Nutrition and Our Health

ARE We GETTING OPTIMUM NUTRIENTS AS THE BASIC BUILDING BLOCKS FOR HEALTH & WELLNESS?  
     
Background

The source of much needed nutrients remains a hot topic in all discussions concerning health and nutrition. To better understand issues of adequacy, inadequacy and imbalances of nutrients in human/animal health, we provide a brief background of nutrition as a crucial component of health protection, health promotion and wellness. In essence, the principles of optimal health and wellness depend on five broad factors, referred to as the five pillars of health, summarized as follows:  i). Avoid situations of serious physical danger  ii). Sleep long enough for your needs iii). Conduct a minimum of exercise per day iv). Do not eat or drink harmful substances v). Choose a sound wholesome diet that you can easily  follow.

For this posting, we focus on the last two pillars of health and wellness (i.e., avoid taking in harmful substances; choose sound diet) which deal with what we take into our bodies as a social undertaking (e.g. drinking), medication, or nutrition and this is explained in more detail below
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Avoiding harmful substances

Excess drinking of alcoholic beverages should be avoided as it tends to harm the body. Intake of prescription drugs should be based on well informed decisions with regards to potential harmful effects of these substances. The challenge on this aspect is: Are we really well-informed decision makers on use of prescription medications? Are there alternative options to potential harmful prescriptions medications?

Nutritional Fundamentals

Life evolves from nutrients from the very instant of inception of each and every new life. Nutrients are sourced from the micro-environment, usually from the beginning of life through the initial phases of developmental stages and from the macro-environment, as life progresses. They are sourced in organic form as proteins (or their building blocks - amino acids), carbohydrates, fats and vitamins; and inorganic form as water, oxygen, and dietary minerals.

The critical aspects of nutrients in health and wellness lie in their deficiency (too little), excess (too much) or imbalance, impacting negatively on the body. The challenge is in food choices and the limited availability of nutrients as they are sourced from the environment and taken into the body to meet their crucial role in growth, body repair, maintenance for health and wellness. Simply put we are what we eat. Therefore factors such as our environment (micro- and macro-environments), socioeconomic status and lifestyle, play a huge role in determining the ultimate nutrient necessary for our body. Issues of adequacy, inadequacy and imbalances of nutrients in human health are inter-twinned within the human lifestyle maze and therefore complex to navigate.

Nutritional science is a very complex discipline, currently not very well or extensively understood authoritatively and it remains a long way to go with regards to studies/research for a better understanding of its role in health and disease. We intend to share our current understanding of nutrition in health and disease and any new knowledge/findings in this regard through postings on this blog.

Happy reading!


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