incredible-healthy-nutrient-dense-variety-of-food
Incredible Healthy Nutrient-Dense Variety Of Food

It is important to take care of both your mind and your body, and learning How To  Eat To Be Healthy will allow you to achieve and maintain overall health and well being, and you’ll  be rewarded in many ways.  It will allow you to take charge of your life and feel good about the choices you make.   You will improve your physical health, gain strength, stamina, and feel more fit, avoid negative health issues and crippling diseases, by eating healthy nutrient-dense foods, like the ones found in the Mediterranean diet, per an National Institutes of Health study (NIH).

You will be mentally stronger and also gain a more positive attitude, by avoiding mental health issues like anxiety and depression, experiencing more enjoyment in your life.  You will become a role model and become a leader for your family and friends and be more enjoyable to be around.  An NIH study looked at the connection between people who are surrounded by many happy people and those who are central in the network are more likely to become happy in the future.  Quoting the study:

People’s happiness depends on the happiness of others with whom they are connected.  This provides further justification for seeing happiness, like health, as a collective phenomenon.

Wikipedia describes health food as a food marketed to provide human health effects beyond a normal healthy diet required for human nutrition.  For more information on health food, read here.

Lifestyle changes

Any changes in your lifestyle should be a work in progress.  Remember, it takes an estimated 66 days to break an old habit and form a new one, according to a European Journal of Social Psychology study.  Lasting changes take time.

healthy-nutrient-dense-food-variety
Healthy Nutrient-Dense Food Variety

So, begin by setting small achievable goals that can be easily added to your busy schedule, and that you can control and not be overwhelmed by.  A good model to set new goals is setting “SMART” goals that means clarifying your ideas, focus your efforts, use your time and resources productively, and increase your chances of achieving what you want in life.   SMART stands for S-specific, M-measurable, A-achievable, R-relevant, and T-time bound, per Wikipedia.

Health and well being involves being aware and making positive changes in all the life dimensions so they remain in balance with each other.  The most obvious and most basic place to start making these changes is by making healthy choices about diet and exercising, getting enough sleep, and maintaining a positive attitude.  Making changes in these areas is the most important investment you can make in your life.  Strive for the best health and wellness you can achieve by making positive changes and mindful healthy choices.

Adopt A Proven Path

There is a proven path to both overall health and well being, and it all starts with diet and proper nutrition and physical activity.  In most of our articles we have stressed the importance of choosing fresh organic foods over store-bought foods, and it’s as important for you to understand why.  Foods on your grocery shelves are not as fresh as they appear.  Sure, they look fresh, but, in reality, it’s very likely, these fresh-looking foods, have been on a path to your grocery shelves taking maybe weeks from harvest to grocery shelves, traveling in refrigirated trucks, even thousands of miles.

During this transportation time it is estimated that foods loose as much as 50 percent of their nutritional value.  According to an NIH study, vitamin C content of broccoli was cut in half when shipped out of the country instead of eaten locally.

high-micronutrient-dense-healthy-foods
High Micronutrient Dense Healthy Foods

It is why we have always recommended you find a local small farmer, or a roadside farmer’s stand, selling fresh organic non-GMO (non-genetically modified) fruits and veggies, to buy from, or plant your own backyard garden, which is even better yet.  And, besides, according to research, like a NIH study, gardening is very healthy not only physically but mentally.  A regular dose of gardening is good for public health.

You should also locate a small local butcher where you can buy fresh lean grass-fed beef, pork, and free-range poultry, or purchase them through the links furnished in this article.  And, locate a local fish market source where you can buy fresh fish and seafood or through this article links.

According to NIH research, just as important as freshness, is buying certified organic and non-GMO foods, because organic foods will be free of perservatives, chemical fertilizers, antibiotic residuals and antibiotic-resistant bacteria infestation, food dyes, and other chemical additives, which is much more healthier for you.  Quoting the study:

Of greater concern is the prevalent use of antibiotics in conventional animal production as a key driver of antibiotic resistance in society; antibiotic use is less intensive in organic production.

mediterranean-diet-wild-caught-seafood-veggies
Mediterranean Diet Wild-Caught Seafood Veggies

One other thing about being fresh, besides having the full nutritional value, it tastes so much better, full of flavor, and tenderness or firmness, depending on what it is.  For example, a fresh tomato, you want the bursting tangy flavor, but firmness when you slice it.  Or, a fresh ear of Silver Queen corn, you want the sweet flavor of the natural sugars and the tenderness of the kernels, when you bite into it.  There is a huge difference in biting into a freshly washed tomato off the vine, and biting into a refrigerated store-bought tomato, isn’t there?

