Energy Initiative Blogs

Carbs; not the only ‘nutrient’ you should be worrying about

by Rajas Gupta | Oct 10, 2016

The growing popularity of no carb diets/ healthier diets has resulted in a massive shift of the normal consumer’s consumption of food products. However, this blog isn’t about that. It’s about a problem larger than NOT being a size 0.

Growing up, one learns about various kinds of pollutions. The most popular and widespread ones, in layman terms are:

  • Air pollution : The mixture of harmful particles, chemicals and gasses in the air, mainly by factories, vehicles etc. or on a more personal level, even a smoker blowing his/her smoke in your face.
  • Water pollution : The overall contamination of water/ water bodies with various varieties of waste, harmful chemicals etc. or on a more personal level, an ignorant citizen nonchalantly defecating in the same pool as you.
  • Noise pollution : The sounds created by various human practices like construction, transportation etc. causing disturbance and adverse affects on various habitats or on a more personal level, your “punk” neighbor playing heavy metal at 3 am when you need to be up by 6 am for a long day at work. 

 

There are other lesser known types of pollutions like light pollution, caused by artificial lights blocking the visibility of stars and planets (really?), and thermal pollution that is caused by the rising temperatures of water bodies due to manufacturing and construction activities (sounds much more threatening).

One of the most dangerous pollutions however, is nutrient pollution, a sub category of land pollution. It is becoming one of the costliest and most challenging environmental problems faced by the world, especially America due to the country’s enormous capacity to produce and consume agricultural goods.

Nitrogen and phosphorous are key nutrients for plants and support the growth of algae and aquatic plants, whilst providing food and habitat for fish and other smaller organisms. However, recently the amount of nitrogen and phosphorous in the soil and water has been rising at an alarming rate mainly due to a wide range of human induced activities, impacting lakes, bays, coastal areas and all sorts of water bodies. 

 

The high amounts of nitrogen and phosphorous are becoming too difficult for ecosystems to handle, radically changing many of them while making other extinct or endangered. This not only affects plants and animals, but seriously and adversely, affects human beings as well. 

Significant increase in algae (due to over nutrition) decrease the oxygen in the water that is essential to survival of most aquatic life. Not only this, but algae can also be extremely harmful for human beings if consumed/come in contact with.

Excess carbs in your diet isn’t the only thing you should be worrying about anymore. 

 

Sources 

https://www.reference.com/science/types-environmental-pollution-e2710a57bd0a60e5#

https://www.epa.gov/nutrientpollution/problem

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