What are whole food supplements? Why are they important? What is the difference between a whole food supplement and a multivitamin? Are they expensive? How do I know which one is the best? Where can I get them? These are some of the questions I will try to answer in this post.
Humans have always gotten their nutrition from food. Early humans were hunters and gatherers. Then humans developed agriculture. They still consumed plant and animal products for their nutrition. Very recently, humans developed processed and refined foods. These processed and refined foods, though delicious, are severely lacking in nutrients. We have developed large scale farming operations in order to provide fresh food to the masses. Many of these farming methods result in nutrient-deficient soil–which translates to nutrient-deficient produce. Human technology has led to genetically-modified-organisms (GMOs) as a food
source, which in and of itself is a controversial issue, worthy of a separate blog post.
Because of the decreased nutrition of food, many of us have turned to vitamins, multivitamins, or other vitamin and mineral supplements. This is fine, but unfortunately, the only things that are in these are vitamins (or minerals) by themselves. They still work, they are still vitamins and minerals. BUT, they are missing a lot of the phytonutrients, factors, cofactors and other micronutrients that help your body get and use the vitamins and minerals efficiently. Remember, the best source of vitamins and minerals is whole food. Our bodies are perfectly adapted to get nutrition in this way.
This takes us to whole food supplements. We know the food that we eat may be deficient in vitamins and minerals. We know our bodies use food more effectively than vitamin and mineral supplements. Whole food supplements are made out of food. They don’t simply isolate the vitamins and minerals. Whole food supplements contain all of the factors, cofactors, micronutrients, and phytonutrients (known and unknown) because they are food. That is the difference between a whole food supplement and a multivitamin.
I will discuss costs in the next blog post. In the meantime, if you have questions please contact me.