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Energy assessment of the diet.

Since in the process of nutrition, the body first of all receives the energy necessary for life processes, then the integral quantitative measure for evaluating the consumed food is its energy value, or calorie content. As you know, energy costs are the sum of the costs of basic metabolism, the specifically dynamic action of nutrients and muscle work.

The energy value of food should be balanced with the corresponding costs of the body. Its insufficient calorie content (malnutrition) leads to weight loss in an adult, to a functional disorder and to the appearance of a number of pathological manifestations. In a child, this causes a violation of all processes of growth and development.

The so-called excess nutrition (overeating) causes an excessive increase in adipose tissue. Approximate estimates show that with regular excess of energy requirements by 200 kcal / day, the amount of reserve fat can approximately increase by 10 - 20 g / day, i.e. by 3.6 - 7.2 kg / year.

The principle of a balanced diet involves a balanced intake of nutrients needed by the body, including proteins, fats and carbohydrates (B: F: Y). The optimal ratio of B: W: Y is 1: 1: 4. With an active lifestyle, playing sports and hard physical labor, it is recommended that B: F: U 1: 1.2: 4.6.

Proteins are an essential part of food; with their deficiency in nutrition, growth, development slows down, the function of hematopoiesis and blood coagulation decreases, immunity decreases, the activity of the humoral, nervous, digestive, respiratory and muscle systems is disrupted. A young growing organism with a high level of plastic processes is especially sensitive to protein deficiency.

When oxidizing 1 g of protein, 16.7 kJ (4 kcal) is obtained.

An adult practically healthy person needs at least 50 g of protein per day (the minimum level necessary for survival), and its intake in the amount of 85-100 g / day is considered the norm, according to the WHO recommendation. Excess protein in the diet leads to the formation of toxic substances in the process of their metabolism, resulting in impaired liver and kidney function.

Of no small importance is not only the quantity, but also the biological value of proteins, which is determined by the presence of essential amino acids in them (those that are not synthesized in the body and must necessarily come from food). Proteins containing the entire set of essential amino acids needed by the body are called complete. Their sources are milk and dairy products, eggs, meat, fish, and liver.

Proteins of animal origin are digested and absorbed better than vegetable ones. Boiling foods increases their digestibility, while high-temperature processing (for example, frying) makes it difficult for enzymes to penetrate the dense crust formed on the surface of the products, and protein absorption is difficult.

The importance of vegetable and animal fats is diverse. They have high energy value; during the oxidation of 1 g of fat, 37.66 kJ (9 kcal) is released. Fats are structural elements of cell membranes, the basis for the synthesis of hormones (genital, adrenal cortex), dissolving vitamins A, B, E, K, contribute to their absorption. In their composition, biologically active substances such as polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), phospholipids, lecithin, sterols, etc. enter the body. Fat deposits in the omentum, near the internal organs, play the role of an elastic gasket, and in the subcutaneous tissue protect the body from hypothermia, preventing heat loss, they protect against mechanical damage, prevent drying and cracking of the skin, giving it elasticity. It should be noted the role of fats as a source of endogenous water (when oxidizing 100 g of fat, 107 g of water is released), which is of no small importance when there is insufficient water supply from the outside.

The daily requirement for fats depends on age, gender, energy consumption and climatic conditions. On average, 80-100 g / day of fat is needed for a healthy adult to replenish the energy costs of the body and to build its cellular structures.

Insufficient intake of fats in the body can lead to a number of disorders of the central nervous system, weakened immunity, pathological changes in the skin, kidneys, organs of vision, growth cessation, weight loss, impaired production of sex hormones and corticosteroids. With a lack of nutrition of vegetable oils, a deficiency of PUFA is created, with which the possibility of the formation of malignant tumors, vascular thrombosis and other pathologies is associated. The fat of marine fish has an even more beneficial effect on body functions than vegetable fats, due to the high content of PUFA.

