The human body requires dozens of individual nutrients in order to function properly. From protein for your muscles to carbs for energy to Vitamin C for your immune system, there are so many different micro and macronutrients that your body needs to keep working. But there are a few that are more important than others, nutrients you desperately need to stay healthy. Below, we’ve listed the most essential ones for a healthy body:
Without calcium, your bones would weaken and turn brittle, which makes them more susceptible to breaking when you are injured. Calcium is needed for strong, resilient, fast-repairing bones, and they can help to reduce bone mass loss caused by aging. But that’s not all calcium does! The critical mineral also plays a role in fat-burning, and it will help to protect your teeth against decay. You’ll find it even plays a role in muscle contractions and the transmission of electrical signals through your nerves.
Fiber is the stuff that slows down the absorption rate of sugar into your body, preventing blood glucose levels from spiking when you eat. Soluble fiber absorbs water, sugar, cholesterol, fats, and toxins and thereby prevents them from being pulled into your bloodstream. Insoluble fiber acts like a scouring pad to scrub out your intestines and get rid of any loose waste matter clinging to the intestinal walls. Fiber can also curb your appetite, protect against colon cancer, reduce your risk of heart disease, and prevent diabetes. More fiber is always a good thing!
Protein is critical for muscle-building, because it provides the nine amino acids required for producing new muscle cells. Protein also plays a role in a faster metabolism, healthy brain function, and many more internal systems and functions. Without protein, your body is going to waste away and seriously suffer. Even if you only consume plant-based proteins, you still need a lot of protein to keep your body working well.
Potassium works hand in hand with sodium to balance the levels of water in your body. It’s present in every cell, and it’s critical for your health. A higher intake of potassium can improve your brain function, enhance central nervous system activity, lower your blood pressure, and promote a healthier cardiovascular system. Given the high-sodium nature of the modern diet, potassium has become even more important than ever!
We all know that Vitamin C is critical for healthy immune function, and it can help to fight off the common cold and reduce its duration. But did you know that Vitamin C also plays a role in protecting your body from free radicals? The vitamin is a potent antioxidant that can help to reduce oxidative stress and free radical damage in your body. It can also improve your heart health, encourage weight loss, and boost your brain function!
Zinc is a fascinating nutrient! It plays a role in healthy immune function, but it’s also critical for the health of your sexual organs. You’ll find that zinc is needed for the production of your thyroid hormones, and a lack of zinc can lead to thyroid dysfunction. It’s one of the harder nutrients to obtain in your diet, but it’s absolutely essential!
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
These fatty acids help to protect your heart, decrease inflammation in your body, improve brain health, lower your risk of stroke and heart attack, and enhance the health of your joints. You’ll find that these fatty acids are critical for a healthy body, so it’s worth eating higher-fat foods in order to increase your Omega-3 intake.