Updated: Jun 28
Today, we practice three categories of nutrition approaches:
1. Nutrition for the Endurance of Life and Basic Health
2. Nutrition for Optimal Health
3. Nutrition for Sport Performance
Nutrition for the Endurance of Life and Basic Health
Majority of the diets eaten by the mass population of the earth fit into this category. It is based on the guidelines produced by a country, the World Health Organization (WHO) or the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO). Nutrition targets must be determined and met to ensure good health on a national or global basis. Though necessary, these guidelines are not intended to achieve optimal health and are based on the average nutrient intake of an entire population. In fact, a typical diet is the cause of many diseases in the human body and the deaths of millions each year.
Nutrition for Optimal Health
We just discussed that the focus of the government and health organizations is nutrition that provides a minimal amount of essential nutrients to ensure the prevention of nutrient deficiencies. No attention is given to non-essential nutrients. The body requires more nutrients in higher amounts for optimum health than the recommended daily allowances. Some of the reasons for this increased need are:
• Our bodies are tasked with warding off a lot of environmental substances such as pollutants, low-quality drinking water, food additives, pesticides and other toxins.
• The supply of food we have doesn’t have the proper amounts of nutrients.
Nutrition for Sport Performance
Where athletic activities are concerned, guidelines produce Performance Daily Intakes (PDI) based on sports and fitness nutrition. A total nutritional plan should contain both food and supplement sources for the PDI for each nutrient. The ranges for each nutrient would mirror the needs of the individual based on one’s size and activity. Smaller and/or less active persons aim their nutrient intake at the lower end of these ranges, while larger and/or more active individuals adhere to the upper end of these ranges.
When using PDI remember that they:
a. Include both men and women
b. Are meant for healthy, physically active adults and athletes
c. Are dynamic and take into consideration a wide range of needs, size of athletic individuals and activity levels
d. Make up for higher nutrition requirements that athletes and physically active people have as compared to persons that are not athletes