Healthy and Unhealthy Food Worksheet

Download our free Healthy and Unhealthy Food Worksheet to help you identify nutritious choices and balance your diet. It includes a fun plate activity!

By Karina Jimenea on May 15, 2024.

Fact Checked by Nate Lacson.

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What is nutrition education?

As a dietitian or nutritionist, you work with clients to assess and assist them in improving their health and addressing nutrition issues. However, you aren't always there with them when they prepare a grocery list or plan their meals. This is why it is essential to introduce your clients to the concept of Nutrition Education in your sessions with them.

Nutrition education refers to teaching individuals nutrition-related behaviors through activities or programs to improve their health (Washington State Department of Social and Health Services, 2012). It is essential to teach nutrition education to help clients consume healthy food groups.

Importance of nutrition education

Nutrition education pioneers that individuals feed themselves and their families nutritiously, get healthy foods at the right prices, cook healthy meals, make informed food choices, and educate others about healthy eating.

Its scope is not only limited to the household since its nutrition education programs are also implemented in schools and rural communities. When people understand what important nutrients are needed, they become more mindful of what they consume.

In the US, 20% of youth aged 2 to 19 and 42% of adults suffer from obesity, increasing their vulnerability to heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer. Over 70% of Americans consume more than the recommended 2,300 mg of sodium daily, primarily from processed foods, while 96 million adults have undiagnosed prediabetes (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2022).

Thus, promoting healthy eating habits, regular physical activity, and sufficient sleep is crucial for combating obesity and lowering the risk of cardiovascular diseases, high blood pressure, and other complications.

Printable Healthy and Unhealthy Food Worksheet

Download this Healthy and Unhealthy Food Worksheet to facilitate nutrition education and promote informed dietary choices for improved patient health outcomes in healthcare practice.

Main differences between healthy and unhealthy food

The choice of food matters. Being mindful will help people achieve better health. This act is also an application of nutrition education, where individuals make healthy eating choices by knowing the nutritional components of a particular food. Sometimes, what they contain are just empty calories.

The difference between healthy and unhealthy food boils down to its nutritional value. Healthy foods provide one's body with essential nutrients such as vitamins and minerals to maintain optimal function. Fruits, vegetables, proteins, and healthy fats make the healthy list.

Conversely, unhealthy foods are high in calories, contain saturated fats, and have added sugars. Fast foods, junk foods, and highly processed foods are typical examples.

Examples of healthy and unhealthy food

To help you avoid the pitfalls of unhealthy eating and stay on track with a healthy diet, here are some examples of healthy and unhealthy foods:

Healthy foods

Discover examples of food that nourish and fortify your body with every bite. Your diet should include some of these:

  1. Fruits: Fruits are packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber. They promote overall health and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. Examples include apples, which are rich in antioxidants, and berries, known for their high vitamin C content.
  2. Vegetables: Vegetables, especially leafy greens, are low in calories but high in nutrients. They help improve digestion and reduce inflammation. Examples include spinach, a great source of iron and folate, and broccoli, which is rich in vitamin K and fiber.
  3. Grains: Whole grains provide fiber, vitamins, and minerals essential for heart health and digestion. Examples include brown rice, which offers sustained energy and B vitamins, and quinoa, a complete protein source rich in magnesium and fiber.
  4. Proteins: Lean protein sources support muscle growth and repair, aid in weight management, and contribute to overall satiety. Examples include chicken breast, which provides high-quality protein with low saturated fat, and fish like salmon, which is rich in omega-3 fatty acids for heart health.

Unhealthy foods

These types of food taste good, but they're not the best for your body. Here are the foods to minimize for maintaining your health and wellness:

  1. Sugary snacks: These treats pack a lot of sugar. Too much sugar can leave an individual feeling sluggish and contribute to weight gain. Think candy bars, pastries, and sweetened cereals.
  2. Fried foods: Fried goodies are loaded with unhealthy fats and calories, making them a double whammy for your health. Examples are French fries, fried chicken, and onion rings.
  3. Sugary beverages: Sipping on these sugary drinks can pile on the pounds and lead to a higher risk of diseases like diabetes. While soda, energy drinks, and sweetened iced tea can refresh you, especially on hot days, it is best to limit them.
  4. High-sodium foods: Foods high in sodium can send your blood pressure soaring and increase the risk of heart problems. Canned soups, processed meats like bacon, and fast food burgers are some of its examples.

How does our Healthy and Unhealthy Food Worksheet work?

Getting started on healthy eating should not be a problem with our worksheet. We've listed down these easy steps to follow:

Step 1: Download the worksheet

Download the worksheet. It's easily accessible and compatible with most devices. Hence, you or your client can ensure that you can use it wherever you are.

Step 2: Review the instructions

Once you have the worksheet, read the instructions carefully to understand the purpose. Familiarize yourself with the categories of healthy and unhealthy foods. Explain it to your clients to guide them into the process.

Step 3: List healthy and unhealthy foods

Tell them to list their preferred healthy foods, such as fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. Then, identify unhealthy options, such as sugary snacks, fried foods, and processed items. Remind them to consider portion sizes and frequency of consumption.

Step 4: Create your plate

Use the provided plate diagram to represent food choices visually. Encourage them to aim for a balanced plate that follows the right proportions, with more healthy options than unhealthy ones.

Step 5: Reflect and adjust

Set a time to reflect on food choices and the balance of their plate. Consider how to incorporate more healthy foods into the diet while reducing the intake of unhealthy options. Use this reflection as a guide for making sustainable changes to eating habits.

Healthy and Unhealthy Food Worksheet example (sample)

Because we are on a quest to help you and your client with their nutrition, we've prepared a filled-out sample worksheet for your reference. Gain insights from the sample, but remember it is only made for a hypothetical client. Remember to consider health conditions when planning out the ideal plate for meals. Some food groups may not be best, depending on your health issues.

Download this free Healthy and Unhealthy Food Worksheet example here:

Healthy and Unhealthy Food Worksheet example (sample)

Why use Carepatron as your nutrition software?

With its array of features, Carepatron is the ultimate hub for teaching healthy eating. Our nutrition software covers all bases, from creating engaging and informative worksheets to offering seamless telehealth services.

Our platform makes it easy for users to access nutrition resources and track progress toward their health goals. With integrated clinical documentation, health professionals can efficiently monitor and tailor dietary plans to each individual's needs. Plus, scheduling appointments is easy. It ensures that clients receive timely support and guidance.

Carepatron's commitment to promoting healthy eating shines through its user-friendly interface and comprehensive toolkit. When empowering individuals to make positive dietary changes, Carepatron stands out as the go-to platform for nutrition education and support.

nutrition software


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022, September 8). Poor nutrition. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Washington State Department of Social and Health Services. (2012). Nutrition education | DSHS.

How long will it typically take to complete the worksheet?
How long will it typically take to complete the worksheet?

Commonly asked questions

How long will it typically take to complete the worksheet?

The worksheet typically takes 15-30 minutes to complete, depending on the level of detail you provide.

Who can benefit from completing the worksheet?

Anyone looking to improve their understanding of nutrition and make healthier food choices can benefit from completing the worksheet.

What are the benefits of using the worksheet?

The worksheet helps individuals identify unhealthy eating patterns, develop healthier habits, and track their progress toward achieving nutritional goals.

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