Rational nutrition

Rational (from the Latin ratio – reason) nutrition is the most important factor of a healthy lifestyle.

Rational Nutrition

Rational (from Latin ratio – reason) nutrition is the most important factor of a healthy lifestyle.

Rational nutrition – a diet balanced in energy and nutrient content, depending on gender, age and occupation.

Currently, the majority of our population does not meet this notion not only because of insufficient material security, but also because of the absence or lack of knowledge on this issue. Before turning to recommendations for nutrition in everyday life, let us dwell on the role of nutrients in the body.

The importance of basic nutrients and their energy value

Proteins are vital substances in the body. They are used as a source of energy (the oxidation of 1 gram of protein in the body gives 4 kcal of energy), building material for the regeneration (restoration) of cells, the formation of enzymes and hormones. The body’s need for protein depends on gender, age and energy requirements, amounting to 80-100 g per day, including animal proteins 50 g. Protein should provide about 15% of the daily caloric intake. Protein consists of amino acids, which are divided into substitutable and indispensable. The more proteins contain essential amino acids, the more complete they are. The essential amino acids are tryptophan, leucine, isoleucine, valine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine.

Fats are the main source of energy in the body (the oxidation of 1 g of fat gives 9 kcal). Fats contain substances valuable for the body: unsaturated fatty acids, phosphatides, and fat-soluble vitamins A, E, and K. The average daily requirement of the body in fats is 80-100 g, including vegetable fats 20-25 g. Fats should provide about 35% of the daily caloric intake. Fats containing unsaturated fatty acids, i.e. fats of vegetable origin, are the most valuable for the body.

Carbohydrates are one of the main sources of energy (the oxidation of 1 g of carbohydrates gives 3.75 kcal). The daily requirement of the body in carbohydrates is 400-500 g, including starch 400-450 g, sugar 50-100 g, pectin 25 g. Carbohydrates should provide about 50% of the daily caloric intake. If there is an excess of carbohydrates in the body, they are converted into fat, i.e., an excessive amount of carbohydrates contributes to obesity.

In addition to proteins, fats and carbohydrates, the most important component of a rational diet are vitamins – biologically active organic compounds necessary for normal life. Lack of vitamins leads to hypovitaminosis (lack of vitamins in the body) and avitaminosis (lack of vitamins in the body). Vitamins are not formed in the body, but enter it with food. A distinction is made between water-soluble and fat-soluble vitamins.

In addition to proteins, fats, carbohydrates and vitamins, the body needs minerals, which are used as plastic material and for the synthesis of enzymes. There are macronutrients (Ca, P, Mg, Na, K, Fe) and micronutrients (Cu, Zn, Mn, Co, Cr, Ni, I, F, Si).

The ratio of proteins, fats and carbohydrates for middle-aged people should be (by weight) 1 : 1 : 4 (for heavy physical work 1 : 1 : 5), for young people 1 : 0.9 : 3.2.

The body receives these substances only if it consumes a varied diet, which includes six main groups of products: dairy products; meat, poultry, fish; eggs; bread, cereals, pasta and confectionery products; fats; vegetables and fruits.

Of great importance is the diet: the frequency of meals, the distribution of daily calories, weight and composition of food at individual times.

For a healthy person, four meals a day is optimal, as a rare meal leads to an accumulation of fat in the body, reducing the activity of the thyroid gland and tissue enzymes. Eating frequent meals at the same time promotes better bile outflow. Eating disorders are one of the main causes of chronic diseases of the stomach and intestines. The frequency of meals is determined by age, the nature of work, daily routine, the functional state of the body. The regularity of meals contributes to the development of a conditioned reflex during meals and the rhythmic production of digestive juices.

With four meals a day, the ratio of the number of calories in separate meals should be 30, 15, 35, 20%.

Products rich in animal proteins (meat, fish) are more useful to eat in the morning and in the afternoon, as they increase performance. Second breakfast may include dairy products, vegetable dishes, sandwiches, fruit. Lunch should be the most substantial meal. Dinner should be small in volume and consist of easily digestible dishes. The last meal should be 2-3 hours before bedtime.

