2.4.1 - Balanced diet

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A balanced diet gives you all the nutrients you need: 

  • Carbohydrates- provide energy
  • Fats (lipids)- acts as an energy store, provides insulation, makes up cell membranes, physically protect organs 
  • Proteins- needed for growth, the repair of tissues and to make enzymes 
  • Vitamins-  Different vitamins have different functions, e.g. vitamin D is needed for calcium absorption
  • Mineral salts- Different mineral salts have different functions, e.g, iron is needed to make haemoglobin in the blood 
  • Fibre- Aids movement of food through gut 
  • Water- It is used in chemical reactions. We need a constant supply to make up for the water constantly being lost through urinating, breathing and sweating

Malnutrition is caused by having too little or too much of some nutrients in your diet. There are three causes:

  • Not having enough food altogether- you get very little of every nutrient
  • Having an unbalanced diet- Getting too little of a nutrient can lead to many different deficiency diseases. Getting too many carbohydrates or fats can lead to obesity
  • Not being able to absorb the nutrients from digestion into your bloodstream properly. 

Over-nutrition and lack of exercise can lead to obesity:

  • Obesity is defined as being


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