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Requirements for a Balanced Diet

A balanced diet is the one which provides an adequate absorption of energy and nutrition for maintenance of your body and therefore good health. A diet can simply be adequate for normal bodily functioning, yet may not be a well balanced diet. An ideal human diet has fat, protein, sugars, vitamins, minerals, drinking water and fibre all in appropriate proportions. These proportions range for each person because everyone has different metabolic rates and degrees of activity.

Malnutrition results from an unbalanced diet, this can be due to an excess of some nutritionary components and insufficient other components, not simply a complete lack of food. An excessive amount of one component can be as much harm to the body as too little. Deficiency diseases occur when there's a lack of a particular nutrient, although some diet related disorders are due to eating an excess.

An enough diet provides sufficient energy for the performance of metabolic work, however the energy food is in an unspecified form. A well-balanced diet provides all dietary requirements in the correct proportions. Ideally this might be 1/7 extra fat, 1/7 proteins and 5/7 carbohydrate.

Energy is provided by glucose, fats and proteins. Protein are a supplier of energy in an emergency, but are mostly used as blocks for growth and repair of several body tissues. These energy providing substances are needed in large quantities inside our diet so can be described as macronutrients.

We also need much small amounts of other nutrients, such as vitamins and minerals. Because much smaller volumes are needed for a balanced diet these are known as micronutrients. Despite the small quantities needed these are essential to provide a healthy diet as they may have specific functions in metabolic reactions as structural components.

Within the cells of our body, the nutrition ingested are changed into other compounds that happen to be then used for metabolism and other mobile reactions. Starch, a significant carbohydrate is changed into glucose which can be then synthesised into fat for storage, protein are synthesised from amino acids, and phospholipids are made from glycerol and essential fatty acids. However there are some organic chemical substances which despite being needed for a healthy diet plan cannot be made by cells so must be provided by diet. They are essential proteins, essential fatty acids and natural vitamins.


Carbohydrates are an instant source of energy, they are the body's fuel. The majority of balanced diet should be made from glucose. If eaten in an more than the diet requirements carbohydrates are easily stored as body fat in the skin cells, although carbohydrate is the first way to obtain energy in the body.

An average adult requires about 12, 000kJ of energy every day, almost all of this comes by the respiration of glucose in the cells.

Carbohydrates are used principally as a respiratory substrates, i. e. to be oxidised release a energy for effective move, macromolecule synthesis, cell department and muscle contraction. Carbohydrates are digested in the duodenum and ileum and ingested as glucose into cells.

Sources of carbohydrates such as starch are grain, potatoes, wheat and other cereals. Sugars are also carbohydrates, sources of sugars are refined sweets - sucrose, which is a food sweetener and preservative and fruit sugars - fructose.

If the diet lacks carbohydrate stores of extra fat are mobilised and used as a power source.


Lipids are a rich source of energy in the diet, they could be greatly low in metabolic reactions and for that reason release much energy. They are often stored in the body and can develop a layer beneath the epidermis of adipose tissue. As lipids are such a wealthy source of energy they are often unnecessary for respiration if there are satisfactory levels of carbohydrate for the power output of the body.

Meat and pet products are rich in fats and cholesterol, plant oils are abundant with unsaturated body fat.

As lipids are digested in the intestine into essential fatty acids and glycerol, some fatty acids are only available in the dietary plan and cannot therefore be synthesised in the cell at all. These are therefore known as EFA'S. Fatty acids are categorised according to the number of dual bonds they may have in their carbon string. Saturated essential fatty acids have nothing, monounsaturated essential fatty acids have one, polyunsaturated fatty acids have significantly more than one. Essential polyunsaturated fatty acids can't be synthesised in the torso from other things as the correct enzymes to add double bonds after the ninth carbon to the carbon chain are not present. Two efa's are linoleic and linolenic acidity which are located in vegetable natural oils such as soya, sunflower and maize.

Fatty acids are necessary for the formation of cell membrane phospholipids and also for the development of steroid hormones such as prostaglandins and thromboxin that have important functions in the renal, immune and circulatory systems as signalling chemicals.

Deficiencies of efa's cause limited growth in children, poor curing of wounds, scaly skin and hair loss.

Obesity is a result of a high excessive fat intake in the dietary plan and insufficient exercise. Obesity is in fact a kind of malnutrition as the diet is not balanced. The chance of growing diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, CHD, arthritis (credited to extra pressure on joint parts), stroke plus some cancers are increased significantly with weight problems.


Protein is not really a direct way to obtain energy in the torso, it is used primarily for growth and repair of body cells although can be utilized as a power source as a last resort. Protein fulfil a multitude of roles in the torso, they are divided in the stomach and intestines to proteins that are then absorbed. Your body can only form 8 amino acids to build protein from, the dietary plan must definitely provide Essential Amino Acids (EAAs) that happen to be synthesised into protein which is often structural, i. e. collagen in bone, keratin in hair, myosin and actin in muscle; metabolic enzymes, haemoglobin, protecting antibodies and communicative human hormones.

