Importance Of Nutrition And Obesity Epidemic

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Nutrients and Health In the United States, harmful eating behaviors have contributed to the obesity epidemic. In fact, approximately 34% of adults, and 17% of children are obese. Furthermore, individuals at healthy weights can still experience the major health risks associated with poor eating habits such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer (Impact of Nutrition on Your Health, n.d.). Accordingly, understanding the importance of macronutrients, healthy sources to obtain macronutrients from, and the importance of minerals is crucial for patients and health care providers.
Importance of Macronutrients Macronutrients are nutrients which provide energy and calories. The body uses macronutrients for numerous processes within the body
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Most of the fat in a healthy diet should be provided by unsaturated fats such as seeds, nuts, and fish. Small amounts of saturated fatty acids such as dairy products should also be included in a healthy diet. In contrast, transfats should be avoided or consumed infrequently (Menza & Probart, 2013, p.86).
Importance of Minerals
To maintain healthy function, the body requires several minerals, also referred to as essential minerals. Essential minerals are often separated into macrominerals and microminerals. Although both types of minerals are important, microminerals are required in reduced quantities than macrominerals (Minerals: Their Functions and Sources, 2014). Minerals can be found in foods such as meat, cereal, fish, dairy products, vegetables, fruits, and nuts (Vitamins and minerals, 2015).
Macrominerals
Minerals such as sodium and chloride (found in table salt and processed foods), potassium (found in meats grains, and bananas), calcium (found in milk products and greens), phosphorus (found in meat, fish, and eggs), and magnesium (found in nuts, seeds, and legumes) are required for important biological processes in the body. Functions range from fluid balance and nerve transmission, to immune health, clotting, and muscle contractions (Minerals: Their Functions and Sources, 2014). Since these minerals are required in larger quantities, it is important for patients and medical professionals to regulate the intake of these minerals and supplement as

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