Nutrients & What they are

With all the new Health & Fitness Trends, Healthy(or not) Diet solutions, and Juicing kicks going around today, it has everyone so confused about Nutrition.

Do you get your daily required Nutrition?

Does your diet include enough essential nutrients to maintain a healthy well-balanced diet?

Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash
Fruit bowls, apple slices and green smoothies

Nutrition is actually a simple 3-part process

We consume drinks and food daily.

Our body breaks down food and/or drinks into nutrients

The nutrients are absorbed into and travel through the bloodstream to various areas of the body and broken down and used as energy and other functions of our system.

Proper Nutrition can be complex… But doesn’t need to be…

It involves the breakdown and absorption of food, drinks, w/nutrients, and bio-active products throughout the entire body from ingestion, to digestion, to excretion.

In order to provide our body with ample nutrition, a person needs to consume enough of the foods that contain key nutrients.

As you know, Nutrients are compounds that are found in foods. These compounds are essential to the vitality of life and mental health and well being.

These nutrients(compounds) provide our body with the energy & building blocks required for repairing and growth of muscle and tissue as well as substances necessary to regulate chemical processing within our body.

These Nutrients are sometimes broken into 2 categories:
Macronutrients, consisting of Protien, Carbohydrates, Water and fats (Lipids)
Micronutrients, which are the Vitamins and Minerals, as well as water(soluables)

There are 6 essential nutrients our body mainly requires to help maintain a healthy balanced diet.
Those 6 key nutrients? Proteins, Vitamins, Minerals, Water, Carbohydrates (CHO), Lipids (fats).
Proteins: meat, dairy, legumes, nuts, seafood (including fish) and eggs
Vitamins: common vitamins include the water soluable B group vitamins and vitamin C and the fat soluable vitamins A, D, E and K
Fruits and vegetables are great sources of Vitamin C, Vitamin A and folic acid (a B group vitamin)
Grains and cereals are good sources of B group vitamins and fibre
Full-fat dairy and egg yolks are sources of the fat soluable vitamins A, D and E
Milk and vegetable or soya bean oil are generally good sources of vitamin K, which can also be synthesised by gut bacteria
Minerals: (sodium, calcium, iron, iodine, magnesium, etc.): all foods contain some form of minerals
Milk and dairy products are a good source of calcium and magnesium
Red meat is an excellent source of iron and zinc
Seafood and vegetables (agriculturally grown) are generally good sources of iodine
Water: As a beverage as well as a component of most foods, especially vegetables (tomatos, yams,squash) and fruits.(citrus fruits, watermelon, kiwi)
Carbohydrates: pasta, rice, cereals, breads, potatoes, squash, milk, fruit, sugar
Lipids (common name fats) : oils, butter, margarine, nuts, seeds, avocados, olives, meat, seafood (fish)

Essential nutrients are natural compounds our body produces on its own but cannot produce in a sufficient quantity in order to maintain balance. Therefore, according to the World Health Organization, we must eat enough of the proper foods to maintain these nutrients in our body. They are vital for disease prevention, growth, and balanced health.

So for those who are concerned with your daily nutrition, there are three basic steps to success.
1.We consume a healthy balanced diet daily.
2.Our body breaks things down efficiently.
3.Sends all the fuel and energy where it’s needed.
Voila! Healthy Well Being and Happy Life!

Then we have our next generation of Health Minded Individuals,…
Things can get technical if you choose to be so strictly health conscious, as often the case with Athletes.

While there are many essential nutrients, they can be broken into two categories:

Micronutrients
Important micronutrients w/ common foods where they can be found:
Calcium – milk, yogurt, spinach, and sardines.
Vitamin B12 – beef, fish, cheese, and eggs.
Zinc – beef, cashews, garbanzo beans, and turkey.
Potassium – bananas, spinach, potatoes, and apricots.
Vitamins and minerals are micronutrients, while small doses go a long way. There are six main groups of essential micronutrients that can play an effective role when pursuing peak performance.

Macronutrients
The macronutrients include:
Carbon (C),
Hydrogen (H),
Oxygen (O),
Nitrogen (N),
Phosphorus (P),
Potassium (K),
Calcium (Ca),
Magnesium (Mg)
Macronutrients are eaten in large amounts and include the primary building blocks of your diet — protein, carbohydrates, and fat — which provide your body with energy.

For a very active and athletic lifestyle, this sort of information is important to be sure you are maintaining a balanced diet as your body would be burning the fuel and nutrients more rigorously during workouts. It is vital to your optimum health performance.

Always be sure to monitor your health conditions while practicing strenuous workouts to be sure your body is functioning well.
Knowing your body and what it needs more of, makes your diet choices more effective to obtain balanced health levels.

Easy Tips to Veggie Up Your Day.
Getting our daily recommended level of veggies can sometimes be a challenge. Current guidelines recommend adults eat at least 2 – 3 cups of a wide variety of vegetables daily.

Try these tips to achieve a balanced daily veggie requirement.


