The term “diet” is so often only used in regards to one’s physical health. However, your diet actually affects every aspect of your health! From physical function to dental health to mental health, here are a few ways your diet will affect your entire life.
First and foremost, the food and drink you put into your body largely determines the physical capabilities of your body. Every food contains micro and macro nutrients necessary for fueling and building your body. Proteins, fats and carbohydrates provide multiple sources of energy that are utilized differently by your body for various tasks. Vitamins and minerals like zinc, iron, magnesium and more are targeted nutrients that help specific functions of your body such as blood flow or digestion. Your physical mobility and energy levels rely almost entirely on the foods you ingest!
The things you eat also, logically, impact your teeth. Eating certain foods can put you at greater risk for cavities. Sugary foods—regardless of the form they come in—stick to your teeth and break down even that tough enamel, creating sensitive spots and, eventually, holes. It is difficult to remove this sticky, sugary stuff without intentional and vigorous brushing. However, some foods can actually benefit your dental health! Foods high in fiber like fruits or vegetables, and dairy products like cheese and milk encourage healthy bacteria. Foods with fluoride are also natural dental-boosting particles that will fortify your teeth against harmful substances, keeping your teeth strong and healthy.
Diet also has a major impact on your brain. Not only does your overall physical health play into the health and activity of your mental function, the chemicals within food can actually directly impact the organ! Healthy fats from fish or avocados or nuts, complex carbohydrates found in whole grains, and proteins in spinach or yogurt all boost mental health. They encourage production of important hormones like serotonin and dopamine (the happiness hormones), or help with the absorption of cortisol (the stress hormone) so that your brain is better able to control stress and anxiety levels and reason properly. Even dark chocolate has positive properties for brain health—the concentrated cocoa acts as an antioxidant which helps with memory and attention span!
Spending a bit more time and attention on your food choices will boost the health of every part of your body! Not only will you be helping your body, brain, and dental health, you’ll find that those healthy foods feel and taste great.
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