Nutrition is the food we eat, necessary for health and growth. There is a famous saying “We are what we eat”.

Fitness is 70% diet and 30% exercise. This means that eating healthy is more important than doing thousands of sit-ups. Remember, you can’t out-train a bad diet.

nutrition containing cereal, apple, orange, strawberry and a cup of orange juice

1. Nutrition provides the body with the energy it requires to function

The Total metabolic rate is the total amount of energy the body spends to function. It comprises of:

  • Basal metabolic rate. The energy the body requires to carry out basic functions such as breathing, digestion, blood circulation, regulating hormone levels, growing and repairing cells. This amount to about 60 to 70 per cent of calories burns in a day.
  • The energy required to do all kinds of physical activity. This amounts to 20 per cent of daily energy use.
  • Thermic effect of food – is the energy you use to eat, digest and metabolize food. It amounts to about 5 to 10 per cent of daily energy use.
2. It helps our muscles grow

Adequate nutrition is essential for building muscles. Your nutrition should correlate with your fitness goal. For example, if you plan to lose weight, you can substitute animal protein such as chicken and fish for whole grains, legumes, vegetables and fruits while if you are planning on bulking – bodybuilding, the opposite is true. The quality of the diet improves our fitness.

3. It helps boost our immune system

The right nutrition helps boost our immune system, preventing us from falling sick.

Our immune system helps us to against bacteria, virus, fungi and parasitic infections.

Protein is part of the body’s defence mechanism. It’s necessary to eat the right balance your diet. Examples of proteins include seafood, lean meat, poultry, eggs, beans and peas, soy products and unsalted nuts and seeds.

Fruits are essential to provide us with vitamins with numerous health benefits.

4. For treating diseases

Nutrition helps to treat some diseases – this is known as diet therapy. Dietary treatment is the first and main therapeutic approach to obesity.

Obesity is a serious public health concern because it predisposes to other diseases such as high blood pressureheart diseases, liver diseases, diabetes mellitus and other health-related issues such as constipation, ulcers etc.

5. For Increasing bone strength

As women grow they reach the stage of menopause, many changes occur. Some hormones such as estrogen and progesterone become less produced.

Lack of estrogen causes a decrease in bone density, the bones become weaker – this is known as osteoporosis. It becomes more difficult to exercise, joint aches and pain.

Nutrition must be greatly depended upon to achieve fitness at this stage. Studies have shown that nutrition has a greater impact on bone strength than exercise.


nutrition's role to weight loss. A woman hold a bowl of vegetables and a singer tape measure tied around her belly.

When talking about weight loss, nutrition comes to mind first way above fitness

Healthy Weight Loss = 80% Nutrition + 20% Exercise

This is Terri Edwards’s story. She is a licensed Food for Life Instructor.

Around 1995, I was twenty-eight years old and somewhat overweight. I began an excruciating exercise program of power walking/jogging 35-40 miles per week, plus an additional 20 miles on the bike. Did I lose the weight? Sure. Think of the calories I was burning! I thought I was eating healthier too, but learned later that what I thought was healthy, really wasn’t.

I was even featured in Shape magazine’s “Success Stories” in July 1998.

A few years later, I started gaining a little bit of weight back, even though I was wearing myself out with exercise. I came across an article that said as we age, our metabolism slows down due to natural muscle mass decreases, so we need to increase our calorie burning exercise. If we don’t, we gain 10 lbs every few years, even though we are still exercising. I remember thinking, “WHAT?!” I was exercising myself to death to keep the weight off, and now I’m going to need to continually increase the intensity and distance, just to keep from gaining? That discouragement was the beginning of the end of my exercise-warrior days.

 As we age our body’s metabolism response to exercise decreases.

It becomes more difficult to burn calories and lose weight by just mere exercising alone.

It’s important to note that not only diet and nutrition play a role in Weight loss.

Weight gain depends on a complex of factors which include metabolismgenetics, ageing, diet, hormone regulation, and the impact of the environment on your lifestyle, including sleep, physical activity and stress.

Dietrine Carb Blocker can you help reduce the amount of carb absorbed thereby reducing weight gain.


A balanced diet is a diet that contains an adequate proportion of carbohydrate (carbs), protein, fats, vitamins and mineral and water. A Balanced diet is an optimal diet the body needs to get the nutrients it need to function it best.

About 50 to 60 per cent of your total daily calories should come from carbohydrate, about 12 to 20 per cent from proteins and about 30 per cent from fat.

