Why do I need food?

Food refers to any nutritious substance that individuals consume to obtain energy for carrying out various tasks and helps in the overall growth and development of the body.

Why do we need food?

All living organisms i.e., plants as well as animals need food and water to survive. These are the necessities of any living organism. We need food because it gives us energy and provides essential nutrients that help us grow and stay healthy. Food also provides healthy supplements to fight diseases and heals us when we fall sick.

Why is a Balanced Diet essential for us?

Diet may be defined as the food we consume daily. For the growth and development of our body, it is very necessary to have all the nutrients in our food in the right quantities. Excess of only one kind of food types may disrupt the normal functioning of our body. A good diet has a good amount of roughage and water.

What are the essential food types?

1. Carbohydrate:

Carbohydrate is one of the most important components of food. It provides us energy in the form of glucose. Some of the food items that are rich in carbohydrates are potato, rice, beans, peas, sugar beet, mango, and melons. They are very high in energy and hence it is essential to consume carbohydrates in appropriate amounts every day. Such foods give a positive result for the starch test.

2. Proteins:

Protein is one of the most essential body-building nutrients. Proteins help in the generation of new cells as well as replaces worn-out cells. They also help our body to fight against infections. They play a crucial role in the proper functioning of the body and its various components.
Legumes such as beans and pulses are rich sources of vegetable proteins. Milk, eggs, meat, cheese, and fish are the main sources of animal protein.

3. Fats:

Fats are the third most important nutrient required by our body. Essentially fats have 9 calories in each gram and provide more energy as compared to carbohydrates. Too much fat deposition is very harmful to the body. This leads to a condition known as obesity. However, small amounts of it are not only healthy but essential for the body.
Food components that are rich in fats are soya bean oil, groundnut oil, butter, and ghee.

4. Vitamins:

Vitamins are organic compounds that help in the normal growth and maintenance of an individual. Vitamins play an important role in generating energy by the utilization of carbohydrates and fats. Vitamin deficiency causes diseases. Deficiency of vitamin A causes night blindness and liver disorder, deficiency of vitamin B causes Beriberi, loss of vitamin C causes scurvy, and vitamin D loss leads to rickets. Therefore vitamins are the most important ingredients in our food diet. Vitamins are required in minute amounts in our daily diet but that does not make them any less important.

Foods rich in vitamins include eggs, milk, carrots, oranges, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and many more.

Fun-Facts:

  1. Canadians spend about 60 minutes a day eating, while the French spend about 133 minutes a day.
  2. Vitamin D helps our bodies to absorb calcium from foods.

Objective Questions:

  1. Which disease occurs due to deficiency of Vitamin A?
    (a) Night Blindness
    (b) Scurvy
    (c) Rickets
    (d) Malaria
  2. Which food items give a positive test for starch?
    (a) Carbohydrates
    (b) Proteins
    (c) Fats
    (d) Roughage
  3. Which food gives the highest amount of energy?
    (a) Carbohydrates
    (b) Fats
    (c) Vitamins
    (d) None of the above
  4. What is the most essential body-building nutrient?
    (a) Proteins
    (b) Carbohydrates
    (c) Salad
    (d) All of the above

Quiz:-

  1. Food is not necessary for survival (T/F)
  2. Loss of Vitamin D can cause Rickets (T/F)
  3. Proteins help in the generation of new cells (T/F)
  4. Lack of a balanced Diet can disrupt the normal functioning of all living beings (T/F)
  5. Excess food consumption can lead to obesity (T/F)

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