macro/micro nutritents explained


Super Moderator


This thread is meant as a quick reference guide to explain briefly what nutrients are and the main sources of them. It isnt an in depth discussion about nutrients or any aspects of them, simply a quick reference guide, handy for n00bs or for anyone wanting to ensure they have a balanced diet.

The thread is divided into sections. The first covers the macronutrients plus water and fibre. From there the thread moves to vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients to alcohols and artificial food components which are briefly mentioned due to the frequency they appear in modern foods. This is followed up by a links section which also doubles as the references for this thread.

After a nutrient is listed and basically described, at least 5 examples of whole foods high in that particular nutrient are listed. What you will notice is the foods which come up again and again. Lean meats, dairy, grains, fruits, vegetables, etc. These foods should be forming the basis and majority of your diet. This thread is also handy if you wanted to choose a food to enable you to up your intake of a certain nutrient such as a particular mineral.



Dihydrogen oxide (H2O) or water is a colourless, tasteless liquid under normal circumstances. Liquid water is essential to life and therefore is the most important and essential nutrient. Water is obtained by drinking and by eating food. It is mainly lost through perspiration, respiration and urination. Water contains no calories.

Water is the basis for the fluids of the body. Water makes up more than two-thirds of the weight of the human body. Without water, humans would die in a few days. All the cells and organs need water to function. Water is the basis of blood, saliva and the fluids surrounding the joints. Water regulates the body temperature through perspiration. It also helps prevent constipation by moving food through the intestinal tract and eliminates waste from the body through filtering by the kidneys. The human brain is around 80% water by weight and is very sensitive to dehydration. For a bodybuilder, adequate hydration is just as important than adequate nutrition. In a survival situation, hydration is much more important than nutrition.


Protein is one of the basic components of food and makes all life possible. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. All of the antibodies and enzymes, and many of the hormones in the body are proteins. They provide for the transport of nutrients, oxygen and waste throughout the body. They provide the structure and contracting capability of muscles. They also provide collagen to connective tissues of the body and to the tissues of the skin, hair and nails. Proteins contain 4 calories per gram.

MEATS - Meat cuts should be lean, trimmed & skinless.

- Poultry: Chicken, Turkey, Goose, Game Birds, etc. (Be sure to remove skin. If buying ground meat ensure it is lean.)
- Red Meat: Any quality lean meat from Cows, Elk, Buffalo, Kangaroo, Game. (If buying ground meat ensure it is lean.)
- Other Meats: Pork, Lamb, Lean Ham, etc. (Ensure you buy the leaner cuts as these meats can be quite fatty.)
- Fish: Fresh Cod, Snapper, Salmon, Swordfish, Canned Fish. (Most fish are lean but the fattier fish are high in healthy fats)
- Shellfish: Includes: Mussels, Oysters, Scallops, Prawns, Lobsters, etc.

DAIRY - Choose mostly low fat dairy products

- Milk, Powdered Milk (Choose mostly skim milk. Can be Cow/goat/sheep, etc)
- Low Fat Cottage Cheese & Natural Yoghurt. (These foods include the benefits of bacterial cultures to improve gut health)
- Cheeses & Other Dairy Products. (Cheeses are very high in fat, choose softer cheeses where possible)
- Eggs, Powdered Egg (Egg whites are pure protein, egg yolks contain fat and protein)

VEGETABLE PROTEINS - Vegetable proteins are often "incomplete" so it is wise to vary them or add dairy/meat

- Raw Nuts & Seeds: (These are also high in healthy fats and contain carbohydrate)
- Grain Protein: (Many grains eg: wheats, rices, etc contain significant amounts of proteins)
- Bean/Vegetable Protein: (Soyabeans are the main protein source here, although other beans and vegetables contain protein)

PROTEIN SUPPLEMENTS These are available in powders/bars/drinks/etc.

