Proper nutrition is one of the most essential elements to being healthy and living a long life. People deal with food every day, and food has been a part of life since the beginning of civilization. What we eat becomes our diet, and our diet plays a major role in deciding how healthy we are and how well our body functions. Without proper diet, our body cannot carry out the functions it needs to perform. Most people have some common knowledge on what is good and what is bad for the human body to consume. Fruits, vegetables, nuts, and grains are some common items people think of when they think of healthy foods. However, it is not enough just to know what foods are good for your body, it is also important to understand why certain foods are good for you and what they do to help the body function.
Food is anything we consume, whether it is for taste or for nutritional value. The nutritional value of a food is the value the food gives to the body to function. To identify whether a food has poor or good nutritional value, people use a nutrition facts chart. These charts can display the amount of fat, sugar, calories, fiber, carbohydrates, cholesterol, calories, and more.
All of these substances serve one purpose or another when consumed into the body. Carbohydrates, for example, are broken down in the body to provide energy for the body to perform reactions and to regain stamina. Protein helps muscles to recover stronger than before as well as help skin and hair cells to develop. Some substances, such as fat and sugar, can be misinterpreted as being harmful to the body. However, fats and sugars are vital to the human body and without them certain processes within the body could not take place ("What's In Food", Nutrition.gov.)
Just as proper nutrition aids the body, improper nutrition harms it. There are numerous effects of improper nutrition on the body. These include obesity, diabetes, and several heart conditions. Obesity is the term used for someone who qualifies as significantly overweight. A BMI (Body Mass Index) records weight in relation to height. A BMI of 25 is overweight and a BMI of 30 is obese. Obesity is not a disease in its self but it can lead to different health issues, some fatal. Obesity can be related to eighty percent of type two diabetes, seventy percent of cardiovascular disease, thirty percent to gall bladder surgeries, and forty two percent to breast and colon cancer. Unfortunately, obesity rates in people are rising rapidly. The United States alone had an obesity rate of twenty six percent in 2007. Some cases of obesity are gene related, but most other cases are a result of improper dieting and exercise among the individual ("Why Is Proper Nutrition Important?", Case Western Reserve University).
Type II diabetes is another major effect from improper diet and nutrition. When someone is a type II diabetic, their body either produces too little of an amount of insulin, or their body’s cells ignore the...