Health and Eating Smart

Essay by ladyace63A+, November 2006

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1.What are the essential nutrients? What is the main function of each one?

The essential nutrients for health are: water, carbohydrates, minerals, fiber, fats, proteins, and vitamins.

The main function of each one is:

Water helps transport nutrients, removes wastes, and regulates the body's temperature. Water carries nutrients along the digestive path to the cells by liquefying food and moving it through the stomach, small intestine, and large intestine. When food is absorbed into the blood water regulates the concentration of nutrients on both sides of the cell walls.

Carbohydrates are the body's primary source of energy. Energy from simple carbohydrates such as candy only last a short time. Energy from complex carbohydrates such as starches last longer and are also a good source of vitamins and minerals.

Minerals There are two types of minerals which are major minerals and trace minerals. Major minerals are: Calcium, Chloride, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Sodium, and Sulfur.

Trace minerals are: Chromium, Cobalt, Copper, Fluoride, Iodine, Iron, Manganese, Molybdenum, Selenium, and Zinc. Major minerals are needed in the daily diet in at least 100 milligrams or more a day. Trace minerals are essential to healthy living but are needed in much smaller amounts. Minerals form healthy bones and teeth, regulate body functioning and help nerves and muscles react normally.

Fiber is a complex carbohydrate in which starchy vegetables and whole grain breads and cereals are rich in fiber. Fiber can be found in fruits, beans, vegetables and grains. Fiber plays an important role in the digestive system. The National Cancer Institute recommends that you eat from twenty to thirty grams a day as they believe that a diet low in fat and higher in fiber may reduce the risk of getting colon cancer.

Fats are the most concentrated source of energy in everyone's diet,