Thursday, April 24, 2014

Why are whole foods healthy?

This month's survey asked "How do you maintain health?"

Here are the results:

Eat a variety of Whole Foods to Maintain Health.

  • yoga
  • Eat lots of fermented foods.

The #1 Answer

Why are whole foods healthy?
The body can distinguish between
whole foods and supplements
Eating a variety of whole foods was the number one answer.

We all know that whole foods are better for us, but have you ever wondered why? After all, processed foods are often "fortified" and supplements can fill in the gaps. So what's the deal with whole foods?

Read on ...

  • Phytochemicals ("Phyto" refers to the Greek word for plant) can only be found in whole plant foods. There are over 25,000 phytonutrients found in plants and they help protect us from cancer, reduce inflammation, encourage eye health, reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, etc.

  • Whole foods are complex and contain a multitude of balanced nutrients which cannot be emulated by a supplement. In short, they contain everything we need, in the right proportions. Supplements, on the other hand, contain isolated nutrients. That means that rather than get the right amount, we could, potentially, overdose on a single nutrient, causing health problems. It should also be noted that supplements, considered medicinal products, come with "side effect" warnings ... whole foods don't.

  • Fiber, essential for GI (Gastrointestinal) health, helps fight heart disease and diabetes, controls blood sugar, and helps us maintain a healthy weight. When a food is processed, the fiber is usually removed. Whole foods, as opposed to supplements, contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. They also slow down the digestion process allowing better absorption of nutrients.

  • Whole foods contain no added fat, sugar, or sodium.

  • Fortified foods artificially add nutrition into the product (often with synthetic vitamins). Studies have shown than even after the "enhancement", the food still doesn't equal the nutrition of a whole food.

Why are whole foods healthy?
A "whole" is better than a "piece"
Consider this ... a fragment of a bottle might be desirable in it's own right, but it will never be able to compete with the functionality of a bottle.

In the same way, processed foods and supplements can never live up to the nutritional benefits of Whole Foods.

How do you incorporate whole foods into your meal plan?

Sneak Peek: Have you checked out the latest energy-saving devices recently? Tomorrow we'll take a look at a few of them.