- Whey Protein: (A fast digesting milk protein. Available in various forms/fractions)
- Casein Protein: (A slow digesting milk protein.)
- Soy Protein: (Derived from soyabeans.)
- Egg Protein: (Primarily the protein albumin, this is a slow digesting protein)
- Vegetable Proteins: (Can be found in the form of Wheat, Pea, Spirulina Protein, etc)

- Amino Acids: (These are the building blocks of proteins. They are present in protein containing foods or available as free form powders or capsules. The essential amino acids * are amino acids that cannot be synthesized by the body from other available resources, and therefore must be supplied as part of the diet. "Complete" proteins contain all of these, whilst "incomplete" proteins do not. The amino acids are:

Alanine, Arginine, Asparagine, Aspartic Acid, Cysteine, Glutamic Acid, Glutamine, Glycine, Histidine, Isoleucine*, Leucine*, Lysine, Methionine*, Phenylalanine*, Proline, Serine, Threonine*, Tryptophan*, Tyrosine, Valine*

Carbohydrates: Complex carbs also contain fibre.

Carbohydrates are the chief source of energy for all bodily functions and muscular exertion. They are necessary for the digestion and assimilation of other foods. They help regulate protein and fat metabolism, and fats require carbohydrates to be broken down in the liver. They also provide some of the structural components necessary for the growth and repair of tissues. All carbohydrates contain 4 calories per gram.

SIMPLE CARBOHYDRATES - These are the small molecule carbohydrates or sugars

- Sugar Cane & Sugar Beets (The main commercial sources of sugar)
- Fresh Fruit & Berries (These contain mainly fructose, a low GI sugar)
- Honey (Honey contains a mix of glucose and fructose)
- Milk (Milk and milk products contain the sugar lactose)
- Prepared Sugars (Glucose/Fructose/Lactose/Maltose, etc. Found in drinks or free form)

COMPLEX CARBOHYDRATES - These are long chains of simple carbohydrates, that breakdown to release sugars

- Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Pumpkin & Squash
- Yams, Parsnips & Other Root Vegetables
- Corn, Oats Wheat & Other Grains.
- Wholegrain Flours, Breads & Pastas.
- Brans, Weet Bix & Shredded Wheat Cereals.
- Ancient Grains (Amaranth, Millet, Teth, etc).
- Basmati, Brown & Wild Rice.
- Raw Nuts, Seeds, Beans, Lentils, Couscous & Other Pulses, etc.
- Vegetables such as Carrots and Peas.

Fats / Oils: All oils ideally should be cold pressed, extra virgin and of high quality.

Fatty acids are individual isomers of what we more commonly call "fats". There are potentially hundreds of different fatty acids, but just a few dozen that are commonly found in the foods we eat. Nutritionists commonly classify dietary fat as either saturated, monounsaturated, or polyunsaturated, based on the number of double bonds that exist in the fat's molecular structure. For each of these three classes, there exists a large number of different chemical variations or "isomers". These include the EFA's or Essential Fatty Acids. Fats are required to produce and build new cells. They are a source of energy and are critical in the transmission of nerve impulses and brain function and development. They are also involved in the synthesis of other essential molecules such as hormones. Fats contain 9 calories per gram.

VEGETABLE FAT SOURCES - These are mostly high in mono and polyunsaturated fats and contain EFA's

- Flaxseed, Hempseed, Evening Primrose, Almond, Canola, Olive and Most Other Plant Oils.
- Whole Raw Nuts & Seeds (Some whole seeds need to be cracked or ground to be digested)
- MCT Oils (These are medium chain saturated fats derived from coconut oil, available as a supplement)

ANIMAL FAT SOURCES - These can be high in mono and polyunsaturated and saturated fats and contain EFA's

- Salmon, Cod, Halibut, Shellfish & Other Fatty Fish/Fish Oils (Fish are high in unsaturated fats and EFA's)
- Dairy Products (Can vary in fat content wildly and can contain high levels of saturated fat)
- Lean Meat & Poultry (Even when trimmed and skinless, these provide fat. Can be high in saturated fat)
- Eggs (Only the yolk contains the mainly saturated fat)

Fibre - Fibre has no caloric value but is still classed as a macronutrient

Dietary fibers are large carbohydrate molecules containing many different sorts of monosaccharides. The key difference between fiber and other carbohydrates is that they are not broken down by the human digestive system.

There Are Two Types Of Fiber: Soluble & Insoluble

These are often found together in the same source.

Soluble fibres can be dissolved in water (hence the name). These fibers are beneficial in that they can slow the speed of digestion due to their thickness. They are also helpful in maintaining artery health.

Insoluble fibers are such things as cellulose which do not dissolve in water. Insoluble fibers do not affect the speed of digestion. They are beneficial to gut health.

