Nutrition Requirements and Vitamins

Question: Can’t I get all of the nutrition I need from the food that I eat? Why do I need supplements? What is the RDA ?

alt textThere are a group of nutritionists supported by the USDA who issue reports every five years regarding their findings. Their latest data was taken from people on the food stamp program. They assumed that the typical citizen was using food stamps. Their report includes the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for all the supplements which appear on every vitamin bottle and box of breakfast food. Their latest report can be found at Dietary Guidelines 2010 Report

I quote the second sentence in the report, “Essential nutrients, those that the body cannot produce itself in adequate amounts, must be obtained from foods.” That, in essence sums up the total bias of the dietitians of the world. Supplements are not considered. We can get it all from their food groups and the five helpings of fruits and vegetables a day. Where is their data to support any of these rules? Where do they get their data to establish the RDA numbers appearing on your supplement bottle? I invite you to read the historic overview of the Origin of Recommended Dietary Allowances by AE Harper.

Beginnings of the RDA

The RDA started in the 1860’s with the British requirement to add lemons to the Navy to prevent scurvy. The basic requirements for RDA’s were generated by politicians. The politicians wanted to know, during depressions and wars, how much food their population would require to prevent starvation.

The first problem in answering the politicians question is, where is the data on what the body needs to avoid starvation? Should we do double blind studies? Are we just following the RDA guidelines to avoid starvation? What happened to a healthy lifestyle? And how can one RDA number possibly cover all genders, races, ages, heredities, life styles, and environments. Not to mention special problems such as stress, addictions, and disease. The idea of one RDA number to cover all the people on this planet is ridiculous; especially when there is no data to even start with.

The nutritionists are still telling you that you can get all the your needs met by consuming five helpings of fruits and vegetables a day. Is there anyone out there who consumes five helpings a day? And where is there proof of that statement? And by meeting the nutritional requirements, are they just satisfying the RDA requirements to avoid starvation?

Quality of the food has changed in last 50 years

Even if you had the perfect diet according to the nutritionists’ recommendations, the quality of the food you consume has changed radically in the last 40 years. My family lived on a farm in North Dakota in the 1930’s and all of our vegetables and some of the meat was home grown (“organic”, by today’s standards). Back then there were many mineral nutrients in the soil which are no longer present. The soil has become exhausted. Chemical fertilizers, herbicides, and weed killers are now common in the farmer’s field in place of long depleted natural minerals. Not to mention all of the chemical pollutants in the air and water caused by the increase in manufacturing over the last 50 years. The vegetables and meats that we consumed 100 years ago were “organically grown” and not subject to the contamination prevalent today.

For those of you who still believe that the food today will provide you with the nutrition that you need, I recommend either viewing the DVD or reading the book entitled Food Inc.: A Participant Guide: How Industrial Food is Making Us Sicker, Fatter, and Poorer-And What You Can Do About It edited by Karl Weber which discusses our contaminated food supply and the industry behind it. The fact that the European Union will not allow our beef to be imported is one clue, but there are many others. Go organic if you can.

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