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Nutrients-theory Biology-day-15 Target-ssc-cgl-2018

Nutrients-theory Biology-day-15 Target-ssc-cgl-2018


The ingredients of food contain some components which are essential for the body. These are called nutrients. The major nutrients in our food are named carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals. In addition, food contains dietary fibres and water which are also needed by our body.

Main components of food are as follows :-


  • Energy giving component of food is called carbohydrate.
  • These carbohydrates are the organic compounds that contain carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.
  • C:H:O = 1:2:1.
  • Carbohydrates are of sugar, starch and cellulose.

Carbohydrates can be classified as…

  • Monosaccharides : Made up of single polyhydroxy or ketone unit.
  • Oligosaccharides : Made up of 2 to 10 monosaccharides.
  • Polysaccharides : Made up of more than 10 monosaccharides.


  • Carbohydrate gives glucose. Glucose is the source of immediate energy production in the cell.
  • Provide energy especially for the brain.
  • Regulation of blood glucose.
  • Helps in the formation of fats and amino acids.


Wheat, rice, potato, plants etc. Mainly present in the form of sugar, starch and cellulose.


  • Fats are made up of the saturated esters of glycerol and fatty acids.
  • Both glycerol and fatty acids contain carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.
  • Fats are solid at room temperature.
  • Oils are liquid at room temperature
  • Fatty acids are divided into two groups: saturated and unsaturated fatty acids.


  • Provides energy.
  • Protects organs from injuries.
  • Protects skin from losing heat.


  • Animal fats are saturated in nature and found in milk, meat, cheese, butter and etc.
  • Vegetable fats are trans-saturated and their sources are nut, coconut, almond, etc.
  • Vanaspati is prepared by converting the unsaturated fatty acids present in vegetable oils to saturated fatty acids.


  • Proteins contains carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen.
  • All the proteins are made up of smaller units called amino acids. So amino acids are termed as building blocks of proteins.
  • The proteins we eat in our diet are not absorbed as such. So they are broken down into amino acids by the protein digesting (proteolytic) enzymes in the digestive system.


  • Essential for formation and growth of cells, proyoplasm and tissues etc.
  • Vital in the maintenance of body tissue, including development and repair.
  • Provide energy to the body.
  • Acts as enzyme.
  • Important for physical growth of the body.
  • Helps in developing genetic characteristics.


Meat, fish, eggs, beans, yogurt, lentils, soy, groundnut, etc.

Diseases caused due to deficiency of proteins

  • Kwashiorkor : In this disease, stomach of a child bulges out while his hands and feet get slimmed.
  • Marasmus : In this disease, muscles of children are loosened.


  • Vitamins are vital amino-acids. Vitamins are discovered by Sir F.G. Hopkins.
  • Vitamins soluble in water: Vitamins B and C.
  • Vitamins soluble in fat: Vitamins A,D,E and K.
  • Synthesis of Vitamin D and Vitamin K only takes place in the body. Other vitamins are obtained from food.
  • Synthesis of Vitamin -D takes place by the Ultraviolet rays of present in the sunlight through cholesterol of skin
  • Vitamin K is synthesized in colon by the bacteria and from there it is absorbed.
  • Cobalt is found in Vitamin B12.
  • Vitamin A is mainly stored in liver.


  • Minerals are essential nutrients that are needed in small amount to keep healthy
  • Minerals are homogeneous inorganic materials which do not give energy or calories but can help with other functions in the body.
  • Human body does not make minerals.
  • It must obtained through diet.


  • Iron is the major component of haemoglobin.
  • Deficiency of iron causes anaemia.
  • Iron is available in green leafy vegetables, fish, egg yolks, etc.


  • Iodine is required for the production of thyroid hormone.
  • Deficiency of iodine results in hypothyroidism, goitre, reduction in metabolic rate and physical growth.
  • Iodine is available in seafood, iodised salts, etc.


  • Involved in the formation of bones and teeth.
  • Prevents tooth decay.
  • If a people consume large amount of fluoride which is present in drinking water this leads to a diseases called fluorosis.


  • It is the most essential component of body.
  • Around 70% weight of the body is water.
  • It controls the body temperature, regulates biochemical reactions etc.


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