a healthy addition to the settlers' diet


Pumpkin was a healthy addition to the settlers' diet because it was rich in vitamin and minerals.

I wonder if I could say "a healthy nutrient added to the settlers' foods" to replace the underlined part without changing the original meaning. Thanks.
  • GreenWhiteBlue

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    To begin with, the sentence should have said that pumpkin was a healthful addition, rather than a healthy one.

    To use "a nutrient" this way would suggest a vitamin or a mineral (for example, Vitamin C, or iron in the diet) rather than a vegetable.


    Senior Member
    Technically, GWB is correct. Using healthy in place of healthful is very common
    in both colloquial and in formal AE. It may be wrong, but most speakers and
    writers use it.

    Random House Unabridged offers: healthy: "3. conducive to good health; healthful: healthy recreations." In a usage note for synonyms, it adds, "Healthy, while applied esp. to what possesses health, is also applicable to what is conducive to health: a healthy climate; not a healthy place to be."


    Senior Member
    No Thomas, I'm certainly not saying that. Colloquial usage has made healthy a
    synonym for healthful, and has replaced it in common usage. That's all. Once upon a time, when dinosaurs stalked the earth, and I was a child, the two words had distinct


    Hungary, English

    Quote - "Pumpkin was a healthy addition to the settlers' diet because it was rich in vitamin and minerals."

    I think some people may be misunderstanding the word 'diet'. From the context I believe the writer intended to mean the foodstuff available to them. If we accept that then the sentence makes more sense. The healthy addition (of another food item, pumpkin) to the diet available.

    Also I'm not sure that healthful (full of health) is a real word. Americanism??
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