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What is Nutrition?

Nutrition is:

utilization of food to grow, repair and maintain our bodies;

getting the right amount of nutrients from healthy foods in the right combinations;

making smart choices about the foods you eat;

proper nutrition helps you develop and maintain good health;



Nutrition Food

  • Most vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories. None have cholesterol. (Sauces or seasonings may add fat, calories, and/or cholesterol.)
  • Vegetables are important sources of many nutrients, including potassium, dietary fiber, folate (folic acid), vitamin A, and vitamin C.
  • Diets rich in potassium may help to maintain healthy blood pressure. Vegetable sources of potassium include sweet potatoes, white potatoes, white beans, tomato products (paste, sauce, and juice), beet greens, soybeans, lima beans, spinach, lentils, and kidney beans.
  • Dietary fiber from vegetables, as part of an overall healthy diet, helps reduce blood cholesterol levels and may lower risk of heart disease. Fiber is important for proper bowel function. It helps reduce constipation and diverticulosis. Fiber-containing foods such as vegetables help provide a feeling of fullness with fewer calories.
  • Folate (folic acid) helps the body form red blood cells. Women of childbearing age who may become pregnant should consume adequate folate from foods, and in addition 400 mcg of synthetic folic acid from fortified foods or supplements. This reduces the risk of neural tube defects, spina bifida, and anencephaly during fetal development.
  • Vitamin A keeps eyes and skin healthy and helps to protect against infections.
  • Vitamin C helps heal cuts and wounds and keeps teeth and gums healthy. Vitamin C aids in iron absorption.

Health benefits

  • Eating a diet rich in vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy nutrient  may reduce risk for heart disease, including heart attack and stroke.
  • Eating a diet rich in some vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy diet may protect against certain types of cancers.
  • Diets rich in foods containing fiber, such as some vegetables and fruits, may reduce the risk of heart disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.
  • Eating vegetables and fruits rich in potassium as part of an overall healthy diet may lower blood pressure, and may also reduce the risk of developing kidney stones and help to decrease bone loss.
  • Eating foods such as vegetables that are lower in calories per cup instead of some other higher-calorie food may be useful in helping to lower calorie intake.

Nutrition Facts and Basic information

Adequate nutrition is the intake and utilization of enough energy and nutri-ents, together with disease control, to maintain well-being, health, and pro-ductivity. “Malnutrition” includes generalized malnutrition (which manifests itself as stunting, underweight, and wasting in individuals) and deficiencies of micronutrients, such as vitamin A, iron, iodine, zinc, and folic acid.


The most visible evidence of good nutrition is taller, stronger, healthier children who learn more in school and become productive, happy adults, who participate in society. Too little or too much consumption of energy and nutrients causes health damage. Individuals who are within acceptable norms for body size and biological indicators of micronutrient status are considered adequately nourished.

Malnutrition does not need to be severe to pose a threat to survival. Worldwide, fewer than 20 percent of deaths associated with childhood malnutrition involve severe malnutrition; more than 80 percent involve only mild or moderate malnutrition. Although the immediate cause of death in mild and moderately malnourished children may be pneumonia or diarrhea, many children would not die if they were well nourished.

Disease and inadequate dietary intake are the immediate causes of mal-nutrition in most individuals. Underlying these causes are barriers in the household and family:

How Maternal and Child Nutrition Are Linked

  • Birth weight is closely associated with child survival, well-being, and growth, which influences nutrition in adolescence and determines how well nourished the mother is when she enters pregnancy.
  • Milk Feeding

                  Milk Feeding

  • Prevention of stunting in girl children during the first two years can help break the cycle of malnutrition
  • Nutrient stores built up in adolescence help the nutrition of women during and between pregnancies.
  • Mother’s nutrition before and during pregnancy influences growth and development of the fetus and its birth weight; it affects her chances of surviving the delivery.
  • Adequate nutrition for the mother should be maintained during breastfeeding.