Sources of proteins include meats, fish, eggs and pulses. The dietary plan must provide 8 EAAs as your body is unable to synthesis protein without these substances. 2 other amino acids are synthesised from EAAs so if the dietary plan lacks the original EAAs these other two will never be present either. Phenylalanine is changed into tyrosine and methionine is converted to cysteine. Cells get after a pool of amino acids for protein synthesis which either come from dietary health proteins digested and soaked up in the gut and the break down of body proteins such as muscle. However, unlike excess fat and carbohydrates there is no store of amino acids for skin cells to pull on, any amino acid solution more than immediate bodily requirements is divided into urea and excreted. It is therefore important to keep the eating intake of protein everyday. If the body lacks protein, muscle spending occurs as muscle is divided.

If necessary protein is lacked in a diet plan a person evolves kwashiorkor which is induced when high levels of carbohydrates are consumed to overcome the lack of protein in the diet. One warning sign of kwashiorkor is the excessive collection of fluid around the belly due to the lack of health proteins in the bloodstream. The body cannot retain normal water by osmosis and liquid accumulates in tissue causing them to become waterlogged.


Vitamins cannot be synthesised by the body so must be supplied by diet. Vitamins have no common structure or function but are essential in small amounts for the body to have the ability to utilise other nutritional components successfully.

Vitamins get into two categories, fats soluble vitamins such as vitamin supplements A, D, E and K that are ingested with fatty foods and normal water soluble vitamins such as the B group supplements and vitamin C. Vitamin supplements are known as micronutrients because only small amounts are necessary for a healthy diet, in fact unwanted fat soluble vitamins can be toxic in high concentrations, for example the body stores vitamin supplements A, or retinol, in the liver as it is toxic if placed in high concentrations in the bloodstream, a dose of more than 3300mg of vitamin supplements A can be viewed as toxic. Drinking water soluble vitamins such as vitamin C and B categories vitamins can be excreted in the urine if in excess in the dietary plan.

Vitamins perform a wide range of functions and stop specific deficiency diseases. A diet plan that lacks a certain vitamin supplements is not a balanced diet, vitamin supplements have vital functions in the maintenance of a healthy body.

An example of a insufficiency is when the diet will not contain enough, or any supplement A.

Vitamin A is found in some dog foods such as dairy, eggs, liver organ and fish liver oils, related materials such as carotenoids e. g. b carotene, are in a multitude of fruit and vegetables such as cabbages, carrots and spinach.

Vitamin A is vital to the correct working of the retina in the eye and the epithelial tissues. A lack of vitamin A ends up with dry, rough skin area, inflammation of the eyes, a drying or scarring of the cornea - xerophthalmia, which occurs when the secretion of lubricating tears is quit, the eyelids become swollen and sticky with pus. Mucous areas of the attention may become eroded allowing disease to create in, leading to ulceration and destruction of the cornea. Evening blindness - an failure to see in dim light can also arise. Rod cells in the retina of the attention find light of low power, they convert supplement A into a pigment, rhodopsin, which is bleached when light gets into the eye. Pole cells resynthesis rhodopsin, but if there is a deficiency of the vitamin, fishing rod cells can no longer function and the effect is evening blindness. Epithelial skin cells use retinol to make retinoic acid, an intracellular messenger used in cell differentiation and expansion. Without retinoic acidity epithelial cells aren't taken care of properly and the body becomes vunerable to infections, specifically measles and infections of the respiratory system and gut.

Xenophthalmia is common amongst children who's diets contain mainly cereals with little meat or more fresh vegetables, this is common in Indonesia, Bangladesh, India and the Philippines.

Vitamin D, or calciferol, is another excessive fat soluble steroid vitamin which functions to energize calcium uptake from the gut and its own deposition in bone. Supplement D works as a hormone when transformed by enzymes in the gut and liver organ into an active form "working supplement D", which stimulates epithelial cells in the intestine to soak up calcium. Vitamin D is therefore essential in growing children's diets to enable the growth of strong bone fragments. Without adequate levels of vitamin supplements D children can form rickets, which is the deformation of the thighs brought on when they lack calcium mineral to strengthen the bones. In individuals a lack of vitamin D in the dietary plan can lead to osteomalacia, a progressive softening of the bones which can make them highly susceptible to fracture.

Vitamin D is manufactured by the body when subjected to sunlight and is also stored in the muscles, however, if your skin is rarely exposed to the natural light or is dark little vitamin supplements D is produced. Foods such as eggs and greasy fish are all rich in vitamin supplements D.

Vitamin K, phylloquinone, is situated in dark inexperienced leafy fruit and vegetables such as spinach and kale. It is a fat soluble vitamin which is mixed up in clotting procedure for blood. In the intestines bacterias synthesise several important clotting factors which need vitamin K. Without supplement K slashes can fail to heal and inner bleeding may appear.

Vitamin C is a drinking water soluble vitamin, known chemically as ascorbic acid. It is seen in citrus fruits such as oranges and lemons, and also in potatoes and tomato vegetables. The primary function of vitamin supplements C is the formation of connective tissues such as collagen. Additionally it is regarded as an antioxidant which really helps to remove toxins from the body and products the immune system. A lack of vitamin C leads to Scurvy, a condition experienced by sailors on long journeys when they did not have fruit in their diets. Scurvy causes painful, hemorrhage gums. As vitamin C is drinking water soluble, it isn't dangerous in high dosages as possible excreted in the urine, high doses can however cause diarrhoea.