Make an effort to have more home-cooked nutritious meals for you and your family, per an NIH study.  Not only does it encourage healthier eating, but, also to spend more constructive healthy social family time together.  That important home-cooked meal should be breakfast, which will allow you and your family to get a jump start on the busy day ahead, by providing the nutrition needed early to enhance energy levels for the day ahead, and the ability to think faster and clearer mentally.

According to an NIH study, eating a nutritious breakfast is better because evidence supports morning‐loaded energy distribution as a beneficial strategy for weight control, as well.  Let your family (children) participate in meal planning.  Here is what this one NIH study said about children involvement family cooking:

Increasing youth involvement in mealtime, tailoring interventions to family characteristics, and providing support for families experiencing time-related barriers are suggested strategies for future research.

healthy-wild-caught-shrimp-veggies-and-olive-oil
Healthy Wild-Caught Shrimp Veggies and Olive Oil

First of all, kids love being involved in making fun meals and snacks.  Speaking of snacks, keep more healthy snacks on hand such as fresh fruits and veggies, raw nuts, and whole grains, and do away with chips and sweets.  Be a good example and show your kids to eat when they are really hungry, not when they’re emotionally upset, bored, angry, or sad.  Enjoy variety from all the four major food groups, such as fresh fruits and veggies, lean sources of protein, low-fat diary, and whole grains.  More on these four nutrient-dense food groups a little later.

Eat when you are actually hungry, not when you’re stressed or feeling emotional, and eat in moderation by focusing on feeling comfortable after you eat.  According to the American Psychological Association (APA), thirty-eight percent of adults say they have overeaten or eaten unhealthy foods in the past month because of stress.  Half of these adults report engaging in these behaviors weekly or more.  Practice the technique of “putting your fork  down”, after taking a bite of food, lay your fork down in your plate, chew your food slowly and savoring it, and even start up a healthy conversation.

Being positive and optimistic is essential to your overall healthy lifestyle and well being, per this NIH “Positive Emotions and Your Health” review.  Choose your free-time activities by things thet interest you and you enjoy, whatever that might be.  Learn to relax, reducing stress and anxiety, an  re-center yourself, by meditation, deep breathing exercise (1), yoga, listening to music or dancing, singing, or whatever works for you.  Give yourself credit for accomplishing small goals, and actually award yourself for your acomplishments along the way.

Be flexible and open-minded because sometimes life just gets in the way.  Sometimes life happens when you’re making plans.  Don’t fear change because change will happen regardless of what you do.  Don’t fear negative events either by developing “psychological resilience” which is the ability to bounce back from negative events by using positive emotions to cope.  Have you ever heard of the saying, “the only thing constant in life is change”?

fresh-wild-caught-salmon
fresh wild-caught salmon

Spend time with family and close friends, and avoid overly negative or depressed people, if it can be avoided.  Remember negativity is contagious and it’s best to stay away from it, according to a ScienceDirect study.  The study offered that negative opinions cause the greatest attitude shifts, not just from good to bad, but also from bad to worse.  Read an inspirational book or listen to a positive motivational CD, or to a motivational speaker, or enroll in a positive thinking class.  Volunteer some of your free time to your church, or charitable, or worthwhile causes in your community.

By helping others in need, it will go a long way of fulfilling the need in you to be wanted and appreciated, which will improve your emotional outlook and health.  A Mayo Clinic study found 6 healthy benefits in volunteering: reduce depressive symptoms, a sense of purpose and value, remain active physically and mentally, reduce stress levels, develop social ties, and longer happier life.

Strive for balance in both your personal and work life, by making time for important relationships in your life.  An NIH study called for a work-life balance but it’s also about priorities.  What is your priority?  Don’t hesitate to call on family and close friends when you are struggling with something, or need support.  Embrace the opportunity to meet new people when you can, and expand your social circle.

Choose Fresh Nutritious Foods

So, what is all the hype about “nutrient-dense foods”?   Healthy foods or nutrient-rich foods, like found in the Mediterranean diet (2), contain micronutrients like all the important vitamins and minerals, and trace elements, amino acids, antioxidants, omega 3 fatty acids, and only a few calories, low in sugar, saturated fats, sodium (salt), and starches.  Foods that are naturally nutrient-rich include fruits and veggies, lean meats and fish, whole grains and complex carbohydrates, dairy, legumes, nuts, natural fermented foods, herbs and spices, and seeds.

