Nutrition is the science of food as it relates to health. Learning good nutrition habits can help you accomplish a wide variety of goals including: losing weight, burning fat and gaining muscle. The type and amount of food you eat has a huge bearing on your overall health. It is therefore crucial you learn to differentiate between healthy and unhealthy food choices.

How Much Food

The amount of food you eat compared to the amount of energy you burn determines whether you gain, lose or maintain weight. Your energy balance is the difference between how much you eat and burn. It is the only way to control your weight. Learning the calorie content of food is important because body weight has an important role in creating a healthy lifestyle.

Types of Food

The types of food that make up a diet can also have a huge impact on health. Some food ingredients such as saturated & trans fats, simple sugars and sodium can hurt the body while others such as fiber, antioxidants and vitamins can help. Creating a diet that is built around healthy foods can help decrease the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and cancer.

The Bottom Line

Making smart food choices is not about depriving yourself. It is about eating healthy most of the time so you can enjoy unhealthy but delicious foods some of the time. This guide shows you how to live a healthy lifestyle by creating a well rounded diet.

How To's

How to Eat Healthy Your eating habits have a lot to do with your overall health. The types of food you eat can either prevent or speed up certain diseases. Eating healthy doesn't always mean counting your calories but it does mean being able to differentiate between good and bad choices.


Calories Calories are units of energy used to track food intake and exercise. Calories taken in from food is the body's source of fuel and provides it with the building blocks it needs to make new tissues and repair damaged ones. Calories can come from a wide variety of foods some healthy and others not.

Energy Balance Explained Energy balance is the basis of weight management. Do you want to lose weight, put on a few pounds or stay right where you're at? Whichever scenario you are in, energy balance will get you there. Energy balance is simply the amount of calories you eat versus the amount of calories you burn. The result will be either weight loss, weight gain or weight maintenance.

Save on Groceries Grocery shopping is a ritual that everyone has to go through. Unfortunately, this ritual can sometimes get expensive and in a time when saving even the smallest amounts of money matters, grocery shopping offers an opportunity to save a lot.

Nutrition Nutrition is a very important concept to understand and not only for those looking to lose weight or go on a diet. Everyone that wants to be healthy needs to understand the difference between good and bad fats, between simple and complex carbs and between healthy and unhealthy foods. Good nutrition can help you live a healthier, more productive and fun filled life by giving you the energy you need to accomplish your goals.

What is Nutrixercise? Nutrixercise is an important concept to understand because nutrition and exercise should always be paired together to achieve the best results.

How to Read a Nutrition Label Properly reading a nutrition label is a basic skill that everyone who is interested in staying healthy needs to learn. Too often, food manufacturers market an item as healthy when in fact it's no different than the average unhealthy product on the shelf.

8 Steps to Improving Your Eating Habits It seems that the only people who try and eat healthy are those looking to lose weight, and even then, most of the time it's a temporary change. Regardless of your weight goals, having a healthy diet has countless benefits including feeling better, being more energetic and looking great.

Staying Healthy During a Recession Whether you think we're in a recession or going through a rough patch, you understand now more than ever the need to save money. Gas prices are at an all time high, food is following closely behind and health insurance is too expensive to buy if you don't get it from your employer. When times are tough, some luxuries such as gym memberships and healthy food seem unnecessary.

Supplement Safety In our society of quick fixes, we have supplements that solve every imaginable problem ranging from too much belly fat to improving memory and even stopping hair loss. Unfortunately, most claims made by supplements have no real science to back them up.

Misleading Food Labels Learning the benefits of eating health foods may convince you to start eating them. But what if the foods you start eating aren't any healthier than the ones you gave up? Misleading statements on food labels can lead to that.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is calorie intake the same as healthy eating? There seems to be some confusion on the difference between calorie intake and healthy eating. While closely related, the two concepts are not always the same. Many people wrongly assume limiting calorie intake and forcing weight loss equates to healthy eating habits and sound lifestyle choices. While controlling calorie intake is mandatory for weight control, it is not synonymous with healthy eating.

Is it bad to eat the same thing every day? There's a vast and almost endless supply of food available to us Westerners, both in terms of quantity and variety. With so much to choose from, why are many of us stuck eating the exact same thing every day? When describing a healthy diet, the term "balanced" is thrown around a lot. A balanced diet is one which draws upon a wide variety of foods. Creating a balanced diet gives you access to a wide array of nutrients, each with unique and important healthy benefits.

Is counting calories important? Energy balance plays a central role in health because it alone determines body weight. Energy balance is described as the relationship between how many calories you consume and how many you burn. This important relationship has three possible outcomes: gaining, losing or maintaining weight. Because body weight and body fat percentage have an important role in preventing disease, it's important to monitor calorie intake and make the necessary adjustments to maintain and improve overall health.

