The average western diet is lacking in several important nutrients. Most westerners eat too many over-processed foods and not enough home cooked, unprocessed, natural whole foods. The lack of the following important nutrients contributes to many modern health problems.
Lack of Iron
Iron is needed for a healthy blood circulation, and lack of iron can lead to anemia. Women are more likely to suffer from iron deficiency because of their menstrual cycle. Vegetarians and vegans are often missing iron, since important sources include meat and poultry. Vegetarians and vegans can get iron from green vegetables and many dried fruits.
Lack of Calcium
Calcium keeps the bones healthy, and a lack of calcium increases the risk of osteoporosis. Young women and people in their 50s (and above) need extra calcium. The body cannot produce calcium naturally, and it is important to eat enough calcium-rich foods such as dairy produce and green leafy vegetables.
Lack of Fiber
Fiber is necessary for healthy digestion, and a lack of fiber in the diet often leads to constipation. A typical modern diet contains large amounts of processed grains which do not provide dietary fiber. Sources of insoluble fiber include brown rice, whole wheat, vegetables and legumes. Sources of soluble fiber include oats, lentils, beans and many fruits.
Lack of Vitamin D
The body creates Vitamin D from sunlight, and lack of vitamin D is a problem for those who live in areas with little sunlight. Vitamin D protects the bones, maintains calcium levels and regulates cell growth. Sources of Vitamin D include fortified milk and oily fish, especially salmon or tuna.
Lack of Potassium
The body needs potassium for many important functions including heart health and water balance, but unfortunately potassium is often replaced with sodium in food production. Symptoms of an insufficient potassium intake include fatigue, muscle cramps and constipation. Good sources of potassium include bananas, spinach and beetroot.
It is easy to change your eating habits for the better. Eat more whole grains, vegetables and fruits, and choose organic, local and seasonal produce when possible. Natural unprocessed foods contain more nutrients than processed or junk foods.
To find out more about a nutritious diet, make sure to read all the newest articles from Scanner Doc.