Difference Between Micronutrients and Macronutrients

Nutrients are chemical substances that are required for the proper functioning of cells, tissues and different organs in all living organism. Our body requires an adequate amount of nutrients which are mainly required for various functions of the body, including growth, repair, and protection against disease-causing microbes. Since our body cannot synthesize these nutrients on its own, these need to be supplied through external sources as food.

There are two different types of nutrients required by the body:

  • Macronutrients
  • Micronutrients

The nutrients that are required by the body in lesser amounts are known as micronutrients, whereas the nutrients that are required by the body in greater amounts are known as macronutrients.

Also Read: Nutrients

Let us have a detailed look at the difference between macronutrients and micronutrients.

Difference between Micronutrients and Macronutrients

Following are the important difference between macronutrients and micronutrients:

Micronutrients Macronutrients
Required in minute quantities. Required in large quantities.
Play a crucial role in the prevention of diseases. Play a crucial role in providing energy.
Deficiency results in Anaemia, Scurvy, Goitre, etc. Deficiency results in Malnutrition, Kwashiorkor, marasmus, etc.
Overconsumption of Vitamins leads to liver and nerve damage. Overconsumption of macronutrients results in cardiovascular diseases,  diabetes, obesity, etc.
Antioxidants, Minerals, and Vitamins are examples of macronutrients. Proteins, fibre, carbohydrates, and fats are examples of micronutrients.
Micronutrients are largely obtained from vegetables, fruits, cashews, eggs, all dairy products, etc. Macronutrients are largely obtained from beans, nuts, legumes, pulses, tofu, soy, cereals, potatoes, fish,  cheese, oilseeds, milk, etc.
Their concentration is less than 1mg/gm. Their concentration is equal to 1 mg or 1000 microgram.
Are found in a minute quantity in plants products. Are found abundantly in all plants products.
They are trace elements. They are major elements.
All micronutrients are minerals. Includes both minerals and non-minerals.

Macro and Micronutrients


The plant-based nutrients which are required in large quantities as our body cannot produce by its self. These macronutrients providing energy and supports the different metabolic system, growth, and development of the body. Macronutrients include fats, proteins,  carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals.


The plant-based nutrients which are required in very small quantities and are mainly responsible for repairing damaged cell and tissues, prevention of infectious diseases by fighting against the disease-causing pathogens including bacteria, virus, fungi, etc. Micronutrients include calcium, iron, vitamins, iron, minerals and vitamin C.


The excessive consumption or the deficiency of both the macro and micronutrients have a negative impact on the health. Therefore, it is important to have a balanced diet which includes an equal and required quantity of both macronutrients and micronutrients.

Also Read: Functions of Macronutrients and Micronutrients

Learn more about macro and micronutrients, its differences  and other related topics @ BYJU’S Biology

Frequently Asked Questions

Which foods are rich in micronutrients?

Milk, yoghurt, spinach, beef, bananas are the foods rich in micronutrients.

What are the major functions of the most important micronutrients?

The most important micronutrients include vitamin B6, vitamin C, magnesium, vitamin E and zinc. These help in boosting the immunity of the body.

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