We know that only 1 person in 100 in the EU and 3 people in 100 in the UK have all the nutrients they need for optimum health.
Why is this?
One reason is the quality of our food and another reason is our changing lifestyle habits.
The World Health Organisation suggest that we require 400-450gms of fruit and vegetables daily.
We know that only 13% of men and 21% of women eat enough. Most people only have approximately 260gms.
We also need 30-35gms of fibre a day. In the MAFF 1998 food survey it found that there was a 16% drop each year in the consumption of fruit and vegetables.
The Quality of Food
Most processed food is heated and heat destroys many of the vitamins, enzymes and phytonutrients that are present in our food. They have been further deprived of nutrients by modern processing methods that advocate preserving, freezing, heating, canning, colouring etc.
Processed food is high in trans-fats of all kinds and sugar. In 1990 the average consumption of sugar was 10lbs. per person annually, it is now 120lbs. In a can of coke there are 30gms. of sugar!
Usually there is a high salt content. The recommended daily intake of salt is 2gms. The average diet has 9gms a day. Salt increases the thickness of blood and slows down the flow therefore causing an increase in blood pressure.
Most processed foods are loaded with all kinds of additives like stabilisers, preservatives, artificial colouring and flavouring agents that are foreign chemicals and put an additional load on the body. An average white loaf contains 50 plus chemical additives!
The liver is exposed to a whole range of chemicals that it has to try and dispose of and this puts an enormous strain on it. New research is showing that our toxic environment is to blame for many of our chronic health problems such as diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease. The reason for that is that our livers, that have to metabolise all the toxins we take into our body, become congested and are unable to clear the toxins. In the liver the clearing of toxins is achieved through two distinct biochemical pathways which work synergistically, phase 1 makes all the toxins water soluble and then phase 2 binds the water soluble chemicals to clear them and protect the body. Imbalanced metabolic clearing is very common and may be the result of genetic make-up, prolonged nutrient insufficiency and, more often than not, toxic overload.
The farmers are under both consumer and commercial pressure to grow more products more quickly. Rotation of crops is therefore not carried out and with the widespread use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides being used to encourage growth and speed of growth, it results in depletion in minerals and trace elements in the soil of most of Western Europe. 400 million litres of pesticides and 600 million litres of organo-phosphate fertilisers are used in this country annually!
In recent tests selenium and zinc were found to be very low and this can be the cause of cancers, cardiovascular disease and infertility.
MAFF test fruits and vegetables each year for their vitamin and mineral content and have found that most of them have gone down in their nutritional value. For example in 1978 a banana had 42 mg. of magnesium per 100 gms. in 1998 it had gone down to 34 and now is even less. A carrot on the other hand had 12 mgs of magnesium and now only has 3mgs! In 1948 a bowl of spinach would have given us 120mg. of iron, the same bowl today gives us 2mg.!
The fruit and vegetables are picked when unripe and put into cold storage and can be left there for several months. Then when required they are put into a heat chamber to ripen before being put on the shelves.
- During storage 50% of the nutrients are lost.
- During transport 25% of the nutrients are lost.
- During cooking 20-50% of the nutrients are lost.
- During freezing 33% of nutrient are lost.
- During overprocessing 100% of nutrients are lost.
- During refining 100% of nutrients are lost.
- Plastic polymers are sprayed onto fruit and vegetables and this holds in the pesticides and herbicides.
- Benton in Swansea
- Schoenthaler in California
They took one group and put them on a placebo, another group they put on 50% RDA vitamins, a third group on 100% RDA vitamins and minerals and a fourth group on 200% RDA vitamins and minerals. After three months they measured their IQ and found that those that had been on the supplements had significantly higher IQ scores, the 100% RDAs having the highest score. 45% of them had an increase in IQ of 15 or more points compared to an average increase of 4.4 points.
This is not surprising as 30% of school children do not have breakfast and therefore have no nutrients before going to school every morning.
Children need 800-1000mg of calcium a day and we are now seeing an increase in osteoporosis as bone density is determined by the time one is 20years old. However calcium is not the only cause of an increase in osteoporosis, our acid diet also plays a huge part. All processed foods, carbohydrates and proteins once digested, leave an acid ash and the body is constantly trying to make the body alkaline, so it uses its buffer stores of minerals to do so. Once the stores become depleted it has to go elsewhere for the buffers and starts to take calcium from the bones and magnesium from the muscles including the heart muscle!
With today’s polluted environment and high stress lifestyles there are more reasons than ever for taking nutritional supplements.
The body is a miraculous organism, which is designed to handle stress of all kinds, but it needs the fuel to make it run in order to be able to function and cleanse itself. Just like a car, if the body isn’t provided with the ‘fuel’ it requires, it cannot work efficiently, or stay healthy? That ‘fuel’ consists of the nutrients obtained from our diet and the supplements that we take to guarantee that we are meeting our daily nutritional needs.
If you suffer regular tiredness, skin problems, headaches, digestive problems or aches and pains it is a warning sign that something is not right in the body. Don’t just pop a pill and hope that it will go away. This is like ignoring or breaking the warning light when it comes on in your car!
It is your individual responsibility to focus on your health and to take action, no-one else is going to do it for you.
The Reason I Recommend Certain Products
The companies I use have all been manufacturing and selling quality, leading edge nutritional products for many years. They seldom use salt, sugar, or artificial preservatives, flavouring or colouring agents in their products and all of their products are pH balanced so that they are more easily absorbed. The fillers and binders, if used, are more natural giving greater bioavailability because it is said that at the Anglian Water filtration station they have found as much as 64 tons of tablets a week sitting on the filters. This is due to non-absorption of drugs, so that they just go straight through the recipient!
The products therefore are more expensive but you pay for quality. It has been reported recently by Larry Augsburger, a University of Maryland School of Pharmacy Professor, that on analysing 52 different Glucosamine and chondroitin products, only 5 of the products that he looked at contained the amounts stated on the label!
Of course a healthy diet is vital as well, to help the body in its efforts to heal itself, and in some cases, particular foods can help protect against the development of serious illness. Here are 8 tips to keep you healthy.
- Avoid polyunsaturated vegetable oils, margarine, vegetable shortening, all partially hydrogenated oils, and all foods that might contain trans-fatty acids (such as deep-fried foods).
- Avoid processed foods
- Avoid sugar, it is non-nutritive and inflammatory
- Increase omega-3 fatty acids by eating more oily fish, freshly ground flaxseeds, and walnuts.
- Use hormone-free, organically produced products whenever possible, it helps the liver.
- Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables especially green ones to keep you alkaline
- Drink 1-2 litres of alkaline water a day to stay hydrated.
- Eat shiitake, enokitake, maitake, and oyster mushrooms frequently, they are great anti cancer foods.