Nutrients: Fats, Proteins. Carbohydrates, Water, Vitamins & Minerals

Essay by dreyazMiddle School, 6th grade May 2007

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A nutrient is any food substance that is necessary for contributing to an organism's growth and metabolism. There are 6 nutrient groups, classified as those that provide energy and others that support metabolic processes in our body. Some of these are very important because they cannot be produced in the body and have to be taken from a food source. Nutrition is the taking in and use of nourishing materials by the body. Different organisms have different ways to take in nutrients, like plants taking nutrients through photosynthesis and the use of their roots. Nutrition is also a science that focuses and studies the relationship between diet, health and disease. For example, deficiencies and disease occurs with the imbalance and food excess in diet. It has negative health impacts, and if no action are taken, can lead to diseases like obesity and scurvy.

Nutrients that provide energy are:Carbohydrates: These are compounds that are made of sugar used or stored as energy.

There are different types of carbohydrates, for example monosaccharide, disaccharide and polysaccharide, which provides short term energy. There are also more complex carbohydrates like starches and fibers, which provide longer-lasting energy. These more complex types are stored in the body as glycogen.

Proteins: These are organic compounds, that provide the building blocks for enzyms and other proteins in the body. Our body doesn't make certain amino acids (building blocks), and so we get these amino acids with our diet.

Fats: fats are basic nutrients made up of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms. They are used for cells to properly function and maintenance of body temperature. The body does not make some fatty acids and again we look for our diet to supply these. Triglycerides make up 95% of our total body fat, and cholestetrol makes...