You Are What You Eat
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You Are What You Eat:10 Reasons to Embrace the Truth

The human body is complex, and many factors can affect human health. We cannot control certain things, such as age or genetic makeup. But there are some other factors which you can influence, like your food preferences. The famous saying “You are what you eat” is probably familiar. It’s a well-known phrase in conversations about wellness, good health, and the undeniable link between nutrition and our bodies. Our body contains the same nutrients as the food have which we eat. Therefore, depending on its type and nutritional composition, food influences our nutrient levels and general health.

The human body contains 62% water, 16% fat, 16% protein, 6% minerals, carbohydrates, and other nutrients. These percentages differ for each individual depending on diet and lifestyle. As a result, good nutrition is necessary for our bodies to function correctly. Nutritional components are used to construct a healthy body. Also, remember that healthy food does not mean expensive food.

Origin of “You Are What You Eat”:

Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, a French lawyer, coined the phrase, “You are what you eat.” In his writings in 1826, he introduced the term. “Tell me what you eat, and I’ll tell you what you are,” he wrote. He said a person’s mental, emotional, and physical health could be determined by his food choice. The idea that great food leads to good character and good health and that bad food is responsible for inadequate health has remained in some form or another ever since.

What Does the Saying “You Are What You Eat” Mean Exactly?

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To understand this saying, “You are what you eat,” consider the following analogy: If you eat bad food, you will eventually look and feel bad. If you eat nutritious foods, you will look and feel great. Think of your body like a machine constantly regenerating to keep all parts operating at peak efficiency. It accomplishes this by utilizing your body’s internal cell manufacturing plant. That’s why feeding yourself unhealthy food like junk will produce ill or weak cells.

You can’t expect your body’s “cell manufacturing plant” to run efficiently and produce the best cells if you eat nutrition-deficient foods. As a result, it is critical to consume nutritious foods. Nutrition and health go hand in hand. What you eat directly influences your health, values, and overall happiness.

Food Directly Impacts Our Health:

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Currently, science has established a connection between our diet and health. Your body becomes unhealthy if you consume a lot of junk food. You can also suffer from obesity, chronic illnesses, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, physical weakness, malnutrition, and cancer. Eating unhealthy food can harm your gut and affect the health of your skin. It can also raise your blood pressure, increase inflammation, and more.

10 Reasons to Embrace the Truth

  1. Food directly impacts our health: Science has established a connection between our diet and health. Eating unhealthy food can lead to chronic illnesses, obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, etc.
  2. Mood and food are linked: What we eat affects our brain and mental health, leading to a better or worse mood and performance.
  3. Food influences our nutrient levels: Our bodies contain the same nutrients as food. Good nutrition is necessary for our bodies to function correctly and produce healthy cells.
  4. “You are what you eat” is not a new idea: The phrase was coined by Anthelme Brillat-Savarin in 1826. He believed food choices could determine a person’s mental, emotional, and physical health.
  5. The effects of food on our body: A balanced and healthy diet provides energy, regulates hormones, and contributes to a better mood. On the other hand, a diet lacking in nutrients can cause neuropathy, aches, and other issues.
  6. Weight and chronic conditions: Obesity can lead to chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, stroke, heart attack, and more.
  7. Food affects our body’s cell manufacturing process: The cells in our body are constantly regenerating, and the quality of our diet directly impacts the health of these new cells.
  8. Healthy food doesn’t have to be expensive: Good nutrition doesn’t have to come with a high price tag. Eating healthy can be accomplished with intelligent choices and meal planning.
  9. Food choice affects overall happiness: Our diet influences our health, values, and happiness.
  10. Making healthier choices: Eating healthy can be achieved by choosing more nutritious foods over less-healthy options and having healthy ingredients readily available in the kitchen.

Mood and Food: How Does Food Affect You?

We should understand that the phrase “you are what you eat” also relates to your mood and mental health. Everything you eat affects your brain, so unhealthy choices affect your feelings and performance. Your brain is always “on.” It looks after your thoughts and movements, breathing, and heartbeat. It works hard 24 hours a day, even when you’re sleeping. That’s why feeding your brain with a constant fuel supply is necessary. We can get that “fuel” from the foods we eat.

The Effects of Food On Our Body:

You won’t feel best if your diet isn’t balanced with healthy foods. Eating foods rich in nutrients is crucial to have more energy, a better mood, and adequately regulated hormones. Even better, research suggests that foods like salmon, high in B12 and Omega 3 fatty acids, can help control mood disorders. Low-quality food contains fewer nutrients and even affects the chemistry of your body. That’s why you should choose a healthy and balanced diet.

