Importance of nutrients in our body
In order to complete our day-to-day agenda and survive, there is an essential need for energy which is provided by the nutrients. So, what is a nutrient and why is it necessary? A nutrient is a substance important enough for a living organism to survive, grow, and carry out its activities, as it comes up with the energy required to do so.
Talking about a typical body, it carries out various functions the whole day long, which definitely requires a large amount of energy. As the functions differ, the need for energy to does. This tells us that there are types of nutrients. There are numerous nutrients that play respective roles in carrying out metabolic functions and activities in and out of the body. According to the need of the body, experts have primed some nutrients as vital and essential for our bodies.
Relying on the roles that these nutrients play, their requirements do differ. Introspecting and getting into the names and functions of these nutrients which are Carbohydrates, Proteins, Lipids, Minerals, Vitamins, and dietary fiber
Carbohydrates fall under the basic food group in a balanced diet. Carbs are the sugars, starches, and fibers which we get from fruits, vegetables, grains, and milk products. As per the recommendations of the National Institute of Health (NIH), the RDA (Recommended Daily Amount) of carbs for an adult is 135 grams. NIH also advises everyone to have their own Carbohydrate goal.
In the total consumption amount of calories, the intake of carbs for the majority should range between 45% to 65%. One gram of Carb is equal to about 4 calories, which if analyzed statistically for a diet of 1,800k calories per day would be equal to 202 grams on the low pitch and 292 grams of carbs on the high pitch. However, during pregnancy, women need a minimum of 175 grams of carbs and diabetic people should not exceed the limit of 200 grams of carbs per day.
- Carbohydrates are comparable to fuel, as they provide momentum and boost the central nervous system and also fabricate energy for working of the muscles.
- Carbs also prevent protein from getting used as an energy course and enable fat metabolism.
- Carbs are important for the functioning of the brain as they have an influence over mood, memory, etc.
- They are a quick energy source.
- Carbs also link to decision-making processes. A consumer of high-carbohydrate breakfast will be less willing to share when playing the “ultimatum game” as compared to a high-protein breakfast consumer.
- Carbohydrates are classified as simple or complex. This distinguishes is done on the basis of their chemical structure and rate at which the sugar is absorbed and digested.
- Simple Carbohydrates
- Complex Carbohydrates
- Contain just one or two sugars
- Contain three or more sugars
- The rate for bursts of energy is quick
- The rate for bursts of energy is quite slow and this can lead to a spike in blood sugar level and Sustainable energy
Chemically, protein consists of amino acids which are organic molecules formed of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen or sulfur, nitrogen. Proportions needed or recommended: According to The Institute of Medicine, 10 % to 35% of daily calories come from protein. Consumption of protein depends upon the age, sex, and level of physical activities of individuals.
Protein needs to range between 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight to 2 grams per kilogram for very active athletes. An inadequate amount of protein could lead to hindrance of one’s muscle mass, metabolism, and hormone level.
- Proteins fuel muscle mass and help metabolism.
- Proteins keep the immune system strong.
- Lipids (fatty acids) are any of the various organic compounds insoluble in water.
- Proportions needed or recommended:
- The Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) for fats in adults, which is 20 % – 35% of the total calories from fat.
- Fats too have types in it and limit for consumption:
- Mono-unsaturated fat : 15% – 20%
- Poly-unsaturated fat : 5% – 10%
- Saturated fat: less than 10%
- Trans fat : 0:%
- Cholesterol: less than 300 mg per day
- Fatty acids are a source of energy
- Fatty acids are composed of cell walls
- Fatty acids absorb fat-soluble vitamins: A, D, E, and K
- Fatty acids insulate our bodies and protect organs
Minerals are essential nutrients that help in the well functioning of the body. Proportions needed or recommended: Comparing the number of Minerals to be consumed is much lesser than the other nutrients. An average adult needs 1,000 mg of calcium, 10 to 15 mg of iron, and zinc per day.
- Minerals keep the teeth and the bones strong.
- Minerals control and regulate body fluids inside and outside of cells.
- Minerals play important role in turning our consumed food into energy.
Vitamins are organic substances that keep your body well developed and well functioned. There are a number of vitamins needed in order to survive. Proportions needed or recommended:
The need for Vitamins differs for their different types. However, it is in small amounts only.
- Vitamins help in energy metabolism
- Vitamins assist our different systems as in the nervous system and the digestive system even skin health.
- Some vitamins are needed in the making of RBCs
- Few vitamins aid in iron absorption.
DIETARY FIBERS :
Dietary fiber consists of the parts of plants your body cannot digest or absorb, unlike the other food components. Proportions needed or recommended: For males under 50, the need for dietary fibers is 38 grams. Whereas, for males above 50 it is 30 grams daily. Females are recommended to consume 25 grams daily who are under 50 and for the ones above, the limit is 21 grams
- Dietary fiber normalizes bowel movements.
- They maintain bowel health.
- Dietary fiber also lowers cholesterol levels.
- Helps controlling blood sugar levels.
- Aids in achieving a healthy weight.
- Somewhat helps you live longer
A proper diet is a must which includes all the vital nutrients, keeps you healthy, and boosts your life.