Nov 5, 2023

A Complete List of Whole Foods by Category

What the heck are whole foods? Whole foods are unprocessed or minimally processed foods that are as close to their natural state as possible. They're like the OG superfoods, packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that help you feel your best.
A list of whole foods on a kitchen counter

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Why bother with whole foods when you can just grab a quick and easy processed meal?

Because processed foods are often loaded with unhealthy ingredients like added sugar, sodium, and unhealthy fats. They’re also typically low in nutrients. Eating too many processed foods can lead to weight gain, obesity, and other health problems such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and some types of cancer.


Whole foods, on the other hand, are nutrient-rich and can help you

    • Lose weight
    • Improve your digestion
    • Boost your energy levels
    • Reduce your risk of chronic diseases
    • Live longer


How to get started with whole foods

Here are a few tips:

  • Start small. Don’t try to overhaul your diet all at once. Start by making small changes, like swapping out white bread for whole-wheat bread or replacing sugary drinks with water.
  • Eat a variety. Focus on eating a variety of whole foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein. This will help you get all the nutrients you need.
  • Get creative. Don’t be afraid to experiment and try new recipes. There are endless ways to prepare whole foods that are both delicious and nutritious.


Here are a few tips for making whole foods more convenient and enjoyable:

  • Wash and chop fruits and vegetables ahead of time so they’re easy to grab on the go.
  • Cook a big batch of whole grains or legumes on the weekend and use them for meals and snacks throughout the week.
  • Try adding whole foods to your favorite recipes. For example, you can add grated carrots to muffins or black beans to tacos.
  • There are also many convenient whole foods products available, such as frozen fruits and vegetables, pre-cooked whole grains, and nut butters.


Here are some examples of whole foods to add to your diet:

  • Fruits: berries, apples, bananas, oranges, mangoes
  • Vegetables: leafy greens, broccoli, carrots, tomatoes, sweet potatoes
  • Whole grains: brown rice, quinoa, oats, whole-wheat pasta
  • Legumes: beans, lentils, peas
  • Nuts and seeds: almonds, walnuts, chia seeds, flaxseeds
  • Lean protein: chicken breast, fish, beans, tofu


Click to get the full list whole foods.