Weight and Chronic Conditions:

Obesity causes chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, stroke, heart attack, etc. Overweight men are more prone to develop knee osteoarthritis, excessive back pain, ankle pain, and foot pain than women. Your body needs specific vitamins, nutrients, and fuel to function correctly. A single nutrient deficiency can cause neuropathy, aches, and other issues.

 You Are What You Eat, True or Not?

Yes, we indeed are what we eat”. Every cell in our body is built on the foundation of food nutrients. Although we cannot feel, our bodies are constantly in the phase of repairing and healing. Our body is always busy creating new cells to replace those that have “expired.” And the quality of our diet directly impacts how healthy those new cells are. Our bodies have little to work with a highly processed and less nutritious diet. However, a healthy and nutrient-rich diet can help us develop cells that function better and are less susceptible to early aging.

How to Eat Healthy Meals? Make Healthier Choices

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You should always choose healthier foods over less healthy foods. It is straightforward to change your diet if you have more beneficial ingredients in your kitchen. As I mentioned earlier, no single food can provide all of the nutrients your body requires, so you should consider the following guidelines when shopping:

Go for a Healthy, Balanced Diet:

Everybody has a unique body structure. Our bone structures and sizes differ. Our genes and metabolic rates vary from one another. Our lifestyles and preferences are diverse. Since each of us has unique nutritional requirements, we must balance our diets. We are consuming more than we require results in weight gain, which can cause health issues. We must consume enough food from each group for a healthy, balanced diet.

Fruits and Vegetables:

Fruits and vegetables are high in nutrients. You can also find fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals in many vegetables and fruits. Every meal should include a variety of seasonal fruits, vegetables, and leafy greens. You should eat fresh fruit instead of fruit juice.


Carbohydrates are essential for our body. Glucose is responsible for everything we do, from breathing to thinking. And it is produced during the digestion of carbohydrates. This is why we can’t eliminate carbohydrates from our diet. When possible, go for whole grains in your diet. After milling, wholegrains keep their original shape, keeping all nutrients intact. Whole grains are nutrient-dense carbohydrates. A wholegrain diet includes such as:

  • Brown rice
  • Grains such as quinoa, barley, and rye
  • Wholegrain noodles
  • Wholemeal bread
  • Wholegrain cereals


Protein plays a vital role in the growth and repair of your body. It also provides vitamins and minerals to the body. Protein-rich foods include meat, fish, eggs, nuts, seeds, and beans. Protein and calcium are also found in milk, cheese, and yogurt. Calcium helps maintain the strength of our bones and teeth, so include one dairy protein source in your diet daily.

Good Fats and Oils:

Our bodies require fat to store energy and transport vitamins. You should select healthier unsaturated fats and oils while limiting saturated fat intake. However, you should use more beneficial oils, too, in moderation. You can have snacks with good fats, such as almonds, walnuts, and sunflower seeds, instead of biscuits, cakes, or deep-fried foods.

Benefits of healthy food:

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Food gives us the energy and raw materials to perform vital bodily functions. It includes removing waste, preventing illness, and maintaining the heartbeat. You should always feel your best after eating to perform your daily tasks. Here are just a few advantages you will experience from eating well:

Increased Energy:

Junk and high-fat foods can slow digestion, leaving you tired and sluggish. You should include protein and carbohydrates in each meal. For example, you can go for baked sweet potatoes with roasted chicken. This will provide you with a steady source of energy that will last much longer without the ups and downs.

Better Digestion:

Constipation, gas, bloating, and heartburn are all inconvenient side effects of eating too many of the wrong kinds of food. You should feel satisfied after eating meals and snacks, not overstuffed or nauseous.

Improved Sleep and Mood:

 An excessive amount of sugar or caffeine will not only reduce your energy, but it will also disrupt your sleep and make you moody. You won’t be able to sleep well if your body is attempting to digest a day’s worth of junk food. Then, if you haven’t gotten enough sleep, you won’t be a ray of sunshine. So, eating a well-balanced diet will help you sleep better.

Remember that healthy food consumption is a continuous goal that we can strive for. It is a choice, a way of life, and a reflection of values. It is a never-ending process, so you should be kind to yourself and eat foods that make you feel good about yourself.

In conclusion, the famous saying “You are what you eat” highlights the importance of good nutrition for our overall health, happiness, and well-being.

Joseph Emb
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Hi there! I'm Joseph Emb, a nutritionist and certified personal trainer passionate about helping people reach their health and fitness goals. With over ten years of experience in the health and wellness industry, I've accumulated a great deal of knowledge that I love to share with my readers. I have a degree in exercise science and am proud to have been featured in reputable publications such as Men's Health and Women's Fitness. My goal with my blog is to inspire and empower others to take control of their health and live happier healthier lives.
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