, vegetables, and fruits helps you maintain healthy body weight. These foods are rich in fiber. They have a high nutritional value.
Fiber is indigestible. It plays a vital role in the digestion process. Fiber slows down the rate of digestion and promotes a healthy digestive system. Foods rich in fiber make you feel full for a long time, reducing the amount of food you eat which translates to low calories and ultimately better weight management.
4. Improved Memory
You can minimize the risk of memory loss and cognitive decline by taking foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamin D, C, and E, polyphenols, and flavonoids. Fish is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids. The Mediterranean diet has a wide range of foods crucial for better memory.
5. Prevent Lifestyle Diseases
Poor eating habits and a sedentary lifestyle cause lifestyle diseases which could lead to obesity. Obesity has been linked to heart disease, hypertension, and type 2 diabetes. Overweight also increases the risk of some types of cancer.
A healthy diet is key to preventing complications caused by lifestyle diseases. A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats reduces the risk of lifestyle diseases. You can also live healthier if you incorporate exercise into your regular routine. Ace study materials can help you better understand the link between exercise, nutrition, and healthy living.
Foods rich in dietary fiber reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, obesity, stroke, and heart disease. They have also been shown to improve blood cholesterol.
6. Improved Mood
Research conducted in 2016 to establish the relationship between diet and mood revealed that diets with low glycemic loads improve mood. Low glycemic load foods include whole grains, whole fruit, and vegetables. These foods are digested slowly, gradually releasing glucose into the bloodstream. High glycemic foods like cakes, biscuits, white bread, and soft drinks are processed. They are digested quickly, causing a rapid rise in blood sugar levels. These foods trigger the symptoms of fatigue and depression.
7. Reduced Risk of Cancer
Several studies link particular foods to reduced risk of some types of cancer. A research study in 2014 showed that fruits reduce the risk of upper gastrointestinal tract cancer. The research further revealed that eating fruits and vegetables reduces the risk of colorectal cancer while fibers minimize the risk of liver cancer.
8. Better Night Sleep
High consumption of alcohol and caffeine can cause the airway to block when you are sleeping, leading to discomfort. This can cause sleep apnea. Other risk factors that may cause sleep apnea include unhealthy diets and obesity.
Studies show that a healthy diet can enhance the quality and duration of sleep. It also helps you sleep fast. A consistent, high-quality sleep makes you more energized, more productive, and healthier.
9. Heart Health
High blood pressure, which can be caused by obesity, lack of physical exercise, too much salt in a diet, smoking, among others, is the leading cause of stroke, heart attack, and heart failure. According to the American Cardiovascular Association, almost half of the adults in the US suffer from heart-related disease. In fact, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention says cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death among adults in the USA.
Healthy foods such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy products, beans, fish, nuts, and vegetable oils help reduce blood pressure. Increasing the intake of foods rich in fiber, magnesium, calcium, and potassium in your diet is equally helpful. In addition, limit soft drinks, foods with added sugar, saturated fats, and sodium intake.
People have often underestimated the importance of proper nutrition. However, science has proven that a healthy diet boosts your immune system, helping your body fight diseases.
You can start your journey to a healthier you by introducing the right foods in your diet until you change your whole meal plan to a more healthy, nutritious one. This way, you can be sure to live a robust, healthier life.
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