Nutritional Deficiencies Diseases in Humans
Nutrient deficiency in humans occur when there is absence of adequate nutrient in the diet. A nutritionally adequate diet, is not only important for the growth and health of an individual, but is often a major component in the management of several diseases.
Food contains more than 40 to 50 nutrients; they are required for maintaining body development; both at physical and mental level. They are the main source of energy needed by the body to perform various activities and functions necessary for its survival.
Carbohydrates, fats and proteins are the main nutrients which provide energy.Vitamins and minerals, water and fibers also act as catalysts in maintaining health and function of human body.
It is desirable to have 20% of calories derived from fats, protein in the diet should have 15% of the total calories and the rest should come from carbohydrates, preferably complex carbohydrates, keeping the level of refined sugar at 5% of the total calories. Vitamins and minerals are also essential for the body; their deficiency may lead to several diseases.
Lack of Nutrients Diseases
Various nutrient deficiency diseases and symptoms in humans:
- Protein deficiency can cause disease known as marasmus and kwashiorkor, it usually occurs when there is protein energy malnutrition. Symptoms: muscular wasting in children, edema, loss of hair pigmentation, skin becomes scaly and diarrhea can result.
- Vitamin B1 deficiency: disease: dermatitis, alopecia. Symptom: hair loss, skin infection eye inflammation.
- Vitamin A deficiency: night blindness, bitots spot
- Vitamin C deficiency disease: scurvy. Symptoms: swollen and bleeding gums, wounds heal slowly.
- Vitamin B3 niacin deficiency: disease: pellagra. Symptoms: diarrhea, dermatitis and dementia.
- Iron deficiency: disease: anemia. Symptoms: tiredness, skin becomes pale, breathlessness, dizziness.
- Iodine: disease: cretinism, fatigue, and hypothyroidism.
- Calcium deficiency: disease; periodontal disease, osteoporosis, rickets.
- Fatty acid deficiency: disease: diarrhea, premenstrual syndrome, acne, eczema, galls stone disease.