Friday, February 20, 2015

What is the Ideal Human Diet According to the Latest Scientific Findings- 2015?

 

ideal-human-diet-latest-scientific-findings-2015

The ideal human diet looks like this: Consume plant-based foods in forms as close to their natural state as possible (“whole” foods). Eat a variety of vegetables, fruits, raw nuts and seeds, beans and legumes, and whole grains. Avoid heavily processed foods and animal products. Stay away from added salt, oil, and sugar. Aim to get 80 percent of your calories from carbohydrates, 10 percent from fat, and 10 percent from protein.

How healthy is the whole food, plant-based (WFPB) diet? It’s hard to imagine anything healthier— or anything more effective at addressing our biggest health issues. Not only is WFPB the healthiest way of eating that has ever been studied, but it’s far more effective in promoting health and preventing disease than prescription drugs, surgery, vitamin and herbal supplementation, and genetic manipulation.

If the WFPB diet were a pill, its inventor would be the wealthiest person on earth. Since it isn’t a pill, no market forces conspire to advocate for it. No mass media campaign promotes it. No insurance coverage pays for it.

Since it isn’t a pill, and nobody has figured out how to get hugely wealthy by showing people how to eat it, the truth has been buried by half-truths, unverified claims, and downright lies. The concerted effort of many powerful interests to ignore, discredit, and hide the truth has worked so far.

Why the WFPB Diet Makes Sense?

I have spent the last few decades studying the effects of the WFPB diet; for me, the diet’s results are convincing based solely on the data. But it’s still helpful to explore the question of why. Why is the WFPB diet the healthiest way for humans to eat? Based on my training in biochemistry, I have a few conjectures that can be boiled down to one concept: oxidation gone awry.

Oxidation is the process by which atoms and molecules lose electrons as they come into contact with other atoms and molecules; it’s one of the most basic chemical reactions in the universe. When you cut an apple and it turns brown in contact with air or when your car fender rusts, you’re witnessing oxidation at work. Oxidation happens within our bodies as well. Some of it is natural and good; oxidation facilitates the transfer of energy within the body. Oxidation also gets rid of potentially harmful foreign substances in the body by making them water soluble (and therefore able to be excreted in urine). Excessive uncontrolled oxidation, however, is the enemy of health and longevity in humans, just as excessive oxidation turns your new car into a junker and your apple slice into compost. Oxidation produces something called free radicals, which we know are responsible for encouraging aging, promoting cancer, and rupturing plaques that lead to strokes and heart attacks, among other adverse effects impacting a host of autoimmune and neurologic diseases.

So how might a plant-based diet protect us from the disease-causing effects of free radicals? For one thing, there is some evidence that high-protein diets enhance free radical production, thus encouraging unwanted tissue damage. But it’s virtually impossible to eat a high-protein diet if you’re consuming mostly whole, plant-based foods. Even if you munched on legumes, beans, and nuts all day, you’d be hard pressed to get more than 12-15 percent or so of your calories from protein.

But there’s much more to whole, plant-based foods than the high-protein animal foods they replace. It turns out that plants also produce harmful free radicals—in their case, during photosynthesis. To counteract that free radical production, plants have evolved a defense mechanism: a whole battery of compounds capable of preventing damage by binding to and neutralizing the free radicals. These compounds are known, not particularly poetically, as antioxidants.

When we and other mammals consume plants, we also consume the antioxidants in those plants. And they serve us just as faithfully and effectively as they serve the plants, protecting us from free radicals and slowing down the aging process in our cells. Remarkably, they have no effect on the useful oxidative processes I talked about earlier. They only neutralize the harmful products of excessive oxidation.

It seems reasonable to assume that our bodies never went to the trouble of making antioxidants because they were so readily available in what, for most of our history, was our primary food source: plants. It’s only when we shifted to a diet rich in animal-based food and processed food fragments that we tilted the game in favor of oxidation. The excess protein in our diet has promoted excess oxidation, and we no longer consume enough plant-produced antioxidants to contain and neutralize the damage.

It’s important to remember, however, that this is just a theory. The most important thing is not why the WFPB diet works so much as the fact that it does work. The evidence is clear about the WFPB diet’s effectiveness— whatever specific reasons there may be.


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Excerpted with permission from the book: T. Colin Campbell. 2014. Whole: Rethinking the Science of Nutrition. BenBella Books. ISBN-13: 978-1939529848.  

Posted with permission from BenBella Books under the Fair Use Policy of the United States for a limited and “transformative” purpose. If you have legal comments and adverse reaction, please contact me at Blog Contact. I get back to you after I read your message ASAP.



Watch very short videos on the importance of food on your life.

Plant Based Nutrition by Julieanna Hever, Dietitian and recently featured on The Dr. Oz Show and Reluctantly Healthy



Food as Medicine by Christa Orechio, clinical and holistic nutritionist and founder of The Whole Journey



Get one of the  whole food, plant-based (WFPB) recipe here... Broccoli Frittata Recipe- Healthy Recipes



Somewhat related posts:

1) Top 10 Best Diet Plan in United States According to Google

2) The Glycaemic Index may Give a Better Idea of How Fattening a Food is than Calories Alone

1 comment:

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