When you do the math, consuming more than calories than your body uses leads to weight gain. Conversely, when you consume fewer calories than your body uses, then you lose weight. Maintaining a healthy weight is important to disease prevention. The heavier you are, the greater your risk of developing high cholesterol, hypertension, heart disease, and diabetes for starters. Obesity throws mobility issues, increased risk of cancer, and upper respiratory ailments like asthma and sleep apnea on the pile. It would seem that the simple solution is to just eat less and move more. So, does it even matter where the calories come from? The simple answer to this question is a resounding "YES"!
Being thin and looking fit doesn't necessarily equate to being healthy. To function efficiently and repair itself, the human body requires the right mix of macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats), micronutrients (vitamins and minerals), and water. Consuming foods that lack nutrients will eventually lead to declining health and sickness. Some physical signs of nutritional deficiencies include tooth decay, aging skin, thinning hair, brittle nails, weak bones, low energy, poor vision, weak muscles, poor posture, and weight gain.
This week we will learn how the foods that we eat affect our overall health conditions:
Tuesday, February 14, 2012 Carbohydrates
Wednesday, February 15, 2012 Proteins
Thursday, February 16, 2012 Fats
Friday, February 17, 2012 Vitamins and Minerals
Terms to Know:
1) Macronutrients- These include carbohydrates, proteins, and fats and are classified as such because they have caloric value and the body has a large daily need for them.
2) Micronutrients- Vitamins and minerals are classified as micronutrients because the body's daily requirements for these nutrients are small.
(Source: Practical Applications in Sports Nutrition 2nd edition, Fink, Burgoon, and Mikesky, 2009.)
Be good to yourself! More next time...