Nutrients are the fuel of your body. These can be taken only from outside through food. Do you know the powerful benefits of nutrients and Why do you need nutrients for your body? In fact, nutrients definition with their types and roles, must be clear in your mind for living with healthy food and happy lifestyle.
Hence, there may be lot of questions in your mind about facts of nutrients, nutrients definition and their functions in your body. But those doubts will be cleared here. Now, it depends on you whether you check given below information deeply or just on surface.
So, let starts from basics of nutrients definition.
Nutrients are: The chemical substances present in the food. Although, these chemical substances must be supplied to the body of an organism in proper amount for its growth, repairing, maintenance and reproduction activities.
Nutrients provide body nourishment. These are essential for maintenance of life and growth. Also, different type of nutrients perform specific function in your body and required in different amounts.
Please keep in mind that nutrient is a source of nourishment such as food, that can be metabolized by an organism for giving energy and building tissues. While, nutrition is the organic process by which an organism assimilates food.
Different types of organism have different essential nutrients. Nutrients are categorized as Organic and Inorganic. Plants nutritional requirement varies as compared with animals because plants synthesize many of nutrients itself. Although, total no. of 17 nutrients are required by plants. But out of these nutrients, 9 nos. of nutrients (nitrogen (N), phosphorus(P), potassium(K), calcium(Ca), sulfur(S), magnesium(Mg), carbon (C), oxygen(O) and hydrogen(H)) are macro-nutrients and 8 nos. of nutrients (iron (Fe), boron (B), chlorine (Cl), manganese (Mn), zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), molybdenum (Mo) and nickel (Ni)) are micro-nutrients.
Broad classification of nutrients
Include carbon containing compounds.
Include non-carbon containing compounds.
for example iron, selenium, zinc containing compounds.
Classification of nutrients as per functions
Energy giving nutrients
Major nutrients responsible for providing energy are carbohydrates and fats. These help in providing energy for doing daily routine activities.
Body building nutrients
Major nutrient that is responsible for body building is protein. It helps in growing body by formation of new tissues.
Major nutrients those are responsible for performing defence mechanism of our body are vitamins and minerals. These nutrients help in protecting our body from infections by building immune system.
Major nutrients are vitamins, minerals and water. These helps in maintaining regulatory function of body like fluid balance, body temperature etc.
Nutrients classification as per describing nutritional requirement of organisms
A. Macro nutrients definition & function
Nutrients consumed in large amounts (grams or ounces).
- Includes chemical compounds i.e. Carbohydrates, Fat, Protein and Water.
- Includes chemical elements i.e. CHNOPS (Carbon, Hydrogen, Nitrogen, Oxygen, Phosphorus, Sulphur). These 6 elemental nutrients are macronutrients for all organisms.
- Used to provide energy for growth and maintenance of an organism.
- Play role in giving energy and body building of an organism.
- Carbohydrates are compounds made up of types of sugars. They are classified as monosaccharides, disaccharides, oligosaccharides & polysaccharides.
- Proteins are organic compounds consist of amino acids which are joined by peptide bonds. Through digestion, proteins broken down back into amino acids with the help of proteases.
- Fats are glycerin molecules with fatty acids. Fatty acids are molecules with -COOH group attached to unbranched hydrocarbon chains.
- Energy content: Fat(9kcal/gm), Protein(4kcal/gm) & Carbs(4kcal/gm).
B. Micro nutrients definition & function
Nutrients consumed in small amounts (milligrams or micrograms).
- Includes Vitamins and Minerals.
- Biochemical and physiological functions in cellular processes, like vascular functions and nerve conduction.
- Play role in protection of an organism from foreign particles e.g. bacteria, viruses etc.
- Minerals are trace elements and essential for metabolic activities.
- Vitamins are organic compounds essential for our body and act as a co-factors or co-enzymes for various proteins in our body, metabolic regulators or antioxidants.
- Vitamin deficiency lead to diseases but Minerals deficiency can cause even death because minerals have vital role in functioning of organ system e.g. lack of hemoglobin due to iron deficiency, heart attack due to calcium deficiency etc.
Essential nutrients: Definition & Function
Nutrients required for normal physiological or biochemical operations in an organism which are not synthesized in the body either completely or in sufficient quantity.
- Must be taken from dietary sources.
- Relevant for various metabolic activities.
- Detail of essential nutrients : 9 amino acids (phenylalanine, valine, threonine, tryptophan, methionine, leucine, isoleucine, lysine, and histidine). 2 fatty acids (alpha-linolenic acid (an omega-3 fatty acid) and linoleic acid (an omega-6 fatty acid)). 13 vitamins (vitamins A, C, D, E(tocopherols and tocotrienols), K, thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), pantothenic acid (B5), pyridoxine (B6), biotin (B7), folate (B9), and cobalamin (B12). 15 minerals (potassium, chloride, sodium, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, zinc, manganese, copper, iodine, chromium, molybdenum, selenium and cobalt (component of vitamin B12).
- Need to take additionally from dietary supplements for optimum health.
Non-essential nutrients: Definition & Function
Substances within foods that can have a significant impact on health and found abundantly in body and resources. Also available in sufficient amount for body functions.
- Can be synthesized in our body.
- Need not to take additionally from dietary supplements.
Phyto-nutrients: Definition & Function
Means plant based nutrients. These are phytochemicals those include all nutritional and non-nutritional components of plants e.g. polyphenols, flavonoids, resveratrol, and lignans.
- They have strong antioxidant effects. We observe that plants have long and effective life span.
- Found in plant colors and peels.
- Phytochemicals are still under researches for knowing their potentials on human health.
“Nutrients are lifeline of our successful healthy lifestyle”-healthjaagran
Nutrients meaning in Hindi
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