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Balanced diet



Translated from the Latin word "diet" means the daily portion of food, and the word "rational", respectively, translated as reasonable or expedient.
Nutrition can be considered rational only when it meets the human body’s need for plastic (construction) substances, fills up its energy costs without excess, corresponds to the physiological and biochemical capabilities of a person, and also contains all other substances necessary for it: vitamins, macro, micro - and ultramicro elements, free organic acids, ballast substances and a number of other biopolymers.
Since all of the above enters us from the outside, rational nutrition can and should be considered also as a naturally conditioned relationship of a person with the environment. But food differs from all environmental agents in that it becomes an internal factor specific to it within our body. Some of the elements that make up this factor turn into energy of physiological functions, others into structural formations of organs and tissues.
Food of any person should be rational, that is, reasonable and scientifically grounded, expedient. This is the ideal that is difficult to achieve in real life, and if to be completely honest, it is impossible, but you should strive for it. The term rational nutrition should be understood physiologically good nutrition, taking into account the characteristics of each person, able to ensure the constancy of its internal environment.
And yet, what are the basic laws of a balanced diet?
The main provisions of the theory of rational nutrition are, one can say, the practical implementation of the postulates of the theory of adequate nutrition.
The first law of rational nutrition says that it is necessary to keep a balance between the energy supplied with food, that is, the caloric content of food, and the energy expenditure of the body. The caloric content of food is an indicator of energy value, equal to the amount of energy (in calories) released by the oxidation of nutrients that make up the food. To measure the caloric content of food (energy value) and the body's work (energy costs), the same units are used - calories (cal) and kilocalories (large calories), and in the international system of units SI - joules (J). One calorie is equal to the cost of heat for heating 1 g of water per 1 ° C. To convert to joules, you must multiply 1 cal by 4.184. One kilocalorie is equal to 1000 calories.

Even in conditions of rest and under favorable temperature conditions, the level of energy consumption of an adult is 1300-1900 kcal per day. This is the so-called basic energy metabolism, which can be calculated for each person in the following way. It was established experimentally that the specific energy exchange for 1 hour is approximately 1 kcal per 1 kg of body weight. So, the main exchange in a man weighing 70 kg will be equal to 1680 kcal (1 kcal x 70 kg x 24 h).
Any physical or mental work requires additional energy costs. If for people engaged in sedentary “sedentary” work, the daily energy requirement is 2500–2800 kcal, then for persons engaged in heavy physical work, these values ​​can reach 4000–5000 kcal (see Table 1).


Table 1

Energy consumption in various types of work
Name of work Energy costs / h per person with a mass of 70 kg, kcal
Running at a speed of 8 km / h 570
Riding in a car 211
Cycling (13-21 km / h) 540
Digging a ditch 486
Skating 450
Cross-country skiing 876
Washing dishes 144
Resting sitting 96
Rest lying down 77
Sweeping the floor 169
Swimming 500
Firewood 480
Typing 140
Tailor work 135
joiner 240
bricklayer 400
Hand mowing 134
Preparation of beds in the garden 463
The work of surgeons (surgery) 338
Work in the laboratory (sitting) 112
Hand wash 105
Sleep 250
Hearing lectures 65
Physical exercises 102
Walking (110 steps / min) 272
Walking on a snowy road with speed 290
6 km / h 300
8 km / h 650
School lessons 111


The main energy material for the human body is provided by carbohydrates and fats, since proteins are mainly used as plastic - building material. However, their excess can also be spent for energy. Thus, the energy material is used by the body only according to needs, and if the daily caloric content of food exceeds the body's energy consumption, the unclaimed part of fat is deposited in special depots. Similarly, the "unburned" part of carbohydrates is converted into fat, increasing overweight. Any deviation in the energy balance is not indifferent for the organism. For example, if the daily caloric intake of food exceeds daily energy consumption by only 100 kcal, over the course of a year, a person’s excess fat will increase by 1.75-3.5 kg, and the body will receive 100 kcal from 50 g of white bread or a teaspoon of granulated sugar.
When you limit the diet, ie, short-term lack of energy material in the human body consumes its reserve substances - glycogen and fats. In the conditions of a prolonged shortage of food (starvation), not only fats and carbohydrates, but also body proteins are used to cover energy costs. Therefore, in order to maintain energy balance, an optimal amount of nutrients is needed.
Part of the energy the body spends directly on the digestion of food, while the amount of energy used depends on the composition of the diet. Thus, the body spends 30–40% of energy for digesting proteins, 7–14% for digesting fats, 4–7% for carbohydrates, and up to 60% for raw vegetables. Why does an incredible amount of energy go to vegetables? They burn very badly, as there is a lot of water in them. This is another value of raw vegetables, with them the body gets a lot of useful nutrients, and more than half of the incoming energy material is spent on their own digestion. Eating raw vegetables every day, even kilograms, it is impossible to suffer from obesity.
Another thing is carbohydrates or fats, which are very easily, without large energy consumption, absorbed by the body. Therefore, all the energy received must be spent not on their assimilation, but on the performance of physical work, otherwise carbohydrates will turn into fats. During the burning of 1 g of proteins and carbohydrates in the body, 4.0 kcal (16.7 kJ) of energy is released, while at the burning of 1 g of fat - 9.0 kcal (37.6 kJ).
Now let us once again clarify the basic meaning of the concepts already mentioned many times - the biological and nutritional value of products.

