Healthful Diet Essay

614 words - 3 pages

iet simply means the food we eat regularly. Eating well is the key to maintain energy, strength, and a healthy immune system. A healthy balanced diet is not the one which skips any foods or food groups but to include variety of foods in the right proportions. The basic elements of a healthy diet must include right proportions of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins because our body needs large amounts of these macronutrients to perform basic cellular functions

Carbohydrates are primary source of energy for the body. During digestion they can be converted more readily into glucose, which is absorbed into the bloodstream through the walls of the small intestine to build energy molecules. Carbohydrates are classified as nondigestible and digestible carbohydrates.

Nondigestible carbohydrate is also called as dietary fiber. There are two types of fiber --- soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber dissolves in water to form a gel, ...view middle of the document...

Insoluble fibers are mainly found in foods derived from plants such as whole grains (brown rice, barley, whole wheat) and vegetables.

Fats are complex biomolecules composed of fatty acids. The body needs fats for growth and energy, to synthesize hormones, and various other functions. Fats the most energyefficient form of food. There are two types of fats---Saturated and unsaturated. Saturated fats increase the cholesterol levels in the body. These fats are not considered as healthy because they increase the levels of low-density lipoproteins (LDL) and very low-density lipoproteins (VLDL) in the blood stream. These lipoproteins are deposited as plaque in the arterial walls, which leads to blockage of the arteries called atherosclerosis. Usually foods derived from animals contain saturated fats such as lard, butter, and cheese are solids at room temperature.

On the contrary unsaturated fats does not synthesize cholesterol in our body and increase the amount of high-density lipoproteins (HDL), which lowers cholesterol levels in the blood stream by removing the build up of arterial plaque. Fats that are derived from plant such as olive oil, sunflower oil are liquid at room temperature. However, coconut and palm oil are exceptions.

Proteins are complex biomolecules composed of polymer of amino acids. Our body takes long time to break down these protein molecules. Hence, they are long-lasting energy source for the body than carbohydrates. Proteins are essential for various biochemical reactions, to build structural components of the body, and to maintain tissues and organs. The main sources of protein are eggs, meat, fish, and legumes.

A diet which contains high fiber, high protein, and low fat is considered as healthy because it reduces the risk of diabetes, heart disease, and helps to control weight. All three macronutrients supply energy to the body. However, they differ in their amount of energy. Each gram of fat supplies about 9 calories, more than twice the amount of proteins or carbohydrates. Diet high in saturated fats raises the level of cholesterol in the blood and increases the risk of heart disease and stroke.

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