Is Food My Enemy ?

Is Food My Enemy?

Ancient human beings worked all day gathering and collecting their food. With our intellect and abilities, we were able to discover good sources of food and learned how to utilize them for our bodily requirement. The result of which was that the human race became more productive and more intelligent. Humans then were able to eat almost everything and still have those 6 packs we desire and dream of today. The sources of food that we try to avoid today but still eat such as high fat and carbohydrates content food items were the main source of energy for ancient us. Human gradually developed the craving of eating those high fat and carbohydrate content food, because of which we are pulled towards those hot burgers and juicy lamb chops.

So, if you need to blame someone for your eating habits blame it on the ancestors.

To plan our diet. Let us try to understand very basic things that your dietician will never tell you.

Energy Giving Food-

 There are only 3 sources of energy giving food, that is Carbohydrate (CHO), Protein and Fat. No Vitamin, Minerals or Water will provide us energy.

 Our food items contain complex molecules, which are Carbohydrates, Protein, and Fats which in turn breaks down into simpler molecules and releases energy. If there is an excess of this energy then required it will be stored in the form of fat in our body so that it would be utilized when needed.

 1 gm of Carbohydrate that we consume gives a total of 4 Kilocalories (Kcal). Let us take an example to understand it better. Sugar almost has 100% content, 1 tsp of sugar contains around 5gms of sugar. As we read earlier 1gm CHO gives 4 KCL of energy therefore 1 tsp will give us 5 x 4= 20 (Kcal) of energy. Easy isn’t it!

 Similar to CHO 1 gm of protein provides us with 4 Kcal of Energy.

 I have reserved Fats for the last, as it is the highest calorie providing substance. 1 gm/ml of fat will provide 9 kcal of energy. Similar to CHO let us try to understand its calculation. 1 tsp contains 4-5 ml of oil. So the calorific gain with 1 tsp oil will be 5 x 9= 45. This is more than the double of what CHO or Protein will provide us.

What’s My Calorific requirement???

Now that we have understood the calculations related to our food items, let us now focus on how much calories we require. The calorific requirement varies for each group of individuals.

It depends on the sex of person, pathological or physiological changes in the body (Disease, pregnancy etc), and what kind of lifestyle we have. As we, all can understand that there will be different calorific requirements for a hard construction worker and an accountant. We can broadly classify the per day calorific requirement if 3 categories on the basis of our work/ lifestyle:-

a)  Heavy worker

b)  Moderate worker

c)  Sedentary worker

An average male adult moderate worker requires a per day requirement of 2800 Kcal whereas an average female adult would require 2100 kcals per day.

How to plan my diet?

Let us take an example of a 25 years old man Will, he is a doctor by profession and work at a hospital near to his house. He is moderate working male and the only exercise he does is walking from his home to the hospital and return to his home. He is 65 Kgs, which is an average weight as per his age.

As we know, he comes under the category of moderate working adult and his calorific requirement per day would be 2800 kcal. So now, the question that you all must have in your mind will be how he would plan his diet or how would I plan my diet?
Few things that we should keep in mind for planning our daily diet would be.

 Our diet should contain correct amounts of CHO, Proteins, and Fats. We also require minerals and vitamins in our diet.

 Per day, a healthy diet should contain 60% of energy from CHO+ 25% from protein and 15% from fats.

 We must know the nutrition content of our food items.

The Calculation-

Now we come to the point when we are able to calculate the exact amount of CHO, Protein, and Fats that we can take. Don’t get afraid I will not take you into deep calculations but share the exact amounts to you. However, if you wish you can check it.
So, the daily diet of Will should have 60% of his energy from CHO. After calculation, it would come as 420gms of CHO per day, which will provide him with 1680 Kcal of his daily requirement.

Similarly, as we know the protein requirement is near 25 % so for a healthy diet for which he should consume around 175gms of protein, which in turn will provide him with 700 Kcal of energy.
Fats should contribute around 15% for which Will has to take around 46 ml of fat content in his diet, which is sufficient to provide him 420 Kcal of energy.

People say that food is enjoyed best at tables, so let us plan it on tables as well

Sex

Lifestyle

Calorific requirement /day

Carbohydrates

Proteins

Fats

Male

Moderate

2800 Kcal

420 gms

175 gms

46 ml

Female

Moderate

2100 Kcal

315 gms

131 gms

35 ml.

Know the content of your food-

Now we know that how much to eat per day to be healthy we must know the content of our food and so we can maintain our diet chat. One more thing we should keep in mind while planning our diet is that we should spread the content adequately throughout the day. Never skip a diet or stop yourself when you are hungry.

Cause food is not a foe but a friend.

Written by : Ashish Noel

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