What Is Nutrition?


What Is Nutrition?

You can ask yourself or your peers, “What is nutrition,” and you’ll most likely receive a wide variety of answers. Nutrition means that people eat or drink. More specifically, it’s about them absorbing nutrients. These are substances that you need to live. The body gets energy from it, it grows and renews itself. Food or food, on the other hand, is what someone eats or drinks. Nutrition is an important part of the economy: many people earn their money by making food. This branch is called agriculture. Others sell food. These include the trade, the shops, street vendors and many others.

Types of Food Intake:

According to the method of food intake, organisms can be assigned to different types.

  • Filter feeders usually live fixed (sessile) in the water, from which they take small food particles or microorganisms (plankton, bacteria). Examples include tunicates, mussels, baleen whales, ducks and flamingos.
  • Absorbers absorb nutrients from the surrounding medium through the surface of the body. These include many endoparasites such as the tapeworm.
  • Suckers take dissolved nutrients from living organisms.
  • Bloodsuckers are numerous ectoparasites such as a few species of bedbugs, fleas, mosquitoes, ticks, leeches or lampreys.
  • Plant juice teats are, for example, cicadas, plant lice or most species of bedbugs. Since these organisms damage their hosts, they are also called parasites. Bumblebees and bees are also plant juice suckers, but since they do not damage their host plants, but ensure their pollination, this community is a symbiosis.
  • Snakes like the python and crouches like the predators take up their prey whole or divided into smaller pieces.
  • Strudlers are filter feeders that generate the water flow necessary for filtration themselves with the help of flagella, cilia or tentacles. Examples are ciliates, rotatoria, corals or the lancet fish.
  • Substrate eaters are terrestrial organisms that absorb the material surrounding them (substrate) and from which they extract the nutrients contained therein in their digestive tract. These include soil organisms (such as the earthworm), leaf miners, bark beetles (such as the spruce bark beetle), saprobiontes and coprophagens (such as the dung beetle).

Methods of Food Acquisition:

According to the technique of food acquisition, animals can be assigned to different types:

  • Grazers are herbivores that only eat their fodder plants to such an extent that they can regrow again. They include ungulates, marmots, giant kangaroos and geese. Starfish such as the crown of thorns starfish graze corals, but they die completely as a result.
  • Collectors either build up a food supply for the winter (squirrels) or keep an excess of prey or food remains in places inaccessible to competitors, e.B. the nine-slayer.
  • Hunters (obsolete predators) prey on other animals, kill them, and immediately after that start eating. Examples are ground beetles, dragonflies, predatory bugs. Depending on the hunting technique, a distinction is made:
  • Predators who sometimes pursue their prey over long distances and for a long time (wolf, cheetah).
  • Lurker hunters who wait on a manor (buzzard) or in a hiding place (e.B. the pike) until a prey animal has come within reach. These hunters are usually well adapted to their environment (camouflage, mimesis in the mantis), some have the opportunity to attract their prey (deep-sea) frogfish, monkfish).
  • Trappers are animals that lurk for their prey and catch them with webs (web spiders) or pitfalls (ant lions).

Different forms of Veganism | What is Nutrition?

  • Vegans completely refrain from animal products, including not only fish and meat, but also foods produced by animals or animals such as honey, milk, gelatin and cheese. The diet is purely plant-based (i.e. vegetables, fruits, mushrooms, and tofu).
  • Vegetarianism: Vegetarians abstain from animal products, such as meat and fish. However, “indirect” animal products such as milk, honey and cheese are allowed. Some vegetarians also exclude individual foods (i.e. eggs).
  • Fruitarism: Fruitarians are basically vegans. Any animal products are excluded from the diet. Fruits are staple foods. In addition, no plants may be killed, i.e. the plants must continue to live after harvesting. Potatoes or carrots are therefore not allowed.
  • Raw food: Raw foodists eat only uncooked foods, both of animal and plant origin. (i.e. fruits, vegetables, mushrooms, nuts, raw milk, raw fish).
  • Food combining: With the food combining, all foods are allowed. The food is divided into groups: protein-containing and carbohydrate-containing foods. Both can be combined with neutral foods (i.e. salad), but must never end up on the plate together/at the same time. Food combining is said to help with digestion and facilitate the absorption of nutrients.
  • Whole food nutrition: The whole food diet puts the healthy, natural and balanced diet in the foreground. This results in a varied diet (whole grains, fish, potatoes, fruits, vegetables, etc.) with the right ratio or amount of nutrients.
  • Pescetarism: Pescetarians abstain from poultry meat and red meat, but eat fish and seafood. Otherwise, there are no further restrictions in the diet (fruits, vegetables, dairy products, etc. are allowed).
  • Stone Age nutrition: The food in the Stone Age diet includes those foods that people already ate and had available in the Stone Age. So meat, fish, fruits, vegetables, roots, herbs, berries and other natural products. Excluded are dairy products, alcohol, sweets and other industrially produced product.

The Unhealthy Diet | What is Nutrition?

  • Use the variety of foods: There is a very large selection of foods that make our diet quite varied and also replenish our nutrient balance. Because no food has all the nutrients to offer. However, the majority of the daily diet should consist of plant foods. Animal products such as milk and meat are more likely to be seen as a “side dish”.
  • Five fruits and vegetables a day: Here, the DGE recommends three servings of vegetables (about 400 grams) and two servings of fruit (about 250 grams) per day. Legumes such as beans and lentils are also part of it and provide a long-lasting feeling of satiety with their fiber. Dried fruit can also replace a serving of fruit. However, this should be smaller, as the calorie content is higher.
  • Consume whole grains: Foods such as pasta, rice or flour are much richer in fiber and nutrients than white flour products. Not only do they provide longer satiety, but they also contain many more important nutrients such as minerals and trace elements. Even potatoes that are not highly processed (ready meals such as fries or rösti are rather not suitable due to the high fat content) are a very good carbohydrate supplier.
  • Animal products as a supplement: Animal foods such as sausage and meat products, fish as well as milk and dairy products are to be seen as a supplement to the plant-based component of the diet and are especially important for the need for vitamin B12. Dairy and dairy products such as cheese and yogurt should be consumed daily as they are an important source of calcium. Calcium, is important for the construction of bones and teeth. In addition, the DGE advises to eat fish once or twice a week due to the iodine and omega-3 fatty acid content. For weekly meat consumption, it should not be more than 300 to 600 grams of sausage and meat products (depending on calorie requirements). Eggs should also be eaten in moderation.
  • Prefer healthy fats: These are mainly found in plant-based products. Animal fats usually contain saturated fatty acids, which can have a negative effect on our blood fat. In vegetable fats there are more unsaturated fatty acids. These have many positive effects on our health. In addition, it is important to pay attention to hidden fats, which can be found, for example, in sausage products.
  • Sugar and salt in moderation: Sugar not only has a high calorie content, but also no nutrients. Excessive sugar consumption increases the risk of diabetes and obesity. Sugar alternatives such as dried fruit or honey can be a good alternative. Also, salt should not be consumed in too large quantities. The DGE advises no more than 6 grams per day, as salt increases blood pressure and deprives the body of water.
  • Drink plenty of water: A daily adequate intake of fluids is indispensable for the functional maintenance of our body. The guideline for this is 1.5 to 2 liters per day. Water and unsweetened tea are particularly recommended here, as sweet drinks such as soft drinks or fruit juices contain unnecessary calories, a large amount of sugar and carry the risk of diabetes and obesity. Alcohol should also be drunk in moderation. For women, the DGE recommends consuming no more than 10 grams of alcohol and for men 20 grams (equivalent to half a liter of beer or 250 milliliters of wine) per day. However, daily consumption should be avoided, as this increases the risk of cancer.
  • Gentle preparation: When preparing the food, it is important to pay attention to a gentle and low-fat method of preparation. Many vitamins and nutrients are water-soluble or sensitive to heat. Therefore, when heated or boiled vigorously in the water (for example, potatoes), important nutrients can be lost. Gentle preparation methods such as steam cooking or steaming are to be preferred here. Even highly fatty methods such as frying should not be used regularly.
  • Eat consciously and mindfully: Enjoying the meal and being aware of what is being eaten is an extremely essential factor for a healthy diet. Likewise, it is important to take enough time to eat and consume the food slowly. Because only after 20 minutes does a filling feeling set in. So if you eat very quickly, you eat more food in the West. In addition, it is advantageous to chew well so as not to make it too difficult for the stomach during digestion.
  • Sufficient exercise: Physical exercise is also part of a healthy diet. Depending on the profession, you should move for 30 to 60 minutes a day. What this looks like is to be decided individually (lose weight or maintain weight). Sport is important for muscle building and can also be a great balance to the stressful everyday life.

Final thoughts on “What is Nutrition?”…

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