- Broccoli / Cauliflower / Cabbage
- Celery / Lettuce / Spinach / Watercress
- Mushrooms / Onions / Carrots
- Green Beans / Peas / Asparagus / Kale
- Bean & Vegetable Sprouts / Beetroot / Leeks
- Cucumber / Zucchini / Aubergine
- Tomato / Capsicum / Silverbeet
- Frozen Mixed Vegetables
- Any Other Non-starchy Vegetable (or similar) of Any Colour
- Any Grain or Grain Product
- Fruits & Berries
- Legumes


Vitamin A - Retinol, Retinal & Retinoic Acid

Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin with multiple functions in the body. It helps cells differentiate, an essential part of cell reproduction. It is a central component for healthy vision; vitamin A nourishes cells in various structures of the eye and is required for the transduction of light into nerve signals in the retina. It is required during pregnancy, stimulating normal growth and development of the fetus by influencing genes that determine the sequential growth of organs in embryonic development. It influences the function and development of sperm, ovaries and placenta and is a vital component of the reproductive process.

- Eggs & Dairy
- Salmon and Fish
- Yellow Fruits & Vegetables
- Prunes
- Blueberries

Vitamin B1 - Thiamin

Vitamin B1 is a water-soluble vitamin that the body requires to break down carbohydrates, fat and protein. Every cell of the body requires vitamin B1 to form adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Vitamin B1 is also essential for the proper functioning of nerve cells.

- Whole Grains
- Meat
- Nuts
- Yeast Products
- Legumes

Vitamin B2 - Riboflavin

Vitamin B2 is a water-soluble vitamin that helps the body process amino acids and fats, activate vitamin B6 and folic acid, and helps convert carbohydrates to adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Under some conditions, vitamin B2 can act as an antioxidant.

- Leafy Green Vegetables
- Fish
- Eggs & Dairy
- Meat & organ Meats
- Whole Grains

Vitamin B3 - Niacin

Vitamin B3 is required for cell respiration and helps release the energy in carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. It also supports proper circulation and healthy skin, functioning of the nervous system, and normal secretion of bile and stomach fluids. It is used in the synthesis of sex hormones, treating schizophrenia and other mental illnesses, and as a memory-enhancer.

- Poultry & Meats
- Nuts
- Whole Grains
- Fish
- Dairy Products

Vitamin B5 - Pantothenic Acid

Vitamin B5 plays an important role in releasing energy from sugars and fats. It is also important in the production of fats and also has a role in modifying the shape of proteins.

- Peas & Beans
- Whole Grains
- Meats
- Poultry
- Fruits

Vitamin B6 - Pyridoxal, Pyridoxamine & Pyridoxine

Vitamin B6 is a water-soluble vitamin and is part of the vitamin B complex. Vitamin B6 plays a role in the synthesis of antibodies by the immune system, which are needed to fight many diseases. It helps maintain normal nerve function and also acts in the formation of red blood cells. Vitamin B6 is also required for the chemical reactions needed to digest proteins. The higher the protein intake, the more the need for vitamin B6.

- Bananas
- Potatoes
- Meats & Organ Meats
- Fish & Poultry
- Leafy Green Vegetables

Vitamin B9 - Folic Acid

Vitamin B9, also known as Folic acid, is a B vitamin necessary for cell replication and growth. Folic acid helps form building blocks of DNA, which holds the body?s genetic information, and building blocks of RNA, needed for protein synthesis. Folic acid is most important, then, for rapidly growing tissues, such as those of a fetus, and rapidly regenerating cells, like red blood cells and immune cells.

- Leafy Greens
- Fermented Foods
- Offal Meats
- Bran Cereals
- Tea

Vitamin B12 - Cyanocobalamin

Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin needed for normal nerve cell activity, DNA replication, and production of the mood-affecting substance SAMe (S-adenosyl-L-methionine). Vitamin B12 acts with folic acid and vitamin B6 to control homocysteine levels. An excess of homocysteine has been linked to an increased risk of coronary disease, stroke and other diseases such as osteoporosis and Alzheimer?s.

- Dairy Products
- Eggs
- Fish
- Meats
- Fermented foods

Vitamin C - Ascorbic Acid
Vitamin C is an essential water-soluble vitamin that has a wide range of functions in the human body.