Try to mix and match quick and easy meal choices and incorporate a variety of veggies into each one. Such as:
For breakfast: Try adding a few carrot or celery sticks and hummus as a side dish w/ egg sandwich
For lunch: Try a side garden salad w/vinaigrette dressing, added to a chicken soup/ or a wrap.
“My fav..1/2 can tuna(drained well), on a bed of Romain lettuce w/ vinaigrette dressing” (surprisingly filling)
For dinner: Salmon steak, w/spinach pasta, and creamed lemon-pepper sauce. Side garden salad w/dressing(choice)

Snacking:
Make healthy choices for sugar cravings, such as apple slices w/ peanut butter or honey, grapes, tangerine, or seedless watermelon(great for hydration)
Choose healthy vegetables for crunch craves, or rice chips instead of potato chips or salty crackers.
Choose wine for social gatherings w/alcohol instead of liquor w/soda pops or beer( too much yeast for some women)
choose dark chocolate (70% or better) if you must have it. 🙂

Out & About:
Carry healthy snacks for sudden hunger attacks( this shouldn’t happen with consistent healthy habits)
If you are shaking a bad habit(smoking) choose healthy foods and find a hobby to keep your hands and mind busy to avoid food bingeing
It’s can be a simple task to get our daily requirement of nutrients if we are health conscious and maintain a well balanced healthy diet.


That’s Nutrition Neat!

10 Comments

  1. Hi Catherine, I thought your post was very informative. I especially like the part about trying to add veggies into more meals during the day. It is something that is not easy to do. I like to cook some spinach in the morning with some scrambled eggs as it is a quick way to get some veggie servings in.

    1. Hello Adam.

      As always, I am happy to help out.

      1 other quick retreat for veggies in your meal plan is,
      Chop up a few of your favorite veggies and throw them in a skillet
      with some olive oil and seasoning spices that you like.

      In fact, there are valuable vitamins & minerals in spices.
      Considering they are made up of vegetables and roots usually, are a natural source
      of vitamins and minerals as well.

      Have a Happy Day! 🙂

  2. Thank you for the veggie tips!! I try to add more veggies in my daily meals but sometimes I get stuck. These ideas are perfect and easy to incorporate. I need to be more mindful about adding some veggies to my breakfast. Thank you!!

    1. Hi Cindy,

      I am glad you enjoyed the article.

      Having healthy alternatives can be a challenge for sure.

      If you are ever in doubt or having a veggie craving,
      just chug a V8 juice. Great replacement.

      Have a Happy Day! :0

  3. Hi Catherine,

    First off, I do love spinach! I know that is fairly odd but even as a kid I had no problems with eating all my veggies.

    I see that nowadays there are so many delicious suggestions with veggies, organic products, that no one can complain anymore for going to a healthy diet.

    I find though that so many of the organic products, since the incursion of GM Foods, the prices are gone up significantly. When I can I grow my own food and in the long run saves a fortune on weekly shopping for a nice few months of the year 🙂 .

    I like the breakfast suggestion as well and I do love blueberries as well. Blue berries and porridge is absolutely to die for! I do not really like porridge but the blueberries make everything taste amazing.

    Thank you kindly Catherine and you have given me much to consider for a whole new healthy eating plan.

    1. Hello, Phil

      I am so happy to get you thinking healthy.

      And we do have so many choices available to gain our daily nutrition that it is
      just a matter of changing the way we think about a healthy diet plan.

      My favorite is Oatmeal. You can put any fruit with it, you can eat it any time of day
      and it tastes great.
      Also a healthy benefit to make our choices simple.

      Always Think Healthy.
      Have a Happy Day! 🙂

  4. Hi Catherine! Vegetables are very important on our everyday lives. I still remember several years ago when i really hate eating vegetables. I only an always choose meat for my daily meals and can’t live without it. Then one time i had felt dizzy and was diagnosed with a high cholesterol and high blood pressure. It wasn’t easy to change my diet from pure meat to vegetables. But i can say that i am much livelier today. Thanks for sharing your knowledge. I love it

    1. Hi Randy.

      Happy to share.
      I am a meat lover myself and I understand the veggie thing too.

      I hated veggies as a child but grew to enjoy them later in my athletic adventures.
      Now its the easy choice between vegetables, over starchy potatoes or pasta.
      Better for your cholesterol and blood pressure.

      Think healthy, Live Happy!

      Have a Happy Day! 🙂

  5. I am currently on a high protein low carb diet and fin the best way to get my greens is my morning smoothie. 1 cup spinach and/or Kale, 1 cup cottage cheese, 1 scoop vanilla protein powder, 1 apple diced skin on, 1/3 cup water in the blender, takes 2 minutes or less to prepare. Taste delicious! Even my grandkids ask for this smoothie now LOL.

    1. Hello Francine.

      That does sound like a tasty & nutritious way to start any day!
      And there is no better way to get kids on the healthy kids kick then,
      with a nutrition packed smoothie. They really think it’s a treat!

      Thank you for sharing.
      Have a Happy Day!

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