The term food refers to any material made up of living organic materials that provide protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients for organisms well being. This article will cover the basics of food, and the various types of food. Food is generally of animal, plant or fungi origin, and includes essential nutrients, including vitamins, proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. The body needs specific amounts of each food type in order to function properly, and a balanced food diet is important to maintaining health and energy levels.
There are three main food groups. Animal-based foods include meat, fish, milk and eggs, which all contain varying levels of fat, protein and iron. Plant based foods include vegetables, grains, beans and nuts, which all contain differing levels of carbohydrates, fat, protein and iron. Fruits, vegetables and grains all provide different nutrients at varying percentages, so the amount you eat is largely determined by your dietary needs. In this article we’ll go over some of the different foods and where they can be found.
Fats A very important source of nutrition, the main component of most foods, provides both beneficial nutrients and calories. There are two categories of fats – saturated and unsaturated. Saturated fats are considered bad for your health because they raise cholesterol levels and can lead to heart disease. Unsaturated fats are much healthier and actually help to reduce cholesterol levels, so eating them is a better choice if you are concerned about your cholesterol.
Macronutrients Foods that provides energy and other important nutrients are called macronutrients. Examples of common macronutrients include vitamins, minerals and carbohydrates. Some examples of good healthy carbs include oats, barley, rice, apples, pears, legumes, mushrooms, oat bran, barley breads and cereals. Some foods that are particularly good sources of carbohydrates include potatoes and lentils. By eating plenty of vegetables and fruit you are also getting an excellent source of minerals, which are also macronutrients.
Natural Sources If you don’t like the thought of ingesting any of the above mentioned nutrients through eating, you can always supplement with supplements. Most of the natural vitamin supplements sold in the market contain only a handful of vitamins, which are required in small amounts to improve your health. For example, if you want to gain more strength, energy and stamina, take a multi-vitamin containing vitamins B, C and E.
Meat Although a good source of protein, red meat can also be loaded with fat and therefore may be bad for your health. The best choices of meat for a diet are those low in fat. Lean meats such as organic chicken, organic fish and organic pork are ideal. Offal is another great option as it is high in protein but low in fat.