Food is any material used to give nutrition to an organism for its proper growth and development. Generally speaking food is generally of animal, plant or fungi origin, and includes essential elements, including vitamins, proteins, carbohydrates, or minerals. The human body requires a certain amount of food daily, mostly in the form of vitamins and minerals, to sustain its activities. With today’s increased level of knowledge about the body’s processes and requirements of food has been developed more in line with these discoveries.
Historically, food has been regarded as a source of sustenance; that is, it provided energy or nourishment to the body. Over the course of time different groups of people have developed different concepts about the value of food. Some people believe that food is something that a person can eat without worrying about the consequences afterwards. Others believe that food is a form of medicine or a gift from the gods, eaten to give strength, comfort, fertility and vivacity to the body, or a symbol of wealth, luxury, power and authority.
Modern people eat foods that are produced for their consumption, for the purpose of being eaten by others. However, this production of edible substances sometimes destroys important nutrients needed in the human body. Such foods generally lack the substances necessary for the human body to develop and grow properly. Therefore, foods, whether produced for consumption or for medicinal purposes, must contain essential substances that stimulate the immune system, such as vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, protein, fat and fiber.
One of the most important nutrients found in food is fats. Fats provide the body with the necessary energy it needs to function normally. However, too much fat can be unhealthy. Oils and fats are liquid at room temperature and do not have to be ground into a solid form in order to be consumed. It is possible to derive all of the dietary fat benefits from regular consumption of vegetable oils and fats.
Some of the food items that are considered to be the most nutritious are vegetables, legumes (especially beans), fruits, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and dairy products. In addition, you can eat food that is considered to be low in saturated fats if they are extracted from the enclosed parts of fish, poultry, lean meat and cheese. Although it is difficult to digest meat, studies indicate that there may be some health benefits to doing so.
Vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, eggs and dairy products provide the bulk of your daily food requirements. Although there are many different types of each of these food groups, you will find that most people are able to eat most of them fairly easily. Vegetable and fruit juice are a great source of vitamins and antioxidants. The best way to get enough fiber in your diet is to eat fresh vegetables and fruits, especially if they are cooked at home. Whole grain breads and cereals are also beneficial, although it is hard to get enough wheat bread or pasta in your diet on a daily basis.