Hello, I am Sophie and I am developing an app, which provides information about micronutrients, foods and dietary supplements for anyone who wants to improve their dietary health.
Healthy eating, alongside regular physical activity, walking in nature, wild swimming and sunbathing, can keep us fit and healthy. Leading a healthy lifestyle becomes increasingly important as we age, to maintain a healthy body and mind, reduce potential illness, ward off infection and recover quickly from any ailment or injury.
For the last 50 years, corporations and governments have tried to influence how we live, not always in our best interests. It is now well known that in the late 1970s, early 1980s, the sugar industry lobbied and funded governments, the press and official bodies to recommend a low fat diet and not to regulate sugars and other potentially harmful products such as partially hydrogenated oils that are used to make cheap, processed food and keep driving up corporate profits.
Today, like with tobacco in the last millenium, food manufacturers spend millions of pounds on marketing, promoting, protecting and pushing their products to consumers.
This means that people alive today have the biggest fight to access and afford real, good quality, fresh food, particularly those in urban areas where fast food chains feast on cash and time poor consumers.
Many people have lost track of how to feel well. A nutrient rich diet, adaptable to any eating preferences, works equally on body and mind. When we are young, we absorb vitamins and minerals easily – as does a pregnant woman – and our cells repair quickly, which helps us deal with what we consume. A useful description of processed, fast and junk food is “entertainment” food, which is eaten for fun, not sustenance.
As we get older, a diverse, varied real food diet is increasingly important to keep our bodies and minds working well, as is daily activity to strengthen our muscles and keep respiratory and circulatory systems working well.
Food cultures all over the world are based on good nutrition, gatherings, using leftovers and using local resources, such as thali, meze and tapas. Having small amounts of a wider variety of foods at each sitting can make any real food tasty, satisfying and nutritious.
Industrialised farming has depleted or stripped nutrients from many mass produced foods, which mean people need to eat more of them to get the vitamins and minerals they are supposed to provide. Refined goods no longer have the nutrients associated with them. Today’s food manufacturers use information about nutrients to add supplementation back in to foods, which have had their natural nutrients processed out.
The industrialised mass food manufacturing process is designed to make foods last longer than is natural, using preservatives and flavouring to replace the macronutrients removed from the item. This means the label can claim it is “fat free”, “gluten free” or “sugar free” but it is also “nutrient free”.
While supermarkets close their deli-counters, leaving consumers to buy packaged, more expensive foods, which have travelled much further to shop shelves, a growing section of society is spurring on quality, natural, organic and nutritious food producers, who are finding more outlets to reach local consumers with their wares.
While a trolley of packaged processed items may be in a bigger quantity and cheaper than a week’s worth of meat, fish, vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds, real food can be much quicker to cook and eat over several meals, which guarantees that everyone from single households to large families can get a rich, diverse, varied meal, which is tasty, satisfying and nutritious.
Here is the data, which I compiled from the NHS website’s vitamins and minerals pages, crossed referenced with other sources and removed processed foods with supplemented vitamins and minerals. Micronutrients provide our bodies and minds with the tools they need and when we eat real food, micronutrients are either used, stored or rejected.
This means, the safest way to get the nutrients we need to stay fit and health is through real food. However, our genes, activity and geography determine reactions to foods, such as allergies, nausea, bloating, inflammation, water retention and other prompts that we don’t need certain nutrients. If we listen to our bodies and minds, we get many more answers than we will ever understand but we can start by listening to the only source of health information, which can’t be corrupted by power, money or greed.