ABCs of Nutrition: Eat Healthy, Whole Foods

fresh veggies

There are so many benefits to eating healthy, whole foods that it’s hard to find a reason not to eat them. They contain nutrients, minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, iron and pretty much everything else that’s good for you. When in doubt about what to eat, go whole!

So why?

No processed worries

Many processed foods contain sugar, additives, preservatives and artificial colors – many of which contain little, if any, nutrient value. When something comes straight from the ground to the grocery shelves, there’s no need to worry about unhealthy things being added to them. Research by Stanford University has shown that trace amounts of pesticides in conventional whole foods do not pose any health concerns and are, in fact, as healthy as organic foods.

No fast food side affects

Fast foods tend to be high in fat, sugar and salt, substances which are known to be additive. And guess what? Many of these foods are high in calories, too. Have you ever heard of someone gaining weight from eating too much broccoli and cauliflower?

No sugar crashes

Sure, fruits contain natural sugars, and some of them have higher glycemic indexes than others. But fruits also contain fiber, which offsets the rise in blood sugar and subsequent release of insulin.

And vegetables? These do nothing but fuel your day in a positive way, without any worries about late morning or early afternoon crashes.

No budget worries

Especially if you buy fruits and vegetables that are in season, you won’t break the bank by filling your body with wholesome food. Buying in bulk is another way to save money on wholesome foods.

No rise in cholesterol levels

Whole foods contain no “bad” fats that might otherwise play havoc on your cardiovascular system.

No confusing labels 

Ever notice that items in the produce section do not contain food labels? When foods are really good for you, there’s no need to place a warning or make some confusing health claim. The foods speak for themselves.

And they taste great, too

If you haven’t found a way to prepare Brussels sprouts, okra or asparagus in a way you or a family member likes, keep trying. They’re too good to turn down. Just ask the kids in who took my Veggie Challengeclass!

Melinda Hinson