Rebekah May Taylor - 20086758
The Role of Nutrition in Health and Diet-related Diseases
1. Metabolic Processes
1.3. Digestion and Absorption
1.4. Amino Acid Interconversion
1.5.2. Link Reaction
1.5.3. Krebs Cycle
1.5.4. Electron Transport Chain
1.5.5. Anaerobic Respiration
2. Health and Diet
2.3. Disorders and deficiencies
2.3.3. Selenium Poisoning
2.3.4. Excess Molybdenum
2.4. Common diseases
2.4.1. Heart Disease
2.4.2. Kidney Disease
4. References and Further Reading
Metabolism is a collection of chemical processes that takes place in the body to convert food into energy (kidshealth.org, N.D.). These processes are included in both digestion and respiration. The breakdown of nutrients after digestion and energy formation using the products of this are the most vital components of metabolism. Bioenergetics is the term used to describe the pathways – both biochemical and metabolic – by which the cell obtains energy (news-medical.net, 2013).
The word ‘metabolism’ derives from the Greek noun ‘metabole’, which means ‘change’ (medicalnewstoday.com, 2013). Currently, this change in terms of metabolism is divided into two categories: anabolism and catabolism.
In order for metabolic pathways to work the body must break down nutrients through digestion. Some of the products of digestion then go on to be involved in respiration. The ultimate product of this is energy, which can be used for a number of things, including DNA synthesis and muscle movement (news-medical.net, 2013).
In this section we will explore anabolism and catabolism as well as the processes of digestion and respiration and their function in metabolism.
In simplistic terms, anabolism is the building up of things (medicalnewstoday.com, 2013). To be more specific, it is the process by which living organisms synthesize complex molecules from simpler components (wisegeek.com, N.D.). To do this requires energy and the outcome is growth of new cells (medicalnewstoday.com, 2013). Examples of this growth include mineralization of bone and increased muscle mass. (ibid)
Anabolism uses the products of catabolism in order to take place.
Figure 1 – The process anabolism
Anabolism receives its energy from the conversion of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) to adenosine diphosphate (ADP), as shown in figure 1, through a hydrolysis reaction (Toole, G., Toole, S., 2008): ATP + H2O ADP + Pi + energy
Here the Pi represents an inorganic phosphate. ATP has three phosphates and it is the removal of this phosphate that converts it to ADP and releases the energy.
Catabolism is the opposite of anabolism. Again in simple terms, this is the breaking down of things (medicalnewstoday.com, 2013). Knowing that catabolism is the opposite of anabolism, we can deduct that this is the breakdown of complex molecules or polymers into simple ones or monomers (or smaller polymers) (medicalnewstoday.com, 2013). This process is used to provide energy as well as creating components that can be used to build up other complex compounds within the body (wisegeek.com, N.D.).
It is in this way that catabolism and anabolism are linked, as seen in figure 2 below.
Figure 2 – The link between catabolism and anabolism in metabolism.
Catabolism takes energy sources and breaks them down into building blocks for biosynthesis, heat, and utilizable energy. This utilizable energy is what goes on to produce ATP...
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