Know the right quantity of nutrients required by body
NEW DEHLI: It’s well
known that iron, vitamins or carbohydrates are nutrients essential to
keep our body fit. But be careful about the quantity, warns an expert.
Annapurna Agrawal, nutritionist at Snap Fitness India, recommends a
list of nutrients that are required by our body. Focus on the quantity
to avoid health problems.
Carbohydrate: Whole grains cereals, legumes, fruits,
milk, sugar, honey and potatoes are sources of carbohydrates. Quantity
should be 40 percent to 60 percent of your calories requirement.
It provides energy, and helps in oxidation of fat. Insufficient
amount of carbohydrate can cause lack of calories, which can lead to
malnutrition. Excessive consumption will make you obese.
Protein: Eat pulses, legumes, nuts, milk and its
products, chicken, fish, and egg to give your body much needed protein.
According to body weight, consume 0.8 to 1 gm or Kg of protein to help
in growth and maintenance of body.
It gives structure and shape to all the cells, organs and connective tissues. Proteins also help your body fight infection.
Malnutrition, weight loss, thinning of hair, muscle soreness,
weakness and lethargy, are among other things that you will experience
if there is less amount of protein present in your body.
Fat: Ghee, butter, cream, cheese, nuts, seed, egg,
fish, chicken, pork and beef are all rich in fat. 15 to 25 percent of
calories requirement is the right quantity.
It provides energy, helps in the absorption of fat soluble vitamins
like vitamin A,D,E and K. It is important for the development of brain
and central nervous system.
There will be poor vitamin absorption and depression, if you don’t
have fat in your body. Overeating food items rich in fat will lead to
obesity, stroke and many more.
Vitamin A: Sweet potato with peel, carrots, spinach,
liver, fish are the sources of this vitamin. 700 to 900 micrograms
(mcg) of Vitamin A per day strengthen immunity against infection and
help in vision.
Lack of it can cause night blindness and rough skin. Excess of it can affect the bone, which increases the risk of fracture.
Vitamin D: 15 mcgs of Vitamin D rich food items like egg yolks, liver help to form and maintain your teeth and bones.
Rickets (long, soft bowed legs), flattening of the back of the skull,
osteomalacia (muscle and bone weakness), and osteoporosis (loss of bone
mass) are some of the major diseases that one can suffer from, if
Vitamin D is not taken.
Too much of it leads to slowed mental and physical growth, decreased appetite, nausea and vomiting.
Vitamin E: This acts as an antioxidant and protects
vitamins A and C, and red blood cells from destruction. So have 15 mcg
of vegetable oil like soybean, corn and cottonseed. Egg yolks also
contain Vitamin E.
Vitamin E deficiency is rare. Cases of this vitamin deficiency usually occur in premature infants.
Vitamin K: All leafy vegetables are said to be good
for health. Turnip greens, spinach, cauliflower, cabbage and broccoli,
soybean oil, cottonseed oil, canola oil and olive oil are all rich in
The vitamin is required for proper blood clotting. Just have 120 mcg
every day. Haemorrhaging can happen if you don’t include it in your
diet. Overindulgence can lead to vomiting.
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine): The sources are whole grain,
bread and cereals. Non-vegetarians can find this vitamin in liver, pork,
and eggs. 0.8 to 1 mg per day is sufficient.
It helps with energy production in your body. Deficiency can cause numbness, tingling and loss of sensation.
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin): Dark green vegetables,
legumes, whole and enriched grain products, and milk, along with liver,
eggs should be eaten. 1.1 to 1.3 mg per day of this vitamin helps to
release energy from foods, promotes good vision, and healthy skin.
Cracks at the corners of the mouth, light sensitivity, and a sore,
red tongue are the problems you can face if you don’t have vitamin B2.
Vitamin C: Citrus fruits like orange and lemon, are
known for being source of this vitamin. 75 to 90 mg per day is the right
quantity required by your body.
It heals wound, helps in bone and tooth formation, strengthens blood
vessel walls, improves immune system function, increases absorption and
utilisation of iron, and acts as an antioxidant.
If you don’t take vitamin C rich food, you can be a victim of scurvy,
causing a loss of collagen strength throughout the body. Loss of
collagen results in loose teeth, bleeding and swollen gums, and improper
Excess leads to formation of kidney stones and you may even suffer from diarrhoea.
Iron: Have beans, lentils, beef, eggs to stay away from anaemia, dizziness or fainting.
Men should have 8mg per day. For women 18 mg per day is sufficient.
Calcium: Milk, yoghurt, spinach are rich in calcium.
1000 mg per day of calcium is essential for bone growth and strength,
blood clotting, muscle contraction, and the transmission of nerve
Absence of calcium can lead to thinning and weakening of bone.