Hello lovely people!
We all know that we need to eat healthy in order to be our best selves, but sometimes it’s hard to know exactly what that means. What are the nutrient requirements for humans? How much of each nutrient do we need on a daily basis? And which foods contain the most of each nutrient? In this blog post, I will answer those questions and more! I’ll discuss the important nutrients our bodies need and how much of each nutrient can be found in some common foods. So read on for all you need to know about nutrients and food in general!
What Are The Nutrients That Our Bodies Need?
The human body needs a wide variety of nutrients in order to function properly. These nutrients can be divided into macronutrients, which include: carbohydrates, fats, proteins, fiber and water; and micronutrients, which include vitamins and minerals. Each of these nutrients plays an important role in keeping our bodies functioning properly.
Carbohydrates are one of the three main nutrients that our bodies need. They are essential for proper metabolism and energy production. Carbohydrates are found in a variety of foods, including bread, cereals, pasta, rice, fruits, and vegetables. Our bodies break down carbohydrates into glucose, which is then used for energy. Eating complex carbohydrates rather than simple sugars is important, as complex carbs are a more slowly-digesting energy source.
This means that they provide a steadier supply of energy throughout the day rather than a quick “sugar high” followed by a crash. Complex carbs also tend to be more nutrient-rich than simple sugars. The recommended daily intake of carbohydrates is about 45-65% of our total caloric intake.
- Bread: One slice of bread contains about 15 grams of carbohydrates.
- Rice: A cup of cooked white rice contains about 45 grams of carbohydrates.
- Pasta: A cup of cooked pasta contains about 40 grams of carbohydrates.
- Potatoes: One medium potato contains about 37 grams of carbohydrates.
- Fruits: One banana contains about 27 grams of carbohydrates.
As you can see, a variety of foods contain carbohydrates. Including carbohydrates in your diet is important to get the energy your body needs.
Next up, we have fats. Fats are important for a number of reasons. They help our bodies absorb vitamins and provide energy, and they help to keep our skin and hair healthy. According to the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the daily fat intake is 20-35% of our total caloric intake.
There are two main types of fats: saturated and unsaturated. Saturated fats are found in animal products like meat and dairy and plant-based oils like coconut and palm oil. Unsaturated fats are found in plant-based oils like olive oil, as well as in avocados and nuts.
- Meat: A serving of cooked ground beef contains about 13 grams of fat.
- Dairy: One cup of whole milk contains about eight grams of fat.
- Coconut oil: One tablespoon contains about 14 grams of fat.
- Palm oil: One tablespoon of palm oil contains about 13.5 grams of fat.
- Olive oil: One tablespoon contains about 14 grams of fat.
- Avocados: One avocado contains about 30 grams of fat.
- Nuts: A handful of almonds (about 28 grams) contains about 13 grams fat.
There are a variety of foods that contain fats. It is important to include both saturated and unsaturated fats in your diet to get the nutrients your body needs.
Proteins are another one of the three main nutrients that our bodies need. They are essential for the growth and repair of tissues and play an important role in many biochemical processes. Proteins are made up of amino acids, which can be obtained from food sources such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy products, legumes, and nuts. It is important to eat a variety of protein-rich foods in order to get all the essential amino acids our bodies need. We also need to consume enough protein to meet our individual needs. This will vary depending on factors such as age, activity level, and muscle mass. Getting adequate protein is especially important for athletes and people who are trying to build muscle mass. The recommended daily intake of protein is about 56 grams per day for adults (depending on weight and activity level).
- Meat: A serving of cooked ground beef contains about 22 grams of protein.
- Poultry: A serving of cooked chicken breast contains about 26 grams of protein.
- Fish: A serving of cooked salmon contains about 20 grams of protein.
- Beans: A cup of cooked black beans contains about 15 grams of protein.
- Eggs: One large egg contains about 6.3 grams of protein.
As you can see, a variety of foods contain proteins. It is important to include proteins in your diet to get the nutrients your body needs.
