NRS 429 Discuss why nutrition is a central component in health promotion
NRS 429 Discuss why nutrition is a central component in health promotion
Nutrition is essential to health promotion because it is necessary for our body’s growth, development, and normal functioning. For optimal growth and development, physical activity, reproduction, lactation, illness and injury recovery, and health maintenance throughout the life cycle, adequate nutrition is essential. For a healthy body, a well-balanced diet with enough of the essential nutrients is critical. Disease is linked to both excess and inadequate nutrition. For instance, chronic inflammatory conditions like obesity and cardiovascular disease can be brought on by a combination of inactivity and nutritional excess, particularly in the form of refined carbohydrates and saturated fats. Conversely, deficiencies in essential nutrients can result in slowed growth, compromised immune system, and common conditions like scurvy, osteoporosis, depression, and xerophthalmia.
National library of Medicine. Nutrients, Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases (2017). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles
Access to adequate nutrition is a central theme in health promotion. This is because a healthy diet can improve a patient’s health status significantly. Proper nutritional support is needed for patients to heal wounds, decrease inflammation, and slow disease processes.
Nutritional challenges for emerging populations include: lack of access to funds to purchase food, food insecurity, and poor food quality. (Seguin, R., 2014.) Patients may also have difficulty preparing or storing healthy foods. Patients may need to supplement their nutrition with additional food from the local Food bank or other food pantries.
4 Major reasons for not eating a healthy diet, as noted by college students are the following:
- Availability of fast food,
- High cost of healthy food,
- Limited time, and
- Laziness. (Abdelhafez, et al., 2020.)
Nutritional deficiencies and excesses play a significant role in the development and management of disease. For example, sodium intake must be decreased in patients with CHF. Excess sodium can be a primary factor causing patients with CHF to retain fluid and experience a crisis. Nutritional deficiencies can cause hypoglycemia. Other electrolyte imbalances can cause disruption, such as low Vitamin C or Vitamin D. Patients may also experience weight loss. Cardiovascular disease, hypertension, and Diabetes can all find their origins both in genetics and also in nutritional imbalances.
- Seguin, R., Connor, L., Nelson, M., LaCroix, A., & Eldridge, G. (2014). Understanding barriers and facilitators to healthy eating and active living in rural communities. Journal of nutrition and metabolism, 2014, 146502. https://doi.org/10.1155/2014/146502
- Abdelhafez, A. I., Akhter, F., Alsultan, A. A., Jalal, S. M., & Ali, A. (2020). Dietary Practices and Barriers to Adherence to Healthy Eating among King Faisal University Students. International journal of environmental research and public health, 17(23), 8945. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17238945
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Nutrition is a central component of health promotion because most of the essential elements that promote good body functioning are derived from food and their deficiencies cause impaired functions in the body. Some diseases like obesity, hypertension, diabetes, cancer, and stroke have been linked to nutrition” (Falkner, 2018). Part of the objective of Healthy People 2030 is Nutrition and healthy eating, their goal being “improving health by promoting healthy eating and making nutritious foods available” (Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion [ODPHP], n.d. Some diseases are associated with malnutrition, when the individual does not eat of the nutrients that promote healthy body functioning. Diseases like malabsorption syndrome whereby the individual cannot absorb the food nutrients are life threatening. People that eat better are strong, active, and more productive than hungry and malnourished individuals. Certain nutrients derived from food help for brain development and function.
Culture influences individual’s food choices. Different cultures have certain practices and beliefs about food, and they consume certain food sources more than others. For The emerging populations, economic barriers affect their choice of food. Healthy food, fruits and vegetables are more expensive than the canned foods and fast food which is cheaper and more convenient. Food nutrients are the substrates like vitamins and minerals and other elements that provide the body with what it need to function normally, these nutrients are affected by the method of processing, storage, and cooking. Nurses have an important role in educating the community on adequate food storage and processing methods that preserve the food nutrients. Eating too much of certain foods and nutrients can be a problem too. Excess salt, fat and sugar increases the risk of heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. Nutritional deficiencies and illnesses that are associated with diet are treated using proper nutritious diet and lifestyle modifications. Good nutrition including breastfeeding promotes the health of infants. Balanced meal in the right proportions prevent malnutrition and illnesses related to nutritional deficiencies. Right proportions is important in checking obesity.
Falkner, A., (2018). Cultural Awareness. In Health Promotion: Health & wellness across the continuum. (Chapter 3). Grand Canyon University. https://lc.gcumedia.com/nrs429vn/health-promotion-health-and-wellness-across-the-continuum/v1.1/#/chapter/3
ODPHP (n.d.). Healthy People 2030. Nutrition and Healthy Eating. https://health.gov/healthypeople/objectives-and-data/browse-objectives/nutrition-and-healthy-eating
Food is a social activity of life. Many of today’s celebrations, gatherings, and events revolve around food. Unfortunately, there is a growing crisis of obesity in the United States, along with comorbidities like diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, cancer, and stroke (Falkner, 2018). These are major issues linked in part to poor nutrition and lack of exercise. When nurses educate clients regarding nutrition and a healthy lifestyle, there are two types of factors of concern. These two factors are modifiable and nonmodifiable. Nonmodifiable factors are things one cannot change like genetics, age, and gender. Modifiable factors are things one can change like intake or quantity and quality of what one consumes, and physical activity. These modifiable factors are essential components of disease prevention and a healthy lifestyle.
