The Encyclopedia of Women’s Health (2004) defines nutrition as the sum of processes involved with the consumption of food. The human body depends on nutrients from carbohydrates, proteins, fats, water, and fiber to function. Nutrition, exercise, and an appropriate diet work cohesively to maintain that the body is working productively and at full capacity. This week’s assignment required the recording of daily food intakes for a span of three days. Data from each meal was inputted into the IProfile food journal program, and reports were evaluated to determine how nutrition, diet, and physical activity are dependent on each other and impact health. The daily food journal allowed detailed imputation of realistic consumption products and studied information centered on individual particulars of weight, age, and physical actions.
A three-day span of meal entries was inputted to the iProfile journal. Meals were chronicled around breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. Protein, carbohydrates, and lipids were included in my daily meals. Within the span of three days, I indulged in both healthy and unhealthy meal choices based on convenience and strategic meal scheduling. Proteins were an essential portion of my meals, which consisted of baked chicken, honey baked ham, hot dog, grilled chicken, eggs, and baked fish. Carbohydrates are indispensable for nutrition as the digestive system converts carbohydrates into glucose and into energy needed by the cells, tissues, and organs. Lack of carbohydrates will result in feelings of fatigue and weakness (Medline Plus, 2012). I consumed a large amount of carbohydrates within the time constraints.
My carbohydrate count was to stay within 248-358 of which my intake was 299 g (University of Phoenix, 2012). Carbohydrates can be found in fruits, vegetables, breads, grains, milk, and products that contain sugar. Some foods high in carbohydrate content are toast, jasmine rice, stuffing, lemon, cake, avocado, bread pudding, and corn. Lipids, also referred to as triglyceride, are a kind of fat that can be found in both plant and animal products. The body needs lipids to generate energy, but a surplus in lipid intake contributes to the development of heart disease (Nall, 2011). The honey baked ham and chicken that my family enjoyed did have a fatty film of saturated fat. I also tend to cook with milk and butter that is another saturated fat. On top of my bread pudding on Saturday was a tablespoon scoop of vanilla ice cream.
After reviewing foods that provide the body with protein, carbohydrates, and lipids, it was imperative to review my own personal intakes. My personal intake for the duration of the study was 2011kcal with my recommended DRI at 2204 kcal. Most of my daily intakes were within the recommended range, but there are areas within my diet that I need to adjust.
My protein DRI was to stay within 55-193g of which I consumed 72 g still within the recommend range for my individual parameters. Proteins are essential for growth, tissue repair, and enzyme protection (Cespedes, 2012). This project was eye-opening as I realized the need to manage and balance what I eat with my physical activity to offset my consumption intakes.
It is noteworthy that majority of the meals I consumed centered on complete proteins. Some meals had both complete protein and incomplete protein such as rice and corn. A complete protein source affords all necessary amino acids and is referred to as high quality proteins including meat, poultry, fish, milk, eggs, and cheese (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2012). I was pleasantly surprised to discover my meal portions consist of complete proteins containing vital amino acids.
From the data collected over the three days, my total fiber does not meet the suggested DRI. The preferred DRI of fiber for a person of my characteristics and lifestyle was 25 g, whereas my fiber total was 14 g. I do agree that the intake was correct, and while my intention is to eat more fiber based products, I tend to limit myself as my husband’s diet is fiber limited as he has Crohn’s Disease. The iProfile site highlights that my current diet does not meet the minimum servings of foods from each fiber group. While I had thought that I was consuming a substantial amount of vegetables and fruits both areas are below standard intake. The food products that afforded me the most fiber was cornmeal stuffing, rice, strawberry, bread, and lemons. The products that offer the least fiber benefit were ham, ice cream, and processed macaroni and cheese.
Reading over the reports I noticed that my meal trends tend to center on main proteins. I need to remember to efficiently balance more vegetables and fruits such as peas, carrots, bananas, and raspberries. Fiber is vital as the body needs fiber to digest. Fiber also reduces the development of colorectal and gastrointestinal cancer (Zelman, 2012). Staying within the macronutrient intake range is important as deficiency in any nutrient can impact energy level, growth, and ability to function. Eating too much protein can lead to osteoporosis, whereas if deficiency in saturated fat can lead to coronary artery disease (Cespedes, 2012).
While I did stay within the recommended range, I do see areas of improvement particularly eating more lean meats lowering my saturated fats and incorporating more fruits into my diet as it was fairly existent. The project did not provide the results I was expecting. I found that the process allowed for me to really understand how important nutrition, diet, and exercise are for my health. I need to consume more food products that contain calcium, potassium, vitamins D, A, E, and K. I also need to look at portions and type of products I am cooking limiting the sodium intake as I was excessively over my DRI. Including more fiber-based fruits and vegetables can help ensure that my body is digesting the nutrients my body needs to function adequately.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/everyone/basics/protein.html Cespedes, A. (2012). Livestrong. Retrieved from http://www.livestrong.com/article/553038-what-happens-if-my-macronutrient-int
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