The biological value of food primarily determines the characteristics of its participation in the synthesis of the body's own proteins, and also takes into account the activity of its polyunsaturated fatty acids and vitamins.
The nutritional value of products is a broader concept. It takes into account both the energy value of the product, organic biopolymers contained in it, and inorganic substances, and even the taste of food. The most common nutritional values ​​are grams or milligrams of a given nutrient per 100 grams of the edible portion of the product. Nutrients are substances that are contained in food and are used by the body.
Therefore, it should be taken into account that 100 g of meat is not 100 g of protein, just as 100 g of bread is not 100 g of carbohydrates. For this, there are coefficients for recalculating food into pure substrates. Taking into account these coefficients table is compiled. 2
Thus, a balanced daily ration of an adult should, on average, include 1900 ml of liquid (in drinking, in dishes and in “dry” foods), 90 g of proteins, 90 g of fats, 450 g of carbohydrates, 0.1 g of vitamins, 20 g of mineral substances, microelements and ultramicroelements. In total, more than 600 different substances are needed to fully meet the needs of the human body, including 8 essential and 10 essential amino acids.
With large, and even more so with excessive physical or mental stress, the need for some nutrients increases, in others it decreases. Changing the needs of the body and in some diseases.
The energy expenditure of adolescents is about 1,700 kilocalories more than children aged 1 to 3 years. And the daily diet of people aged 28 to 39, with other things being equal, on average should contain 200 kilocalories more than the diet of 40-60-year-old people.
In women, energy costs are usually lower than in men, and if she eats on a par with a man, then inevitably begins to gain weight.
Thus, having considered the first law of rational nutrition, we can conclude that moderation should be observed in food.
The fulfillment of this condition is the key to preserving physical health and outer beauty.


table 2

The energy value of certain foods (kcal per 100 g of the edible part of the product)
Rye bread 170
Wheat bread 240
Pasta 333
Cakes 320-570
Biscuit cake 350
Sugar 379
Milk 59
Condensed milk 315
Sour cream 205
Cottage cheese 156
Ice cream 178
Butter 749
Russian cheese 371
Sunflower oil 900
Boiled potatoes 82
Cabbage 28
Cucumbers 15
Apples 39
Chicken 165
Boiled beef 254
Pork fatty 489
Sausages 220-320
Eggs 168
Boiled fish 78
Cod 96
Carp 557
Chocolate 65-71
Beer 32-55


The second law of rational nutrition is that it is necessary to keep a balance between the proteins, fats, carbohydrates and vitamins, minerals and ballast components that enter the body.
According to this law, in order to lead a full-fledged life and maintain health, a person does not need any specific products, but a certain - optimal - ratio of the nutrients contained in them. For the normal development of the human body, it is necessary to systematically intake about 70 food components into it, which the human body itself does not synthesize, but receives only from food. Such a quantity of valuable food components cannot be in any one, even the most valuable product. They are partially contained in various foods: meat, fish, cereals, vegetables, fruits, berries, etc.
For various groups of the population there are specially developed norms of physiological needs for nutrients and energy, which are based on scientific data of physiology, biochemistry, dietology and other branches of medical science, analyzing the role, relationships, digestibility of individual nutrients and the norms of their true needs.
In order to determine an adequate amount of energy for specific groups of people, it is necessary, in accordance with the recommendations of the World Health Organization, to relate the total energy expenditure for all types of human activity to the value of its basic metabolism, i.e., energy consumption at rest. The ratio of total energy expenditure to basal metabolic rate gives the coefficient of physical activity. For example, if by age and sex for a certain group of people the energy consumption for all types of activities is 3 times greater than the value of the main exchange, this means that their coefficient of physical activity will be equal to 3.
Workers engaged in light work, with little physical activity, have a coefficient of this activity of 1.6. In this group, according to the recommendations, include trams and trolleybus drivers, workers of conveyors, packers, seamstresses, weighers, workers of the radio-electronic industry, nurses and nurses, agronomists, workers of the service industry, sellers of industrial goods, etc.
Considering that the energy requirement of this group is 2500-2800 kcal per day, they need to eat daily food containing 72-80 g of proteins, 83-93 g of fats and 366-411 g of carbohydrates. The fluctuation of numbers depends on the sex and age of the employee. According to the recommendations of the Institute of Nutrition of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, proteins in the human diet should be 12-14%, and 60% of this amount should be animal proteins. The proportion of fat is equal to 30%, including at least one-third should fall on vegetable fats. On carbohydrates, 56-58% of the total caloric content of the daily ration remains.
The most common forms of food imbalance are usually associated with insufficient consumption of essential amino acids, polyunsaturated fatty acids, vitamins A, E, C and group B, dietary fibers (ballast substances), some mineral salts and trace elements.
Thus, the second law of rational nutrition can be formulated as follows: in order to be healthy and beautiful, you need to eat a variety of foods.
The third law of rational nutrition requires from a person a certain diet, i.e., the distribution of food intake during the day, the observance of a favorable food temperature, etc.
The life of an adult is characterized by a dynamic balance between the intake of nutrients, the processes of their transformation and removal from the body in the form of decomposition products. For each substance entering the body with food, there are strictly defined patterns of its transformation, its own pathways of exchange. Therefore, regularity and optimal distribution of food throughout the day are so necessary.
The last, fourth, law of rational nutrition prescribes to take into account the age needs of the body and in accordance with them to carry out the necessary preventive adjustment of the diet.
Long-term imbalance between the intake of a substance into the body, on the one hand, and its breakdown or elimination, on the other, leads to an asymmetry of metabolism. It is safe to say that age-related metabolic disorders are closely associated with the occurrence of such common diseases as excess fullness, atherosclerosis, salt deposition, etc.
That is why it is so necessary that daily nutrition ensures the timely and complete satisfaction of the physiological needs of the body in essential nutrients.
The implementation of the laws of rational nutrition guarantees us the preservation of high physical and mental activity, vigor and cheerfulness over the years.
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