Real health foods – no wooden nickels!
But here come
those wily jungle
NATURAL OR PROCESSED FOOD?
Not many foods today are really health foods. OK, all food is “natural,” in the sense that it comes from our planet. But nowadays, especially in the United States, not much of it comes direct from the farm. Most of the food that finds its way to the table is so processed that we wouldn’t recognize it in its original form.
Maybe that doesn’t sound so bad. But to stay healthy, keep going strong, and protect ourselves from potential diseases, we need to eat natural health foods as close to their original forms as practical. Scientific studies have shown that most processed foods contain almost none of the nutrients we need to keep healthy.
An obvious example is white flour. White flour is made from wheat grain. But to get the white flour, part of the grain (the most nutritious part!) is thrown away, and what’s left is bleached to make it whiter. Most of the vitamins and minerals are gone, at that point. Now you have pure starch, which can provide energy, but not body-building or maintenance.
So oftentimes synthetic vitamins and minerals are added back, but they aren’t as effective as the ones that were lost. Many of them just wash out of your body. (Not real health foods)
There’s a reason. Scientists know that all foods are made up from some of the same basic elements, but sometimes they don’t realize that each one puts them together differently.
So, for any natural food entering the human system, there is an individual “firing order,” or action connected with that food. If you eat two different vegetables at a meal, they will have completely different reactions in the body, even though the vitamins and minerals might look the same under a microscope.
This is the medicinal magic of health foods!
The natural form of wheat flour is whole wheat flour, which is simply the grain, ground into flour. Tests indicate that our bodies get many more minerals, vitamins, natural oils, and other nutrients from eating whole grain flours. They're super health foods! And many people prefer the taste, too!
ORGANIC OR CONVENTIONAL FOOD?
Food can be raised by very different methods. In a natural ecology, growing plants feed on nutrients in the soil. But after years of growing crops on land, people saw that the land became too poor. So scientists tried to figure out why – what was missing? And why did some plants grow on one type of soil, while other plants couldn’t survive there?
They tested soils, and came up with lists of nutrients that each food plant preferred. Then they decided to synthesize the nutrients, and put them in bags, to be distributed over the soil before a crop was planted. That way, the plants would have what they needed to grow.
It wasn’t such a bad idea, but they didn’t look deep enough. It was like adding the vitamins and minerals back to white flour, after it’s been ruined. It’s just not the same!
HERE ABIDE PREDATORS!
Today, conventional agriculture is entirely based on using those synthetic fertilizers to feed plants growing on exhausted land, and poisonous herbicides to kill the weed competition. They spray more synthetic pesticides to kill insects preying on the plants. In the case of livestock, they administer hormones to increase the animal’s growth rate or production of meat, milk or eggs, and antibiotics to help them tolerate a diet of foods they can’t digest.
The idea behind this process is to raise as much food as possible, as quickly and surely as possible. Given the starvation-history of our world, this is surely understandable.
But with all that poison on them, how can you call them health foods?
And there is also another motive, for the huge agribusiness conglomerates: to make as much money as possible, no matter what the consequences to people and the land might be. And modern science is becoming aware that there definitely are some adverse consequences.
But there was another answer that they overlooked! Organic Food is grown without the use of synthetic products. Our world’s ecology consists of uncounted circular processes, and, as we all know, a circle has no end. This means that each piece of the process fits neatly into the next piece, and the whole thing just keeps on going round and round.
When the leaves fall from a tree, they lie on the ground and decompose into fertilizer for the tree itself and whatever other plants may be growing there. So the tree and the plants are fed and grow larger, and let more leaves fall, and so on. Nothing misses a beat. (So much for raking your leaves!)
The same goes for animals. They eat the plants or animals they were designed to eat, recycle them through their bodies, and let fertilizer fall to the ground, which feeds the plants, and it goes on.
Organic farming tries to follow this same process, because it meshes with other circular processes in nature. This produces genuine health foods.
Many scientists are aware that we don’t fully understand all those processes yet, and are starting to see that breaking the circle can cause problems for everyone. So it’s wiser to follow a method that is proven to work over the millennia, and keeps on working.
To feed growing plants, organic farmers provide rich soil, and continue to build it by adding the same kind of nutrients Nature adds:
composted plant materials
and animal wastes. Healthy plants make healthy foods.
Competitive weeds are deterred by careful cultivation or piling mulch around the food plants. Oftentimes insect pests are reduced by the balance of the mini-ecosystem. But when they are a problem, sprays and powders are made, using natural ingredients like red pepper and garlic. This achieves the effect without damaging beneficial insects or organisms. There is no runoff of residues to contaminate our water supplies.
So the healthiest foods are really NATURAL and ORGANIC!
Come with us to the Organic Food page,
to watch the giants duke it out!
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