Excessive intake of fat, especially in the evening, as well as in combination with physical inactivity, leads to the fact that chylomicrons accumulate in the blood, destroying, gluing (forming blood clots) and disrupting the movement of red blood cells.
The resulting slowdown in blood flow worsens the nutrition of tissues and organs, reducing their resistance to adverse factors. In addition, excess fat is accompanied by an increase in LPS, leading to the development of cardiovascular diseases and obesity.

The accumulation of lipids in the blood occurs during protein deficiency, as well as during stressful conditions, including during fasting. In these cases, the liver glycogen is converted into glucose, which enters the bloodstream, and fatty acids, chylomicrons, take the place of glycogen. If this condition is prolonged, then liver obesity, the so-called fatty infiltration, can occur. Its development is also facilitated by the frequent use of alcoholic beverages.

Elderly people, as well as those who lead a sedentary lifestyle, are mainly engaged in mental activity, it is necessary to reduce the intake of fats in the body. To do this, use lean meat, fish and dairy products in your diet.

The biological value of vegetable fats is reduced when they are refined (refined) and as a result of heating. Long-term heat treatment (more than 30 minutes) leads to the formation of toxic, and with repeated heating (over 200 ° C) carcinogens. At the same time, melting animal fats increases their digestibility, therefore, it is recommended to use ghee, lard and cooking fats for frying foods.

An extremely important role in nutrition belongs to carbohydrates, since they are the main sources of easily utilized energy (when 1 g of them is oxidized, 16.7 kJ, or 4 kcal, is formed in the body), and also are part of the tissues and body fluids, performing a plastic function. In addition, carbohydrates and their derivatives counteract the accumulation of toxic products of fat oxidation and have a tonic effect on the central nervous system. Their protective function should be noted, for example, the polysaccharide heparin prevents blood coagulation in vessels, hyaluronic acid prevents the penetration of bacteria through cell walls, and glucuronic acid combines with toxic substances, forming non-toxic esters that are easily removed from the body with urine.

Food products include three groups of carbohydrates: monosaccharides (glucose, fructose), oligosaccharides (disaccharides and trisaccharides) and polysaccharides (starch, glycogen, fiber, pectin). Glucose and disaccharides have a simple structure, easily dissolve in water and are quickly absorbed. Their excessive consumption leads to a sharp increase in blood sugar - hyperglycemia, which negatively affects the function of the pancreas and contributes to the development of diabetes. The exchange of fructose in the body occurs with the participation of enzymes, the activity of which does not depend on the presence of insulin, which makes it an important component of the diet of patients with diabetes mellitus. The main sources of fructose and glucose are watermelons, melons, fruits, berries, beets and honey.

Lactose disaccharide is found in milk and dairy products. Its hydrolysis in the intestine proceeds slowly, in connection with which the fermentation processes are limited and the activity of the intestinal microflora is normalized. The intake of lactose in the digestive tract creates a favorable environment for the development of lactic acid bacteria, which are antagonists of putrefactive microorganisms.

Polysaccharides, such as starch, are insoluble in water and are absorbed by the body only after cleavage by amylase. This process occurs gradually, therefore, the consumption of starch does not cause a sharp increase in glucose in the blood. Glycogen practically doesn’t come from food, as it is destroyed during the “ripening” of meat of slaughtered animals.

Cellulose (fiber) refers to polysaccharides that are not digested by the enzymes of the human body. However, some bacteria that inhabit the large intestine produce the enzyme cellulase, under the influence of which it breaks down to form monosaccharides. Fiber has no energy value, but it normalizes bowel function. Passing through it in transit, fiber irritates its walls and enhances peristalsis, thereby improving digestion. In addition, fiber and other ballast substances (for example, pectins, which are rich in berries and fruits) prevent the formation of ulcers and polyps in the digestive tract, adsorb sterols, including cholesterol, toxic metabolic products, prevent their reabsorption and promote excretion from the body.
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Energy assessment of the diet.

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