Part of the problem with food in the U.S. is that the less expensive, easily accessible foods are typically highly processed and loaded with extra calories, fat, and sugar (Falkner, 2018). These foods are also less nutritional, so people are consuming less of the vitamins and minerals essential for their bodies to work properly. Nurses should encourage proper intake including a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and low-fat or fat-free dairy products (Falkner, 2018). Falkner (2018) also suggests nurses encourage clients to consume smaller portions, avoid alcohol, limit processed foods and foods high in fat and/or sugar, and increase their level of activity. People with healthy eating habits tend to live longer and are also at lower risk for serious health problems such as heart disease, diabetes, and obesity (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], n.d.a). For individuals with a chronic disease, healthy eating habits can help manage the disease and prevent complications.
Racial and ethnic minority groups have not had extensive opportunities in the past for economic, physical, and emotional health (CDC, n.d.b). Some of these same issues are contributing to higher obesity levels in minority and emerging populations. Emerging populations have added challenges like language barriers, lower health literacy, difficulty with access to health care, cultural issues regarding traditional foods, religious rules about consumption/fasting, as well as financial, social, and environmental disadvantages (Falkner, 2018). Foods higher in nutrition, better balanced meals, smaller portion sizes, and increasing exercise for everyone should be the advice of nurses across the health care system.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (n.d.a). Why it matters. https://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/about-nutrition/why-it-matters.html
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (n.d.b) Obesity, race/ethnicity, and COVID-19. https://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/obesity-and-covid-19.html
Falkner, A. (2018). Cultural awareness. In Grand Canyon University (Ed.), Health promotion: Health & wellness across the continuum. Grand Canyon University. https://lc.gcumedia.com/nrs429vn/health-promotion-health-and-wellness-across-the-continuum/v1.1/#/chapter/3
A healthful diet and wise food choices are critical components of promoting health and reducing the risk of chronic diseases. Good nutrition means your body gets all the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals it needed in the right proportion to work at its best. Nutrition can be defined as the process by which living organisms obtain food and use it for growth, metabolism, and repair of body tissues. Adhering to a healthy diet, rich in plant-based foods and low in processed energy-dense food can help prevent and control multiple chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension, coronary heart disease, and some types of cancers. Optimum nutrition contributes to general well-being hence development and improved quality of life (Gibney et al, 2009) healthy nutrition helps to provide an adequate defense to the body against the invasion of microorganisms. There is a saying that ” you are what you eat. When you eat the right quality and quantity, you stand the chance of living healthily. Good nutrition helps in:
maintaining a healthy weight reduces the risk of diseases such as coronary heart disease, diabetes, stroke weight, osteoporosis, and cancer.
It helps in reducing high blood pressure, lower high cholesterol, and improving well-being. Good nutrition helps to repair worn-out tissue
The most nutritional challenges for the emerging population include:
i. Lack of adequate food supply: Due to the social economic situation in the country, some individuals find it difficult to afford to buy food rich in nutrients for healthy living
ii. Lack of time for grocery and cooking due to working extra hours to meet up with financial obligations. They do not have time to cook food so they snack and oftentimes do not even remember to eat due to the pressure of work
iii. Poor eating habits: Some individuals have some bad eating behaviors which predispose them to certain disease conditions example is craving and diabetes excessive eating. this often results in diseases such as type 2 diabetics, hypertension etc.
Lack of nutritional education; some persons do not have nutritional knowledge of the classes of food needed for healthy living. some prefer to drink more soda than drinking water thereby resulting in morbid obesity or diabetics
Eating disabilities: some individuals due to some medical conditions such as stroke. swallowing or malabsorption syndromes. tend to have a nutritional deficit.
Nutritional deficiency and nutritional excesses result in malnutrition or morbid obesity which predisposes the person to diseases such as anemic heart diseases, anemia, hypertension, coronary artery diseases
Falkner, A. (2018). Health Promotion in Nursing Care (Chapter 2). CCC web books by AWS & CDD. Retrieved October 17, 2022, from https://lc.gcumedia.com/nrs429vn/health-promotion-health-and-wellness-across-the-continuum/v1.1/#/chapter/2
Truman, E., Bischoff, M., & Elliott, C. (2020). Which literacy for health promotion: health, food, nutrition or media?. Health promotion international, 35(2), 432-444. https://doi.org/10.1093/heapro/daz007