What is a good food to eat before bed? Though most of the visible work needed for a fit body takes place at the gym, the real "magic" happens during rest. Exercise causes damage to muscle tissue (completely normal) which the body repairs during the recovery process. The recovery process is technically what makes you bigger, faster and stronger. This important process is dependent on an adequate amount of rest and nutrients. Because a large part of muscle repair happens during sleep, good nighttime nutrition is crucial for a speedy, effective and complete recovery.

What's the point of counting calories? Counting calories seems like one of the most mundane tasks people do. Why would anyone want to measure food with spoons, cups and scales? Wouldn't all the numbers drive you crazy? Counting calories is one of the best ways to guarantee successful weight control. Weight control is a numbers game. It is as simple as understanding the relationship between how many calories you burn and how many you eat. Counting calories is an important step in managing this relationship.

Is [insert food here] healthy? Is pizza healthy? Are hamburgers healthy? Are Oreos healthy? These are some of the most common nutrition questions around. The answer to the question, "Is [insert food here] healthy?" is more complicated than a simple yes or no. Typically, individual foods can't be classified as healthy or unhealthy by themselves. More important than figuring out whether a food item is healthy or not, is figuring out how it fits into an overall lifestyle. Foods can be relatively good or bad depending on an individual's life choices.

Should I take a multivitamin? With so many supplements on the market, it's difficult to differentiate between products that can help you improve your overall health and those that are simply a waste of money or even worse, potentially harmful. A multivitamin can be helpful if used properly.

Are all calories the same? Gaining weight, losing weight or simply maintaining weight requires that you control your calorie intake. Our body gets its energy from calories found within food. When you eat too much, you gain weight. When you restrict your intake, you lose weight. When it comes to weight balance, all calories are the same. When it comes to overall health, picking the right foods will lead to a healthier life.

How many calories should I eat each day? It seems as though every month a new diet book, pill or product is released and claims that you can lose weight without giving up your favorite foods or even exercising more than you already are. Before you get all excited and spend your money on these "miracles", realize that there is only one way to control weight: calories intake.

Do calorie calculators work? Calorie calculators can be found on countless websites. Even Straight Health has its own calorie calculator which uses sex, weight, height, age and activity level to estimate a person's daily calorie expenditure. But are these numbers reliable and should you base your diet off of them?

Is it OK to eat junk food sometimes? The dilemma: you know how unhealthy doughnuts can be but love them nonetheless, should you eat one here and there? You defiantly should. To be completely healthy, you have to make your body as well as your mind happy.

Top 5 Lists

Top 5 Reasons to Eat Healthy A diet built on a foundation of healthy food choices has plenty of benefits including weight loss, increased energy and disease prevention. A healthy diet allows you to eat unhealthy foods sometimes, provided you make the right choices most of the time. A healthy lifestyle is about balance, not deprivation.

Top 5 Ways to Increase Nutrient Intake Nutrients are substances the body uses to regulate life essential functions such as: hormone production, the immune system, vision and energy metabolism. Without adequate levels of essential nutrients, the cannot function optimally. Certain nutrients also lower disease risk and improve overall health. For example, fiber reduces cholesterol and cancer risk while omega 3 fatty acids decrease the risk of heart disease. Smart nutrition habits play an important role in ensuring you get adequate levels of every essential nutrient.

Top 5 Places You Shouldn't Get Your Information From Making smart health decisions involves gathering good information. Unfortunately, today's diet and exercise world are filled with unreliable sources pedaling inaccurate information to further a specific agenda (gym memberships, personal training packages or supplements). When you get information from unreliable sources, you will make bad decisions.

Top 5 Bad Eating Habits "You are what you eat" is a perfect saying because the nutrition habits you practice now have a huge effect on your overall health tomorrow. The right eating habits will help you lose weight, gain muscle and even reduce your risk of disease.

Top 5 Healthy Eating Habits Liquid calories, skipping meals and having a strict diet are just some of the bad eating habits that need to change if you're looking to improve your overall health.

Top 5 Ways to Eat Healthy During a Recession With tough times ahead of us, everyone is looking for ways to save money and the grocery store is no exception. Sure we could all go on Ramen Noodle diets and probably save a lot of money, but that would be creating big problems tomorrow to solve a few problems today. There are plenty of ways you and your family can stay healthy and still save money during a recession.


Free Diet Plans This tool will provide you with a daily meal program that is personalized for your own needs. Whether you're looking to gain, lose or maintain weight, the SH Trainer can help you reach your goals.

Daily Nutrient Needs Calculator This tool will calculate your daily needs of fats, carbohydrates, protein, vitamins, and minerals.

Common Terminology A few common terms you should know if you're interested in improving your health, eating healthy and starting an exercise routine.

Functions of Vitamins & Minerals Here are the major functions and sources of all the vitamins and minerals.