Nutrients

What Are They?

Carbohydrates

A carbohydrate is a nutrient that serves as the body's main energy source. In other words, without it you would have no energy. There are 2 types of carbohydrates which are simple and complex. Simple carbohydrates are sugars and complex carbohydrates are starches and fiber. (pictures below & to the right). In 1 gram of carbohydrates, there are 4 calories.

Fats

Fat is a food/nutrient that provides energy. It also gives your food flavor and texture. Yes, fats are bad if you have too much, but without them, food wouldn't taste as good, and it keeps your skin healthy. There are 3 types of fat; unsaturated fat, saturated fat, and trans fat. Unsaturated fat are liquid at room temperature and help lower cholesterol in blood. On the other hand, saturated fats are solid at room temperature and tend to raise the cholesterol in blood. Too much cholesterol can lead to heart disease and too much trans fat can lead to stroke risk and/or cancer.

Protein

Proteins are important because they build the body new cells and repair injured ones. Without proteins, where else would we get new cells? Amino acids are very small units that make proteins. There are 22 amino acids, but only 9 come from food. Our body can make the other 13. There are also complete proteins and incomplete proteins. Complete proteins have all 9 essential amino acids. While incomplete proteins lack 1 or more essential amino acids.

Water

Water is important because everyone of your body cells contain water. Water helps regulate body temperature and helps clean out our digestive process. If you don't get enough water you can become dehydrated, digestive problems, weight gain, and A LOT of health problems.

Vitamins

Vitamins are important because they provide us energy. If you didn't have any energy you would always feel tired. Also, vitamins regulate body processes and help other nutrients. Water-Soluble Vitamins dissolve in water they get rid of excess amounts of vitamins in urine. Fat-Soluble Vitamins dissolve in fat. They store excess fat so when our body needs it, it already has it.

Minerals

Minerals are important because they help with a lot of things. They help with regulating body processes, become a part of your body in forms of cells, fluids, muscles, teeth, and bones. If you don't get enough calcium, your bones won't be strong and it helps prevent osteoporosis. If you don't get enough iron, you can develop anemia.
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