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Another important requirement is that of nitrogen. Protein catabolism provides a source of organic nitrogen. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins and protein breakdown provides amino acids that are used for cellular function. The carbon and nitrogen derived from these become the building block for nucleotides, nucleic acids, proteins, cells, and tissues. Excess nitrogen must be excreted as it is toxic. Fats add flavor to food and promote a sense of satiety or fullness. Fatty foods are also significant sources of energy because one gram of fat contains nine calories. Fats are required in the diet to aid the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins and the production of fat-soluble hormones.

Essential nutrients

While the animal body can synthesize many of the molecules required for function from the organic precursors, there are some nutrients that need to be consumed from food. These nutrients are termed essential nutrients , meaning they must be eaten, and the body cannot produce them.

The omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid and the omega-6 linoleic acid are essential fatty acids needed to make some membrane phospholipids. Vitamins are another class of essential organic molecules that are required in small quantities for many enzymes to function and, for this reason, are considered to be co-enzymes. Absence or low levels of vitamins can have a dramatic effect on health, as outlined in [link] and [link] . Both fat-soluble and water-soluble vitamins must be obtained from food. Minerals , listed in [link] , are inorganic essential nutrients that must be obtained from food. Among their many functions, minerals help in structure and regulation and are considered co-factors. Certain amino acids also must be procured from food and cannot be synthesized by the body. These amino acids are the “essential” amino acids. The human body can synthesize only 11 of the 20 required amino acids; the rest must be obtained from food. The essential amino acids are listed in [link] .

Water-soluble Essential Vitamins
Vitamin Function Deficiencies Can Lead To Sources
Vitamin B 1 (Thiamine) Needed by the body to process lipids, proteins, and carbohydrates Coenzyme removes CO 2 from organic compounds Muscle weakness, Beriberi: reduced heart function, CNS problems Milk, meat, dried beans, whole grains
Vitamin B 2 (Riboflavin) Takes an active role in metabolism, aiding in the conversion of food to energy (FAD and FMN) Cracks or sores on the outer surface of the lips (cheliosis); inflammation and redness of the tongue; moist, scaly skin inflammation (seborrheic dermatitis) Meat, eggs, enriched grains, vegetables
Vitamin B 3 (Niacin) Used by the body to release energy from carbohydrates and to process alcohol; required for the synthesis of sex hormones; component of coenzyme NAD + and NADP + Pellagra, which can result in dermatitis, diarrhea, dementia, and death Meat, eggs, grains, nuts, potatoes
Vitamin B 5 (Pantothenic acid) Assists in producing energy from foods (lipids, in particular); component of coenzyme A Fatigue, poor coordination, retarded growth, numbness, tingling of hands and feet Meat, whole grains, milk, fruits, vegetables
Vitamin B 6 (Pyridoxine) The principal vitamin for processing amino acids and lipids; also helps convert nutrients into energy Irritability, depression, confusion, mouth sores or ulcers, anemia, muscular twitching Meat, dairy products, whole grains, orange juice
Vitamin B 7 (Biotin) Used in energy and amino acid metabolism, fat synthesis, and fat breakdown; helps the body use blood sugar Hair loss, dermatitis, depression, numbness and tingling in the extremities; neuromuscular disorders Meat, eggs, legumes and other vegetables
Vitamin B 9 (Folic acid) Assists the normal development of cells, especially during fetal development; helps metabolize nucleic and amino acids Deficiency during pregnancy is associated with birth defects, such as neural tube defects and anemia Leafy green vegetables, whole wheat, fruits, nuts, legumes
Vitamin B 12 (Cobalamin) Maintains healthy nervous system and assists with blood cell formation; coenzyme in nucleic acid metabolism Anemia, neurological disorders, numbness, loss of balance Meat, eggs, animal products
Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid) Helps maintain connective tissue: bone, cartilage, and dentin; boosts the immune system Scurvy, which results in bleeding, hair and tooth loss; joint pain and swelling; delayed wound healing Citrus fruits, broccoli, tomatoes, red sweet bell peppers

Questions & Answers

what diseases and mode of sickness it causes and vector
Biola Reply
what is Biology
Sheku Reply
what is biology
Abel
biology is the study of life basically
Ajipha
bio means life and logy means study
Biola
what is biology?
William Reply
the study of living things
Joe
what's marketing
Mirabel Reply
what are hormones
Mirabel
what is meant by th word photosynthesis
MARTHA Reply
it is the process where by chloropherious plant manufacture their food with the presence of sunlight , chlorophyll and water etc.
Kosoe
it is the process by which green plant manufacture their food through sunlight and water ,chlorophyll.
Biola
what is biology
stallon Reply
is the study living things
Zhayma
and non living things
Zhayma
what is water circle?
Faith Reply
please i asks whether this biology is for university
Sky Reply
for secondary
stallon
Copulation means coming together of male and female in the present of sexual Intercourse.
LEKAN Reply
what are the adaptive features of nervous system
Ridhwan
Please what is ovulation
Adusei Reply
What is cell division?
Adusei
What is copulation?
Adusei
bhaiya didi Gate mat
qaisar
bajali ji ka matlab Aur Payal Chaudhary ka matlab
qaisar
please tell me adaptive features of nervous system
Ridhwan
what is a metaborism
Beatrice Reply
this is a specialized part of the cell eg Nucleus
David Reply
what are adaptive features of nervous system
Ridhwan
what are the organelles?
Faith Reply
what is reproduction
mana Reply
reproduction is the process by which living organisms give rise to young ones of their own kind
Miriam
What is evolution
Wengelawit
the production of new forms of life over time as documented in the fossil record.
mana
hmm
Marvin
give two parasites where secondary host is water snail?
Kevin Reply

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Source:  OpenStax, Biology. OpenStax CNX. Feb 29, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11448/1.10
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