Nutrient-rich foods aren’t the same as energy-rich foods although these two terms sound very similar. It’s not nutrients per se that give us energy; from the standpoint of nutrition, the term “energy” is actually synonymous with “calories.” High-calorie foods can be
metabolized in our cells to provide us with a large amount of energy. Low-calorie foods cannot provide us with much energy in terms of calories. They help support our metabolism in an infinite number of ways, but they cannot provide our muscles and organs with the “get up and go” they need to get us through our day.
Difference Between Nutrient Rich Foods Vs Energy Rich Foods
As in all health-related matters, it’s a question of balance here. We need enough energy-rich foods to give us the caloric energy for our “get up and go,” and we need enough nutrient-rich foods to support our metabolism while we’re on the move.
I can make it easy for you to lock into an optimal mix of energy rich and nutrient-rich! Actually, I don’t have to do much at all, because the world of natural, whole foods has done it for me. The World’s Healthiest Foods approach is not only nutrient-rich, but it balances out energy-richness by including energy-rich foods (like nuts and seeds and olive oil) in your regular meal plan, but also watching out for the overall amount included, especially in recipes and stovetop cooking (since I don’t recommend cooking with oil).
I don’t let energy-richness get out of hand—but I don’t forbid myself to use energy-rich foods in any of my recipes or meals. At the same time, I focus heavily on the nutrient-rich foods that are lower energy in terms of calories—most importantly, fresh vegetables. I use these foods generously in my weight loss approach, and they are a key component for balancing out your overall weight loss.