For the organization of nutrition in everyday life, the following principles should be observed:

Do not overeat;

Meals should be varied, that is, every day it is desirable to eat fish, meat, dairy products, fruits and vegetables, wholemeal bread, etc;

in the way of cooking preference should be given to boiled;

Know the caloric and chemical composition of food.

Features of nutrition to prevent obesity

One of the negative consequences of irrational nutrition is excessive body weight, which increases the risk of many diseases. People suffering from obesity, 1,5-2 times more often than people with normal weight, there are cardiovascular disease, 3-4 times more often diabetes, 2-3 times more often cholelithiasis and liver disease. Obesity is one of the most frequent causes of premature aging.

To prevent obesity it is necessary:

pay attention to the information on the composition and caloric content of products on labels;

Do not get addicted to cereal products, especially pastries containing fat and sugar;

avoid excessive consumption of sugar and sweets, and use sugar substitutes;

avoid foods rich in fat (sausages, wieners, sausages, fatty dairy products);

remember that alcoholic beverages, including beer, are caloric;

leave the table with a slight feeling of hunger, as the body has already received enough food, but the signal of this has not yet had time to reach the brain; chew your food carefully, as this helps to reduce appetite;

with an increase in body weight to increase physical activity.

Peculiarities of nutrition in the elderly

A decrease in the intensity of metabolic processes in old age and a decrease in physical activity cause a decrease in the need for nutrients and a decrease in the caloric content of poverty in this population group. The diet of an elderly person should be varied and include a sufficient amount of fruits and vegetables. Food should be eaten frequently, at least 5-6 times a day, in small portions. The diet should include the introduction of saltwater fish, cottage cheese, milk products, lean meat. Fish and meat should preferably be eaten in boiled form. Limit the amount of fats of animal origin, giving preference to vegetable fats containing unsaturated fatty acids, which is the prevention of atherosclerosis. Salt, sugar (replace with honey or sugar substitute), spices, smoked meats, strong tea and coffee should be limited. For regular intestinal function, the elderly should include coarse-meal bread in their diet.

Nutrition peculiarities of pregnant women

Rational nutrition of a pregnant woman is important not only for the proper development and maturation of the fetus, but also for the restructuring of the body of the pregnant woman in connection with future lactation. Therefore, the diet of the pregnant woman should provide the increased needs of the body in all essential nutrients. In the first half of pregnancy need protein is 1.2-1.5 g per kilogram of weight in the second half – 2 g per kilogram of weight. A pregnant woman should eat 120-200 g of lean beef or 150-200 g of fish daily. Fat should be eaten in an amount of 80-100 g per day (of which 30 g should be vegetable fats), carbohydrates – mainly in the form of raw vegetables and fruits to 400-500 g per day. Particular attention should be paid to products rich in iron, since very often pregnant women develop anemia. The daily requirement for iron is 15-20 mg. Iron is found in beef, beef liver, egg yolk, fruits and green vegetables (spinach, lettuce, apples). Pregnant women should limit their intake of salt, fluids, chocolate, citrus fruits, sweets, strong tea and coffee. With a rapid increase in body weight, you can appoint so-called “off days” on the advice of a doctor.

Nutrition therapy

The patient’s diet, along with medications, plays an important role in the treatment of the patient. A certain diet is an important factor in the treatment of diseases of the digestive organs, cardiovascular system, kidneys, endocrine system, etc.

Therapeutic meals are organized according to a nomenclature of diets developed by the Institute of Nutrition RAMS. Specialist social work should have an idea of the features of a particular diet – a therapeutic table (there are 15 such therapeutic tables). Each number corresponds to a specific therapeutic table disease for which the table (diet) is used. A therapeutic diet can be prescribed not only in hospitals, but also at home. The diet is prescribed by the attending physician. In hospitals, the ward nurse oversees compliance with the therapeutic diet in addition to the attending physician, who checks the contents of the food parcels and supervises the storage of food. At home, compliance with the diet is checked by the district doctor, the ward nurse and the patient’s relatives.