The importance of nutritional supplements

Adequate nutrient density provides the building blocks for health, longevity, and vibrancy. Unfortunately, your diet is less than nutritious. Chances are, no matter how good your diet, you have a nutrition deficiency.

Ask yourself: What is the purpose of food? Some may dwell on the fleeting component of taste, but most would agree that we eat to nourish our bodies with the proper nutrients to keep them functioning. But today, modern agricultural practices plus climate change are putting that purpose in danger.

“Opportunistic eating”, (the unplanned consumption of food just because it is available) in today’s environment is a far cry from what it was during 99.9% of our species’ evolution.

Science has put a serious one-up on Mother Nature herself by bettering her at her own game: producing a surplus of nutritious, satiating, disease-fighting food.

Unfortunately, some of these “advances” have had unintended and disastrous consequences both to the nutritional quality of our food supply, and to the health of our farmland soil.  As evidenced by a continuing stream of credible studies, the quality (nutrient density) of our food supply is in serious question.

But what’s the problem?

Soil depletion.

As early as the 1940’s, scientists began documenting disturbing observations of rapid mineral depletion in the soil.

But noticeable nutrient decline began after the Green Revolution in the 1950s and 60s when Farmers were introduced to all types of practices to increase yields, namely planting monocultures and using chemical fertilizers.

Sixty years later, these practices are ubiquitous. Three of the biggest crops in the U.S. – corn, soybeans, and wheat – are all mostly grown as monocultures, and American farmers spend over $23.5 billion year on fertilizer. As scientists have studied these practices, they have discovered that while these techniques increase the quantity of food grown, the increased yield also comes with a decrease in vital nutrients and minerals, a result commonly referred to in horticulture circles as the “dilution effect.” Scientists have found that over the past 50 years the nutrient content of soil has been depleted by these intensive practices, thus making the nutrient content of the plants grown also less nutritious.

“During those 50 years, there have been intensive efforts to breed new varieties that have greater yield, or resistance to pests, or adaptability to different climates. But the dominant effort is for higher yields. Emerging evidence suggests that when you select for yield, crops grow bigger and faster, but they don’t necessarily have the ability to make or uptake nutrients at the same, faster rate.”

University of Texas biochemist, Dr. Donald Davis

In addiction, the increase of CO2 in the atmosphere is not just warming the planet, it is also changing the chemical makeup and diluting vitamins and minerals in key crops so accelerating the soil depletion process.

Transportation Requirements

Another hit to nutrient density comes via transport distance and shipping time.  To support extended transport times, fruits and veggies can be picked weeks before full maturity, then artificially ripened in route or at destination.

This means that a particular fruit or vegetable has not only spent less time in the ground or on the vine, but during transport time live material continues to respire, churning through what scant, beneficial antioxidants and polyphenols were in the produce to begin with.

Also, the mere manipulation of product during shipping degrades nutrient value and by the time a fruit or vegetable does finally arrive at our home, it has lost some of the very health-promoting compounds.

Undernourished and Overweight

And this is another thing to take in consideration: how do think the body compensates for this lack of nutrient density in the diet?

Very simply, it manipulates the hunger signal so as to consume more volume.  An excess of empty calories, whether they come from, gets stored as fat leading to this condition: undernourished and overweight.

So, what to do?

Supplement intelligently

As you can see the nutritional value of modern crops has declined precipitously over the past few decades, in fact, the recommendation of “five servings of fruits and veggies a day,” has become, at best, “anemic” advice.

Healthy eating in our current environment is an art that does require a good amount of education built it upon a simple model so to make it usable, day to day.

So, giving the circunstances, in order to navigate our current environment, we need to create a model that will allow us to make healthy eating choices without thinking to much, by which to operate by, day-to-day and which can be sustainable long term. The proper dietary choices have to become automatic without having to expend much brain energy, concentration or will power.

And here is where it takes place supplementation to fill the gaps.

Supplementation can help meet the higher nutritional needs of a more demanding lifestyle or medical condition: stress, medical needs, and energetic living can all create a greater need in your specific body for very specific minerals or vitamins.

Therefore, as we have seen, Chemicals used in farming, depleted soils, refinement, preservatives, and additives all create deep imbalances in our food supplies and taking dietary supplements on top of your healthy diet may prove beneficial in ensuring your body may be the nutrients it needs each day and correcting deficiencies in the food you are eating. 

Consider supplementation your insurance policy, protecting your health and preventing disease.

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