The Role Of Nutrients In Human Health
Nutrients play an important role in determining a healthy individual. Good health is said to be achieved if there is a balance of good nutrition, proper diet and regular exercise. The higher consumption of food with low nutritional value over foods that should be eaten more often leads to an imbalance. This imbalance causes risks that may lead to the development of certain diseases.
Over the course of medical history, usage of various nutrients has been identified to have been responsible in maintaining health. Certain nutrients are needed to keep cellular function in check. At the same time, over consumption of certain nutrients have led to harm such as absorption of fats and sugars that are more than what the body needs. Without certain nutrients the body will be unable to perform certain physical, chemical or mental processes to sustain life as we know it. Nutrients are generally obtained through the food that we eat which should be taken in a balanced diet in order to maintain a healthy body.
Studies show that there are at least 45 chemicals that are essential to keep the human cells alive. These 45 chemicals are divided to six classes: water, proteins, fat or lipids, vitamins, minerals and carbohydrates. To further understand how nutrients able to keep a healthy body it is important to understand the individual roles of the main classes of nutrients.
Carbohydrates. Considered as the power plant of the body, carbohydrates or carbs are generally taken from the starches that we consume such as potatoes, rice, bread, sweets, fruits and vegetables and other starchy and sweet food items. The body sources its energy requirement from the carbohydrates that we consume. Aside from energy, it helps the body in other functions such as heartbeat, digestion and breathing. Carbohydrate is a macronutrient which means that the body needs a huge amount of these. Studies show that carbohydrates should comprise at least 40 percent of the calorie intake of a person.
Proteins. These foods are important to sustain a healthy body. The body relies on proteins to maintain, grow and develop our muscles, teeth and bones. Certain enzymes rely on protein to do their tasks. Amino acids are said to be the building blocks of the body and guess what it is a protein. Lack of proteins can lead to muscle deterioration or muscle atrophy. It can also lead to kwashiorkor or the lack of sufficient protein supply in the body.
Fats. Media has painted an evil picture of fat. In fact, we cannot live without it. Fats are needed to sustain essential bodily functions aside from providing the body with heat. Fat helps in the absorption of certain vitamins, minerals or even medicines. It maintains cellular health and even help to maintain the immune system. The key to health fat consumption is to choose the right kind of fat that is beneficial to the body.
Vitamins. Vitamins are nutrients from plants or animals that are needed by the body in small amounts. A vitamin is crucial in providing assistance to a certain bodily function. Scurvy has prevented navigators of ancient times to expand their travel. It was unknown to them that it is easily prevented with huge servings of citrus fruits or foods that are rich in vitamin C. The lack of this vitamin in the body causes this malady.
Minerals. Minerals are nutrients that come from the soil and water that has found its way into our food chain. It helps in the development and growth of organs and is important in the release of energy in the body. There are two basic types—trace and major.
Water. We may look at water as ordinary but without it we cannot survive. Actually you can survive without food longer than to survive without water. It helps to maintain a healthy body temperature, remove waste from your body and helps in the chemical reactions in the body.
Now that you know the importance of nutrients in human health, make sure you get them all in one balanced diet.