One of vitamin C?s important functions is acting as an antioxidant, protecting LDL cholesterol from oxidative damage. When LDL is damaged the cholesterol appears to lead to heart disease, but vitamin C acts as an important antioxidant protector of LDL. Vitamin C may also protect against heart disease by reducing the stiffness of arteries and the tendency of platelets to coagulate in the vein.

Vitamin C has a range of additional functions. Its is needed to make collagen, a substance that strengthens many parts of the body, such as muscles and blood vessels, and plays important roles in healing and as an antihistamine. Vitamin C also aids in the formation of liver bile which helps to detoxify alcohol and other substances. Evidence indicates that vitamin C levels in the eye decrease with age and that vitamin C supplements prevent this decrease, lowering the risk of developing cataracts.

- Berries
- Fruits esp. citrus
- Red Peppers & Tomatoes
- Broccoli & Spinach
- Sprouts

Vitamin D - Calcitriol

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that helps maintain blood levels of calcium, by increasing absorption from food and reducing urinary calcium loss. Both functions help keep calcium in the body and therefore spare the calcium that is stored in bones. Vitamin D may also transfer calcium from the bone to the blood, which may actually weaken bones. Though the overall effect of vitamin D on the bones is complicated, some vitamin D is certainly necessary for healthy bones and teeth.

- Fatty Fish
- Eggs
- Organ Meats
- Milk
- Sunlight

Vitamin E - Alpha-Tocopherol

Vitamin E is an antioxidant that protects cell membranes and other fat-soluble parts of the body, such as LDL cholesterol (the ?bad? cholesterol), from damage. Several studies have reported that supplements of natural vitamin E help reduce the risk of heart attacks.

Vitamin E also plays some role in the body?s ability to process glucose. Some trials suggest that vitamin E may help in the prevention and treatment of diabetes.

In the last decade, the functions of vitamin E have been further clarified. In addition to its antioxidant functions, vitamin E has now been shown to directly effect inflammation, blood cell regulation, connective tissue growth and genetic control of cell division.

- Nuts & Seeds
- Avocado
- Vegtables and Vegetable Oils
- Whole Grains
- Organ Meats & Eggs

Vitamin H - Biotin

Vitamin H is actually part of the B-complex. It is involved in energy production, synthesis of fatty acids and support of nervous system growth

- Dairy Products
- Meat & Poultry
- Oats & Grains
- Soyabeans and Legumes
- Mushrooms & Nuts

Vitamin K - Phylloquinone & Menaquinone

Vitamin K is necessary for proper bone growth and blood coagulation. Vitamin K accomplishes this by helping the body transport calcium. Vitamin K is used to treat overdoses of the drug warfarin. Also, doctors prescribe vitamin K to prevent excessive bleeding in people taking warfarin but requiring surgery.

- Leafy Vegetables
- Whole Grains
- Eggs
- Polyunsaturated Oils
- Seaweed



Of all the essential minerals in the human body, Calcium is the most abundant. Calcium helps the body form bones and teeth and is required for blood clotting, transmitting signals in nerve cells, and muscle contraction. Calcium helps prevent osteoporosis; of the two to three pounds of calcium contained in the human body, 99% is located in the bones and teeth.

Calcium also seems to play a role in lowering blood pressure, and has been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease in postmenopausal women.

- Dairy Products
- Fish w/bones
- Whole Grains, Seeds & Nuts
- Green Vegetables
- Beans


Present in the body as the chloride ion,this and sodium are essential to life. It is responsible in part for maintennance of membrane potential in nreves, nutrient absorption and transport, maintennance of blood volume and pressure, and many more fuctions.

- Table Salt
- Tap and Bottled Water
- Seafood
- Pickled foods
- Salted Foods


A trace element, chromium is essential in the production of a substance called glucose tolerance factor (GTF) which is important in the utilisation of insulin, a hormone which stabilises blood sugar. It is also involved in the synthesis of fatty acids and cholesterol.