You may not be getting all the micronutrients your body requires to function effeciently and effectively.  According to an NIH study, increased intake of foods with high nutrient density can help to break the intergenerational cycle of malnutrition and obesity.  Americans tend to eat fast-foods that are high in calories and low in micronutrients (empty calories).

Americans also tend to eat more unhealthy processed or refined foods, or precooked foods, high-sugar, processed meats, or high-sodium foods, fried foods, or microwavable foods, that are full of hormones, perservatives, additives, flavoring, food coloring, and no telling what else, all of which are unhealthy, nutrient-deficient, and hard to digest.

healthy-medicinal-incredible-spices-for-seasoning
Healthy Medicinal Incredible Spices For Seasoning

Some studies show using microwaves are not safe, per this NIH study that found that various non-thermal microwave EMF exposures produce diverse neuropsychiatric effects, including depression. Low nutrient foods usually contain more sugar, sodium and soluable-fats, and contribute to weight gain and poor health, as well.  These types of food increase your risk of health issues such as Type 2 Diabetes and heart disease, and many other chronic diseases.

According to the U.S. Dietary Guidelines adult Americans are most likely defficient in the following micronutrients:

    • Mineral Calcium–food sources include non-fat diary, broccoli, dark leafy greens, and sardines.
    • Mineral Potassium–food sources include bananas, canteloupe, raisons, nuts, fish, spinach, and other dark greens.
    • Fiber–food sources include legumes, beans, peas, bran, whole grain, seeds, apples, strawberries, carrots.
    • Mineral Magnesium–food sources include spinach, black beans, peas, and almonds.
    • Vitamin A–food sources include eggs, milk, carrots, sweet potatoes, canteloupe.
    • Vitamin C–food sources include oranges, strawberries, tomatoes, kiwi, broccoli, red and green bell pepper.
    • Vitamin E–food sources include avocados, nuts, seeds, whole grains, spinach, and dark greens.

    Nutrient-Rich Food Groups (How To Eat To Be Healthy)

    healthy-antioxidant-rich-fruits-and-vegetables
    Healthy Antioxidant-Rich Fruits and Vegetables

    Organic Unrefined Grains and Complex Carbohydrates. (A)  Whole grain foods are low in fats, high in fiber, and complex carbs, preventing overeating because you feel fuller longer.  Always look for ingredient “whole” on the label, such as “whole wheat flour,” and have at least three grams of fiber per serving.  Choose the following grains:  rolled oats, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat tortillas, whole grain wheat or rye crackers and breads, brown and wild rice, barley, quinca, buckwheat, whole corn, and cracked wheat.

    Organic Fruits, Vegetables, Nuts, and Seeds. (A)  Fruits and veggies are naturally low in fats.  Always buy FRESH certified organic and non-GMO.  Orange and dark green are the best skin colors.  Choose the following fruits and veggies:  broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, leafy greens such as swiss chard, cabbage, romaine, or bok choy, dark leafy greens such as spinach and kale, squash, carrots, and sweet potatoes. turnips and pumpkin, snap peas, green beans, bell peppers and asparagus; and in fruits, apples plums mangos, papaya, pineapples, bananas, blueberries, strawberries, cherries, pomegranates, and grapes.  Citrus fruits grapefruit and oranges, peaches, pears, melons, tomatoes, and avocados.

    (A) Organic Lean Grass-Fed Finished or Free-Range Meats.  Beef, bison, Poultry like chicken, duck, and turkey, Veal, Lamb, wild-game, and Pork. Choose low-fat lean cuts of beef, or pork, veal, or lamb.  Look for “round”, or “loin”, or “leg” cuts on the packaging.  Trim other fat off before cooking, cooking by broiling, baking, or roasting.  Limit the use of lean beef to not more than three times a week.  Chicken breasts are the best cut of poultry, being low in fat and high in protein.  Always remove skin and excess fat before cooking, either baking, broiling, grilling, or roasting.  Other substitute meats include turkey bacon, ground chicken or turkey.  Protein non-meats sources include beans, peanut butter, nuts, seeds, legumes, lentels, and chick peas.

    Wild-Caught Fish and Shellfish .(A)  Fish and shellfish should be fresh cold-water, or wild-caught fish, clean and clear in color with firm springy flesh.  If you can’t buy fresh, purchase frozen or low-salt canned fish.  Wild-caught oily fish are best source of Omega 3 fatty acids, which include wild caught salmon, wild-caught tuna, mackerel, sturgeon, sardines, halibut, oysters, shrimp, mussels, clams, scallops, and lobster.

