Food is one of the basic necessities of life. It is more than other basic needs shelter and clothing. For ages, we have acquired plenty of information’s about the use food as a part of our community social, national and religious life. It has been used an expression of love, friendship and social acceptance. So, food or the lack of it has great influence on the destiny of one’s health and the community at large.
Food, nutrition, health and nutritional status are connected with life. So, we mi have proper clarity of these aspects of healthy life.
Food is that which nourishes our body and keeps us healthy. It can be defined anything eaten or drunk, when swallowed, digested and assimilated in the body, keeps it well. In short, food is the raw material from which our body is made. When we taker kind of food, we ensure good health which could be evident in our physical appearances, work efficiency and emotional well-being.
Nitrition is the ‘Science of foods’- the nutrients present in them, their action, interaction and balance in relationship to health and disease. It has been defined as ‘food’ at work in the body’. Nutrition includes everything that happens to food from the time is consumed, until it is used for performing various functions of the body.
Health means complete physical, mental and social well being. But he commonly implies to the ‘general’ wellbeing of the body or the condition to be ‘fit’. Health is viewed differently in different perspectives. According to the English term Health is a condition of being safe and sound where as dictionary explains health “as the state of being hale and sound in body, mind and soul especially free from physical diseases or pain Further, World Health Organization (WHO) gives a more explicit definition of health- “As a state of complete physical, mental, social wellbeing and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. It encompares all aspects of life put together in a way that is comfortable as that one can enjoy a vibrant life in work and play.” All these definitions imply that health is multidimensional and there is interdependence of all these aspects physical, mental, social and spiritual health. Hence, health encompasses complete wellbeing of the individual in body, mind and soul.
Nutirents are the component of food that is required by the body in adequate amount to grow, reproduce and lead a normal healthy life. These are proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals and water.
Nutritioal Status is the condition (state) of health of an individual as influenced by the utilization of nutrients in his body. This can be found by careful medical and dietary history, a thorough physical examination and appropriate laboratory investigations.
Good or Adequate nutrition
Good or Adequate nutrition implies that the essential nutrients are present in correct amount and proportion. It also indicates the manner of nutrient utilisation, so that the highest level of physical and mental health is achieved throughout life time.
Nutritional Care is the application of the science and art of human nutrition to food and people. It is the use of nutritional knowledge in selecting and planning of meals and the preparation of these meals in such a way to make it widely acceptable, to nourish their bodies in good health and in sickness throughout the lives.
Malnutrition means undesirable kind of nutrition, leading to ill health. It results from lack, excess or imbalance of nutrients in the diet. It comprises of two types under nutrition and over nutrition. Under nutrition refers to inadequate/insufficient supply of essential nutrients, whereas in over nutrition, there is excess supply of one or more nutrients, which creates stresses in the body functions.