Glossary

Helping you digest the jargon

Nutrition

Brewer’s Yeast
Brewer's Yeast is used as a nutritional supplement. It is a rich source of chromium, which may help your body maintain normal blood sugar levels. Brewer's Yeast has a high nucleic acid content which is an important component of cell development. It is also rich in folic acid, vitamin B12, potassium, thiamin, niacin and chromium.

Calorie
A calorie is a unit of heat used to indicate the amount of energy a food will produce in the body. A calorie (kcal) is the amount of energy needed to raise the temperature of 1 kilogram of water 1 degree celsius. Calories on food packets are usually defined in kilocalories, or 1,000 calories.

Choline
Choline helps the body to utilise fats and is an important building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Choline is a water soluble nutrient, and is grouped with the B vitamins. It can be made in the liver. It is also found in foods such as liver, muscle meats, fish, nuts, beans, peas, spinach, wheat germ, eggs, soy and lecithin. It is said to protect the heart and lowers the risk of liver cancer.

Chromium
Chromium is an essential mineral that the human body requires in trace amounts, meaning it is a micro-nutrient. It’s necessary for glucose tolerance and sugar regulation within the body and responsible for carbohydrate and fat metabolism, and helps in the prevention of diabetes. It helps insulin facilitate the entrance of glucose into the cells thus helping to regulate blood sugar levels. Chromium is not found abundantly in many foods although grains, dried beans and cheese contain small amounts. The best source are Brewer’s Yeast tablets.

Engevita B12
Engevita is a nutritional yeast rich in thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic Acid, folic Acid, biotin, vitamin B6 and B12. It’s a great source of nutrition for vegetarians and vegans, and can be used to add flavour and nutrition to soups, sauce or drinks.

Folic Acid
Folic acid, also known as folate, is a B vitamin found naturally in leafy green vegetables. It’s a nutrient necessary for reproductive and cardiovascular health. Our bodies need folate to make DNA and other genetic material. Folate is also needed for the body's cells to divide. It also acts as a cofactor for metabolic processes such as the formation of red blood cells (in conjunction with vitamin B12). As such, Folic acid deficiency can cause anaemia. Food sources that contain folic acid include kale, spinach, broccoli, sweetcorn and beans.

Fructose
Fructose is a sugar found naturally in many fruits, vegetables and honey. It’s very sweet and gives fruit its sweetness. It’s a sugar that should be limited in our diet, unlike glucose which every cell in our body uses. Fructose is only handled by our liver, and when we eat lots of fructose-rich foods (even too much fruit) the body will store excess fructose as fat.

Glycogen
Glycogen is the main way the body stores glucose sugars for later use, it’s a stored form of glucose, principally in the liver and muscles. When the stomach digests carbohydrate (sugars and starches) from food, the stomach and small intestines absorb the glucose and then release it into the bloodstream. Once in the bloodstream, glucose can be used immediately for energy, or stored as glycogen in our muscles and liver, to be used later.

Inositol
Inositol is a nutrient that is a vital cofactor for the brain's major neurotransmitters. It’s water soluble, and part of the “B” family of vitamins. As with choline, it is a precursor of phospholipids which are a necessary component of cell membranes. This is important because phospholipids are vital for the electrical current and nutrient transport across and inside of cells.

Iodine
Iodine, found in seafood and seaweed, is used by the thyroid gland to make thyroid hormones, which control metabolic rate and body temperature. It also supports other biochemical reactions. It can be used as potassium iodide, for bronchial congestion, to rebalance the body, and to support immune function. It is found in kelp, vegetables (as long as it occurs naturally in the soil) and in milk (if farmers add it to the cows’ feed).

Isotonic
An isotonic drink means that two solutions (the drink and your body fluids) have the same osmotic pressure across a semi-permeable membrane. This state allows for the free movement of water across the membrane without changing the concentration of solutes on either side. An isotonic drink is taken up by the body about as quickly as water. They are intended to quench thirst and provide energy to the body, so they are ideal for endurance sports.

Lactose
Lactose is a milk sugar made from disaccharides derived from galactose and glucose sugar units. All milk has the sugar lactose in it. In an 8oz glass of milk you will find 12g of lactose. Some people can become lactose intolerant and have trouble digesting the sugars. Lactase is an enzyme necessary for splitting the disaccharide sugars into their single sugar units and if people are deficient in this enzyme they can experience stomach cramps, indigestion, wind and bloating when they have milk or dairy products.

Lactucarium
Lactucarium is found in the leaves of lettuce, and is known for having mild sedative and pain relieving properties. Natural healing practitioners use it as an antispasmodic, and to treat digestive problems.

Lycopene
Lycopene is a powerful antioxidant found in fruits such as papaya, watermelon and apricots. However, it is found most abundantly in tomatoes. Lycopene is a carotenoid pigment and phytochemical responsible for the vibrant orange and red colours of the tomatoes. It’s a powerful antioxidant that can help to neutralise free radical damage and also protect skin from ultra-violet light (natural sunscreen!). Cooked tomatoes are a better source of lycopene than raw ones, as the cooking process helps to break down the lycopene making it easier for the body to absorb.

Phosphorous
Phosphorus is the second most abundant mineral nutrient in the body, after calcium. This mineral is part of all cells, especially cell membranes. It is essential to bone strength, because it's the main structural component of bones and teeth, as calcium phosphate.

Quiona
While quinoa is usually considered to be a whole grain, it is actually a seed, but can be prepared like whole grains such as rice or barley. Pronounced “keen-wah,” it’s high in protein, and contains every amino acid including all the essential amino acids. It is particularly rich in lysine, which promotes healthy tissue growth throughout the body. Quinoa is also a good source of iron, magnesium, vitamin E, potassium, and fibre.

Selenium
Selenium is a trace mineral found naturally in the soil. It also appears in certain foods, and there are even small amounts in water. Selenium is an extremely vital mineral for the human body as it increases immunity, and takes part in antioxidant activity that defends against free radical damage and inflammation. It also plays a key role in maintaining a healthy metabolism. Selenium is thought to have antiviral properties, and is essential for successful male and female fertility and reproduction. It also reduces the risk of cancer, autoimmune and thyroid diseases.

Silica
Silica is the most abundant mineral in the earth, and we require it in our bodies for tissue strength, strong bones, cartilage and connective tissue. It’s also important for hair, nails and skin health and renewal, and helps keep arteries flexible too. It’s found in rice, grains, wheat and oats.

Spirulina
Spirulina is a blue/green micro-algae increasingly used as a powerful supplement to add to smoothies, juices and salads. It’s rich in iron, contains a host of B vitamins and protein, and is helpful in boosting your immune system, increasing your metabolism and fighting inflammation.

Statins
Statins are drugs that lower your body’s cholesterol level. They work by reducing the production of cholesterol in the liver and therefore reduce your risk of heart disease. Also known as HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, they are a class of lipid-lowering medications that inhibit the enzyme HMG-CoA reductase. This helps to lower the production of cholesterol. High cholesterol levels have been associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD).

Tryptophan
All protein foods contain amino acids and tryptophan is one of them. Tryptophan is found most abundantly in foods such as turkey, steak, chicken and pumpkin seeds and, to a lesser extent, in peanuts, sunflower seeds, beans and milk. Tryptophan is important because, when it reaches the brain, it converts to an important chemical called serotonin, a neurotransmitter.

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