Natural vs. Refined Foods

All human nutrition comes from plant based foods—foods produced by the soil, water and sun. While we use animal products, and animals themselves as nutrition, the animals got their nutrition from the plants, we are just getting it second hand.

The closer we get our nutrition to its source, the healthier it is. The more science understands about human nutrition, the more we see that there are numerous elements and chemicals that are in plants that are lost when we get them second hand.

We talk a lot about ‘refined’, or ‘engineered’ foods vs. ‘unrefined’ or ‘natural’ foods. The foundation of what we are sharing has to do with understanding the health benefits of using more natural foods, the use of which will naturally reduce the amount of refined, or engineered foods in our diet.

One Very Important Example

During the milling of wheat into the refined, white, flour, at least 24 known minerals and vitamins are largely removed. This is to say nothing of the very important phytochemicals and antioxidants, which nutritional science has just recently realized make a major contribution to human wellness. The industry says it then ‘enriches’ the refined flour, but generally that means they restore 4 of these nutrients. When wheat is refined the final product has lost this percentage of these vital nutrients:

% Loss of Nutrients When Refining Wheat

Thiamine (B1)----------------------86%
Riboflavin (B2)---------------------70%
Niacin (B3)--------------------------80%
Iron------------------------------------84%
Pyridoxine (B6)---------------------60%
Folic Acid----------------------------70%
Pantothenic Acid-------------------54%
Biotin---------------------------------90%
Calcium-------------------------------50%
Phosphorus--------------------------78%
Copper--------------------------------75%
Manganese--------------------------72%
Zinc -----------------------------------71%
Chromium ---------------------------87%
Fibre-----------------------------------68%
Table From: ‘Dynamic Living’ p 101, Hans Diehl, DrHSc, MPH & Aileen Ludington, MD

For more information:

http://www.emeraldhef-ie.org

See also:

 http://www.hse.ie/eng/services/healthpromotion/