Many people and doctors believe that you can get all the nutrients you need from food alone. This is only partially true. If you only want the RDA levels of key vitamins and minerals, then you probably could get that from a decent well balanced diet. An RDA level diet, as I’ve written previously, only provides enough to avoid the diseases of deficiency like beri beri, pellagra, rickets, scurvy, etc.
Research has shown that that there are optimal levels of key nutrients that provide disease prevention and can turn back some diseases. These are usually far greater than the RDA levels many popular nutritional supplements are proud to state that they provide. These levels would be difficult to be obtained by food alone. It depends on the foods eaten, but it has been estimated that you’d have to consume over 20,000 calories a day, every day, to get the optimal levels of nutrients which can provide real health benefits like fighting cancer vs just preventing rickets.
For example here is what you’d have to eat to get the levels I have in my supplements:
- Vitamin C – 18 oranges
- B12 – 7 ounces of cooked clams
- Vitamin E – a bag of sunflower seeds plus a quart of corn oil
- Folate – 4.5 cups of cooked spinach
- Iodine – 9 ounces of baked cod
- Zinc – 8 ounces of pumpkin seeds
- Vitamin D – 44 Large Eggs or a pound of wild caught salmon
- Olive Oil benefits – 3 ounces of Olive Oil daily
- Magnesium – One cup of pure wheat bran (not bran cereal) or 2/3 cup of brazil nuts.
- Selenium – 3 ounces of liver or if you prefer, 40 slices of bacon.