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Family Nutrition
Understanding the Basics to Good
The Food Guide Pyramid -
 In
2010, the U.S. Department of
Agriculture (USDA) implemented the
current Food Guide Plate in order to
educate Americans about healthy eating
and incorporating exercise into daily
USDA's MyPlate - Home page
Definition of Whole Grains | The Whole Grains Council
The Six Basic Nutrients
Nutrients are substances the body needs to regulate
bodily functions, promote growth, repair body tissues,
and obtain energy.
 There are approximately 40 necessary nutrients the
body needs to be healthy.
 A deficiency occurs when a person does not have
enough of a certain nutrient in their diet; they are said to
be nutrient deficient and will experience certain negative
effects, depending on the nutrient.
 On the contrary, if a person has too much of a certain
nutrient, they could overdose, which would also have
certain negative effects. An example would be if a child
overdosed on the mineral iron, the effects could be fatal.
 The amount of energy released when nutrients are
burned is measured in units called calories.
Nutrition Education – What to look for when Food Shopping
There are two main types of carbohydrates.
Simple Carbohydrates – consists of refined sugar.
Glucose is the most important sugar and is the major
energy provider for the body cells.
Natural food sources – fruits, vegetables, milk
Complex Carbohydrates – made of sugars linked
together chemically to form long chains called
Natural food sources – grains (rice, cereal, and
breads) are all food with starch (potatoes are another
*The words whole grain should appear as the first listed
on the ingredient list for a true whole grain food.*
Simple Carbs vs. Complex Carbs.
Simple Carbohydrates
Comes from glucose
Only good for quick energy bursts
Foods high in sugar don’t provide many other
Food examples: candy and soda
Complex Carbohydrates
-Comes from starch
-Better for long-term sustained energy
-Foods high in starch provide a good variety of nutrients
-Food Examples: Breads and pasta
 Fats
contain twice as many calories as
Functions of Fats
Supply body with energy
Form part of cell structure
Maintain body temperature
Protects nerves and tissues
Essential for growth and development
Unsaturated Fats
There are two main types of fats.
Unsaturated Fats are liquid at room
Unsaturated fats are better for your body,
especially when consumed in its natural
state. Food examples: peanuts, avocado,
seeds, olives
Other food examples: Olive oil, sesame oil,
vegetable oil, canola oil
Saturated Fats
Saturated fats are solid at room temperature.
These fats are very caloric and hard for the body
to break down. The over consumption of
saturated fats is what can lead to heart disease.
Food examples: butter, margarine, fat in meat such as
hot dogs, salami, bologna, or the fat off of steak and
the fat in dairy products such as whole milk and
Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance found in
the cells of all animals. High levels of cholesterol
in the blood can clog the blood vessels and lead
to heart disease and stroke.
*Most foods contain a combination of unsaturated
and saturated fats.
Proteins are your body’s 3rd main source of
 They build up, maintain, and replace the tissues
in your body such as your muscle and organs.
 The immune system is mostly protein-based.
 Your body uses protein to make hemoglobin.
Natural Food Sources: beef, poultry, fish, eggs,
dairy products, nuts, seeds, and legumes like
black beans.
Amino Acids
 When
you eat foods that contain protein,
the digestive juices in your stomach and
intestines break down the protein in food
into basic units called amino acids.
 The amino acids can then be reused to
make the proteins your body needs to
maintain muscles, bones, blood, and body
 There are 22 amino acids that are very
important to human health.
Different Kinds of Protein
 Complete
proteins are from animal
sources such as meat and milk because
they contain all nine of the essential
amino acids.
 Incomplete proteins would come from
most vegetable sources. One vegetable
alone would not have all the essential
amino acids. However eating a wide
variety of protein-rich vegetables would
give a person all of the essential amino
 Vitamins
are nutrients that come from
living organisms, are required in only small
amounts, and assist in many chemical
reactions in the body.
Functions of Vitamins in the Body
- They help with various body processes,
including the use of other nutrients.
- Each vitamin has their own function.
Examples of Vitamin Functions in
the Body
 Vitamin
A: keeps eyes, skin, hair, teeth,
and gums healthy
 Vitamin D: Necessary for formation of
bones and teeth
 Vitamin B12: Formation of red blood cells
 Vitamin B1(Thiamin): Function of nerves
 Vitamin C: Helps the heart, cells, and
muscles function
Two Classes of Vitamins
Fat-soluble vitamins dissolve in fatty materials and
can be stored by the body.
Vitamins A,D,E, and K are all fat soluble.
Natural Food Examples: Milk, cheese, egg yolk, green
vegetables, nuts, tuna
Water-soluble vitamins cannot be stored in the
body, therefore must be supplied daily from the
foods we eat.
* All the B Vitamins and Vitamin C are water
Natural Food Examples: citrus fruits, tomatoes, beef,
fish, whole-grain cereals
Facts on Minerals
 Minerals
are nutrients that occur naturally
in the rocks and soil.
 How minerals get in the foods we eat:
Plants absorb minerals from rocks and soil
through their roots
Animals obtain these minerals by either eating
the plants or eating animals that have eaten
the plants
Some Minerals and Functions in
the Body
mineral is a nutrient that regulates many
chemical reactions in the body.
Calcium – builds up bones and teeth
Sodium – aids in water balance in cells and
tissues and for nerve cell conduction
Copper – production of hemoglobin in red
blood cells
Iodine – production of the thyroid gland
hormone triiodothyronine and thyroxine
Iron – aids red blood cells
 Water
is a nutrient that:
Is involved with all body processes, including
energy production
makes up the basic part of the blood and
tissue fluids
helps with digestion of food and waste
regulates body temperature
cushions the spinal cord and body mass and
lubricates your joints
Makes up more than 60% of body mass
A condition in which the water content of the body has
fallen to an extremely low level.
• Lack of water intake
• A dry environment
• Fever
• Vomiting
• Diarrhea
You need to drink at least 8 cups (64oz.) of
water every day.
Good water sources: Pure water, 100% fruit juice, milk, and
food sources such as fruits and vegetables
Signs of Dehydration
Dry mouth
Flushed skin
Blurred vision
Difficulty swallowing
Dry, hot skin
Rapid pulse
Frequent need to urinate
The Nutrition Facts Label
 The
Nutrition Facts Label is required on all
food packaging.
 It helps to make smart food choices to
maintain a healthy diet.
 It helps people who are on restricted diets
due to medical conditions or food allergies.
How to Understand and Use the Nutrition
Facts Label
Reading the Nutrition Fact Label
Common Causes of Obesity
Burning too few calories through lack of physical
Taking in more calories than are burned
Changes in metabolic rates with age
Unhealthy eating habits
Psychological factors
Social factors
Benefits of Regular Exercise
 Burns
 Prevents diseases such as heart disease,
Type II Diabetes, and Obesity
 Helps to relieve stress
 Increases self-esteem
 Tones and builds muscles
 Promotes normal appetite
 Promotes loss of body fat
 Increases metabolism
 Gives body a firm, lean shape
Bottom Line
 Pick
a variety of whole foods from all five
of the food groups on a daily basis
 Incorporate exercise into your daily routine
 Keep on eye on portion size when eating a
 Eat smaller meals throughout the day, it is
easier for your body to digest and takes
less energy, leaving more energy for you
and your day!
 Drink plenty of water and/or water-rich
foods and drinks