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  1. #1
    Agnes is offline Member
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    Default 'Healthy foods' and 'Healthful foods'

    When is it right to use the above? Can they be used interchangeably or would it depend on the context? For example can one say " I only eat healthy/healthful foods?" or "This food is healthy" or "Is the food healthful?" Help!

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    Default Re: 'Healthy foods' and 'Healthful foods'

    I do not know of any examples of the use of the word healthful. As far as I am concerned in the UK, "healthful" does not exist.

    We tend to call foods that are "good for you", health foods rather than healthy foods.

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    Agnes is offline Member
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    Default Re: 'Healthy foods' and 'Healthful foods'

    Quote Originally Posted by Holty View Post
    I do not know of any examples of the use of the word healthful. As far as I am concerned in the UK, "healthful" does not exist.

    We tend to call foods that are "good for you", health foods rather than healthy foods.

    Thanks Holty, I guess it must be American because it's in an American report on nutrition I was reading where 'healthful food' was mentioned a number of times throughout the report. I just wish I knew if it were correct usage. 'Health foods' makes a lot sense I think, but I wonder if 'healthy food' is wrong, since the use of 'health food' is a tendency in the UK. Should i take that as THE correct english?
    Last edited by Agnes; 26-Nov-2007 at 09:31. Reason: Addition

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    Default Re: 'Healthy foods' and 'Healthful foods'

    Healthy foods is a term used in the UK (although I dislike the term as I believe that technically the foods themselves are not healthy). I prefer to say "foods that are good for ones/your health". This is probably being overly pedantic though.

    I would not like to comment on whether the English/British version is the correct one. However, if you said to a British person "a healthful food" they would probably correct you. Whether this is in general American usage, I am unsure.

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    Default Re: 'Healthy foods' and 'Healthful foods'

    Holty, I'm afraid you've fallen prey to false logic. "Healthy" has been used to describe foods and exercise since the 16th century. In the same way that the hot sun makes you hot, so too does a healthy lifestyle make you healthy.

    In American English, however, the word "healthful" has been coined to mean "that which makes you healthy", and many writers insist that healthy people lead healthful lifestyles and eat healthful foods.

    The distinction is probably unnecessary, since it is almost always clear from the context whether "healthy" is intended to mean "of good health" or "conducive to good health", but in AE "healthful" has become pretty much established; if you are writing in an American publication, it would be wise to observe this rule lest your manuscript fall foul of the proof-reader's red pen.

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    Default Re: 'Healthy foods' and 'Healthful foods'

    Good point. I stand corrected.

    Andy

  7. #7
    Agnes is offline Member
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    Default Re: 'Healthy foods' and 'Healthful foods'

    Quote Originally Posted by rewboss View Post
    Holty, I'm afraid you've fallen prey to false logic. "Healthy" has been used to describe foods and exercise since the 16th century. In the same way that the hot sun makes you hot, so too does a healthy lifestyle make you healthy.

    In American English, however, the word "healthful" has been coined to mean "that which makes you healthy", and many writers insist that healthy people lead healthful lifestyles and eat healthful foods.

    The distinction is probably unnecessary, since it is almost always clear from the context whether "healthy" is intended to mean "of good health" or "conducive to good health", but in AE "healthful" has become pretty much established; if you are writing in an American publication, it would be wise to observe this rule lest your manuscript fall foul of the proof-reader's red pen.


    Thank you very much for shedding more light on this. I am happier now.

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