Four Pillars of Healthy Eating
At Whole Foods Market, we believe that focusing on these four pillars of healthy eating offers the greatest health benefits, no matter what dietary path you follow.
Choosing whole foods is a simple way to ensure that what you eat is micronutrient dense and free of unnecessary additives. A "whole food" is any food in its most essential, pure, delicious and basic form: an asparagus spear, a lemon, a scoop of quinoa or a fillet of salmon. Whole foods are the best ingredients for creating tasty and healthy meals, and diets loaded with whole and unrefined foods may help keep you healthy.
Choose whole, fresh, natural, organic, local, seasonal, unrefined and unprocessed foods.
Eliminate artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, sweeteners and hydrogenated fats from your diet.
Want to learn more about ingredients and additives to avoid? Check out our Quality Standards.
No matter what type of diet you follow — including those that incorporate dairy, meat and/or seafood — begin to reconfigure your plate so that the majority of your meal is made from an abundance of plant-based foods. When you eat more plants — like raw and cooked vegetables, fruits, legumes and beans, nuts, seeds and whole grains — you're helping your body get the key micronutrients it needs to function at its best.
Emphasize plant-based foods, no matter what type of diet you generally follow.
Eat a colorful variety of plants to ensure you're getting the best nutrients for your body, which leads to feeling satisfied.
Get your healthy fats by eating whole plant-based foods like nuts, seeds and avocados. Then, work to minimize (or eliminate) the amounts of extracted oils and processed fats you cook with on a daily basis.
Choose whole foods (nuts, seeds, avocados) when looking for a micronutrient dense source of healthy fats.
Minimize or eliminate extracted oils and processed fats (like margarine).
Ready to try cooking without using extracted oils? Check out these Cooking Tips for Healthy Eating.
Build your meals around recipes that emphasize plant-based foods.
Choose foods rich in micronutrients when compared to total caloric content.
Got these down? Pat yourself on the back and then check out Simple Changes for Lifelong Health.