This is a legitimate question and the answer to it may revolutionize the way you think about the phenomenon. You see, the major problem with our society in the past was that people had a poor understanding of various illnesses and many of them proved to be strongly related to our diets. This is also a recurrent problem, because we still have such problems nowadays and the science of nutrition is still evolving at an increasingly faster pace. Along the way, people have registered a scientific advance in all the important fields such as biochemistry, genetics and biology and it became obvious that all of these influence the way our nutritional habits work with our organisms and how are this affects our metabolism. Another aspect that should be taken into consideration is the fact that nutrition analyzes the way diseases evolve and how can they be prevented and fought against using a healthier diet. For instance, it has recently been discovered that eating fruits and vegetables at least five times per day will provide you with a longer and healthier life than if you didn’t. Also, having a regular breakfast, containing about 700 calories, can help you lose weight and will help you remain safe from developing heart conditions and diabetes for instance.
Now a distinction has to be made and that is the one between a dietician and a nutritionist, because a lot of people have problems differentiating between the two. The terms are somewhat related, but not entirely identical.
So dietetics is actually the communication link between the science of nutrition and the consumer which will help people become more informed, regarding their food and lifestyle choices so that they will make those that will provide them with healthier and safer outcomes.
Now regarding nutrition, it is the science that studies the nutrients in various foods, the way they impact your organism and what is the exact correlation between the diet, health and all sorts of diseases caused by the lack of a proper balance between all these.
An important addition has to be made here and that is that there is no medical section that is completely unrelated to any part of the nutritional aspect. Whether we are talking about regular medicine, psychology, dentistry or whatever medical section that you may think of. It is the one influencing every aspect of your life, starting with your development as a fetus and all the way through your childhood towards maturity and until the moment you will die. After that your body will be broke down into essential nutrients for other organisms, so even then it will not stop.
A human body needs several essential nutrients without which cannot perform its daily tasks and can quickly develop all sorts of affections. These nutrients will nourish your organism and will either prevent them or provide you with important tools to effectively fight them off.
These nutrients are the ones providing us with energy for our daily activities and there are three types that we need to mention: carbohydrate, proteins and fats.
Carbohydrates – are formed from monosaccharides like glucose, galactose and fructose, sisaccharides and polysaccharides. The last ones have the most appealing nature to humans because of their sugar chains.
Proteins – these are special molecules containing nitrogen, hydrogen, oxygen and carbon and they are divided into monomers and polymers. Polimers are involved in rebuilding and repairing your tissue.
Fats – fats are molecules formed out of carbon, oxygen and hydrogen and they are called triglycerides, which basically means that there are three molecules of fatty acids linked with one molecule of alcohol glycerol.
While these nutrients are usually required in small amounts by your body, it does not make them less important, because their addition to your overall health cannot be ignored. This is where we need to mention minerals because their role is extremely important in your internal processes. There are 16 major minerals that can have the most impact on your health:
- Potassium – a key mineral involved in producing your RNA
- Chloride – it offers a priceless help in the production of your hydrochloric acid responsible with your digestive processes.
- Sodium – regulates ATP with potassium
- Calcium – extremely important in your heart, muscle and bone health
- Phosphorus – strengthens your bone structure and provides high levels of energy
- Magnesium – also processes ATP and gives you the material for building better bone systems
- Zinc – it is required by several enzymes in your body
- Iron – a key mineral in sustaining your hemoglobin production
- Manganese – it revolves around sustaining enzyme functions
- Copper – it is an important ingredient of many oxidation enzymes
- Iodine – it is required for the biosynthesis of a thyroid hormone called thyroxine
- Selenium – improves the activity of antioxidant enzymes
- Molybdenum – it is an important component of xanthine oxidase, aldehyde oxidase and sulfite oxidase and it is an essential addition in the formation of the uric acid
Is nutrition essential for our health? There is no doubt that it is and the more understanding of the phenomenon we will have, the more healthier our lives will become. And this is ultimately the final goal.