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The value of fats, carbohydrates and minerals in human nutrition. The norms of these components of food and the sources of their entry into the human body



As mentioned in the previous lecture, fats are substances that perform in the body mainly energy function. In this regard, fats are superior to all other components of food (carbohydrates and proteins), since their combustion releases 2 times more energy (1 g of fat forms 9.3 kcal, while 1 g of protein and the corresponding amount of carbohydrates is only 4, 3 kcal).

However, the biological significance of fats is not exhausted only by their energy function. Fats are involved in plastic functions, being a structural part of cells and their membrane systems. Insufficient intake of fat can lead to:

- disruption of the central nervous system due to disruption of the directional flow of nerve signals;

- weakening of immunological mechanisms;

- skin changes, where they perform a protective role, protecting against hypothermia, increase elasticity and prevent drying and cracking;

- Violation of the internal organs, in particular the kidneys, which protect against mechanical damage.

Fat improves the taste properties of food (acts as a flavoring substance) and increases its nutritional value (creates a high degree of saturability).
However, even more important is the fact that only along with the fats of food a number of biologically valuable substances enter the body: fat-soluble vitamins, phosphatides (lecithin), polyunsaturated fatty acids, sterols, tocopherols and other substances possessing biological activity.

In humans, fat is in two forms: structural (protoplasmic) and reserve (in the fat depots, in the subcutaneous fat layer, in the abdominal cavity, the omentum, around the kidneys, near the kidney fat).

The amount of protoplasmic fat is maintained in organs and tissues at a constant level and does not change even during fasting.

The degree of accumulation of fat reserves depends on the nature of food, the level of energy consumption, age, sex, activity of the endocrine glands.

Heavy physical work, some diseases, inadequate nutrition contribute to a decrease in the amount of stored fat. Conversely, excessive nutrition, hypodynamia, decreased function of the gonads, and the thyroid gland lead to an increase in reserve fat.

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The value of fats, carbohydrates and minerals in human nutrition. The norms of these components of food and the sources of their entry into the human body

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