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Food sources of nutrients

Food sources of nutrients

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Every day, you get to hear names of so many nutrients, from the most commonly known proteins and iron to the latest buzz words such as DHA and vitamin D.

Tuesday, November 29th, 2016

Probably, the first question that pops in your mind is, “which foods provide these nutrients?”

We summarise for you a list of important nutrients and their main sources. So, go ahead, pick up your favourites and ensure a healthy diet for yourself and your baby.


Cereals such as rice, wheat, pulses and legumes, fruits, vegetables, milk and milk products


Meat, chicken, fish, milk, curd, cheese, paneer, nuts, pulses and legumes. Cereals such as rice and wheat also provide some proteins

Saturated Fats(Bad fats)

Mostly found in animal foods and some plants. Examples include beef, lamb, pork, lard, poultry fat, milk, butter, cream, cheeses and other milk products made from whole milk. These foods also provide dietary cholesterol. Plant foods that provide saturated fat include coconut, coconut oil, palm oil and palm kernel oil, and cocoa butter

Unsaturated Fats(Good fats)

There are two types of unsaturated fats such as polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats. These are mostly found in fish, nuts, seeds and oils from plants. Examples include salmon, trout, herring, avocados, olives, walnuts and vegetable oils such as ground nut, soybean, corn, safflower, canola, olive and sunflower

Trans fats(Bad fats)

These are formed during hydrogenation of fats which is a food processing technique commonly used in the food industry. Foods rich in trans fats are margarine, vegetable shortenings and foods prepared using margarine/shortenings such as baked foods, cookies, readymade snacks

Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)

Fish (salmon, trout and herring), seafood, eggs, vegetarian food sources, which are used by the body to make DHA include flaxseeds, canola oils, walnuts and soya products

Vitamin A

Liver, organ meats, salmon, green leafy vegetables, orange, broccoli, carrots, squash, cantaloupe, apricots and mango


Egg, legumes, peas, nuts, seeds, beef liver, pork and whole grain products such as bread, cereals, rice and flour


Cereal grains and products such as bajra, ragi, pulses and legumes such as black gram, lentil, soya bean, leafy vegetables such as mint, spinach and radish leaves, mustard and gingelly seeds, almond, nuts, egg and sheep liver


Dairy products, eggs, fish, legumes, nuts and poultry


Eggs, red meat, chicken, milk and milk products, wheat germ and soya beans

Folic acid

Dark green leafy vegetables, especially spinach, Brussels sprouts, asparagus, fruits, nuts, cereals, pulses and legumes, milk products, poultry, meat, liver, eggs and seafood

Vitamin C

Citrus fruits such as oranges, sweet lime, red and green pepper, kiwifruit, broccoli, strawberries, cantaloupe, potatoes, tomatoes and sprouts

Vitamin D

Fatty fish (salmon, tuna and mackerel), liver, egg yolk. Sun exposure for 5–30 minutes at least twice a week

Vitamin E

Vegetable oils like wheat germ, sunflower, safflower oils, corn and soya bean oils, nuts such as ground nuts, hazelnuts, almonds, seeds, such as sunflower seeds, green vegetables, such as spinach and broccoli

Vitamin K

Spinach, turnip greens, collard, parsley, mustard greens, broccoli, lettuce, red cabbage, asparagus and soya bean oil


Milk, curd, flavoured yogurt, cheese, green leafy vegetables, broccoli, Chinese cabbage, whole-grain cereals and millets, especially ragi/naachani and sesame seeds


Fish such as cod, tuna, seafood such as shrimp, milk and milk products, grains, fruits and vegetables (iodine content depends on the soil), iodized salt


Liver, fish, green leafy vegetables, such as amaranth, Bengal gram leaves, cauliflower greens, radish leaves, whole grains, millets, soya beans, pulses, legumes and dry fruits


Green leafy vegetables, such as spinach, legumes, nuts, seeds and whole grains. Foods rich in fiber are generally rich in magnesium as well.


Nuts, legumes, seeds, tea, whole grains, and green leafy green vegetables


Green leafy vegetables such as spinach, grapes, blackberries, root vegetables, such as carrots and potatoes; citrus fruits, such as oranges and grapefruit


Seafood, meat, cereals, millets, milk and milk products


Oysters, crabs, lobsters, red meat, chicken, pulses, legumes, nuts, whole grains and milk products

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