All human beings need nutrients to grow and live healthily. There are mainly two types of nutrients that we can use in our meals, and you can ingest these while eating eggs, milk, cereals, legumes, meat, fruit or vegetables.
Although both macronutrients and micronutrients can be obtained from the same source of food, they differ very clearly. In this article, learn what are macronutrients and micronutrients and the difference between them.
What are Macronutrients and Micronutrients
Characteristics of Macronutrients
What our body requires most is proteins, carbohydrates, and fat. Macronutrients are needed in large quantities to ensure optimal functioning of the entire body.
Carbohydrates are macronutrients and are a great source of glycogen; however, the body has little capacity to store glycogen, and once the reserves are replaced, the body will transform leftover carbohydrates into fat. For example, meat and fish contain protein and are highly nutritious foods, which provide the body with the necessary to recover well after sports.
Macronutrients provide energy to the body. That is, fats, proteins, and carbohydrates help provide energy to different parts of the body such as the kidneys, heart, and brain.
For the body to function normally, it must have enough energy to sustain the functions of the different organs, otherwise insufficient energy can lead to fatigue. The main types of foods rich in macronutrients are the following: meat, cereals, potatoes, yams, nuts, fish, water and oil seeds among others.
However, all excesses are bad, and macronutrient consumption is no exception.In fact, excessive consumption of macronutrients can be harmful for your health, and can even cause obesity or diabetes. You can also suffer numerous dental problems derived from high levels of acids that contain some macronutrients.
Characteristics of Micronutrients
Unlike macronutrients, the body requires micronutrients in small amounts. The micronutrients come mainly from minerals that exist in small quantities, so they cannot be consumed in large quantities. Vitamins are also an excellent example of micronutrients.
Micronutrients do not contain calories and therefore do not provide the energy of macronutrients, but are mainly composed of high volumes of antioxidants. These antioxidants play a fundamental role in protecting the body against various diseases and also eliminate toxins that can affect the overall health of a person.
Micronutrients are also essential for the creation of enzymes which really help improve different functions in our body. Some examples of micronutrients are vitamins and minerals that our body needs it in small amounts such as: fresh agricultural products, including green vegetables and fruits, iodized foods and eggs.
Many of the micronutrients should not be taken daily and can accumulate in the body when they are needed. For example, vitamin A can be stored in the liver and meet the needs of this vitamin in periods of 6 months and a year with a single intake.
It is vital to have a balanced diet so that the body can exercise its functions optimally and healthily.
What are Macronutrients and Micronutrients – The Differences
Macronutrients and micronutrients differ significantly due to many factors. Here are some:
We need macronutrients in large amounts in order to ensure optimal health and body performance. You can find these in large amounts in different types of food. In contrast, we need smaller amounts of micronutrients, and they often exist in smaller amounts in different types of foods as well.
Macronutrients primarily provide the body with the energy that is required by different organs to perform a variety of activities. They are also in charge of the repair of body tissues, storage of energy in the body by carbohydrates while fats maintain temperature and storage of vitamins, promote healthy function of the cells and the coagulation of the blood.
On the other hand, micronutrients promote muscle growth and improve health by preventing diseases that can attack the human body. The other main functions of the micronutrients include the following: promote the growth of healthy hair, promote good skin, promote the development of strong teeth and bones, the production of hormones that improve a strong immune system, as well as to prevent contagious diseases among others.
Examples of macronutrients include the following: carbohydrates for energy storage, fat for storing vitamins, as well as maintaining the appropriate body temperature and proteins that are responsible for maintaining the balance of enzymes and acids.
Examples of micronutrients include vitamins and minerals, which play a crucial role in promoting the healthy growth of hair, teeth, skin, cells, bones and the development of a strong immune system capable of combating different diseases in the body. Essentially, micronutrients are primarily responsible for the prevention of diseases and the promotion of optimal health.
Since we established what are macronutrients and micronutrients, here are some helpful things you need to know…
- Excessive consumption of macronutrients can be harmful to health, as it can cause problems such as obesity and diabetes, among others. The lack of sufficient macronutrients in the body can also lead to such problems as malnutrition.
Inadequate micronutrients in the body can cause some health-related issues. For example, scurvy and goiter are two diseases that can be caused by a deficiency of micronutrients in the body.
In general, it is imperative to maintain a proper and balanced diet to ensure that the body has sufficient macronutrients and micronutrients for optimal health to be achieved.
We hope that with today’s article “What are Macronutrients and Micronutrients” we have helped you understand how to do that better.