A food is something that provides nutrients. Diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease are among the biggest health challenges facing society. Knowing how to choose the right foods plays a key role in our health, as it can positively or negatively influence our risk of disease. Here are 21 reasons to eat real food.
Unprocessed animal and plant foods provide vitamins and minerals you need for optimal health. For example, 1 cup (149 grams) of red pepper, kiwi (180 mg) or orange slices (165 grams) contains more than 100 es RDI for vitamin C (1, 2,. Developing sustainable agriculture based on real foods can help improve the health of the planet by reducing energy demand and decreasing the amount of non-biodegradable waste that people produce (1.Dietary fibre offers many health benefits, including promoting digestive function, metabolic health and feelings of fullness (12, 13, 1.In a 12-week study, people with diabetes or prediabetes followed a Paleolithic diet combining fresh meat, fish, fruit, vegetables, eggs and nuts. They saw blood sugar levels drop by 26% (1.Dark chocolate and avocados, for example, have been shown to protect the skin from sun damage (16, 1.Studies suggest that eating more vegetables, fish, beans and olive oil can reduce wrinkling, loss of elasticity and other age-related skin changes (18, 1.In addition, eating unprocessed foods such as fatty fish, lean meats, vegetables and nuts has been shown to significantly lower triglyceride levels (21, 2). One of the ways that functional medicine targets deteriorating health is by providing the foods and nutrients needed to restore function.
Food choices and nutritional status can affect overall health throughout life. Fried foods, solid fats and trans fats found in margarine and processed foods can be detrimental to heart health. However, when these foods regularly replace more nutrient-dense and healthier foods in your diet, your risk of developing obesity and chronic diseases such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and some cancers increases. The importance of food is not limited to physical health, but it is also important for mental health.
There are hundreds of different real foods, including a wide variety of meats, fish, dairy products, vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, whole grains and seeds. Research has shown that high consumption of processed and fast foods is associated with higher rates of obesity, especially in overweight people compared to non-overweight people (3). Gastrointestinal conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) are also directly influenced by food consumption. Firstly, people who do not have enough food to survive are too anxious to get hold of food.
Thinking about food in this way gives us a view of nutrition that goes beyond calories or grams, good or bad foods.