With an increasingly hectic lifestyle and more and more families with both parents working full-time, we know how difficult it is to provide three fresh, balanced meals each day for our family. Many people continue to believe that “we can get everything we need from food,” but with convenience starting to play a bigger role in our food preparation, can that really be true? In practice, even very careful eaters find it difficult to ensure that they receive the range of essential vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients in their daily diet. Here are some reasons:
1. Food Choice and Habit They say variety is the spice of life, but the fact is, most people’s diets are pretty boring. We don’t eat sufficiently wide in variety, often sticking to the few types of food that we like. Spinach may be full of nutrients, but Popeye isn’t necessarily healthy if that’s all he eats.
2. Overcooking Heat destroys many valuable food nutrients. But for the sake of taste, we continue to boil, fry, roast, and grill the goodness out of our food.
3. Variation in Nutrient Content The same food–cultivated in different locations, planted in different seasons, or processed to different degrees–can end up containing very different nutrient profiles. How can you be sure that you’re really getting the amount of nutrients your body needs?
Should We Take a Nutritional Supplement?
A nutritional supplement does not replace a healthy diet. But proper supplementation can bridge the gap between what our body needs in optimal nutrition, and what most of us actually get from food.
Who says so?
The Journal of American Medical Association, in its June 2002 issue, says “Most people do not consume an optimal amount of all vitamins by diet alone. Pending strong evidence of effectiveness from randomized trials, it appears prudent for all adults to take vitamin supplements.”
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