What Are the Benefits of Food?
Food is any material consumed in order to supply nutrition to an organisms for life. Food is generally of animal, plant or microbial origin, and includes necessary nutrients, including proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, or minerals, in their normal physiological function. The word ‘food’ is derived from the Greek words eukaryotic (plant) and logos (form). It also refers to a living being that provides the sustenance to an organisms, and sometimes is a part of a complex system that nourishes the organisms, too. Modern humans consume food not only to satisfy their physiological need, but also to be attractive to others and satisfy their needs for pleasure.
The physiological significance of food is to nourish, protect, and enable the growth of all the elements of the body. All food is made up of primary food components: carbohydrates, protein, fat, minerals, vitamins and hormones. The carbohydrates are sugars, starches, breads and cereals; the proteins are meats, poultry and eggs; fats are animal fats, oils and fats; vitamins are synthesized by the bodies and other chemicals; and hormones are stored in the bodies as steroids, hormones and other substances that promote development, growth and development. In certain circumstances, some types of food may not be used by the organisms, such as vitamins and carbohydrates, because they are not essential to their existence. Such food may nevertheless be used as snacks or as sources of energy or as reserve food for emergencies.
There are certain foods that, by their very nature, encourage the activity of the immune system. Some of them, for instance, contain antioxidants, which work to prevent the oxidation of free radicals and thus inhibit the growth of bacteria and viruses. There are certain foods, like vitamin A, that serve as potent antioxidants that destroy the invading organisms and prevent their growth in the body; these food substances are called ‘vitamin A’.
As food is digested, some nutrients are used and excreted as waste while others are used and excreted as food for further processing. Vitamins are a form of nutrient, which is non-absorbable. In case of fat, some nutrients combine with the fat to create fatty acids, which are then carried out by the liver and stored in the body as triglycerides. These triglycerides add to the fatty acid composition of the blood stream, which in turn helps in carrying out the immune system’s action against pathogens. Fats that have a high amount of polyunsaturated fatty acids are better than saturated fats; however, there are some foods that contain too much polyunsaturated fatty acids and may therefore be harmful to the body. Examples of such foods include some vegetable oils, egg yolks, palm oil, butter, canola, tropical oils and some animal fats.
Modern food processing techniques have enabled many people to enjoy the benefits of food, but they are still limited by the natural, chemical ingredients that were part of the food structure in the beginning. One limitation is related to food processing. A good example is that whole grain bread usually contains wheat flour, which is not part of the natural food structure. Many people prefer to eat these kinds of breads, but they end up getting sick because of the unnatural ingredients.
Carbohydrates are another group of nutrients that have been successfully processed for human consumption. These include sugar, starch, salt and fiber. Due to the fact that carbohydrates can provide a large number of benefits, they have been processed and added to foods for their value in enhancing the taste and the health of a person. However, many people are on a tight budget and they may not want to spend money on foods that have artificial additives in them. Therefore, a good solution to this problem is to opt for whole foods, which will provide the right nutrients at their natural levels without any side effects.