Nutrition Resources M - P


A macronutrient is a nutrient that the body needs in relatively large quantities and they form the major part of our diet. The three macronutrients are carbohydrate, fat and protein.


Magnesium is a mineral that helps with energy production. It is also needed for healthy bones and teeth and proper nervous system functioning. Magnesium is found in a wide variety of foods including green leafy vegetables, nuts, brown rice, fish, meat and dairy foods.

The amount of magnesium you need is:

  • 300mg a day for men
  • 270mg a day for women


A micronutrient is a nutrient that the body needs in small quantities. Vitamins and minerals are both micronutrients.


Potassium is a mineral that works with sodium in the body to control fluid balance. Potassium is found in most foods but bananas, vegetables, pulses and nuts are particularly good sources. Adults need roughly 3,500mg of potassium a day.


Protein is essential for growth and repair of the body and maintenance of good health. It also provides energy (4Kcal per gram). The amount of protein we need changes during a lifetime. Protein should provide the body with approximately 10-15% of its dietary energy.

Different foods contain different amounts and combinations of amino acids (the building blocks of proteins). Protein from animal sources (e.g. meat, fish, eggs and dairy products) contains the full range of essential amino acids needed by the body. There are also non-animal sources of protein such as pulses and cereals.


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