Another type of nutrient that our bodies need is vitamins. Like minerals, vitamins can be found in both food and water. There are two types of vitamins: fat-soluble vitamins and water-soluble vitamins. Fat-soluble vitamins, such as vitamin A, are stored in the body’s fat cells, while water-soluble vitamins, such as vitamin C, dissolve in water and are excreted through the urine. Vitamins are essential for a variety of functions, including metabolism, immunity, and cell growth. Without adequate amounts of vitamins, our bodies would not be able to function properly.
- Fruits: One cup of strawberries contains about 97mg of Vitamin C.
- Vegetables: One cup of broccoli contains about 65mg of Vitamin C.
- Meat: A serving of cooked beef liver contains about 17,997 IU of Vitamin A.
- Dairy: One cup of whole milk contains about 100 IU (or 2.5 mcg) of Vitamin D.
- Grains: One cup of cooked quinoa contains about 1.17 mg of Vitamin E.
Our bodies need a variety of nutrients in order to function properly. Minerals are one type of nutrient that we need, and they can be found in both food and water. There are two types of minerals: macrominerals and microminerals. Macrominerals, such as calcium and magnesium, are needed in large amounts, while microminerals, such as iron and zinc, are needed in small amounts. Our bodies use minerals for a variety of functions, including building bones and teeth, maintaining muscle tissue, and regulating blood pressure. Without adequate amounts of minerals, our bodies would not be able to function properly.
- Fruits: One cup of raisins contains about 3.1 mg of iron.
- Vegetables: One cup of cooked spinach contains about 0.81 mg of iron.
- Meat: A serving of cooked beef liver contains about 17.9 mg of iron.
- Dairy: One cup of whole milk contains about 24 mg of magnesium.
- Grains: One cup of cooked brown rice contains about 1.21 mg of zinc.
Fiber is a mixture of different carbohydrates which are not digested like other nutrients and therefore pass through the gut nearly unchanged. Foods rich in fiber are vegetables like cabbage, carrots, cassava; fruits like banana and avocado; peas, beans and lentils; whole-grain cereals, nuts like almonds, pine nuts, pistachios, peanuts, chestnuts, hazelnuts, pecans or macadamias; and seeds like chia, sunflower, flax, sesame or pumpkin seeds.
Fiber should be included in the diet because they make food bulky or bigger, which can help a person who is overweight to eat less food. It also makes the faeces soft and bulky, which help prevent constipation. Above all it slows the absorption of nutrients, so it helps nutrients to enter the blood stream slowly. You should include between 25 and 35 grams of fiber in your diet per day.
- Quinoa: One cup of cooked quinoa contains 5,2g fiber.
- Oats: One cup of raw oats contains 16,5g fiber.
- Chickpeas: ½ cup cooked chickpeas contains 6g fiber.
- Lentils: ½ cup cooked lentils contains 8g fiber.
- Berries: One cup of berries contains 8g fiber
- Chia seeds: 2 tablespoons contain 10g fiber.
- Almonds: 3 tablespoons contain 4g fiber.
- Dark chocolate (70-85% cocoa): 100 g dark chocolate contains 10,9g fiber.
All living things need water to survive. The human body is made up of about 60% water, which is essential for all bodily functions. Every cell, tissue, and organ in our bodies need water to work properly. For example, water helps to carry nutrients and oxygen to our cells, remove waste from our bodies, and keep our joints lubricated. When we don’t get enough water, we become dehydrated. This can lead to fatigue, headaches, and other health problems. It is important to drink plenty of fluids every day and ensure that we get enough water in our diet. There are many ways to get water into our bodies, including through food and beverages.
- Fruits: One cup of watermelon contains about 92% water.
- Vegetables: One cup of cucumber contains about 96% water.
- Meat: A serving of cooked chicken breast contains about 64.92% water.
- Dairy: One cup of milk contains about 87% water.
- Grains: One cup of cooked rice contains about 70% water.
As you can see, there are many ways to get water into our bodies. It is important to drink plenty of fluids every day and ensure that we get enough water in our diet.
It’s important to eat a good variety of foods to get a good variety of nutrients that our bodies need. There are plenty of foods that contain all the different types of nutrients. By eating a balanced diet and ensuring you’re getting all the essential nutrients, your body will thank you with good health and vitality. Do you have a favorite source of one or more of these key nutrients? Let us know in the comments below!