Crack the Code For a Balanced Diet Exploring Macronutrient Essential
A balanced diet contains an adequate amount of all the nutrients required by the body to grow, remain healthy and be disease-free. A balanced diet can be achieved by carefully selecting and Combining food items from different food groups.
A balanced diet pyramid is a pictorial representation of all the food items a person requires daily. The food items are arranged in ascending order according to their quantity of intake.
The food to be eaten in a heavier quantity is placed at the bottom of the pyramid and food items that are eaten in the least amount are present at the top of the pyramid.
The seven Essential components of a Balanced Diet are proteins, carbohydrates fats or lipids micronutrients such as Vitamins, minerals & water. Macronutrients. are the nutrients that your body needs in large amounts, which include fat, Carbohydrates and protein.
Carbohydrates are nutrients that are the main source of energy for the body. Carbohydrate supply Four calories of energy per gram of food & should make up 45-65% of your diet. These macronutrients include sugar, jaggery, honey, etc.
Cereals, pulses, roots and tubers like potatoes Sweet potatoes, beetroot & yam are
very rich sources of carbohydrates. Fruits especially bananas, mangoes,
pineapple and grapes are also good sources of carbohydrates
Function of carbohydrates:
Providing energy & regulation of blood glucose.
Sparing the use of proteins for energy ·
Breakdown of fatty acids to prevent Ketosis
Flavour & Sweeteners
Deficiency or Lack of Carbohydrates in the diet leads to being underweight, tiredness and poor work efficiency.
Excess of carbohydrates in the diet leads to the risk of being overweight. This in turn can be one of the causes of other diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure etc.
Proteins are the building blocks of life. Protein is a nutrient your body needs to grow and repair cells and to work properly. Proteins are made up of smaller units called amino acids which are attached to one another in long chains. There are different type 20 different types of amino acids that can be combined to make a protein.
Protein is obtained from the following two sources:
Animal protein sources are milk, egg, meat, Fish, Poultry & milk products like cheese, curd, khao etc.
Vegetable protein sources are pulses, paneer, soybean, nuts and oil seeds like, peanuts, almonds, cashew nuts etc. cereal pulse combinations like khichadi, dosa, missi roti (wheat flour + besan), idli etc.
Function of proteins
For growth and maintenance
Regulation of body processes
Sources of energy
Protein deficiency in children can lead to kwashiorkor.
Fats and oil belong to a group of compounds called lipids are concentrated sources of energy in our diet. Fats are obtained from vegetables as well as animal sources. Vegetable sources are extracted from oil seeds and nuts such as ground nut, mustard sesame, soybean, cottonseed and coconut.
Animal sources are milk, egg yolk, and fats like ghee, butter, cream, fish liner oils etc.
The function of fats:
Source of energy
Carrier of fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E, and K
A deficiency of fat leads to tiredness, reduced work efficiency and being underweight whereas overconsumption can lead to one being overweight
Understanding the importance of macronutrients is crucial in achieving a balanced diet and maintaining optimal health. By recognizing the roles that carbohydrates, proteins, and fats play in our bodies, we are better equipped to make informed choices about what we eat. Incorporating a variety of food sources for each macronutrient can help ensure that we are getting all the necessary nutrients and energy our bodies need. However, it is important to remember that balance is key – excessive consumption or restriction of any macronutrient can have negative consequences on our health. So let’s crack the code for a balanced diet by embracing a diverse range of foods and making conscious decisions about what we put on our plates.