B group supplements have a variety of roles acting as co-enzymes in metabolic pathways. They are found in most vegetable and animal cells involved in metabolism, therefore foods such as liver, yeast and dairy products are all abundant with B group supplements. Scarcity of B group supplements include dermatitis, tiredness and malformation of red blood cells.


Some minerals are believed to be macronutrients because they are required in fairly huge amounts in the diet to maintain a healthy body. Minerals are needed in their ionic status in the diet.

Calcium, Ca2+, is a significant constituent of bones and tooth and is required to keep bone fragments strong. It really is required in blood clotting as an activator of various plasma proteins which is also involved with muscle contraction. Calcium mineral is used in synapses and also as an enzyme activator. An excellent source of calcium mineral is in milk products, eggs and vegetables, the RDA for calcium mineral is 800mg.

Chlorine, Cl-, must maintain the osmotic anion / cation balance of your body and the forming of HCl in the stomach. It is found in table salt which is rarely lacking in the dietary plan as it is used as a preservative to may foods. Sodium, Na+, is also found in table salt as well as dairy foods, meat, eggs and fruit and vegetables. Sodium is employed in conjunction with chlorine in the maintenance of the osmotic anion / cation balance. Additionally it is needed in nerve conduction and muscle action. Potassium, K+, is just one more nutrient required in nerve and muscle action, it also has a role in necessary protein synthesis. It is found in meat, fruit and veggies.

Phosphorus, in the form of phosphate, PO43- is a constituent of nucleic acids, ATP, phospholipids in cell membranes, bone fragments and teeth. It really is present in dairy foods, eggs, beef and fruit and vegetables.

Magnesium, Mg2+, is an important component of bones and tooth and is also an enzyme activator. It really is found in meats and green vegetables.

Micronutrients are nutrients needed in trace quantities. Despite the small volume required, they are still essential to a healthy balanced diet.

Iron, in the varieties of Fe2+ and Fe3+, are required in the forming of haemoglobin and myoglobin. Flat iron is a constituent of several enzymes as a prosthetic group and also as an electron carrier in mitochondria. Red meat, liver and green vegetables are all resources of iron. Iron supplements are used by people who suffer from anaemia.

Iodine, I-, is a component of the growth hormone thyroxine. Too little iodine in the diet can cause hypothyroidism which results in putting on weight and in acute cases a lack of physical and mental development known as cretinism. A swelling of the throat can occur which is called goitre if iodine is deficient in the diet. Iodine can be found in seafoods such as shellfish, seaweed and fish. Iodine in addition has been added to water items in areas where it is lacking in the key drinking water system.

Copper, Cu2+, manganese, Mn2+ and cobalt, Co2+, are all needed in the diet to create co-factors for enzymes. Copper is also needed for bone and haemoglobin formation and cobalt is needed for the production of red blood vessels skin cells, manganese is also a growth element in bone development. They are located in meats and liver as well as some milk products.


Fibre is not digested by your body, but is involved in maintaining the health of the gut and is therefore an important part of an well balanced diet. Fibre is mostly consisting of cellulose from herb cell walls and is indigestible as the abdominal and gut do not contain the appropriate enzymes. Fibre aids the forming of faeces, protecting against constipation. It also supports the peristaltic movement in the intestine and has been from the prevention of bowel tumor. Fibre also gets rid of some fats and cholesterol therefore guarding the body a little from the build up of plaques in arteries. Fruit, vegetables and cereals are a good source of eating fibre.


The diet must provide water which is necessary as a solvent, a transport medium, a substrate in hydrolytic reactions and for lubrication. Normal water in fact makes up about 70% of the total bodyweight of humans. Drinking water is needed as it is lost constantly from our anatomies in urine, sweat, evaporation from lungs and in faeces. An average person requires 2-3 litres of drinking water per day which is supplied through refreshments and liquid foods. Without normal water or food the longest anyone has ever before survived is 17 days and nights, however, with water the longest anyone has survived is 70 times, this illustrates the importance of water in the dietary plan.

As you can view a balanced diet is imperative to maintaining a sound body. People who choose to be vegetarians and vegans therefore must make sure that their diet consists of all the correct nutrients to avoid any deficiencies that may occur, as well as people residing in countries where their diet lacks certain important food teams. A diet can easily be adequate without being a properly well balanced diet and since everyone has different metabolic rates everyone's ideal diet is exclusive, therefore generalised recommendations have been founded to assist people in finding a good diet. Vitamins and minerals are essential in small amounts to handle a variety of essential specific functions, excess fat and glucose are the main fuel that the body operates on, whilst proteins is needed in large amounts for development and repair. The dietary plan must provide adequate quantities of efa's and amino acids which are required for the body to metabolize into proteins and are key for health. Overeating of one food group is known as to be a form of malnutrition because the dietary plan is not balanced.

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