Maximizing Your Nutrition Dollar
Getting the most nutrition for every dollar spent is of great concern for those interested in maintaining good health. Yet for the average consumer, the nutrition derived from fresh food dollars has substantially decreased over the past three decades. Why is this happening and what can be done about it?
Another reason for nutrient poor produce is the very soils they are grown in. Soils throughout North America have been depleted since the 'dust bowl' years of the 1930's. Soil depletion is a problem worldwide, because of poor farming methods that take from the soil without returning the minerals vital to good health. Modern methods replace only the minerals necessary for good plant growth, not trace minerals essential for human health. Although this trend is beginning to be reversed by today's organic farmer's careful cultivation of the soil, depletion continues to be a problem throughout the world with little attention paid to the contribution of trace minerals to good health.
How food is stored on the grocery shelf also has an impact on nutrition. Tomato juice retains vitamin C better in cans than in glass containers, whereas orange juice retains its vitamin C better in glass than plastic or glass containers. Vitamin K as well as some B vitamins is depleted by exposure to light, including fluorescent light present in grocery stores. For example, enriched pastas can lose up to 80% riboflavin content if stored in lighted conditions for just 12 weeks.
The best defense against nutritionally depleted foods is careful supplementation followed by purchasing fresh foods as close to the source and organically grown whenever feasible. Maximizing your nutrition dollar by getting optimal nutrition from all sources is your best offensive move for maintaining good health.
Karen Walker is a home business consultant specializing in the health and wellness industry.