whole·​some | \ ˈhōl-səm How to pronounce wholesome (audio) \

Definition of wholesome

1 : promoting health or well-being of mind or spirit
2 : promoting health of body
3a : sound in body, mind, or morals
b : having the simple health or vigor of normal domesticity
4a : based on well-grounded fear : prudent a wholesome respect for the law
b : safe it wouldn't be wholesome for you to go down there— Mark Twain

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Other Words from wholesome

wholesomely adverb
wholesomeness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for wholesome

healthful, wholesome, salubrious, salutary mean favorable to the health of mind or body. healthful implies a positive contribution to a healthy condition. a healthful diet wholesome applies to what benefits, builds up, or sustains physically, mentally, or spiritually. wholesome foods the movie is wholesome family entertainment salubrious applies chiefly to the helpful effects of climate or air. cool and salubrious weather salutary describes something corrective or beneficially effective, even though it may in itself be unpleasant. a salutary warning that resulted in increased production

healthy, sound, wholesome, robust, hale, well mean enjoying or indicative of good health. healthy implies full strength and vigor as well as freedom from signs of disease. a healthy family sound emphasizes the absence of disease, weakness, or malfunction. a sound heart wholesome implies appearance and behavior indicating soundness and balance. a face with a wholesome glow robust implies the opposite of all that is delicate or sickly. a lively, robust little boy hale applies particularly to robustness in old age. still hale at the age of eighty well implies merely freedom from disease or illness. she has never been a well person

Examples of wholesome in a Sentence

a wholesome dish made with vegetables less-than-wholesome entertainment that wasn't appropriate for children a young actor known for his wholesome good looks
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Recent Examples on the Web Each little nibble includes organic, wholesome ingredients like peas, oats, potatoes, and of course, the main protein ingredient—crickets. Ben Romans, Outdoor Life, "The 2019 Camping Gear Gift Guide," 26 Nov. 2019 Simply Pierogi bakery has been around for 87 years in Buffalo, N.Y. Opened by a first-generation Polish family, the business is woman-owned by Ania Duchon, and offers pierogi that are non-GMO with wholesome ingredients, as well as vegan options. Stephanie Sokol, chicagotribune.com, "Six pierogi spots to try at the annual Pierogi Fest in Whiting this weekend," 26 July 2019 Wry, wholesome, self-deprecating, sometimes hokey funny, but funny. Jennifer Medina, New York Times, "The Punch Lines Amy Klobuchar Uses to Keep Voters Laughing," 6 Nov. 2019 But the airfield may soon take on less wholesome role, if one local politician gets his way. Cnn.com Wire Service, The Mercury News, "Drive-in sex booths proposed at historic airport," 14 Aug. 2019 But, for a more lowkey, wholesome take on A-list Independence Day, look no further than Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez Win Cutest 4th July Family Photo With Their Kids," 5 July 2019 Lime and mint give creamy butter beans or baby lima beans a refreshing tang in this wholesome side dish. ExpressNews.com, "Recipe: Limey Lima Beans," 27 Nov. 2019 There were benefits, in high school, to living near a province more libertine than our wholesome state. Joshua Jelly-schapiro, The New Yorker, "What Are Borders For?," 27 Nov. 2019 Greatest of all Time tournament will be a refreshing, wholesome competition viewers can get behind. Adam Epstein, Quartz, "The Jeopardy “Greatest of All Time” tournament is the contest America needs right now," 19 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'wholesome.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of wholesome

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for wholesome

Time Traveler

The first known use of wholesome was in the 13th century

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Statistics for wholesome

Last Updated

13 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Wholesome.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wholesome. Accessed 19 January 2020.

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More Definitions for wholesome


How to pronounce wholesome (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of wholesome

: helping to keep your body healthy : good for your health
: morally good
: suggesting good health or behavior


whole·​some | \ ˈhōl-səm How to pronounce wholesome (audio) \

Kids Definition of wholesome

1 : helping to improve or keep the body in good condition wholesome food
2 : healthy for the mind or morals wholesome entertainment

Other Words from wholesome

wholesomeness noun

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Comments on wholesome

What made you want to look up wholesome? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to insert between existing elements

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