Enzymes are present in raw, natural, unprocessed foods. They promote and aid in digestion of foods for the release of energy. Enzymes are the vitamins and minerals found in whole grains, beans, legumes, leafy green and yellow vegetables, fruits, seeds, and nuts. Enzymes are made with protein. They regulate the body’s metabolic functions in the presence of water and oxygen.
Glucose, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and the B vitamins release energy to muscle cells that move the chest cage and diaphragm so we can breathe.
Oxygen, carbon dioxide, and water released from foods undergo a change in the lungs to help maintain blood pH and homeostasis. This is critical for our survival.
Another function of food is the detoxification and efficient elimination of waste from the body. Critical for this is fiber, which binds with toxic substances, makes them harmless and carries them safely outside the body. The detoxification and elimination organs of the body are the liver, gallbladder, colon, kidneys, lungs, and skin. Allies to protein are the antioxidants of vitamin A, C, E, the flavonoids, carotenoids, and selenium. All of these protect the cells from free-radical damage. Fiber binds cholesterol and toxins. With adequate water they are flushed out of the body.
Every cell has the same basic nutritional needs, but each one has extra nutrient requirements for its specialized function. For example, bones and teeth need more calcium than the blood; the eyes need more flavonoids, carotenoids, vitamin C, E, and zinc. To give further insight into these special needs, the following will show where the body uses the nutrients we eat:
Brain and Nervous System
Protein – Glucose – Lipids – Essential Fatty Acids – Vitamin C – Potassium – Vitamin E – Sodium – Zinc – B Complex – Calcium – Riboflavin – Magnesium – Niacin – Phosphorus
Skin, Hair, and Nails
Protein – Carotenoids – Vitamin C – B Vitamins – Zinc – Vitamin E
Protein – Vitamin C – Carotenoids – Lutein – Zeaxanthin – Vitamin E – Zinc
Teeth and Gums
Protein – Carotenoids – Vitamin C – Calcium – Phosphorus – Fluorine
Digestion, Liver and Gallbladder
Protein – Niacin – Lipids/Fats – Zinc – Carbohydrates – Potassium – Vitamin B12 – Sodium – Selenium – Carotenoids – Lecithin
Protein – Vitamin C – Folic Acid – Calcium – Magnesium – Phosphorus – Vitamin B6 – Biotin – Essential Fats – Sodium – Potassium – Magnesium – Manganese – Chromium
Heart/Blood – Bone Marrow
Protein – Essential Fatty Acids – Vitamin E – Vitamin C – Vitamin K – Vitamin B6 – Vitamin B12 – Iron – Folic acid – Biotin – Calcium – Copper – Zinc – Cobalt – Carotenoids
Endocrine Glands – Pituitary – Adrenal – Thyroid – Pancreas – Sex Glands
Protein – Phosphorus – Vitamin C – Zinc – Carotenoids – Essential Fatty Acids – Vitamin E – B Vitamins – Iodine – Biotin
Protein – Vitamin D – Vitamin C – Calcium – Phosphorus – Magnesium – Manganese – Boron – Molybdenum – Vitamin K
In tomorrow’s post we’ll talk about getting well.
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