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Introduction to Nutrition: Nutrition, Types, Practice Problems and FAQ’s

Introduction to Nutrition: Nutrition, Types, Practice Problems and FAQ’s

We are doing exercise daily to stay healthy and fit. Exercise is part of our daily routine. 

To do any kind of work, we need energy. 

Where does this energy come from? 

Yes, it comes from the food we eat. We eat a variety of food. A substance which is taken by the organism to supply the necessary nutrients to the body is called diet or food. 

food

The food contains nutrients that get absorbed in our body and provide energy. Let’s understand more about the nutrients present in food. 

Table of Contents

Nutrition

Nutrition is a process through which living organisms obtain nutrients. The nutrients are necessary for energy, growth and development of an organism. The organisms obtain nutrition through different modes.

Modes of Nutrition

Organism obtains food mainly through two modes as follows: 

Autotrophic Mode

It is commonly seen in plants because they prepare their own food through a process called photosynthesis. Therefore, plants are also known as autotrophs.

photosynthesis

Heterotrophic Mode

They depend on other organisms for food. For example, animals get their food from plants or other animals. So they are called heterotrophs. 

heterotrophic mode

Nutrients

The word nutrient derives from the Latin word ‘nutritia’ which means ‘to nourish’. Nutrients are characterised as the chemical substances that are present in food. Nutrients are necessary for the growth and maintenance of body functions. The food is the reservoir of nutrients. The nutrients that are obtained from food are as follows:

Nutrient 

Function

Image

Vitamins

Required for proper functioning of the body

1

Carbohydrates

Major source of energy

1

Water

Required for proper functioning of the body

1

Minerals

Required for proper functioning of the body

1

Proteins

Required for growth and development

1

Lipids

Required for growth and development

1

Types of Nutrients

Based on the Type of Constituents

On the basis of the type of constituents present in the food, nutrients are classified into two types as follows:

  • Organic Nutrients - Organic compounds contain carbon in it. They include carbohydrates, lipids, proteins and vitamins.
     

    lipids

  • Inorganic Nutrients - Inorganic compounds contain metal and other elements. They include minerals and water.

water

Based on the Requirements in Human Body

Nutrients are also classified into two categories based on the amount of requirement in the human body as follows:

  • Macronutrients - They are required in large quantities by the body because they are involved in the synthesis of various compounds required by the body. Examples of macronutrients include carbohydrates, fats and proteins.
     

    macronutrients

  • Micronutrients - They are required in less or minute quantities by the body because they are involved in the regulation of metabolism. They do not provide energy but their deficiencies can cause specific diseases. Examples of micronutrients include vitamins and minerals.

micronutrients

Practice Problems of Nutrition

Question 1. A panda eats plants to fulfil its nutritional needs. The panda has which mode of nutrition?

a. Autotrophic nutrition
b. Heterotrophic nutrition
c. Holozoic nutrition
d. Parasitic nutrition

Solution: In heterotrophic mode of nutrition, an organism depends on plants or animals for their food. Here, pandas are taking food from plants and therefore, they have heterotrophic mode of nutrition. The organisms are collectively known as heterotrophs. Hence, the correct option is b.

Question 2. There are various nutrients that are required for the synthesis of other compounds in larger amounts. These types of nutrients are classified under which category?

a. Macronutrients
b. Micronutrients
c. Organic nutrients
d. Inorganic nutrients

Solution: The nutrients are classified into two types on the basis of quantity required by the human body. These are macronutrients and micronutrients. Macronutrients are needed in larger amounts because they are involved in the synthesis of various compounds. On the other hand, micronutrients are required in less quantities because they regulate the metabolism. Hence, the correct option is a.

FAQs of Nutrition

Question 1. Define nutrition?

Solution: Nutrition is a type of process through which living organisms obtain nutrients that are necessary for their growth and development. There are two modes of nutrition and these are autotrophic nutrition and heterotrophic nutrition. 

Question 2. Why are plants considered as autotrophs?

Solution: Plants are also known as autotrophs because they prepare their own food through a process called photosynthesis. The process of photosynthesis requires carbon dioxide, water, chlorophyll and sunlight. They prepare food in the form of glucose and release oxygen.

Question 3.Why are nutrients essential for human development?

Solution: Nutrients are described as chemical substances that are essential for growth and maintenance of the human body. Food is the reservoir of nutrients. The nutrients get digested and absorbed in the human body and provide energy to do work.

Question 4. What is the difference between macronutrients and micronutrients?

Solution: Macronutrients are those substances that are required in larger amounts by the human body. They are involved in the synthesis of various compounds required by the body. The macronutrients include carbohydrates, fats and proteins. On the contrary, micronutrients are those substances that are required in minute quantities by the human body. They are involved in the regulation of metabolism. They do not provide energy but their deficiencies can cause specific diseases. They include vitamins and minerals.

Question 5. Give some examples of organic nutrients?

Solution: The organic compounds essentially contain carbon in it. They include carbohydrates, lipids, proteins and vitamins. The carbon is bound to other atoms through covalent bonds. They are found in the cells of living organisms.

Question 6. Is water an organic molecule?

Solution: The water is considered as an inorganic molecule because it does not contain carbon. Those compounds having carbon as an essential component are known as organic compounds.

Other Related Topics

The Living World Biological Classification Plant Kingdom
Animal Kingdom Morphology of Flowering Plants Anatomy of Flowering Plants
Structural Organization in Animals Cells: The Unit of Life Biomolecules
Cell Cycle and Division Transport in Plants Mineral Nutrition
Photosynthesis in Higher Plants Respiration in Plants Plant Growth and Development
Digestion and Absorption Breathing and Exchange of Gases Body Fluids and Circulation
Excretory Products and their Elimination Locomotion and Movement Neural Control and Coordination
Chemical Coordination and Integration

Other Related Topic Of Biology

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