Balanced Diet: All of us need food to grow and remain healthy. There are many useful substances present in food items. These substances are called nutrients. A nutrient is a chemical substance that is required for the nourishment of an organism. Our food contains nutrients like carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals. These nutrients provide energy to our body and protect it from diseases. Water and roughage are also important for us.
Let us learn how these nutrients are essential for our body:
Carbohydrates give us energy to work and play. Sugar and starch are carbohydrates. Wheat, rice and potatoes have starch in them while honey, sweets and all kinds of fruits have sugar in them.
Lack of carbohydrate intake may result in fatigue, reduced stamina and feverishness.
Proteins help to make new cells in growing children and help them to grow. They also help to replace dead or damaged cells with new ones at all ages. Meat, eggs, pulses, milk and milk products are rich sources of proteins.
Lack of protein may cause weakness, vision problem, memory problem and lack or appetite.
Fats are steady sources of energy. Fats give us more energy than carbohydrates. They are deposited in various parts of our body and under the skin. The layer of fat under the skin helps to keep the body warm. Butter, ghee and oils are rich sources of fats.
Lack of fats may result in dry skin, hair loss and poor growth.
Vitamins are needed in small amounts to maintain good health. They keep us fit and protect our body from diseases. Green leafy vegetables and fruits are rich sources of vitamins. There are many kinds
of vitamins like vitamin A, B, C, D, etc.
Lack of vitamins can lead to various types of problems which we will study later.
Minerals are also needed in small amounts for the growth and development of the body. Iron, calcium, phosphorus, iodine, etc. are a few minerals important for our body.
Water is an important component of our food and provides many important minerals. It helps to excrete waste from the body in the form of urine and sweat.
Roughage is dietary fibre. It is an essential component of our food. It is indigestible and helps in regulating bowel movement, Fruits, vegetables, seed coats of pulses and cereals are some rich sources of roughage.
Thus, “We have seen that for the healthy functioning of our body, all these nutrients are required. A diet that contains all the nutrients in an adequate quantity is called a balanced diet. We must take a balanced diet every day.“
Physical exercise helps us to stay fit. It not only helps in developing physical strength but also gives strength to our mind. It makes our heart strong, improves blood circulation, makes our body flexible and keeps us active and happy.
Playing outdoor games develops the spirit of comradeship and unselfishness.
Rest is very important for our body after long hours of working or studying. We can relax by listening to music, reading a book, watching television or by simply lying down.
We get up refreshed after a sound sleep. When we are asleep, our bodies get Complete rest and the damaged cells are repaired.
Hygiene is closely associated with good health. Hygiene is the practice of keeping oneself clean to prevent diseases. We can maintain proper hygiene by following the healthy practices given here.
Brush your teeth daily in the morning and before going to bed at night.
- Have a bath daily.
- Dry yourself with a clean towel after having a bath.
- Wear clean clothes.
- Pare your nails at regular intervals.
- Wash your hands before and after every meal.
- Cover your mouth with a handkerchief while coughing, sneezing or yawning
- Avoid eating stale and uncovered food.
- Drink at least 6-7 glasses of clean and pure water every day.
- Wash your hands with soap after using the toilet.
- Keep the surroundings clean.