- Fermented Foods
- Whole Grains
- Dairy Products and Meats
- Grapes & Raisins
- Beets & Black pepper


Copper is a trace element that is essential for most animals, including humans. It is needed to absorb and utilize iron. The influence of copper upon health is due to the fact it is part of enzymes, which are proteins that help biochemical reactions occur in all cells. Copper is involved in the absorption, storage and metabolism of iron. The symptoms of a copper deficiency are similar to iron deficiency anemia. Copper may be absorbed by both the stomach and small intestinal mucosa, with most absorbed by the small intestine. Copper is found in the blood bound to proteins.

- Seafood
- Whole Grains & Nuts
- Meats & Organ Meats
- Legumes & Green Vegetables
- Molasses


Iodine aids in the development and functioning of the thyroid gland. It is an integral part of the hormone thyroxine, one of the thyroids major hormones. Thyroid hormones are essential for proper cellular metabolism.

- Shellfish
- Fish
- Seaweed
- Iodised Table salt
- Whole Grains


Iron is one of the human body?s essential minerals. It forms part of hemoglobin, the component of the blood that carries oxygen throughout the body. People with iron-poor blood tire easily because their bodies are starved for oxygen. Iron is also part of myoglobin, which helps muscles store oxygen. With insufficient iron, adenosine triphosphate (ATP; the fuel the body runs on) cannot be properly synthesized. As a result, some iron-deficient people can become fatigued even when they are not anemic.

- Seafood & Fish
- Meat & Organ Meats
- Poultry & Eggs
- Fruit & Vegetables
- Whole Grains & Legumes


Magnesium is an essential mineral for the human body. It is needed for protein, bone, and fatty acid formation, making new cells, activating B vitamins, relaxing muscles, blood clotting and forming adenosine triphosphate (ATP). The production and use of insulin also requires magnesium.

Under certain circumstances magnesium has been found to improve vision in people with glaucoma. Similarly, magnesium has demonstrated an ability to lower blood pressure.

- Meat & Dairy
- Fish
- Whole Grains & Green Vegetables
- Nuts & Beans
- Fruits


Manganese is an essential trace mineral that is required in small amounts to manufacture enzymes necessary for the metabolism of proteins and fat. It also supports the immune system, blood sugar balance, and is involved in the production of cellular energy, reproduction and bone growth.

Manganese works with Vitamin K to support normal blood clotting. Working with the B-complex vitamins, manganese helps promote a positive outlook when faced with stress, frustration, and anxiety.

- Seeds & Nuts
- Whole Grains & Leafy Vegetables
- Berries & Fruit
- Eggs & Avocado
- Tea & Seaweed


Molybdenum is an essential trace mineral in animal and human nutrition. It is found in several tissues of the human body and is required for the activity of some enzymes that are involved in catabolism, including the catabolism of purines and the sulfur amino acids. Animals can be made molybdenum deficient by feeding them diets containing high amounts of tungsten or copper.

- Legumes
- Dark Leafy Green Vegetables
- Whole Grains
- Dairy Products
- Organ Meats


Phosphorus is an essential mineral that is usually found in nature combined with oxygen as phosphate. Most phosphate in the human body is in bone, but phosphate-containing molecules (phospholipids) are also important components of cell membranes and lipoprotein particles, such as good (HDL) and bad (LDL) cholesterol. Small amounts of phosphate are engaged in biochemical reactions throughout the body.

The role of phosphate-containing molecules in aerobic exercise reactions has suggested that phosphate loading might enhance athletic performance, though controlled research has produced inconsistent results.

- Fermented Foods
- Meats & Poultry
- Whole Grains & Seeds
- Dairy & Eggs
- Mushrooms & Vegetables


Potassium is an essential mineral needed to regulate water balance, levels of acidity and blood pressure. Potassium, together with sodium-potassium inside the cell and sodium in the fluid surrounding the cell, work together for the nervous system to transmit messages as well as regulating the contraction of muscles.

People with low blood levels of potassium who are undergoing heart surgery are at an increased risk of developing heart arrhythmias and an increased need for cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Potassium is also required for carbohydrate and protein metabolism.

- Fruits & Vegetables
- Legumes & Whole Grains
- Seeds & Nuts
- Dairy & Meats
- Poultry & Fish


Selenium is an essential trace mineral. Selenium activates an antioxidant enzyme called glutathione peroxidase, which may help protect the body from cancer. Yeast-derived forms of selenium have induced "apoptosis" (programmed cell death) in cancer cells in test tubes and in animals. One study found that men consuming the most dietary selenium developed 65% fewer cases of advanced prostate cancer than did men with low levels of selenium intake.

