Food is any material consumed for the purpose to give nutrition to an organisms. The food that we eat is referred to as nutrition. Food is generally of animal, plant or fungi origin, and all contains various essential nutrients, including proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, or minerals, depending on its type. A wide range of foods exist, with some having more health-giving qualities than others.

Fruits and vegetables are a major source of nutrients. A variety of fruits and vegetables can be eaten on a daily basis to provide an individual with vitamins and minerals needed to maintain a healthy diet and strong immune system. Fruits and vegetables also have high fiber content. High fiber foods are helpful in preventing constipation, as they induce regular bowel movements and enable the absorption of nutrients from food. A varied, healthy diet is an important factor in maintaining weight gain and preventing diseases such as cancer. A nutritious diet can aid in reducing cholesterol and blood pressure levels and in maintaining healthy skin and nails.

Milk products are one of the main foods that provide sufficient amounts of calcium, protein, iron and other vitamins and minerals for good health. Other nutritional values provided by milk include protein and fat. Other milk products that are sometimes eaten in place of or in addition to milk include yogurt, cheese, butter and sour cream. In some countries, goat milk is used to make yogurt and sorbet, which are considered healthier alternatives to fruit juices.

Raw or cooked vegetables are a great way to get plenty of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. Although they may seem bland and most people do not eat them very often, leafy green vegetables such as spinach are rich in vitamins and other nutrients that are good for the body and can be consumed on a daily basis. Cooking vegetables releases valuable nutrients that are lost during the cooking process.

Legumes and other beans are another popular food choice and provide a wide range of dietary fiber. Fiber is known to help with weight control and is included in a variety of foods including whole grains, vegetables and fruits. Soybeans, black beans and chickpeas are also excellent choices for increasing the amount of fiber in a diet. Some people do not eat beans or legumes because of their strong taste and this is often true of soy products. If you do not enjoy a flavorful bean curd, you can substitute some of the other legume options for your meal plans.

Finally, some people do not eat meat and would rather have more carbohydrates and vitamins from foods such as fruits and vegetables. This is not necessarily a bad thing. People who are dieting should still include protein from animal sources, but they can still choose to have more of the vegetarian or organic dairy products available. A raw food diet is also an option when you are trying to eat more of a variety of foods and make choices about what kinds of fats and proteins are included in their diet. The trick is to be an omnivorous instead of a vegan.

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