The term ‘nutrient dense foods’ essentially refers to whole, wholesome, minimally processed foods that come from the earth just as, or very close to the way nature made them.
Foods that are nutrient dense are good sources of the vital nutrients our bodies need to thrive, including things like essential fatty acids, amino acids, (proteins) complex carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, enzymes, beneficial bacteria and other phytonutrients.
Sadly, much of the foods people eat today are highly processed and manufactured in factories. Such ‘foods’, if you could call them that, are drastically depleted of many nutrients.
Industrial Agriculture Depletes Nutrients
Much of the foods in the food chain these days, as well as the food that’s fed to the animals whose meat and dairy products are widely available, are grown in soil that has been drastically depleted of its life giving biology, minerals and other nutrients. This is due to industrial agricultural practices including mono-cropping and the routine application of toxic petrochemical pesticides, herbicides and synthetic fertilizers. Food grown in soil that has been deadened and depleted in this way is extremely nutrient sparse.
As a result of these industrial farming techniques, and because so much of the food available to us today is manufactured in factories, a great deal of the food consumed in our world these days is sorely lacking in some of the most basic nutrients we require to maintain good health and to heal ourselves properly and in a timely manner if we are sick or hurt.
Even though it seems that food is very plentiful here in the west, and it is, because much of it is of such inferior quality, many people today who seem to be well fed are actually suffering from chronic malnourishment.
This widespread malnourishment is a significant factor in the increase in chronic illness we are seeing today in many, many people.
Traditional Fats Are Healthiest
In addition to the massive amounts of nutrient depleted food being consumed, there has also been some very damaging misinformation that has been disseminated to the public during the past 50-60 years or so about the kinds and amounts of fats we should be consuming.
The truth is that fats like partially hydrogenated soybean, canola and corn oils, which are not only widely used for cooking but are also prominent ingredients in many, many of the processed foods people eat today, are not really food. Prior to the industrialization of agriculture and the food system during this past century, no people on earth have ever consumed such oils derived from these particular crops. Rather than being foods, they are simply products of industry created and manufactured for profit.
These oils are often derived from genetically modified crops which are sprayed with poisonous chemicals and grown in dead soils. Therefore besides being virtually devoid essential nourishment, they’re also toxic and full of unhealthy trans fats. They’re utterly unnatural for human beings and are extremely unhealthy for us to consume.
For more information about the kinds of health giving, nutrient dense fats human beings have been eating for ages, and should be eating now for optimal health read the article at this link:
Nutrient Dense Foods
Here are a examples of some of the most nutrient dense foods available to us today:
Animal products including meats, organs, eggs, and raw, unpasteurized, unhomogenized dairy products that come from non-factory farmed, non-GMO fed, non-drugged, pastured, (ie grass fed) humanely raised and/or wild livestock.
Long cooked, mineral rich homemade broths made from the bones of these same kinds of properly fed and raised animals described above, and home cooked soups stews and sauces made with such broths.
Wild caught fish and seafood.
Traditionally consumed fats, including butter and cream from grass fed cows; animal fats like tallow, lard, and poultry fat from pastured livestock; tropical oils from coconut and palm; and cold expeller pressed oils of olives and sesame seeds.
Enzyme enhanced lacto-fermented dairy products, veggies, fruits, beverages and condiments.
Fresh, organically grown, non-factory farmed fruits and vegetables, preferably locally and seasonally cultivated in mineral rich soil.
Nuts, seeds, whole grains and legumes which have been soaked, sprouted or leavened to neutralize their anti-nutrients and improve digestibility.
Seaweeds harvested from clean ocean waters, and other aquatic plant foods such as spirulina, chlorella, blue-green algae and marine phytoplankton.
Wild grown foods harvested directly from nature, such as huckleberries, blackberries, chanterelle mushrooms and dandelion greens.
Culinary, medicinal and adaptogenic herbs and medicinal mushrooms, which are often good sources of various different vitamins, minerals and other phytonutrients, may also be considered to be nutrient dense foods.
To source nutrient dense foods in your area, seek out farmers markets, natural food coops and local farms that offer CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture).
You can also check out these links for more information and resources to help you locate places to purchase whole, wholesome nutrient dense foods near where you live:
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