Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Produce Just Ain't What it Used to Be

For about the last 10 years it has been known in scientific circles that our plant-based foods contain declining nutrient levels. There are many reasons for this: chemical fertilizers designed to speed growth, genetic manipulation for the purpose of making fruits and vegetables more "attractive", picking produce before it is ripe to ensure that it looks ripe when it arrives in the supermarket, etc. For example, everyone's favorite veggie, broccoli, contains 63% less calcium today than it did in 1950. So even if you make a serious effort to eat your fruits and veggies, chances are you are still not meeting your basic nutritional requirements. What's a person to do?

One thing you might consider is buying organic. Avoiding the use of synthetic fertilizers has several effects that can boost the nutritional content of food crops. But the cost and availability of organic produce makes this impractical for many people. Here are nine simple ways to maximize the nutritive value of your fruits and vegetables from the nice folks at Prevention Magazine.

And remember! Even with fewer nutrients than in the past, fresh fruits and vegetables remain a far better food choice than the processed "food-like substances" that form the core of the Standard American Diet (SAD).

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