Key Nutrients To Maximize Your Health | Ways To Get Daily Nutrients

The Real Mom’s Guide 

Healthy eating not only helps you live longer by preventing chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer, but it also boosts energy and mood, increasing overall quality of life, says Natalie Stephens, RDN, LD.

 a registered dietitian at Ohio State University Medical Center in Columbus and president of the Ohio Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics And a smart diet helps you maintain a healthy weight and get a good night’s sleep.

The 5 to Stay Alive

1. Carbohydrates

Main function: Provide energy

“Carbohydrates are the body’s main energy source and the brain’s only source of fuel,” says Kate Patton, MEd, RD, a registered dietitian at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio. Your body breaks carbohydrates down into glucose, which cells require to create energy.

The best sources of carbohydrates are whole grains, whole-wheat bread, bulgur, barley, oatmeal, brown rice, and cornmeal. Limit your intake of sugar and refined grains (including white pasta, white rice, and white breads).

2. Protein

Main function: Build and repair tissue

“Protein is another important source of energy for the body,” Solomon says. 

Protein consists of amino acids that act as the body’s main building blocks for tissues, such as muscle, skin, bone, and hair.

What Is The Paleo Diet?

Proteins also assist in many reactions in the body, including the production of enzymes (the catalysts that keep all body processes running smoothly), hormones, and antibodies, Solomon explains.

The best protein sources are lean meats, poultry and seafood, beans and peas, nuts and seeds, eggs, and soy products, according to the USDA.

3. Fats

Main function: Provide backup energy

“Your body uses fats for energy when carbohydrates aren’t available,” Patton says. 

“You also need fats as insulation, to help your body absorb fat-soluble vitamins, and to protect your organs.”

Fats come in both liquid and solid forms. The USDA notes that the best sources of healthful fats are the liquid monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats found in olive oil, canola oil, sunflower oil, soybean oil, corn oil, nuts, seeds, and avocados.

 as well as fatty fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Limit foods high in unhealthy saturated fats (red meat, cheese, butter, and ice cream) and trans fats (processed products that contain partially hydrogenated oil), which increase your risk for disease. 

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4. Vitamins and Minerals

Main function: Maintain optimal health

“You need vitamins and minerals for numerous physiological functions that help you survive,” Patton says. They’re essential for normal growth and development, and each one plays a unique role in helping to maintain optimal health.

For example, calcium and vitamin D are necessary for healthy bones, and the B vitamins help support the nervous system, explains Tricia L. Psota, PhD, RDN, president-elect of the DC Metro Area Dietetic Association.

Vitamins and minerals come from a variety of foods, including fruits and vegetables, dairy products, and lean protein sources. “Eat a selection of colorful fruits and vegetables every day, and vary the types of proteins you eat,” Solomon says.

5. Water

Main function: Enables vital bodily functions, You’ve probably heard that you can live for weeks without food but only days without water.

That’s because water is the most important essential nutrient. It is involved in many of your body’s vital functions, and it distributes other essential nutrients to your cells.

The Institute of Medicine recommends that men consume about 125 ounces of water a day and women 91 ounces per day.

About 20 percent can come from foods, and the remaining 80 percent should come from drinking water — about 12 cups a day for men and 8.8 cups for women.

Melt 7 Pounds Every 7 Days

Eat vegetables and fruits
Vegetables and fruits are loaded with prebiotic fiber, vitamins, minerals, and many antioxidants, some of which have potent biological effects.

Studies show that people who eat the most vegetables and fruits live longer and have a lower risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and other illnesses.

Make sure to eat enough protein
Eating enough protein is vital for optimal health.

What’s more, this nutrient is particularly important for weight loss.

High protein intake can boost metabolism significantly while making you feel full enough to automatically eat fewer calories. It can also reduce cravings and your desire to snack late at night.

Sufficient protein intake has also been shown to lower blood sugar and blood pressure levels.

Do some cardio
Doing aerobic exercise, also called cardio, is one of the best things you can do for your mental and physical health.

It’s particularly effective at reducing belly fat, the harmful type of fat that builds up around your organs. Reduced belly fat should lead to major improvements in metabolic health.

Don’t smoke or do drugs, and only drink in moderation
If you smoke or abuse drugs, tackle those problems first. Diet and exercise can wait.

Belly Fat in Women 

If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation and consider avoiding it completely if you tend to drink too much.

Use extra virgin olive oil
Extra virgin olive oil is one of the healthiest vegetable oils.

It’s loaded with heart-healthy monounsaturated fats and powerful antioxidants that can fight inflammation.

Extra virgin olive oil benefits heart health, as people who consume it have a much lower risk of dying from heart attacks and strokes.

Minimize your sugar intake
Added sugar is one of the worst ingredients in the modern diet, as large amounts can harm your metabolic health.

High sugar intake is linked to numerous ailments, including obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and many forms of cancer.

Don’t eat a lot of refined carbs
Not all carbs are created equal.

