nutri-, nutrit-

(Latin: nutrire; to nourish, to feed, to nurse, to foster, to support, to preserve)

Essential Nutrients (pl) (noun) (plural used as a singular)
  • Proteins are the main structural component of tissue and organs and they are essential for the growth and repair of cells in the body.
  • Carbohydrates are food groups that contain sugars and starches and they are the main energy sources required for metabolism or the chemical processes that take place within cells and they should make up at least half of people's diets.

    Unrefined or unprocessed carbohydrates found in cereals and fruit are usually richer in fibers than refined carbohydrates; such as, sugar and white flour.

  • Fats provide energy for metabolism and are a structural component of cells.

    Saturated fats are found mostly in meat and dairy products and increase the amounts of unwanted types of cholesterol in the blood.

  • Fibers are the indigestible structural material in plants and they are an essential part of a healthy diet.
  • Water constitutes a high proportion of many foods and it is essential to maintain the chemical processes within cells and normal bowel functions.
  • Vitamins ensure the healthy functioning of the brain, nerves, muscles, skin, and bones.
  • Minerals consist of calcium zinc, and magnesium all of which are needed in small amounts to control cell metabolism and table salt is needed to maintain fluid balance.
—Compiled from excerpts located in
The American Medical Association Home Medical Encyclopedia;
"Nutritional disorders"; Volume Two; Random House; New York; 1989; page 736.
malnutrition (s) (noun), malnutritions (pl)
Inadequate nourishment or caloric intake to sustain good health: The state of malnutrition among the animals at the private animal sanctuary was closed because it was so terrible to see and therefore it was no longer available for the public to experience.

Some causes of malnutrition can be a result of not having enough to eat, not eating the right things, or being unable to digest the food that one does eat.

2. Etymology: from Latin mali-, "bad, poor, poorly" + nutritionem from nutire, "a nourishing" + -tion, "act or process of".
nourish (verb), nourishes; nourished; nourishing
1. To provide with proper food or other substances necessary for growth, health, and a good physical condition: Irene was doing everything she could to nourish and to protect her baby.
2. To keep a feeling or a belief in one's mind; usually, for a long time: Harry has long nourished an ambition to play a piano with the local orchestra in a concert.
3. Etymology: from Latin nutrire, "to feed".
nourishable (adjective), more nourishable, most nourishable
Relating to something that is needed for health and proper growth: Sally provides nourishable meals for her children with the best ingredients that she can buy.
nourisher (s) (noun), nourishers (pl)
A provider of substances conducive for the growth and health of a living being: Jane was very aware of the fact that, as a nourisher, she wanted to give her baby the best possible food and care.
nourishing (adjective), more nourishing, most nourishing
1. Related to the promotion or sustenance of a good life, growth, and strength: Harry and his family are always striving to have nourishing meals so they can be healthy and physically able to do what is necessary and enjoyable with their bodies.
2. Pertaining to the components necessary to be as healthy as possible: Gertrud prepared a nourishing dinner for her family with fresh vegetables and fish.
nourishingly (adverb), more nourishingly, most nourishingly
Descriptive of providing food materials necessary for life and growth: Jill was nourishingly disciplining herself to keep her body and mind functioning at the highest possible degree by eating properly, reading, and exercising every day.
nourishment (s) (noun), nourishments (pl)
1. Substances important for a healthy development and a good condition for plants and animals: Jack didn’t forget to include some plant food in the water for the tomatoes he had on his balcony because he was aware of the nourishment that they needed in order to produce ripe tomatoes.
2. The act of taking care of another person or people: Much attention to nourishment has been necessary to save the lives of many refugees all of whom need help.
3. Etymology: from Latin utrire, "to suckle, to feed".

Unusual information about the nourishment of certain foods.

  • Celery has negative calories because it takes more calories to eat a piece of celery than the celery has in it to begin with.
  • The candies that are most likely to cause tooth decay are dark chocolate and fudge.
  • Those least likely to damage the teeth are nut-covered or coconut-covered candies.

    The most harmful items which are baked are chocolate-chip cookies, frosted cakes, and Graham crackers and the least harmful to the teeth are pies, plain cakes, and doughnuts.

  • A person needs to eat eleven pounds of potatoes to put on one pound of weight, because a potato has no more calories than an apple.

    As late as 1720 in America, eating potatoes was believed to shorten a person's life.

Believe the foregoing information or not, it's up to you!

—Compiled from excerpts in
2201 Fascinating Facts; in the "Diet" section; by David Louis;
Published by Greenwich House and Distributed by Crown Publishers, Inc.;
New York; 1983; pages 44-45.
nurse (s) (noun), nurses (pl)
1. A professional person trained to assist and to aid the infirm and sick, particularly in a hospital: Mr. Anderson had a nurse come to his home and help with the treatment of his invalid and ailing grandfather.
2. Etymology: from Latin nutrire "to suckle, to nourish".
nurse (verb), nurses; nursed; nursing
1. To provide care for an afflicted person: After Jack fell down, he was nursed back to health by his wife who helped him every way she could.
2. To breastfeed a baby: After giving birth to her son, Hana was nursing little Finn for six months, knowing that her milk was the best for him.
3. To carefully treat someone or something: Dianne always nursed her roses in the front yard and fertilized them on a regular basis and that is why they are so beautiful.
nursery (s) (noun), nurseries (pl)
1. That part of a home that is providing for the care of a baby or a small child: Ted's parents decided to paint the nursery a lovely green color where their newborn baby would be spending so much time.
2. A structure or indoor garden where plants are grown and taken care of: Jason and Jane went to the nursery to find and to buy a small tree to plant in their garden.
3. A kind of school which takes care of small children whose parents are at work: Timmy went to the local day nursery where he was able to play and get along with other small children before attending an elementary school.
nursing care (s) (noun), nursing cares (pl)
The process by which patients are helped by someone who is trained to be concerned about them and to aid them in recovering from an illness or an injury, or to regain as much physical independence as possible: Those who are trained in nursing care are often more interested in the patient's overall reactions to the ailment than with the medical problem itself and they are devoted to the control of physical pain, the relief of mental suffering, and, when possible, the avoidance of any complications.
nursing home (s) (noun), nursing homes (pl)
A residential facility for the care of elderly people or, in some cases, for people who have serious illnesses or disabilities: Approximately 50% of residents in nursing homes are demented and most suffer from a number of medical conditions related to aging.

The ideal nursing home is well equipped with registered nurses, as well as nurses' aides, has regular visits from a physician, provides access to advanced medical care facilities, and is closely linked, both organizationally and geographically, to community hospitals.

nurturable (adjective), more nurturable, most nurturable
A reference to the basic elements of a diet: The nurturable ingredients that people should consider include carbohydrates, fats, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and liquids.
nurture (verb), nurtures; nurtured; nurturing
1. To feed, to care for, to maintain, and to bring up: Jim and JoAnne are nurturing and looking after, or rearing, their five children.
2. Etymology: from Latin nutrire, "to feed, to nurse, to foster, to support, to preserve".
Nourish and train and care for.
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To feed, to foster, to bring up or rear.
© ALL rights are reserved.

Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
so you can see more of Mickey Bach's cartoons.