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Nutritional requirements of the individual

[1] The nutritious requirement of an individual is driven by several factors, including the species, the individual’s metabolism, other dynamic internal conditions like physical and mental health, as well as external conditions like weather and humidity.

Dog Knows : page 8, Chapter 1, Essay on Canine Nutrition

There is extensive evidence that the diet requirements of an individual changes based on several factors. For instance, consider the following quotes from Herman, 1993 :

Even within the seasons, of course, there may be considerable variability in temperature; does appetite suffer during a summer heat wave as compared to normal summer weather?

Indeed, eating itself has thermogenic effects, so that not only does heat affect appetite, but appetite may affect heat.

This is not a book on nutrition, so we will not deep dive into the matter. However, following are a list of papers one can use to go down this rabbit hole, should they desire. the point here is to note that, diets cannot be prescriptive, because the needs of every individual will vary and even within the individual, the needs vary based on several internal and external factors. So, in short the diet needs of an individual are dynamic and that makes prescriptive diets problematic.


Ans, A.H., Anjum, I., Satija, V., Inayat, A., Asghar, Z., Akram, I. and Shrestha, B., 2018. Neurohormonal regulation of appetite and its relationship with stress: A mini literature review. Cureus, 10(7).

Ashworth, A., and A.D.B. Harrower 1967. Protein requirements in tropical countries: Nitrogen losses in sweat and their relation to nitrogen balance. Br. J. Nutri. 21:833–843.

Brobeck, J.R. 1948. Food intake as a mechanism of temperature regulation. Yale J. Biol. Med. 20:545–552.

DiBella, L., G. Tarozzi, M.T. Rossi, and G. Scalera 1981. Effect of liver temperature increase on food intake. Physiol. Behav. 26:45–51. Donhoffer, S., and J. Vonotzky.

Drewnowski, A., E.E. Shrager, C. Lipsky, E. Stellar, and M.R.C. Greenwood 1989. Sugar and fat: Sensory and hedonic evaluation of liquid and solid foods. Physiol. Behav. 45:177–184.

Fantino, M., and M. Cabanac 1984. Effect of a cold ambient temperature on the rat's food hoarding behavior. Physiol. Behav. 32:183–190.

Herman, C.P., 1993. Effects of heat on appetite. Nutritional needs in hot environments: applications for military personnel in field operations, pp.187-214.

Jakubczak, L.F. 1976. Food and water intakes of rats as a function of strain, age, temperature, and body weight. Physiol. Behav. 17:251–258.

Johnson, R.E., and R.M. Kark 1947. Environment and food intake in man. Science 105:378–379.

Kandiah, J., Yake, M., Jones, J. and Meyer, M., 2006. Stress influences appetite and comfort food preferences in college women. Nutrition Research, 26(3), pp.118-123.

Macari, M., S.M.F. Zuim, E.R. Secato, and J.R. Guerreiro 1986. Effects of ambient temperature and thyroid hormones on food intake by pigs. Physiol. Behav. 36:1035–1039.

McCarthy, D.O., M.J. Kluger, and A.J. Vander 1984. The role of fever in appetite suppression after endotoxin administration. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 40:310–316.

Pilgrim, A.L., Robinson, S.M., Sayer, A.A. and Roberts, H.C., 2015. An overview of appetite decline in older people. Nursing older people, 27(5).


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