Carbohydrates, Fats, and Proteins
Carbohydrates are nutrients that give the body quick energy. The two types of carbohydrates are complex, which includes starches and fiber, and simple, which includes sugars, like glucose, fructose, and sucrose. Complex carbohydrates are essential to a daily diet and should be about 50% of an overall diet. Foods that contain complex carbohydrates include pasta, vegetables, wheat, grains, and fruit. Simple carbohydrates do not add much to a healthy diet and can contain a lot of calories, which may cause weight gain. Candy, soft drinks, and cookies are examples of foods high in simple carbohydrates. (ETR Associates) In the SJU dining hall, a meal that contains a good amount of carbohydrates would be whole grain pasta, with red sauce and broccoli on top.
Give an example of a meal that contains complex carbohydrates and would contribute to a healthy diet.
Fats are nutrients that give the body stored energy. Fats can help for healthy skin and hair, normal growth and nerve function, the production of hormones, and allow the body to absorb certain vitamins. Fats are necessary to the body in order to insulate against cold, provide energy for muscles, provide a layer of protection between skin and muscles, and protect internal organs. Foods that are high in fats include meat, fish, dairy products, nuts, and chocolate. Many foods that are low in fats can become high in fats when cooked in oil, like french fries. Eating too much fat can result in health problems such as obesity or diabetes. A daily caloric diet should contain 25% from fats. (ETR Associates) In the SJU dining hall, a meal that contains a healthy amount of fats would be a piece of grilled fish with a small side dish of french fries.
As a group, discuss other foods that may become high in fats once cooked in oil.
Proteins are nutrients made up of amino acids, which the body uses to make muscles, bones, and skin. The body requires 20 amino acids, 11 of which are naturally produced in the body. The other nine amino acids are called essential amino acids, because they must be apart of any diet. Foods high in protein include meats, fish, eggs, nuts, and dried beans. Only 10-15% of your daily caloric intake should come from proteins, although Americans are known for eating more protein than necessary. (ETR Associates) In the SJU dining hall, a meal that contains a healthy amount of protein would be an egg omelette with ham and spinach inside.
Name a quick snack that contains protein.
Vitamins and Minerals
Vitamins are nutrients that help regulate body processes. These body processes include digestion, growth, metabolism, hormone development, wound healing, and nerve function. Vitamins can be found in all food groups, but common sources include fruits and vegetables. Vitamins are broken down into four letters: A, B, C, D. Vitamin A and B can be found in leafy vegetables, Vitamin C can be found in lemons and limes, and Vitamin D can be gained through contact with sunlight. (ETR Associates) In the SJU dinning hall, a meal that contains a healthy amount of vitamins would be a salad with spinach leafs and lite dressing, and an orange as a side.
What food could you use as a side dish to a meal in order to get Vitamins A and B?
Minerals help the body grow and metabolize properly. Common minerals include calcium, sodium, potassium, iron, iodine, and zinc, all of which can usually be found on food labels. All foods contain certain minerals that vary based on the type of food. A healthy diet includes a variety of minerals through different sources of food. Not getting enough minerals can affect different body systems like the skeletal or respiratory. (ETR Associates) Any meal eaten in the SJU dining hall will include a number of different minerals.
Where can you find what minerals are in a packaged food?
- What is the difference between complex and simple carbohydrates?
- What types of foods contain simple carbohydrates?
- What do fats do for the body?
- Eating too many fats can result in which types of problems?
- How many amino acids does the body require?
- Do Americans eat more or less than the suggested amount of protein?
- What types of body processes do vitamins help with?
- How can Vitamin D be attained?
- Name three types of minerals.
- A lack of minerals can affect which body systems?
Physical activity on a regular basis is important and can create long term health benefits in a number of different ways. This may include increasing your chance of living longer, decreasing chances of depression, sleeping well at night, having stronger muscles and bones, and staying at a healthy weight. Lack of physical activity can cause issues such as heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or stroke. The two main types of physical fitness are aerobic activities and muscle-strengthening activities. (USDA) College campuses are a great location to find and participate in a number of different physical fitness activities.