Selenium is also essential for healthy immune functioning. Even in a non-deficient population of elderly people, selenium supplementation has been found to stimulate the activity of white blood cells. Selenium is also needed to activate thyroid hormones.

- Nuts & Seeds
- Whole Grains
- Fish & Shellfish
- Fermented Foods
- Organ Meats


Sodium functions with chloride and bicarbonate to maintain a balance of positive and negative ions (electrically charged particles) in our body fluids and tissues. The body receives sodium primarily in the form of table salt (sodium chloride). Sodium, the principal extracellular ion, has the property of holding water in body tissues.

Sodium is vital component of nerves as it stimulates muscle contraction. Sodium also helps to keep calcium and other minerals soluble in the blood, as well as stimulating the adrenal glands. High sodium levels can cause high blood pressure. Sodium aids in preventing heat prostration or sunstroke

- Table Salt
- Fermented Foods
- Fish, Shellfish & Seaweed
- Soy Products
- Peppers & Pickles


Sulfur is needed in the formation of the hormones and is a component of some amino acids. Important in the manufacture of many proteins, it also helps keeps your energy levels stable. Helps to keep hair, muscles and skin health and contributes to fat digestion and absorption. Found in insulin and helps to regulate blood sugar. Combines with toxins to neutralize them.

- Beans & Vegetables
- Meats & Eggs
- Fish & Garlic
- Fish
- Dairy Products


Zinc is an essential mineral with a wide variety of functions within the human body. Zinc is a component of over 300 enzymes needed to repair wounds, maintain fertility in adults and growth in children, synthesize protein, help cells reproduce, preserve vision, boost immunity, and protect against free radicals, among other functions.

- Whole Grains & Vegetables
- Meat & Poultry
- Fish & Shellfish
- Eggs & Dairy
- Seeds & Mushrooms



Flavonoids, an array of over 6,000 different substances found in virtually all plants and are responsible for many of the yellow, orange, and red plant colors. Most flavonoids function in the human body as antioxidants. In this capacity, they help neutralize overly reactive oxygen-containing molecules and prevent these overly reactive molecules from damaging parts of cells. Flavonoids have also been shown to play a role in fighting excessive inflammation and have also shown antiviral activity. Flavonoids are comprised of groups such as flavonols, dihydroflavonols, flavones, isoflavones, flavanones, anthocyanins, and anthocyanidins. Examples of flavonoids are quercetin, hesperidin and the soy isoflavones.

- Coloured Fruits
- Berries
- Cabbage, Onions and Parsley
- Soybeans and Soy products
- Tomatoes


Carotenoids represent one of the most widespread groups of naturally occurring pigments. Like Flavonoids, these compounds are largely responsible for the red, yellow, and orange color of fruits and vegetables, and are also found in many dark green vegetables. Many of the carotenoids are Vitamin A precursors, so help with Vitamin A deficiency. They also have strong antioxidant and immune enhancing activity and have been shown to play a role in enhancing cell communication. Carotenoids include molecules such as lutein, lycopene and beta cryptoxanthin.

- Carrots
- Tomatoes and Coloured Vegetables
- Sweet Potatoes
- Spinach
- Collard Greens


Lecithin is a fatlike substance called a phospholipid. It is produced daily by the liver if the diet is adequate. It is needed by every cell in the body and is a key building block of cell membranes. Lecithin protects cells from oxidation and largely comprises the protective sheaths surrounding the brain. It is composed mostly of B vitamins, phosphoric acid, choline, linoleic acid and inositol. Although it is a fatty substance, it is also a fat emulsifier. Hence, it supports the circulatory system. Its choline is used in the production of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine.

- Eggs
- Soyabeans
- Peanuts
- Organ Meats
- Supplements

Co-Enzyme Q10

Coenzyme Q lies at the heart of our cells? energy producing process. Special organelles (tiny organs) inside our cells, called mitochondria, take fat and other substances and convert them into usable energy. This process always requires coenzyme Q. In some cells, like heart cells, this energy conversion process can be the difference between life and death ? and so can the activity of coenzyme Q. Coenzyme Q is a well-established antioxidant used by the body to protect cells from oxygen damage. It is also referred to as ubiquinone.

