Things that are healthful are good for your body, mind, or overall well-being. Your dinner of barbecued potato chips, ice cream, and slices of cheddar cheese might be delicious, but it's not very healthful.

Something that has a favorable effect on your health can be described with the adjective healthful. Well-balanced meals full of whole grains and vegetables are healthful. A good night's sleep and a long walk in the fresh air are both healthful, because they promote your good health. When you are full of health, however, don't use healthful to describe yourself — instead, use the closely related word healthy.

Definitions of healthful
  1. adjective
    conducive to good health of body or mind
    “a healthful climate”
    “a healthful environment”
    healthful nutrition”
    healthful sleep”
    “Dickens's relatively healthful exuberance”
    anthelminthic, anthelmintic, helminthic, parasiticidal
    capable of expelling or destroying parasitic worms
    antimicrobial, antimicrobic
    capable of destroying or inhibiting the growth of disease-causing microorganisms
    carminative, flatus-relieving
    relieving gas in the alimentary tract (colic or flatulence or griping)
    cathartic, psychotherapeutic
    emotionally purging
    alterative, curative, healing, remedial, sanative, therapeutic
    tending to cure or restore to health
    without the use of drugs
    good, salutary
    tending to promote physical well-being; beneficial to health
    medicative, medicinal
    having the properties of medicine
    simple and healthful and close to nature
    designating or relating to a form of treatment of mental disorders that seeks to restore biochemical balance in the body with large doses of vitamins and minerals
    preventative, preventive, prophylactic
    preventing or contributing to the prevention of disease
    recuperative, restorative
    promoting recuperation
    thoroughly clean and free of or destructive to disease-causing organisms
    conducive to or characteristic of physical or moral well-being
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    detrimental to good health
    crippling, disabling, incapacitating
    that cripples or disables or incapacitates
    of or relating to or causing pathological changes in cells
    infective, morbific, pathogenic
    able to cause disease
    nonmedicinal, unmedical, unmedicative, unmedicinal
    not having a medicinal effect or not medically prescribed
    not conducive to good health
    infected, septic
    containing or resulting from disease-causing organisms
    of or relating to or caused by a toxin or poison
    detrimental to physical or moral well-being
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  2. adjective
    free from filth and pathogens
    synonyms: sanitary
    hygienic, hygienical
    tending to promote or preserve health
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    insanitary, unhealthful, unsanitary
    not sanitary or healthful
    unclean and constituting a likely cause of disease
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Commonly confused words

healthful / healthy

Healthful describes something that will create good health, like apples, yoga, and fresh air. Healthy describes someone fit, trim, and utterly not sick.

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Word Family

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