Skip to content

Nutrient Density

January 9, 2014


Nutrient dense is term that describe foods that have a lot of nutrients per calorie. In other words they give you more bang for your calorie buck These foods are very important because they allow us to fuel our bodies more efficiently. Fruits, veggies, whole grains, and lean meats make up the bulk of your nutrient dense food. Foods that have less nutrients per calorie are called empty calorie foods. Diets full of empty calorie foods like juices, pizza, sodas, cakes, and other processed foods lead to obesity because you need more calories to compensate for the lack of nutrients. Have you noticed that after eating a lot of potato chips you are either still hungry or you get hungry again extremely quick? Your body is telling you to keep on eating not because you have not had enough calories but because you have not had consumed enough nutrients. When you eat a nutrient dense snack or meal you stay fuller longer which reduces the total amount of calories you have to consume throughout the day. 

Here a list of empty calorie foods and a more nutrient dense substitute (sourced from :

Instead of…


Regular cheese

Low-fat cheese

Sweetened yogurt

Plain yogurt plus fruit

Whole milk

Fat-free or low-fat milk

Sweetened breakfast cereals

Cereals with little or no added sugar


Graham crackers

Fried chicken or fried fish

Baked chicken or fish

French fries

Oven-baked fries

Ice cream or frozen yogurt

Frozen fruits or frozen 100% fruit bars

Soft drinks or fruit punch


Potato chips

Baked chips or whole grain crackers

Butter or margarine

Trans fat-free tub margarine

Jam or jelly

100% Fruit spread

A diet high in fruits, vegetables, lean meats, and whole grains and low in processed foods is the best way to lose or weight. If you are  diet is high in empty calorie foods gradually start substituting healthier foods. The more gradual the change the higher your success rate will be. It will not happen over night but with hard work you can transform your diet into a nutrient dense one.


From → Uncategorized

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: