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Bill Bryson Competition 2013 Entry - Staying Healthy-How to have a healthy and balanced diet
STAYING HEALTHY How to have a balanced and healthy dietBy Alice M
What is a balanced diet?A balanced diet is needed to stay healthy. Abalanced diet is a diet with a combination of theright amount of different types of food we eatwith the right amount of exercise.For a balanced diet, you need the right amount ofcarbohydrates, proteins, fats, minerals, vitaminsand fibre.
An introduction to carbohydratesCarbohydrates are important nutrients for usbecause they are most important source ofenergy for your body.Between 45% and 65% of your diet should becarbohydrates.
The 2 Types of CarbohydrateThere are two types of carbohydrates: simplesugars and complex carbohydrates. They aredifferent because have different chemicalstructures.
Simple sugarsSimple sugars are found naturally in fruits, milkand dairy foods. The simple sugar in fruit iscalled fructose and the simple sugar in milk anddairy products is called lactose.Simple sugars can also be processed and theseprocessed simple sugars are found in foods suchas biscuits, chocolate and jelly. Too much ofthese can cause tooth decay.
Complex carbohyratesComplex carbohydrates are starchy foods whichcan also be found naturally and after beingprocessed. Naturally they are found many foodssuch as bananas, beans, root vegetables, nuts,oats, and wholemeal breads, cereals, flour andpasta. When processed they are found in biscuits,cakes, pizza and white breads, flour, pasta andrice. Complex carbohydrates also tend to containmuch fibre.
Foods with NaturalComplex CarbohydratesComplex Carbohydrates Bananas Who lemeal breads, flo ur, pasta and cereals Root vegetables
Foods with ProcessedComplex CarbohydratesComplex Carbohydrates Cakes and biscuits White breads, flour, pasta and rice Pizza
The differences between simple sugars and complex carbohydratesThe main difference between the two carbohydratetypes is that simple sugars have simple chemicalstructures while complex carbohydrates have complexchemical structures. Simple sugars are either made upof one or two sugars while complex carbohydrates.For example, glucose is just one sugar while anothersugar called sucrose is made up of only two sugars(fructose and glucose). Complex carbohydrates aremade up of 3 or more sugars so have more complexstructures. Because they are made up of more sugars,they take longer to digest.
Why are carbohydrates important?All carbohydrates form a sugar called glucosewhen broken down by the digestive system. Theglucose is transported throughout the body viablood and taken in by cells for energy. Thisenergy is used for essential functions such asrespiration, the heart beating, digesting of foodand moving around.
How much carbohydrate should be eaten?As said before, 45-65% of your diet should becarbohydrates.So, for a person a that is meant to eat around2000 calories a day (calories are in food and eachcalorie is a unit of energy at around 4 joules)around 900-1300 of these calories should becarbohydrates.
An introduction to proteinsProteins are very important for the body andevery single cell contains protein. Skin, organs,muscles and glands all contain lots of protein. Itis found in all bodily fluids except bile and urine.Proteins are important because they give thebody 10-15% of its dietary energy. Proteins arealso used by the body for growth and repair.
The two types of proteinThere are two types of protein: animal proteins and plant proteins.Animal proteins are also called first-class proteins while plant proteinsare also called second-class proteins.When proteins are digested, organic compounds called amino acids areleft. Amino acids can be found in the animals and plants we eat. Sourcesof animal proteins include meats, fish, milk and eggs. Sources of plantproteins include soy, beans, legumes, and some grains (such as wheatgerm).The difference between animal proteins and plant proteins is that plantproteins contain amino acids that can be produced by the body whileanimal proteins contain amino acids that cannot be produced by thebody, and thus must be supplied with food. Animal proteins containamino acids called essential amino acids while plants contain non-essential amino acids.
Other facts about proteinsToo much meat (which is high in protein)consumed can lead to high cholesterol, gout andstrain on the kidneys.An extreme protein deficiency results inkwashiorkor.Vegetarians are still able to get enough proteinsby eating a wide variety of plant proteins.
Sources ofanimal proteinsanimal proteins Meats Fish Milk and eggs
Sources ofplant proteinsplant proteins Soy Some grains Beans and legumes
How much protein should be eaten?There is an equation for the amount of protein that should beeaten daily: amount of protein needed in g = 0.6 x body mass in kgSo for an adult that weighs 60kg: 0.6 x 60 = 36gAn adult weighing 60 kilograms should eat 36 grams ofprotein daily.The estimated recommended daily amount for protein mayvary depending on your age, if you’re pregnant and lactation.
An introduction to fatsFats are used to supply and store energy. They are requiredto produce all membranes. Fats provide a lot of energywith each gram containing 9 calories.Fats are important because some vitamins are fat-soluble.This means that if you do not consume fat in your diet,these vitamins won’t be able to be absorbed by the body.Vitamins A, D, E and K are fat-soluble.Fats are also important because they form a layer betweenthe skin and muscle as an energy store. This insulates thebody, acts as a waterproof layer and protects the organs.
Saturated fats and unsaturated fatsThere are two types of fats: saturated fats and unsaturated fats.Saturated fats are normally solid at room temperature while unsaturatedfats are normally liquid at room temperature. Unsaturated fats spoil morequickly than saturated fats.Unsaturated fats are considered healthier than saturated fats.Eating too much saturated fats can lead to high amounts of cholesterol inthe blood (atherosclerosis) with an increased risk for heart disease.Saturated fats are usually found in animal sources including butter, hardmargarine, cheese, whole milk as well as anything that contains these(cakes, chocolates etc.).
Foods with saturated and unsaturated fatsSaturated Fats Unsaturated Fats Butter Coconut oil Whole milk and cheese Peanut butter margarine Vegetable oil and fish oil Avocado Soybean oil
How much fats should be eaten?Your diet should consist of no more than 10% ofsaturated fats and 30% of unsaturated fats. Sofor someone that eats 2,000 calories a day,should eat no more than 200 calories ofsaturated fats daily and therefore no more than22.2 grams of fat daily (there are 9 calories ineach gram of fat). This also means you should eatno more than 600 calories of unsaturated fatsdaily which equals 66.6 grams of unsaturatedfats.
An introduction to mineralsMinerals are needed for strong bones and teeth,turning food into energy and controlling bodyfluids inside and outside cells.Minerals can be found in foods such as meat,cereals, bread, fish, milk and dairy, fruit andvegetables and nuts. Examples of mineralsinclude calcium and iron.Some examples of essential minerals aredescribed in the following slides.
CalciumCalcium is needed for strong bones andteeth, the regulation of musclecontractions and is involved in theclotting of the blood.A deficiency in calcium results in rickets.Excessive amounts of calcium in the dietcan cause stomach pains and diarrhoea.Calcium can be found in foods includingdairy foods, green, leafy vegetables (e.g.cabbage and broccoli) excludingspinach, tofu, soya beans, nuts.Adults need 700mg of calcium daily.
IronIron helps in the production ofred blood cells.A lack of iron leads to irondeficiency anaemia. Too muchiron causes constipation, nausea,vomiting and stomach pains.Sources of iron include liver,meat, beans, nuts, dried fruits,wholegrains and most dark green,leafy vegetables (e.g. watercressand curly kale).Daily men should eat 8.7mg whilewomen should eat 14.8mg.
MagnesiumMagnesium helps turn eaten foodinto energy as well as making surethe parathyroid glands worknormally.Too much magnesium results indiarrhoea.Magnesium can be found in greenleafy vegetables (e.g. spinach),brown rice, nuts, bread, fish, meatand dairy.Daily men should consume300mg of magnesium whilewomen should consume 270mg.
PotassiumPotassium aids in controlling thebalance of fluids in the body andpossibly helps lower blood pressure.Sources of potassium include fruits(especially bananas), vegetables,pulses, nuts, seeds, milk, fish,shellfish, beef, chicken, turkey andbread.Too much potassium causes stomachpain, nausea and diarrhoea.Daily adults should take 3,500mg ofpotassium.
An introduction to vitaminsVitamins are needed in the diet because theyallow the body to perform chemical reactionsthat produce hormones, to produce energy andto stay healthy.
An introduction to vitaminsThere are two types of vitamins: fat-soluble and water-soluble.When you eat fat-soluble vitamins, they get stored in liver and fattytissues for future use. Therefore, you do not need to eat vitamins everyday. Excessive fat-soluble vitamins can be harmful.Water soluble vitamins cannot be produced by the body and so need tobe eaten frequently. The body does not store water-soluble vitamins, sogenerally too much is not harmful as the excess is urinated.The fat-soluble vitamins are vitamins A, D, E and K while the water-soluble vitamins are all the B vitamins, vitamin C and folic acid.Fat-soluble vitamins can be found in animal fats (butter, lard etc.),dairy, vegetable oils, liver and oily fish, while water-soluble vitaminscan be found in fruit, vegetables and grains.
Examples of vitaminsVitamin A is needed to see in dim light and a lack of itcauses night blindness.Vitamin C makes connective tissue and a lack of it causesscurvy. This results in bleeding gums. It is found in citrusfruits (lemons, limes, oranges) and green vegetables.Vitamin D helps absorb calcium ions from the intestineand a lack of it causes rickets (same as calciumdeficiency). Vitamin D can be made by the body in theskin if sunlight is present. It is found in milk and fish oil.
An introduction to fibreHaving a good amount of fibre in your diet can helpprevent heart disease, diabetes, weight gain, somecancers as well as improving overall digestivehealth.Fibre can only be found in plant sources. Dairyproducts, meats and fish do not contain fibre.People should aim to eat at least 18 grams of fibreevery day, although 16-24 grams is a healthy range.(This can vary if you have a digestive disorder)
Soluble fibre and insoluble fibreThe main difference is that soluble fibre can bedigested by the body whilst insoluble fibre can’t. Bothtypes are healthy.Soluble lowers cholesterol levels and controls bloodsugar while insoluble fibre helps the bowels pass foodand prevents constipation.Soluble fibre can be found in fruits, oats, barley, rye,root vegetables and golden linseeds. Foods containinginsoluble fibre include wholemeal bread, bran,cereals, nuts and seeds.
Foods withsoluble fibresoluble fibre Fruits Root vegetables Golden linseeds
A balanced diet is important because it will keep you healthy. It providesyou body with the right nutrition so it can function properly. A lack ofthe right nutrients can lead to many problems such as being tired and diseases. Eating healthily will help you to live longer.
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