We have all been there "Oh I am going to start a diet" and then we are good for awhile and we eventually go off the beaten path.
Good nutrition is eating foods in proper quantities with the proper nutrients to feed our bodies. Malnutrition, on the opposite side is a diet that these nutrients are under consumed or unbalanced. I do not claim to be a dietitian. This post is for basic information. If you have more in depth questions please ask a Registered Dietitian. I will answer basic question regarding nutrition.
The basic nutrients the body needs are carbohydrates, fat, proteins, vitamins, minerals and water. There are Recommended Daily Allowances (RDA) based on sex and age.
Carbohydrates are nutrients that are essential for energy. It is recommended that 45-65% of daily calories come from carbohydrates. This is approximately 130g. Take a look at the nutrients on what you eat and most people eat way beyond the recommended amount of carbohydrates. Yes there are good and bad carbs that our body breaks down differently. Simple carbs or sugars are just that break down to sugars. Examples would be fruit juice, sodas and candy. Complex carbs are better but we have to make sure that the carbs have a good amount of dietary fiber also. Fiber cannot be broke down by the digestive system but it does help prevent some cancers and helps our digestive system work properly. Most of you reading this BLOG are under 50 and the average fiber intake per day is 38g.
Fats are another important nutrient to help temperature regulation, protection of vital organs, distribution of some vitamins, energy production and formation of cells. Yep you got it! Good and Bad Fats. Trans fat is unsaturated fat that is common in baked goods such as cookies and cakes. BAD BAD BAD!!! Moderation! Monounsaturated fats are found in olive oil and canola oil. Better! Polysaturated fats Fish, soybeans, and peanut oils are good and needed in the body. The recommendations for fat intake is 20-30% of calories. If you ate that Big Mac you are done!
Proteins are are forms of amino acids. Proteins have alot of functions in the body such as: carry oxygen, fight disease, allow muscle contraction, act as connective tissue and clot blood just to name a few. The recommendations for proteins are 10-35% of calories. People who train intensively may require more protein in their diet.
Vitamins are organic based substances that are essential to normal human function. Vitamins are essential in metabolism of fat, carbohydrates and proteins. The body needs certain vitamins in the proper quantities for protein synthesis, blood clotting and bone formation.
Minerals are inorganic elements that are found in the body. Some examples of these include calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sulfur, sodium chloride and magnesium. Each mineral plays a different role in the body's function. Calcium help with the mineralization of bone, muscle contraction and transmission of nerve impulses. These elements can be damaging in large amounts. Sodium is very high in our diet these days this has been linked to hypertension(high blood pressure).
Water plays a major role in the function of the body. Water is essential in creating a environment for a healthy metabolism. Water regulates body temperature and transports substances throughout the body. Someone who is exercising needs to have a high intake of water.
Dieting can have more of a negative influence than a positive one. Watching what we eat is a better option. Moderation of calories and fats is not a diet. I recommend a food log if you are having trouble loosing weight. Write down everything you eat and drink or one week! Sometimes we don't realize the calories that are in food or drinks. There are people who do not eat enough calories and this slows the metabolism and you might not loose weight. A diet is a temporary fix. Watch what you eat and exercise will give you the best success.