The American diet is killing us
(This was taken directly from Dr. Laura Ruby’s Blog http://www.drlauraruby.com and while she is addressing this from a United States perspective, this is a global issue in all developed nations.)
Several years ago I watched a documentary called Food Matters that changed my life forever. The information presented was “mind blowing” to say the least. I remember feeling overwhelmed with emotion as I sat intensely listening to the researchers share the evidence that showed that our “American diet is killing us…..and our poor lifestyle choices are responsible for majority of the chronic disease in our culture, including many cancers”. In a similar fashion, researchers published a report in the Journal of the American Medical Association that concluded that “ sub-optimal vitamin states are associated with many chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease, cancer and other chronic health conditions”.
Fruits & vegetables – not what they used to be
Fruits and vegetables are one of our primary sources of vitamins, minerals & antioxidants. Sadly, less than 10% of us are getting recommended 5 servings per day, when in fact, current data suggest we should be getting at least 9 servings daily. Furthermore, our current dietary recommendations (RDV = recommended daily value) only address the bare minimum amounts that are needed to prevent severe vitamin deficiency, not what we need to prevent chronic disease.
To further complicate the issue, the way we process and store fruits and vegetables has a profound impact on their nutritional value. Fruits and vegetables begin to lose their nutritional value as soon as they are picked. Cold storage and processing further deplete the essential nutrients in our produce. Grapes lose 30% of their B vitamins by the time they reach the grocery store shelf. Tangerines lose over half of their vitamin C after 8 weeks in cold storage, while asparagus can lose up to 90% of their vitamin C in only 1 week. Milling grain removes 26 essential vitamins and strips most of the fiber from the grain.
Our soil has been depleted of many essential vitamins and minerals such as zinc, selenium and magnesium. Potentially harmful pesticides are sprayed on our produce. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports that nearly 87,000 chemicals are released into environment on a regular basis, many of which have not been fully tested especially in combination with other toxins and chemicals. So for example – chemical A has been tested and found to be “safe” as well as chemical B. But what happens when chemical A and B get together? What happens when a human is exposed to long term low “safe” levels of either chemical? These are just a few examples of why the food we are eating is not really always what it seems.
Why are we getting sicker?
So the bottom line is that many of the essential nutrients that we need to keep our bodies in balance and prevent chronic disease are not available in the foods we eat. On top of that, the processed and fast foods in the typical American diet are a major contributor to chronic disease.
Do you ever wonder why, in time of advanced medical science, Americans are getting sicker and sicker? Stayed tuned for my upcoming post to find out what essential nutrients, vitamins and minerals that may be missing from your diet. .