Poor agricultural practices and excessive food processing tend to leave the food that ends up on your table a shadow of its former self in regards to the nutritional content of years gone by. Plus, we make things worse, when we cook these nutrient deprived foods and further destroy any nutritional value. But, we have a plan!
How to maximize the nutrient value of food
To get the most nutrition out of your food, focus on buying clean, whole foods. Purchase organic if you can to lessen the effects of pesticide residue and use the following four methods to expand upon their nutritional value.
1. Juicing 2. Blending 3. Fermenting 4. Sprouting
Fresh raw fruit and vegetables have a maximum of vitamins, minerals, and enzymes before processing. Juicing this produce makes it much easier to assimilate the nutrients in your body, as they go straight into your system without having to be broken down. It would appear that our digestive systems today are lacking in many ways. Thus, there are varying limitations on what the digestive system can absorb, but juicing helps bypass that problem by liberating key nutrients from the tough plant cell walls for you, this ensures you get the most out of your fruits and vegetables.
Smoothies are becoming more popular as they are nutritious, easy to make and less expensive than juicing plus you keep the fiber. Blending doesn’t get you more nutrition out of your food but it is extremely easy and quick to prepare. One of our favorites is the kale shake, simply add a handful of fresh raw kale with a banana, some berries and water…blend for 3 minutes, pour into a glass and your meal is ready.
Sprouting is something few people do, but it is another exceptional way to deliver a concentrated source of nutrition that is different from eating the plant in its mature form.
Sprouts are ideal for improving your health because they are a highly digestible source of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, proteins, beneficial enzymes, and phytochemicals. Sprouted foods have five to ten times higher B-vitamins, and twice the vitamin A, C, zinc, calcium and iron content of their non-sprouted counterparts, not to mention they are easy to digest. Sprouts also add some crunch to sandwiches and salads and they can be added to smoothies and to your juices.
Per calorie, sprouts may be arguably the most efficient form of nutrition, and they are very easy and economical to produce in your home.
Fermenting foods is one of the most powerful ways to introduce incredible nutrition to your body. The process of fermenting is simply a culturing process that produces beneficial bacteria that are very important in maintaining a healthy gut. Introducing them to your diet will improve the function of both your digestive and immune system plus enhance your liver, and your brain!
As an example, sauerkraut, which is fermented cabbage, is a source of many nutrients including:
– Vitamin B1, B6, and B9
– Vitamin C and K
– Manganese, magnesium, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron
Plus the live probiotics and enzymes that fermented foods contain makes fermented food unique.