What are nutrient-dense foods?

What are nutrient-dense foods?

Proper nutrition gives us energy without exceeding fat. Prioritize the consumption of vegetables, fruits and whole grains to the detriment of processed foods.

Top 10 nutrient-dense foods

Nutrient-dense foods contain many vitamins and minerals (also called micronutrients) but not many calories. Vitamins and minerals nourish your body and help maintain health while reducing the risk of chronic diseases.

What are nutrient-dense foods?

Knowing the foods rich in nutrients is essential to design a balanced diet according to our needs. As we well know, the body requires a certain amount of essential macro and micronutrients daily.

However, their needs may vary according to age, current health and weight, among other factors. Therefore, besides knowing the food, it is good that you get advice on how and how much you should consume by going to a nutritionist.

1. Vegetables

vegetables nutrient-dense foods

Vegetables are one of the most popular and nutritious foods, although ironically less consumed. A diet rich in vegetables can provide you with a host of health benefits.

According to a Harvard T.H. Chan, vegetables would help reduce the risk of stroke, heart disease, blood pressure, the risk of eye problems, digestive problems and some cancers.

Among the most nutritious vegetables that you can add to your diet, we find:





    Sweet potato









2. Fruits

fruits nutrient-dense foods

Fruits provide all kinds of minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and a host of other beneficial micronutrients derived from plants (phytonutrients). They are also naturally low in fat and calories and contain no cholesterol.

Some of its components, such as vitamins C and E and flavonoids, have been associated with possible protection against chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes and obesity, according to data published in Advances in Nutrition in 2012.

Some of these nutrient-rich foods that you can incorporate into your diet are:














3. Whole grains

nutrient-rich whole grains

Whole grains are also part of nutrient-dense foods because they are low in fat and high in fibre. Research carried out jointly by the University of Eastern Finland and The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) indicated that the consumption of whole grains would be associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes mellitus and some types of cancer.

Different studies also suggest that it would be possible to benefit from whole grains to reduce so-called systemic inflammation. However, more research is necessary.

Some of the whole grains that would be interesting for you to include in your diet would be:

    Integral rice





    Whole wheat


4. Legumes

Legumes are a source of protein.

According to the Spanish Nutrition Foundation, legumes are one of the best sources of soluble fibre and are rich in iron, magnesium, and folic acid. This last component is essential during pregnancy to avoid possible neural tube malformations.

At a general level, iron participates in the formation of hemoglobin in the blood, as well as in the oxygen transport process in the body, while magnesium helps the normal functioning of muscles and nerves.

A healthy diet is a key to avoiding some diseases such as diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular diseases. Although we have a wide variety of products on the market, it is relevant to know which ones positively impact our bodies.

Dr. Aníbal Donoso, a diabetologist and nutritionist at the Universidad de Los Andes Clinic and a member of the Obesity and Diabetes Program, maintains that we should choose foods that make us feel good and have better health.

The recommended foods are:

    Foods rich in calcium: milk and its derivatives allow us to have healthy and strong bones.

    Fibre: plays a dominant role since it regulates intestinal transit and reduces sugar absorption. This component can be found in legumes, nuts, seeds, fruits, and green leafy vegetables.

    Electrolytes and trace elements: magnesium stands out, which participates in the body’s energy metabolism, and we can consume it in nuts, vegetables and fish.

    Omega 3: essential oil for protege cardiovascular health and prevent autoimmune diseases. In addition, it has an anti-inflammatory effect and helps prevent cognitive decline. It is found mainly in fish such as salmon, horse mackerel, and mackerel.

     Vitamins: A, C and E are vital to our health. The first one strengthens our immune system and is present in green vegetables. The second is an antioxidant, and we can consume it in citrus fruits such as orange and grapefruit. Vitamin E, meanwhile, has a powerful antioxidant effect and can be consumed in nuts, cereals and vegetable oils.

Information on the consumption of food and beverages in the Venezuelan population is essential to identify nutritional problems and groups at risk by age, geographical areas and socioeconomic levels. The objective of this study was to analyze the characteristics of the average food intake in the population between 15 and 65 years of age in Venezuela during 2015. A cross-sectional study was carried out in 1132 subjects, to whom two 24-hour reminders were applied, not consecutive with the multistep methodology, and a qualitative frequency questionnaire on beverage intake. The average calorie consumption was 1,925 kcal, distributed in: 16.3% protein, 30.2% fat, 52.4% carbohydrates and 1.1% alcohol. 79.2% of the sample presented an inadequate habitual diet due to a calorie deficit. The mineral deficiency was higher in women, calcium (92.9%), iron (42.2%) and zinc (76.6%). Most of the respondents ate three meals a day. Lunch was the meal that predominated in the daily intake, followed in decreasing order by breakfast and dinner. Sugary drinks, fruit juices and sodas are essential sources of simple carbohydrates. The EVANS 2015 study shows a significant drop in the consumption of macro and micronutrients, especially in the lower social strata and educational levels and in older adults, which is different by region, generating a nutritional and nutritional status in vulnerable sectors. Poor health, with a consequent increase in calorie and nutrient deficiency diseases.