In an ideal world a healthy clean diet would provide all the nutrients we need in order to achieve optimum health. Unfortunately, the fruit and vegetables that we buy fall far short of this. The Journal of the American College of Nutrition has published findings from University of Texas showing diminished levels of six nutrients in vegetables and fruits
According to the report, levels of calcium, riboflavin, vitamin C, iron, potassium, and protein in vegetables and fruits have significantly declined since 1950. So why has this happened?
1) Selective breeding for pith and water- (pith is defined as the fibrous part of fruits and vegetables, such as the – netting around orange sections that is usually discarded). Desirable traits for commercial growers who want produce to ship well, look good, and weigh a lot, but undesirable traits for consumers who buy produce as a source of nutrition. Plant jockeys call it the dilution effect — more water and pith, less vitamin content.
2) Prematurely picked- Most commercial fruit, including tomatoes, is picked green. Green fruit doesn’t have a chance to sun-ripen; it’s artificially ripened with ethylene, a natural plant hormone. Ethylene is what causes tomatoes to turn pinkish. Produce deprived of sunlight doesn’t have a chance to develop sunlight-related nutrients such as anthocyanins — the flavonoids that make cherries red and grapes purple.3-5 Anthocyanins are plant sunscreens. When humans ingest them, they provide protection against DNA damage, brain cell deterioration, cancer, and more.6-8
Add to this changing climates, commercial fertilizers, and changes in soil composition all of which add to the vitamin drain in commercial produce. In addition increasing carbon dioxide levels and synthetic fertilizers are another potential source of vitamin depletion
Supplements are not a replacement for food, but they can help give you the edge when food is so highly processed and genetically modified.
So if you make the decision to take a supplement then you are sorted right? Not quite. Then you need to decide which supplements you are going to take. Now, by this I don’t mean, the individual supplements – that is dependent on the individual and their needs and requirements. I mean, what brand will you buy – the cheap ones from the supermarket? Ones from a health shop? Shop around online? Again a personal choice but if you are going to spend your money on a supplement then it may as well be on a good one.
My personal choice is Nature’s Sunshine. Unlike many other companies Nature’s Sunshine does not use synthetic ingredients, herbs that have been sprayed with pesticides or artificial flavours and additives. Nature’s Sunshine use only the very best natural organic ingredients from across the world and manufacture their products to pharmaceutical standards, in their own state-of-the-art, award winning manufacturing facility. Over 500 different quality control procedures are used, guaranteeing the potency, efficacy and purity of our products.
It is purely for the fact that they use natural and organically sourced ingredients that I choose to buy their products. The cheap ones in the supermarkets and even some health shops are highly processed. Why would I work so hard on maintaining an unprocessed, clean, natural diet and then take a synthetically produced supplement?!
But as I said it is a personal choice. I will leave that one with you 🙂