- Organ Meats
- Fish
- Whole Grain Germ
- Poultry
- Supplements


Cholesterol is a component of cell membranes and a precursor for synthesis of steroid hormones and vitamin D. The compound is synthesized in the liver under feedback control by dietary cholesterol. Because sufficient amounts of cholesterol can be synthesized endogenously to meet physiological demands, dietary cholesterol is not considered an essential nutrient for adults and children over the age of 2 years. Cholesterol is lipid sterol compound found exclusively in foods of animal origin such as dairy products, eggs, beef, pork, lamb, poultry and fish. The most concentrated sources of dietary cholesterol are liver and other organ meats, egg yolk, and shellfish. Plants contain sterol analogues of cholesterol called phytosterols. Cholesterol is mentioned here more for reference purposes, as dietary cholesterol is not essential in humans over 2.

- Organ Meats
- Egg Yolks
- Shellfish
- Meat and Poultry
- Whole Milk


Other than the carotenoids and flavonoids, there are many other phytonutrients (nutrients from plants) that are consumed regularly and have a proven beneficial effect on health. These benefits include, antioxidant properties, antitumour, cardioprotective and neuroprotective properties. Some major examples are:

- Indoles: Cruciferous vegetables
- Sulphurophane: Cruciferous vegetables
- Alicin: Garlic, Onions.
- Genistein: Soy products (e.g., tofu)
- Polyphenols: Green Tea
- Anthocyanins: Wild blueberries, bilberries, black berries
- Limonoids: Citrus Fruits
- Capsaicin: Chilli and Peppers
- Sterols: Cruciferous vegetables, cucumbers, squash, sweet potatoes, soy foods, eggplant, whole grains, tomatoes
- Elegiac acid: Strawberries
- Lignans: Nuts and seeds



Alcohol (ethanol) is the product of the fermentation of sugars in the absence of air. These sugars can be in free form or come from starches or grains. Ethanol is toxic to the body at moderate to high doses, but in low infrequent doses can have a beneficial effect on artery health. Alcoholic beverages are also full of the by-products of the fermentation proces and additives to flavour the drinks. Some of these can be beneficial, such as the tannins in red wine. Alcohol generally is counterproductive to a healthy lifestyle, but can be enjoyed sensibly and in moderation without fear of long term ill effects. Alcohol has 7 calories per gram.

- Beer, Cider, Mead
- Wines
- Spirits & Liquers
- Medicines, mouthwash and some herbal extracts
- Ingredient in some foods, eg: cakes, etc.

Artificial Sweetners:

Artificial sweetners are used as a no or low calorie substitute for sugar. There is much controversy surrounding some of them and links to diseases have been claimed. Some are completely artificial whilst others are extracted from natural sources. In general consumption of these should be limited. They are almost always found in processed foods, although they may be added to more wholesome foods to provide sweetness without sugar.

Sugar Alcohols: Polyols

Sugar alcohols, also called polyols - are a class of carbohydrate that are neither sugars nor alcohols. This group includes maltitol, sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, erythritol, lactitol, and hydrolysed starch hydrolysates (HSH). These popular sugar substitutes provide the bulk and sweetness of sugar and corn syrup, but are incompletely absorbed in the intestine. Thus they provide fewer calories and carbs than sugar, and result in a much slower, and smaller rise in blood sugar and insulin. They are generally recognised as safe for diabetics to consume for this reason, and products sweetened with these products may legally be labelled "sugar-free" in both Canada and the US. Polyols contain approximately 2 calories per gram.

Acesulfame K

Acesulfame Potassium (K) was approved for use by the FDA as a safe artificial sweetener in July, l988. It is a derivative of acetoacetic acid. Unfortunately, several potential problems associated with the use of acesulfame have been raised. They are based largely on animal studies since testing on humans remains limited. Acesulfame K stimulates insulin secretion in a dose dependent fashion thereby possibly aggravating reactive hypoglycemia ("low blood sugar attacks").


