Components of food
The combination of foods that one eats regularly every day is called the diet (staple food). A good combination of foods that contains all the components that are required by the body is called a balanced diet. These components must be present in sufficient quantities in the diet. Nutritional science deals with various components of food in various vegetables or meat, and their effects on health, metabolism and disease prevention.
The main components of nutrition are :
1. Proteins : help the growth and health of muscles, hair and skin
2. Carbohydrates : primary source of energy to the body, and contain glucose
3. Fats : Some vitamins (D) are synthesized from fats. Unsaturated fats (vegetable oils) are good. Intakes amount of saturated fats must be controlled. When we do not eat food for a long duration, certain fats stored in the body are converted in to energy.
4. Vitamins : Mainly A, B, C, D, E, K. There are more. These are required for proper functioning of various organs in the body. Immunity against diseases requires vitamin sufficiency.
5. Minerals : Calcium, iron, iodine, chromium etc. The amounts of sodium , potassium must be very small and controlled. These make the body and mind function properly and healthily.
6. Water : body, blood and brain consist of a lot of water. Sufficient water must be taken in.
7. Roughage or fibrous foodder or dietary fibre (in fruits etc.) which are indigestible but help passage of food through the gut and intestines.