Nutrition plays a vital role in our lives. It is at the center of our health, well-being, energy levels, and our self-esteem. Knowing what to eat and how to maintain your optimum nutrition levels is key. This article will give you that information and tips on how to achieve it.

Oprah Winfrey used the phrase “clean eating” in her book Oprah’s Kitchen. It’s helpful to think of clean eating as a good way to approach food. Simple preparations, lighter salad dressings, using less oils and fats (though still a bit for flavor!), and keeping things as fresh as possible – all these ideas contribute to her way of clean eating. Oprah loved her fried chicken – and presents a clean way of cooking it in her book. The bottom line is, if you have a choice between fancy and heavy vs. simple and fresh, go with the latter and your scale will thank you, no matter what food you’re eating.

When assembling a diet plan that includes the right amount of calories and proper nutrition, it is critical that you include breakfast every day. Not only does breakfast help your metabolism, but it also provides you with vitamins and nutrients.

Carrots are universally recommended by nutritionists. Most of us eat carrots because we like the taste. They are also rich in carotenoids, vitamins and iodine. Studies show that carrots lower blood cholesterol and reduce the risk of lung cancer. Also, carrots provide a natural source of sugar, that is safe for diabetics.

One fundamental starting point for good nutrition is to take a daily multivitamin. Although you should not rely on multivitamins for all your nutritional needs, it’s helpful to think of a multivitamin as insurance against the nutrients you may not have taken in that day. Also, be aware that multivitamins are available for a wide variety of ages and needs (kids, teens, seniors, prenatal, etc.) and choose one that’s right for you.

A good nutritional tip is to be consistent with the timing of when you serve your child meals. Ideally, you’ll want to serve them meals around the same time everyday. It’s also a good idea to limit fruit drinks and soda to only meals because they can easily fill up on them.

To lower your risk of heart disease, include plenty of Omega-3 fatty acids in your diet. Omega-3 fatty acids decrease your cholesterol levels and improve cardiovascular functions. One of the best sources of this nutrient is salmon, but it can also be found in flaxseed, walnuts, and tofu. Try eating something with Omega-3 fatty acid several times a week.

To boost your energy in a nutritious way, eat foods high in magnesium. Magnesium helps your body make a substance called adenosine triphosphate, which significantly increases your energy levels. A wide variety of foods contain magnesium, including cashews, yogurt, and spinach. If you have a sweet tooth, the cocoa powder used in making dark chocolate is another excellent source of this nutrient.

When looking to add more nutritious vegetables to your diet, make it easy by chopping a batch of vegetables to keep on hand for when time is short. Choose vegetables that are rich in color to maximize vitamins and minerals. Having the vegetables ready to add to soups and salads will make it more likely that you will actually eat them.

Be sure that people know that you are trying to eat healthier. If someone asks if you want seconds, say no. Let your significant other know that you do not want chocolate and to try flowers instead. When deciding where to go if you are going to dine out, pick a place that will offer you great healthy options.

Although most nutritionists agree that small, frequent meals and even the occasional scheduled snack is a highly effective plan for healthy eating, ALL agree that these snacks should be some approximation of nutritious. Some people mistakenly tell themselves that a small, unhealthy snack is preferable to simply going without food for extended periods of time, but this is dangerous thinking. Limit yourself to one or two nutrient-rich, healthy, filling snacks per day.

A commonly overconsumed mineral in the modern American diet is sodium. While a certain amount of sodium in the diet is vital to continued nervous system function, it is important to not eat too much, as it can lead to high blood pressure. The easiest place to cut it out is with eliminating fast food.

As a vegetarian, it is very important to consider the foods that you eat on a regular basis and make sure that you are getting enough iron, protein and amino acids. Beans, tofu, and dairy products can get you the protein you need. Iron is found in many dark leafy greens and avocados are a great source for those amino acids.

Soybeans are practically miraculous in their nutritional value. They contain a moderate amount of carbohydrates, lots of good protein, and just enough fat to help you absorb the good phytochemicals like isoflavones and the omega-3 fatty acids. Eating more protein in the form of soy products will also help you avoid saturated fats and cholesterol.

Nuts, seeds, and fruits are all the beginnings of life. They all have the proteins, minerals, and compounds to grow into their respective plant. It also means they have the things needed to build and support life. And they can support yours too! Mix your favorites together and make a nice crunchy and chewy trail mix snack.

If you are feeling the urge come on to indulge in something you know is unhealthy, then it may help to know that research shows the ferocity of the urge normally passes in about 15 minutes. So use this valuable information to push through and let the urge pass. Distract yourself for those 15 minutes by walking the dog, calling a friend or reading the newspaper. Do something fun and know that you are building your mental muscle. Each time you can push through and deny the unhealthy behavior, makes it easier to do so again.

Now you have some great advice and knowledge on the subject of nutrition. Know how you can incorporate these tips into your own life and how to have healthier eating habits. In doing this, you will be much more likely to stave off sickness, disease, and other physical ailments that generally come with poor nutrition.