Aspartame, a dipeptide of aspartic acid and a methyl ester of phenylalanine, is approved for use in pharmaceutical products and is being used increasingly in chewable tablet and sugar-free formulations. Labels for both prescription and nonprescription products must include the phenylalanine content. The major consideration in the use of aspartame in children is in patients with autosomal recessive phenylketonuria.
Headache is the most common adverse side effect attributed to aspartame but is seldom confirmed by single-dose double-blind challenge.
In anecdotal reports, aspartame has been linked to various neuropsychiatric disorders, including panic attacks, mood changes, visual hallucinations, manic episodes, and isolated dizziness. None of these conditions has been rigorously proven to be caused by aspartame, but carefully conducted double-blind challenges may be indicated in patients with histories that suggest aspartame as a cause. Patients with underlying mitral valve prolapse or affective disorders may be at increased risk for neuropsychiatric effects; several studies have shown that individuals without psychiatric or seizure disorders do not demonstrate these effects.


Foods containing saccharin no longer carry a label stating that the "use of this product may be hazardous to your health ...contains saccharin which has been determined to cause cancer in laboratory animals." This warning was lifted in 2001 by the American FDA as saccharin no longer has been connected to cancer in human beings.

Saccharin may be present in drugs in substantial amounts. Ingestion of the recommended daily dosage of chewable aspirin or acetaminophen tablets in a school-age child would provide approximately the same amount of saccharin contained in one can of a diet soft drink. Saccharin is an O-toluene sulfonamide derivative and causes similar dermatologic reactions. Cross-sensitivity with sulfonamides has been demonstrated; therefore, children with "sulfa" allergy should also avoid saccharin. Other reactions include wheezing, nausea, diarrhea, tongue blisters, tachycardia, fixed eruptions, headache, diuresis, and sensory neuropathy. The American Medical Association has recommended limiting the intake of saccharin in young children and pregnant women.


Splenda, also known as sucralose, is an artificial sweetener, which is a chlorinated sucrose derivative. Despite the manufacturer's mis-statements, sucralose does break down into small amounts of 1,6-dichlorofructose, a chemical which has not been adequtely tested in humans. More importantly, sucralose must break down in the digestive system. If it didn't break down and react at all, it would not chemically-react on the tongue to provide a sweet taste. The truth is that sucralose does break down to some extent in the digestive system.


Another sweetener, stevioside, is championed by natural-foods advocates in the United States and is used in several countries, most notably Japan. Stevioside comes from the leaves of the stevia plant (Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni), a perennial shrub of the Asteraceae (Compositae) family native to Brazil and Paraguay. Stevia contains sweet-tasting glycosides, mainly stevioside; but also rebaudiosides A, B, C, D, and E; dulcoside A; and steviolbioside. Stevioside has a slight bitter aftertaste and provides 250 to 300 times the sweetness of sugar.

High Fructose Corn Syrup There are many forms of "syrups" , HCFS is the most common.

High-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is produced by processing corn starch to yield glucose, and then processing the glucose to produce a high percentage of fructose. HFCS has the exact same sweetness and taste as an equal amount of sucrose from cane or beet sugar but it is much more complicated to make, involving vats of fermenting liquid, fungus and chemical tweaking. HCFS consumption is linked to reduced insulin sensitivity, obesity and diabetes. It should be mostly avoided by those seeking to eat healthily.

Remember guys, 80% of your goals come from your diet. Check out 3J's Nutrition Network! There are before and afters of recent clients in the thread too!!
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New member
Amazing! The info that you have shared is really seems to be informative. I didn't get anything to write in front of this.
Thanks for sharing..


Excellent information about diet and nutrition , i found this information very helpful ...
thanks ..


Hey you have shared a nice information here. Through this shared information many people will be able to differentiate and also able to understand the importance of both macro and micro nutritions. I also was not aware about some of the nutritions that they are macro or micro but now there is no confusion.


That is an excellent post 3J, and i truly admire your diet knowledge. Sure helping me loads.


New member
The micronutrients are those nutritional components needed by the body in comparatively small amounts, usually measured in milligrams or micrograms, and may be classified into vitamins and minerals. And the macronutrients are fats, carbo, and protein. But all in all these nutrients are important to our health.


New member
Extremely interesting and knowledgeable explanation has given here for more acquainted with importance of nutrients and its actual need and necessity which is responsible for normal functioning of our body.I really enjoyed admirable elaboration of nutrients category and its each components .


New member
Hello Everybody

This is so interesting forum site and I am very impressed. I want to stay with you. Thanks.

Flax Seed