Nutrient, it is what feeds, i.e., increasing the substance of animal or plant body. Nutrients are chemicals from outside of the cell it needs in order to develop its vital functions. The nutrient is absorbed by the cell and is transformed by the means of a metabolic biosynthesis (called anabolism) or degradation process for obtaining other molecules.
Among the various substances composing food, nutrients are those who participate actively in the metabolic reactions. Water, oxygen and minerals are the basic nutrients that consume plants, while human beings humans and animals feed on plants and other animals.
Vitamins, proteins, lipids and carbohydrates are some substances that are part of the nutrients consumed by all human beings living who are not photosynthetic capacity (i.e., which are not plants).
Concerning their function in their metabolic reactions, nutrients can be classified into two major groups: essential nutrients (they are vital to the Organization given that it is unable to synthesize them and that he gets the environment) and essential nutrients (they are not vital and, in some cases, they can be synthesized through precursor molecules).
Another classification can be made compared to the quantity needed by cells. Macronutrients are needed in large quantities daily (such as proteins) and form the basis of the diet. In contrast, micronutrients are required in small quantities and act as regulators of energy processes.