Healthy Diet Plant-Based Diet

Refined carbs have been highly processed to remove their fiber. They’re relatively low in nutrients and can harm your health when eaten in excess.

Studies show that refined carbs are linked to overeating and numerous metabolic diseases.

Don’t fear saturated fat
Saturated fat has been controversial.

While it’s true that saturated fat raises cholesterol levels, it also raises HDL (good) cholesterol and shrinks your LDL (bad) particles, which is linked to a lower risk of heart disease.

New studies in hundreds of thousands of people have questioned the association between saturated fat intake and heart disease.

Lift heavy things
Lifting weights is one of the best things you can do to strengthen your muscles and improve your body composition.

It also leads to massive improvements in metabolic health, including improved insulin sensitivity.

The best approach is to lift weights, but doing bodyweight exercises can be just as effective.

Avoid artificial trans fats
Artificial trans fats are harmful, man-made fats that are strongly linked to inflammation and heart disease.

Lifestyle Changes to Improve Your Cholesterol 

While trans fats have been largely banned in the United States and elsewhere, the U.S. ban hasn’t gone fully into effect — and some foods still contain them.

Use plenty of herbs and spices
Many incredibly healthy herbs and spices exist.

For example, ginger and turmeric both have potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, leading to various health benefits.

Due to their powerful benefits, you should try to include as many herbs and spices as possible in your diet.

Take vitamin D3 if you don’t get much sun exposure

Sunlight is a great source of vitamin D.

Yet, most people don’t get enough sun exposure.

In fact, about 41.6% of the U.S. population is deficient in this critical vitamin.

If you’re unable to get adequate sun exposure, vitamin D supplements are a good alternative.

Unless you keep a record of everything you eat every single day, you may not really know if you’re managing a healthy diet. A recent government report found that Americans aren’t getting enough calcium, fiber, magnesium, potassium, or vitamins A, C, and E. “You’re not going to have a major health event as a result,” says Alanna Moshfegh, an author of the USDA report What We Eat in America, “but the recommended amounts will help you maintain your health and decrease your risk of chronic diseases.”

Best Diets Weight loss Diet plans

Seemingly healthy snacks are often secretly loaded with sugar, saturated fats, and carbohydrates, so we’ve handpicked our recommended snacks for each nutrient (because healthy doesn’t have to mean bland). Here are the figures, as they pertain to women, and a little help interpreting them.

Benefits: Bone health.
Sources: Dairy products; fish with bones; dark, leafy greens.

While some yogurts are loaded with extra fat and artificial sweeteners, Stonyfield Organic Plain Fat-Free Yogurt is a healthy, calcium-packed alternative. Mix in fresh berries, chia seeds, or pure vanilla extract for natural sweetness and bonus nutrients.

Benefits: Protects against coronary heart disease and reduces the risk of diabetes.
Sources: Fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, whole grains.

For a fiber-rich snack, we love Cascadian Farm Organic Dark Chocolate Almond Granola, which has 37 grams of whole grains and offers 19% fiber content in one serving. Plus, a dose of dark chocolate makes this a delicious breakfast or snack to perk up your day.

Recommendation: 310 to 320 milligrams a day.
Benefits: Helps maintain normal muscle and nerve function and develop and maintain bones.
Sources: Nuts, seeds, bran, halibut, and other fish.

Even though dark chocolate has relatively high levels of magnesium, that doesn’t mean you should start grabbing M&M’s by the handful. Instead, try this RAWMIO Hazelnut and Fig Chocolate Bark, which offers natural sources of magnesium.

The simple lifestyle shifts in the Eat Sleep Burn ugly belly fat…


Benefits: Helps maintain healthy blood pressure and reduce the effects of salt; it may reduce the risk of recurrent kidney stones and possibly decrease bone loss.
Sources: Potatoes, tomato paste, and puree, white beans, yogurt, soybeans, bananas.

Bananas are well-known for being a potassium-rich fruit—one banana contains 12% of the daily recommended value. They’re the perfect snack to stash on-the-go or add them to smoothies, peanut butter toast, and healthy banana bread.

Vitamin A
Benefits: Important for vision, red blood cell production, embryonic development, and immune function.
Sources: Organ meats; orange vegetables; green, leafy vegetables.

Trade out potato chips for Rhythm Superfoods Kale Chips, which contain 25% of the RDI of Vitamin A, thanks to superfood ingredients like kale, tahini, sunflower seeds, and carrots.

Vitamin C
Benefits: Acts as a disease-fighting antioxidant; may help to maintain a healthy immune system.
Sources: Fruits and vegetables, including citrus fruits, red and green peppers, kiwis, and guavas.

These Organic Slammers Superfood Pouches might resemble baby food, but they’re chock full of delicious antioxidants. With 90% of your daily value of Vitamin C in one serving, we’ll squeeze and snack on them all day long.

Vitamin E
Benefits: Acts as a disease-fighting antioxidant; may support eye health.
Sources: Some ready-to-eat cereals, some oils, almonds, peanut butter.

Nuts are always a go-to health snack.


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