Everyone knows that nutrition is important. But not everyone is aware that the proper nutrients are found in just about every food that we eat. It is important for people to understand what these nutrients actually are and how they are related to good health and great weight loss. This way people can enjoy delicious foods without worrying about their nutrition.

Carbohydrates and Proteins There are two main groups of nutrients: carbohydrates and proteins. Both play a major role in nutrition but the type of carbohydrates and proteins vary greatly. Most fruits and vegetables are considered to be a complete source of carbohydrates while some examples of carbohydrates include pasta, rice, breads, cereals, potatoes, rice, and some fruits.

Sweet Potatoes Good source of fiber and vitamin b6 Sweet potatoes are a complete source of carbohydrates and vitamin b6, including beta carotene, which converts into vitamin A when eaten. One of the major benefits of sweet potato is they are high in an essential nutrient called beta carotene, that converts into vitamin A when eaten. Vitamin A is vital for good vision, skin, and healthy teeth. However, most sweet potatoes are processed before they are used so they contain the nutrient called aspartame, which has been linked to the development of certain cancers. While aspartame is commonly used as a marketing ploy, the sweet potato is an excellent source of nutrition.

Legumes, Beans, and Rice We all know that beans are an excellent source of fiber and protein but what many of us don’t realize is they are also a fantastic source of nutrients including almost all the essential vitamins and minerals as well as iron. Legumes such as black beans, chickpeas, kidney beans, Lima beans, garbanzo beans, and pigeon peas, are an excellent source of protein and carbohydrates. In fact, these legumes, beans, and rice are so nutritious, there are no unwanted calories and are very easy to prepare and cook.

Gluten-Free Foods It is difficult to get the recommended daily allowance of gluten, the protein found in wheat and rye, for our bodies as we need it in small quantities for human consumption. However, there are alternatives such as grains, oats, corn, soy products, and potatoes which provide an excellent source for nutrition and are also gluten-free. Some fruits, such as papaya, mangoes, bananas, and oranges, are naturally gluten-free too. It is important to make note of which foods are considered ‘gluten-free’ and which ones do not.

Sweeteners are used for flavor and for their chemical composition, which can affect our health. There are three major types of sugars: sucrose, fructose, and lactose. The fructose and lactose are derived from dairy and animal products, whereas sucrose is usually found in fruit juices. A diet low in sugar can lead to obesity and may increase our blood pressure.

Potatoes and bananas are rich in potassium, iron, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus, copper, manganese, and vitamins A, C, E, and B complex. They have a low glycemic index and are easily digested by our bodies. Asparagus is rich in potassium and has a low Glycemic Index. Olives and grapefruit are rich sources of antioxidants, which can prevent cell damage, reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases, prevent carcinogens, and reduce blood pressure. Carrots have beta carotene and other valuable nutrients that improve vision and may also prevent certain cancers.

Nutrition Facts The above-mentioned foods are a small sample of a few of the many nutritious snacks, cereals, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, and other foods that we could eat on a daily basis and reap the benefits. We don’t need expensive or complicated diets. Eating whole foods in their natural form, such as fresh vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, and healthy snacks can provide a variety of nutrition benefits. Eating potatoes are an excellent source of vitamin K, potassium, magnesium, and other minerals that improve our health.

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