GIS KL Dragons Sports Teams

Veronika’s Blog: Nutrients and the food pyramid

Hi everybody and welcome back to term 3! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday and were able to gather new energy!

As promised I will be there for you throughout this term and provide you with information, articles and recipes for a healthier lifestyle with lots more energy for your sports activities as well as your academic goals.

I would like to start with a basic overview on nutrients and from there guide you through all relevant aspects of nutrition.

Why we need nutrients

We need food and the nutrients it supplies us with for building, maintaining and renewing our body’s cells,to generate energy as well as different metabolic processes.

What are nutrients?

Nutrients are substances we get from the food we eat. All foods have different nutrients to offer and we need to eat a variety of them to make sure we meet our body’s needs.

Nutrients are divided into:

Macronutrients

These are the nutrients we need the most of: protein, fat, carbohydrate and water.

Micronutrients

These are nutrients we need only small amounts of: vitamins and minerals.

Phytonutrients

Plant foods contain thousands of natural chemicals which are called phytonutrients.”Phyto” refers to the Greek word for plant. Many of these are only found in the colourful skins and flesh of fruits and vegetables. The best known phytonutrients are the carotenoids. They include yellow, orange, and red pigment in fruits and vegetables.

What are good nutrients?

Our daily diet should consist of the food groups shown in the food pyramid. The higher up they are placed, the less of them we need during the day. Occasional foods are foods that have NO nutritional value and therefore should NOT be part of our daily diet. Amongst occasional foods are sweets, savoury snacks as well as sodas.

Lack of nutrients – malnutrition

Malnutrition is a very broad term and it refers to both under nutrition and over nutrition!

Undernourished

If we lack one or more nutrients over a period of time, we will become undernourished. This can happen due to not having enough food or not eating the right foods. An undernourished person has difficulty doing normal things like growing, resisting diseases and physical work as well as learning abilities can decrease.

Over nourished

People can also be over nourished if they consume too many calories or empty calories our body doesn’t need.

Therefore malnutrition is really insufficient, imbalanced or excessive consumption of nutrients.

Have a great weekend everybody!

Happy healthy eating!

Veronika

Food Pyramid

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