It is recommended you eat 5 times per day.

You should have a diet plan if you want to achieve a specific goal whether it is to lose weight or to gain muscles.


A Calorie/kilocalorie is the energy needed to raise the temperature of 1 kilogram of water through 1°C. It is often used to measure the energy value of foods.

1 g of  Carbohydrate and Protein gives 4 Calories each while 1 g  of Fat gives 9 Calories.

Food: Calories

You should be able to calculate the calories you get from diet. You can use a food calorie calculator to do this.

The exact number of calories might vary. This is an approximate measure.

Common food and the calories you get from it

  1. Apple, medium: 72
  2. Bagel: 289
  3. Banana, medium: 105
  4. Beer (regular, 12 ounces): 153
  5. Bread (one slice, wheat or white): 66
  6. Butter (salted, 1 tablespoon): 102
  7. Carrots (raw, 1 cup): 52
  8. Cheddar cheese (1 slice): 113
  9. Chicken breast (boneless, skinless, roasted, 3 ounces): 142
  10. Chili with beans (canned, 1 cup): 287
  11. Chocolate chip cookie (from packaged dough): 59
  12. Coffee (regular, brewed from grounds, black): 2
  13. Cola (12 ounces): 136
  14. Corn (canned, sweet yellow whole kernel, drained, 1 cup): 180
  15. Egg (large, scrambled): 102
  16. Graham cracker (plain, honey, or cinnamon): 59
  17. Granola bar (chewy, with raisins, 1.5-ounce bar): 193
  18. Green beans (canned, drained, 1 cup): 40
  19. Ground beef patty 193 (15 per cent fat, 4 ounces, pan-broiled):
  20. Hot dog (beef and pork): 137
  21. Ice cream (vanilla, 4 ounces): 145
  22. Jelly doughnut: 289
  23. Ketchup (1 tablespoon): 15
  24. Milk (2 per cent milk fat, 8 ounces): 122
  25. Mixed nuts (dry roasted, with peanuts, salted, 1 ounce): 168
  26. Mustard, yellow (2 teaspoons): 6
  27. Oatmeal (plain, cooked in water without salt, 1 cup): 147
  28. Orange juice (frozen concentrate, made with water, 8 ounces): 112
  29. Peanut butter (creamy, 2 tablespoons): 180
  30. Pizza (pepperoni, regular crust, one slice): 298
  31. Pork chop (centre rib, boneless, broiled, 3 ounces): 221
  32. Potato, medium (baked, including skin): 161
  33. Potato chips (plain, salted, 1 ounce): 155
  34. Pretzels (hard, plain, salted, 1 ounce): 108
  35. Raisins (1.5 ounces): 130
  36. Ranch salad dressing (2 tablespoons): 146
  37. Red wine (cabernet sauvignon, 5 ounces): 123
  38. Rice (white, long grain, cooked, 1 cup): 205
  39. Salsa (4 ounces): 35
  40. Shrimp (cooked under moist heat, 3 ounces): 84
  41. Spaghetti (cooked, enriched, without added salt, 1 cup): 221
  42. Spaghetti sauce (marinara, ready to serve, 4 ounces): 92
  43. Tuna (light, canned in water, drained, 3 ounces): 100
  44. White wine (sauvignon blanc, 5 ounces): 121
  45. Yellow cake with chocolate frosting (one piece): 243
 knowing the calories you consume is very important if you want to reach a fitness goal or lose weight.
Calculate your total metabolic rate using the TDEE calculator and subtract it from the total number of calories consumed using the calories calculator.

For weight loss, the number of calories you consume must be less than the energy you spend. The opposite is true if you want to gain muscles.

Accumulation of extra calories is stored by your body as fat. 3500 extra calories equal to one pound of fat. Fats are the body’s way of saving energy.

It’s recommended that an average woman eat about 2000 calories per day to maintain, and 1500 calories to lose one pound of weight per week. An average man needs 2500 calories to maintain, and 2000 to lose one pound of weight per week. This value varies depending on age, height, weight, activity levels, metabolic rate. You can calculate the number of calories you need.

Nutrition is a very broad and important aspect of fitness. You must pay attention to it.


Dr. Klas

Dr. Klas aka Dr. Emmanuel Adeniran is a medical doctor, a health educator, and a fitness expert who has been into fitness for more than five years. He is willing to share his knowledge and experience with you.


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