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Nutrition Basics Explained in Simple Words

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Healthy eating is simple if you just keep these basics in mind. Healthy eating is simple if you just keep these basics in mind. Simply put, a nutrient is any substance in food that provides energy and helps build/repair tissue. There are six classes of nutrients – Carbohydrates, Proteins, Fats, Vitamins, Minerals and Water. Carbohydrates, proteins and fats are considered energy tissues because they provide carbon (fuel) that can be “burned” for energy production.

Carbohydrate Carbohydrate is your body’s preferred fuel source. To crush a tough workout, you need energy. You get energy from carbohydrates.

Types of Carbohydrates

  1. Simple carbohydrates (bad carbs): These are sugar that include glucose, fructose (typically found in fruits and vegetables), lactose (milk sugar), sucrose (table sugar), and maltose (grain sugar). Simple carbohydrate provides lot of calories and usually they have zero nutritional value.
  2. Complex carbohydrates (good carbs): Complex carbohydrate sources, such as whole-grains, starchy vegetables, fruits and beans, deliver fiber as well as valuable amounts of vitamins and minerals. Complex carbohydrate (dietary fiber) is useful in the diet because it may lower fat, improves blood sugar control and cholesterol absorption.

What Role Do the Play in Our Body?

  1. Provide energy: Carbohydrate is the preferred fuel for the body and it is a quick energy source.
  2. Protein sparing: If you provide enough carbohydrates to your body, it will not break down muscles for its energy needs. Carbohydrate preserves protein from being broken down.

How much carbohydrate you should eat a day? 6 to 10g of carbohydrate per kilogram of your body weight each day

What Role Does Protein Play in Our Body?

  1. Muscle building: Protein helps build and recover muscles and promote muscular growth in the body.
  2. Hormone Production: Hormones control many chemical activities in the body and these are made of unique proteins.

Sources of protein Whey protein, chicken, egg, fish, Indian dal, milk products, soy products, beans, sprouts and mung

How Much Protein Should You Eat a Day?

  • Children: 1.0-1.6 g/kg of body weight
  • Adults: 0.8g/kg of body weight
  • Athletes and weight lifters: 1.2-1.7g/kg of body weight


Fat is a source of energy. Fat provides 9 calories per gram compared to 4 calories per gram from carbohydrates and proteins. Fat provides cushion against concussive forces such as a fall or a solid hit. High fat intake results in higher circulating blood cholesterol levels. How much fat should you eat a day? The generally accepted healthy limit for fat intake is no more than 20% of total calories per day. Sources Oil, butter, margarine, friend foods and whole milk dairy products

Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamins and minerals are essential nutrients because they perform hundreds of roles in the body. There is a fine line between getting enough of these nutrients (which is healthy) and getting too much (which can end up harming you).

The best strategy to make certain that an adequate amount of all the vitamins is consumed is to eat a wide variety of foods and consume plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables daily. Water-soluble vitamins Vitamin B and C are water-soluble vitamins. Water-soluble vitamins are packed into the watery portions of the foods you eat. They are absorbed directly into the bloodstream as food is broken down during digestion or as a supplement dissolves.

Fat-soluble Vitamins

Fat-soluble vitamins are those vitamins that are delivered with fats and oils. For example, milk is a fortified with the fat-soluble vitamins A and D. Vegetable and cereal oils are excellent sources of vitamin E.

Fluid and Hydration

Water carries nutrients to cells and carries waste products away from cells. It serves as a body lubricant and helps maintain body temperature through sweat.

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