The Basics of Healthy Nutrition

Overview of Basic Nutrition

There is much discussion today about basic nutrition. This is because there is an obesity epidemic on the rise, not just in the United States, but around the world. People are gaining weight for a number of reasons, including less time exercising and poorer eating habits.

The poorer eating habits exemplify a lack of basic nutrition. Many people aren’t even aware of what exactly makes up basic nutrition. In this chapter, we will go over what exactly basic nutrition is so that you can ensure you are following this in your own life.

Basic nutrition involves drinking plenty of water and eating right. Water is essential because the human body is made up of between 45% to 75% of water by weight. In newborns, the amount of weight made up by water can be as high as 75%. In a study composed of men and women of all ages, the adult human body averaged 65% water. Another reason why people must drink water regularly is because they cannot store water; thus, it must be replenished regularly.

The common knowledge was that you were supposed to drink eight glasses of water (about 64 ounces) each day. This knowledge has been disputed in recent years to where the recommended amount is now between six to ten glasses, depending upon the person.

Suffice it to say, though, that water is vital to life and that humans cannot go for long periods of time without water. Depending upon weather conditions and climate, an average person may be able to survive up to a week at most without water.

Conversely, people can go up to two months without eating. This doesn’t mean that it’s good for you, though. Nutrient deficiencies can occur when you don’t eat, leading to potentially dangerous side effects. The common knowledge was that you were supposed to eat three meals per day – breakfast in the morning, lunch in the afternoon, dinner in the evening.

However, that understanding has also been challenged in recent years, with many nutritionists now saying that you are best-served by eating four to six lighter meals throughout the day rather than three larger meals. This is because your metabolism continues to be used throughout the day when you eat that many meals per day. This leads to your food being turned into energy and not fat.

Of course, you need to be eating the right foods in order to maximize your energy levels and keep the food you eat from turning into fat. The “right foods” are those that come from eating from the “My Plate” guide, which is the current nutrition guide presented by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It is a food circle or pie chart that shows the serving portions from the five main food groups: Fruits, Grains, Vegetables, Protein, Dairy.

It is recommended that you eat approximately 30% each of vegetables and grains, while eating 20% each of proteins and fruits. A very small portion of dairy (less than 1%) should also be consumed each day (this small portion can be in the form of a yogurt cup, glass of milk, etc.). The U.S. Government also emphasizes portion control when deciding upon what to eat, plus limiting your intake of sugar and sodium.

In this section, we gave an overview of the importance of water, what is meant by the “right foods,” and the “My Plate” guide. In the next section, we will explore more of the importance of drinking water and eating the right foods, as well as examine more specific details of good nutrition and portion control.

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The Basics of Healthy Nutrition

There is much discussion today about basic nutrition. This is because there is an obesity epidemic on the rise, not just in the United States, but around the world. People are gaining weight for a number of reasons, including less time exercising and poorer eating habits.

Basics of Healthy Nutrition

The poorer eating habits exemplify a lack of basic nutrition. Many people aren’t even aware of what exactly makes up basic nutrition. In this chapter, we will go over what exactly basic nutrition is so that you can ensure you are following this in your own life.