Why is good nutrition and fitness vital to good health?
Health, nutrition, and fitness are the three interrelated areas that determine an individual’s sense of happiness and well-being.
Health involves the physical, mental and spiritual levels of the individual. A physically healthy person is one who can carry out normal daily physical activities and respond to emergencies without having to get rid of fatigue or pain. The health part of health, nutrition, and fitness is achieved through a balanced program of good nutrition, healthy physical activity, continuing education, and mental activities, and social and spiritual activities. Your choices for the foods you eat and your physical activities affect your short- and long-term health (how you feel now and in the future). You may be eating a lot, but if it’s not an adequate balance of the five basic food group choices, you may be adding fat to your body without generating the energy needed to burn calories and cell energy to perform your functions. Healthy physical activity helps burn off any excess calories you consume and keeps muscles and joints flexible and strong. Your continuing education efforts (reading, attending seminars, as well as attending formal education classes) and spiritual activities (social activities, attending devotional services, meditation, etc.) provide you with a sense of accomplishment and well-being. An important part of good health is being physically fit and maintaining an adequate body weight. Maintaining good health requires following a nutritional diet and exercising to develop and maintain muscles and burn excess calories.
The nutritional health part of health, nutrition, and fitness refers to the foods we consume to maintain our health and provide energy to carry on with our daily lives. Nutrition is the process of nourishing or being nourished; the total of all the processes that a plant or animal uses to absorb and process food substances to maintain a healthy life. A healthy lifestyle requires a balanced diet of foods selected from the five basic food groups, fruits, vegetables, naturally calcium-rich dairy products, or calcium-enriched products, whole grains, and proteins (lean fish meat, peas, and beans). Other nutritional factors should also be considered. Most fruits and vegetables are best eaten raw because heat destroys some of the healthy nutrients. Steaming and grilling is better than boiling or frying. Preparing fresh fruits and vegetables is better than processed or prepared foods.
Prepared foods usually contain more salt (sodium) than needed and other flavor-enhancing substances. Some of these additives do not add any nutritional value to foods and may even be harmful to health. More nutritional factors to consider are the variety of fruits and vegetables in our diet. Nutritional data show that dark green vegetables (romaine lettuce, kale, broccoli, etc.) and orange vegetables (carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, and summer squashes) provide more nutritional value than some of the less colorful vegetables. Here’s more nutrition information. Some foods contribute to fat burning. Green tea contributes to fat burning by increasing the body’s metabolism and energy level. Protein-rich foods are harder to digest, so they require more calories in the digestive process. Good nutrition practices may not be enough for some people, as they may require unique supplements such as CoEnzimeQ10 or others.
Physical fitness is part of physical fitness, health and nutrition is the ability to carry out daily activities, enjoy leisure activities and have a healthy immune system to resist disease and infection. Developing and maintaining good physical fitness requires a balance between good nutrition and varied physical exercise. There are elements to physical fitness: specific fitness, the ability to perform daily functions related to work or recreation, general fitness, the ability to enjoy leisure time and a sense of peace with the environment, preparedness, the ability to overcome or avoid emergencies.
There are also three factors to achieve good physical fitness: good nutrition, physical exercise and rest (sleep). Nutrition maintains cell health and provides the energy for exercise. Physical exercise can be used to do work for a living, participate in sporting events, develop and maintain a healthy cardiovascular system, or control body weight. Physical fitness and how physical fitness is achieved varies from individual to individual. If a person is involved in an occupation that requires vigorous activity and has good nutrition, no other exercise may be needed to keep a body in shape.
However, even people who work hard in their occupation may need additional cardiovascular exercise to keep the heart and blood vessels in optimal condition. For people whose profession does not require vigorous physical exercise, a special effort is required to achieve and maintain good physical fitness. A good nutritional diet is the obvious starting point. Some easy things are using stairs instead of elevators, parking a little farther from the office or store entrance, throwing away the TV remote, switching channels the old-fashioned way, and walking to nearby offices or neighbors instead of using the phone. These efforts will help, but more vigorous exercise is needed for fitness.
Cardiovascular health requires a fitness routine for a minimum of 20 minutes three times a week. The best and generally most convenient cardiovascular exercise is walking. Another good cardiovascular exercise is swimming. Swimming also helps strengthen and tone muscles. The other factor in developing and maintaining fitness is strength exercise to build and tone muscles and burn fat. Strength exercises are good for weight control because they stimulate muscle growth even after the exercise is completed. This means that the body continues to burn fat for an extended period of time.