    Grass-Fed Finished Dairy and Dairy Substitutes and Eggs. (A) Choose skim milk or low-fat milk, or enriched milk substitutes.

    certified-organic-grass-fed-or-free-range-finished-meats
    Certified Organic -Grass-Fed Or Free-Range Finished Meats

    Replace cream with evaporated skim milk for cooking and coffee.  Also use low-fat or fat-free cheeses.  Brown eggs should come from grass-fed cage-free hens.  Use the following forms: low-fat, skim, nut or enriched milk, like soy or rice, skim ricotta instead of cream cheese, low-fat cottage, string cheese, and plain low-fat fermented yogurt in place of sour cream.

    Natural Organic Fermented Foods. (A) Natural fermentation is the breakdown of carbs like starch and sugar by bacteria and yeast and an ancient technique of preserving food. Cultured foods aid in restoring the “good bacteria” or microflora in the human gut. Common fermented foods include kimchi, sauerkraut, miso, kefir, tempeh, kombucha, fermented red wine, beer, olives, and yogurt. These foods may reduce heart disease risk and aid digestion, immunity, and weight loss.

    Fresh Organic Herbs and Spices. (A) Spices are the flowers, fruit, seeds, bark, and roots typically of tropical plants and range from brown to black to red in color. In general, spices have a more pungent flavor than herbs. It is possible for one plant to provide an herb and a spice. Examples are cayenne, peppercorn, turmeric, cardamom, cinnamon, allspice, cloves, nutmeg, pepper, ginger, mace, saffron, vanilla, cumin, dill. Herbs are derived from the leafy and green parts of a plant, such as its leaves. Some examples include basil, oregano, rosemary, thyme, mint, and parsley.

    Antioxidant Drinks, Infused Water, and Fruit Smoothies. (A) Coffee or espresso used in moderation is good for your health because of it’s antioxidants and bioactive plant compounds. Infused water is made from filtered water and various fresh fruits. Fruit or veggie smoothies are also very healthy. Checkout this blueberry-Peruvian Maca smoothie.

    gut-health-fermented-foods-for-wellness
    Gut Health Fermented Foods For Wellness

    Supplement Your Diet With A Natural Adaptogen Whole Food

    For added nutritional benefits and assurance to eating fresh nutritious foods, supplement your diet with a natural, organic, non-GMO, healing whole food Adaptogen Peruvian Maca (A), which will provide you with all the benefits of fresh nutritional whole foods, per this NIH study.

    Adaptogens are a unique class of natural-growing plants (only a few recognized world-wide), that have the ability to assist the human body to “adapt” and naturally function properly, by providing a “normalizing effect”, or balancing effect, to harmful stressors, oxidation, inflammation, and other harmful substances.  For example, According to another NIH study, P Maca has been shown to be effective in treating anti-depressant-induced sexual dysfunction in postmenstrual women. Another NIH study of post-menopausal Chinese women showed P Maca reduced blood pressure and depression.

    P Maca is a natural, non-toxic, nutritionlly balanced, whole food containing 60% carbs, 11% protein, 9% fiber, 18 amino acids (almost all of the amino acids), 20 free fatty acids, vitamins thamin (B1), riboflavin (B2), ascorbic acid (C), and niacin (great for healthy circulation).  Minerals and trace elements sucs as calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, sodium, copper, zinc, manganese, iron, selenium, and boron.

    It contains five different sterols (lowers colesterol), naturally occuring fruit sugar, and phytonutrients glucosinolates and polyphenols (plant bioactive compounds) believed to have anti-cancer properties.  One ounce (28 grams) of P Maca contains:  91 calories, 20 grams of carbs, 4 grams of protein, 2 grams of fiber, 1 gram of fat (fatty acids), 133 % of RDI of vitamin C, 85% of RDI of copper, 83% of RDI of iron, 16% of RDI of potassium, 15% of RDI of vitamin B6, 30% of RDI of manganese.

    fresh-powder-capsule-Maca-root-plant
    fresh, powder, capsule Maca root plant

    Look back at the USDA study showing the various micronutrient deficienceies of most Americans.  Even if you didn’t eat fresh nutritious foods as we recommend, you could still supplement with P Maca, and go a long way in correcting those deficiencies outlined by the USDA, assuring you at least some hope of restoring and maintaining overall health and well being.   Now that you’ve learned How To Eat To Be Healthy in an effort to promote better overall health and well being for you and your family, do you feel like you’re better prepared?    Are you ready to take action?

    I know you probably have questions, so please address them below, and I will get back to you as soon as possible.  For more in depth information on the many and wide-ranging benefits of this incredible Adaptogen Maca, please read the following reviews: