Nutrition is the physiological and chemical process through which an organism uses food for its survival. It involves absorption, assimilation, metabolism, biosynthesis and excretion. There are five major classes of nutrients; minerals, vitamins, proteins, carbohydrates and fats. The nutritionists are concerned about how to provide nutrition to their patients. Based on their needs, they suggest different types of diets, including the food pyramid.
All the food items have to be registered before they can be sold. Nutrition is measured by nutrient content. Nutrient content is expressed as a percentage of the total calorie value. The nutritional value of the foods can be determined by using standard methodologies like the NDD (National Diabetes Data Dictionary) and IBSS (International Dietary Standards). According to the IBSS, whole grain, low-fat dairy products, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, and seaweeds have low, moderate, high and extremely high nutrient content.
The measurement of nutritional status is a complex process involving assessment of body mass index, physical activity, nutrient intakes, and other factors. Nutrition is important in ensuring overall health, but it can also affect weight loss and body mass index (BMI). A healthy diet has to be combined with regular physical activity to promote good nutrition and improve nutritional status.
Nutritional requirements of individuals vary according to their activities and the presence or absence of other substances in the environment. Nutrient deficiency can be corrected by replacing the substances that are not essential for the body by adding the necessary substances. Common substances that are essential for human nutrition include fat, protein, carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins, and water.
Data on nutrient intake were collected from 4 different studies. Study session 1 compared intakes of adults with and without known sources of dietary fat, carbohydrates, or protein; this provided evidence that the source of fat, protein, and carbohydrates affect nutrition more than sources of energy. In study session 2, participants were asked about their food choices for the day and their reported intakes of food substances that are not considered essential for nutrition. Another study measured food choices at weekdays and found that participants who ate several foods from one category had similar mean intakes of the other foods; participants with known sources of essential nutrients had similar mean intakes of all food categories, but did not consume more food from these categories than participants who did not know the sources of nutrients.
The participants in the study session 3 were asked to complete a nutrient database. This database contained detailed information on the frequency of intake of foods with micronutrients and information on the sources of these micronutrients. Data were analyzed using a multiple-period comparison design. This design made it possible to evaluate the effects of changes in nutrient availability on nutrient consumption over a period of months. Participants were categorized into four groups: those with a known source of micronutrients, those without a known source of micronutrients, those with a balanced diet, and those with no known source of micronutrients.
After the nutrient database analysis, the participants were grouped into four groups again, based on the amount of known sources of micronutrients in their diets. Again, those with a balanced diet, and those without a balanced diet, were included in the group with known sources of micronutrients. Participants in this group were encouraged to replace their regular sources of foods with those with less than 5 calories per serving, and eat more fruits and vegetables. Those in the group with known main sources of nutrients were asked to replace these sources of nutrients with foods having fewer than 5 calories per serving. Participants in this group, replacing their usual sources of unhealthy food with healthy foods, were asked to increase their fruit and vegetable servings and reduce their fat and carbohydrate intakes.
After this phase, participants were asked to reduce their total fat, increase their dietary fiber intake, increase their dietary fruits and vegetable servings, and decrease their calorie intake by 200 calories a day. They were also asked to include lean meats, eggs, and low fat dairy products to their daily menu plan. After this phase, participants were encouraged to increase their protein and fiber intake and decrease their fat and carbohydrate intake. The last phase of the study compared with participants who had followed all of these recommendations with those who had not. The study found that the people in the group that had taken all of these different approaches to improve their health, as measured by their blood pressure, were more likely to have lower blood pressure at the end of the study than the group that had not made any change.
If you liked this content, check out Nutrition