People talk about eating well. Dietary supplements are commonly found in the average household. The labels of all food products include nutritional information. Lunches at public schools are nutritionally balanced. Everywhere you look, somebody or something is pointing that good nutrition is important. The reason for this is quite simple: Good nutrition is important! Poor nutrition may lead to numerous long-term health problems, a very brief overview of which follows:
Obesity – A diet low in nutrients but high in fat, sugars, and salt, especially when coupled with inactivity, may lead to a person being significantly overweight. Obesity itself may lead to additional health problems, including high cholesterol, heart disease, and certain forms of cancer.
Tooth decay – Certain nutrients are essential for dental health. Additionally, sugars have been shown to contribute to the breaking down of teeth, which may lead to not only cavities, but also gingivitis, gum disease, abscesses, and a whole host of other dental issues.
Stroke – Poor nutrition may lead to high blood pressure, which may increase risk of having a stroke.
Diabetes – A diet high in sugar may damage the ability of the pancreas to produce adequate amounts of insulin, resulting in diabetes.
Osteoporosis – A diet insufficient in calcium, vitamin D, and other bone-strengthening nutrients may lead to mineral loss and softening of the bones.
Depression – Deficiencies in nutrients such as Omega-3 Fatty Acids, vitamin D, magnesium, B vitamins, folate, iron, zinc, iodine, and selenium may contribute to depressive disorders.
Cancer – A diet high in artificial ingredients and preservatives and low in beneficial nutrients may contribute to the development of certain forms of cancer.
As an adult, changing your dietary habits may seem like an impossible undertaking. However, dietary changes do not have to be all-inclusive and immediate. In fact, many studies show that making one or two small changes at a time is a more effective method to lasting changes.
Adding food may be a better method than reducing food. Instead of determining to eat a painfully low number of calories or outright ban an a type of food, strive to add more nutritious foods. Add two servings of fruit to your daily diet, then increase your servings of vegetables up to five a day. These additions will leave you fuller, and less likely to gorge on fatty, saltier items. Adding water may also leave you feeling fuller and cut down on your desire to consume sugary drinks.
Plan meals ahead of time, make a grocery list, and stick to it. Having healthy ingredients in the house and a plan for what to do with them may cut down on the temptation to pick up the phone and order a pizza.
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