Food is any material consumed to give nutrition to an organism, usually in a living system for the purpose of supporting the growth of an individual or the whole body of a species. Food is generally of vegetable, animal or fungi origin, and has essential nutrients, like proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, or any other minerals, that are required for their physiological processes. The specific foods vary from one culture to another, but most of them are rich in carbohydrates (e.g., vegetables), protein (e.g., meat), vitamins (e.g., fruits), and minerals (e.g., salt). The components of food can be separated into two main categories: carbohydrates and protein.
Carbohydrates are the main source of energy in the human body, with proteins being the most important components of proteins. Carbohydrates provide the majority of the calories required by the body for normal daily activities. They are the main source of glucose or sugar used for energy by the cells for energy production. Many carbohydrates are complex in structure, making it difficult to digest for the body, and require complex digestive enzymes for processing. This process results in the break down of carbohydrates into simple compounds that can be used by the body for energy production.
Proteins are the major part of most plants, providing the essential amino acids and other nutrients that the cell needs to grow and function. These substances can be broken down into simple molecules called amino acids, which are the building blocks of the body’s proteins. Some fats are also part of proteins, although they are generally not used as energy production by the cells. A lack of essential fats can cause a person to become deficient in energy, result in lethargy and lack of muscular activity, and eventually cause obesity. A proper balance of carbohydrates and proteins is important for a healthy, disease-free immune system.