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"Nutrient density" refers to the quantity of nutrients in a food in relation to the calories it supplies (). All foods contain calories, however not all foods are nutrient-dense. For instance, a sweet bar or a box of mac and cheese might be extremely high in calories but lack vitamins, minerals, protein, and fiber.
For instance, egg whites are much lower in calories and fat than entire eggs. Nevertheless, an egg white offers 1% or less of the Daily Value (DV) for iron, phosphorus, zinc, choline, and vitamins A and B12, while a whole egg packs 521% of the DV for these nutrients (, ).
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Plus, although some nutrient-dense foods, such as numerous fruits and veggies, are low in calories, many like nuts, full fat yogurt, egg yolks, avocado, and fatty fish are high in calories. That's completely OK! Simply since a food is high in calories does not suggest that it's bad for you. On the exact same token, even if a food is low in calories does not make it a healthy option.
As a general guideline, attempt to mostly consume foods that are high in nutrients like protein, fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. These foods consist of veggies, fruits, nuts, seeds, beans, fatty fish, and eggs. Diet variety Another part of healthy eating is dietary variety, suggesting consuming a range of foods.
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Still, consuming a range of foods may be hard if you're a picky eater. If that's the case, try to introduce new foods one at a time. If you don't eat many veggies, start by including a preferred veggie to one or 2 meals daily and build from there.
Macronutrient ratios Macronutrients the main nutrients you get from food are carbohydrates, fat, and protein. (Fiber is considered a type of carb.)Usually, your meals and treats need to be well balanced in between the three. In particular, adding protein and fat to fiber-rich carb sources makes meals more filling and tasty (). For instance, if you're snacking on a piece of fruit, including a spoonful of nut butter or a bit of cheese helps keep you fuller than if you were to consume the fruit alone.