Every food contains nutrients, however, nutrient dense foods are much better for maintaining your optimal health, as they have more nutrients than calories. Empty calorie foods are nutritionally poor food choices and they contain more calories than nutrients, unlike nutrient dense foods. A high intake of empty-calorie foods may cause weight gain, especially if your intake of calories exceeds their utilization. In contrast, consumption of nutrient-dense foods helps to maintain a healthy weight in addition to supplying nutrients that protect against disease.
Empty Calorie Foods
Most empty calorie foods are highly processed foods that contain added fat and sugar. Baked goods such as pies, cookies, cakes, and pastries as well as jelly, jams, doughnuts, puddings, french fries, syrups, sweetened fruit drinks, ice cream and breaded fried burgers are examples of empty calorie foods. Empty calorie foods such as salted snacks, candy, pop, energy and sports drinks and chips, also make up the majority of the long shelf life foods and drinks that are sold in vending machines. They are often cheaper and usually easily to find, the intake of these foods can have a negative effect on your health.
Empty Calorie Foods And Health
The biggest disadvantage of frequently eating empty calorie foods is that the energy intake can easily exceed the energy requirements. If you are not using them for physical activity, the extra calories are easily stored in the body as fat, and as a result, it can be easily be the cause of weight gain and obesity. Furthermore, energy dense food intake may also increase your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to a study published in “Diabetes Care ” in 2008. Eating nutrient dense foods , the high fiber content in them provides satiety and may actually decrease sugar and blood cholesterol levels.
Nutrient Dense Foods
Eating a balanced and healthy diet of nutrient dense foods provides many nutrients that are required to keep you healthy. So planning meals that include vegetables, fruits, low fat or fat free dairy products ,whole grains,beans, nuts, seeds, chicken, turkey, lean cuts of meat and fish are all examples of nutrient dense foods. These foods are also excellent sources of nutrients such as the vitamin A, D, C, E and B vitamins, iron, zinc, calcium, potassium, and monounsaturated fatty acids and fiber , as well, they have fewer calories. Vegetables and fruits also contain phytochemicals that may help reduce the incidence of cancer, diabetes and heart disease.
Make the Right Choice
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010 focuses on a diet comprising of nutrient dense foods while avoiding foods that contain refined carbohydrates, sodium, fats and, sugar. A colorful plate of fruits and vegetables, whole-grain foods instead of of refined carbohydrates and roasted or broiled, lean meats will provide foods that are nutrient dense. Controlling the portion sizes of energy dense foods and eating nutrient dense foods only in the next meal, is another way of reducing your intake of empty calories. Making some of these easy dietary choices and changes will help you to improve your health and quality of life.
These guidelines and ideas about how to improve your health and overall improve your body’s ability to fight off infection disease over the long haul are ideas that I am incorporating into my life and it seems to be working. I can not remember the last time I was sick and I do notice how much more energy I have just by changing the way I eat. I am also losing weight which is for me a bonus.
Take care and thanks for stopping by.