Benefits of Natural & Whole Food Diet (Why They Are Better Than Processed Foods)By John Under Diet & Nutrition
With recent trends in organic and natural foods, the whole foods diet has seen a rise in popularity. Whole foods are typically defined as foods that go through as little processing as possible. Fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and beans are all examples of whole foods. Many nutritional experts are endorsing the whole foods diet because of its numerous nutritional benefits.
One of the most immediate benefits of a whole foods diet is the weight you’ll lose.
Vegetarians and vegans already enjoyed the benefits of eliminating processed foods.
When you switch to a whole foods diet, you’ll be cutting out an incredible amount of high calorie and high sugar foods, which will help you shed unwanted pounds.
Lower Cholesterol Levels
Along with fat loss, a whole foods diet will help lower your cholesterol levels, which increases your chance of living longer. Whole foods decrease trans fats and saturated fats, instead substituting them with healthier fats.
Also, people who eat more raw foods are at less risk to contract disease. With a whole foods diet, prominence is placed on the foods that will do so.
Whole foods don’t have any extra additives or preservatives, so you’re getting all the healthy vitamins and nutrients you need without any of the other garbage that you’re body doesn’t need.
Processed foods have chemicals to preserve them, but contain high amounts sugars and salts as well. These preservatives contained in processed foods can bet detrimental to your health. The dangers of salt alone are insane!
Whole foods, on average, contain only the essential nutrients your body needs, without adding any extras to your diet. With much of the average American diet lacking in vitamin A, vitamin C, magnesium and other nutrients, whole foods will provide these important nutrients.
Because whole foods provide more efficient fuel for your body, you’re able to have increased energy without that extra cup of coffee or soda.
Another benefit of this diet is the fiber in many of the foods you eat. Fiber helps with digestion and will flush toxins out of your GI tract.
You will eat smaller portions and lose weight since fiber will make you feel full faster.
Fast foods and junk foods typically are extremely low in fiber, so whole food diets will give you the added benefits of the extra fiber.
Whole grains, an important part of the whole foods diet, have other benefits than just fiber. The food group contains essential nutrients and vitamin compounds that have significant health benefits, including increased alertness, memory retention, and increased energy.
A key component of this benefit are components known as phytonutrients.
Phytonutrients (sometimes called phytochemicals) are active plant components that are antioxidants. For example, lycopene, found mainly in tomatoes, is a common phytonutrient.
Pterostilbene, found in blueberries and certain grape varieties, helps break down fat and cholesterol. Since their discovery is relatively new, the only dependable way to get phytonutrients is to eat unprocessed fruits and vegetables as part of a whole foods diet.
Where to Find Healthy Recipes?
While the whole food diet may seem to limit what you can eat, there are many websites containing whole food of raw food recipes, like this one that I particular like Whole Food Mommies. These sites are geared towards helping you succeed with your new diet and give plenty of options for healthy recipes to choose from. By browsing through these sites and bookmarking a few recipes, you’ll be able to enjoy some of the healthiest, most delicious home-cooked meals available.
While these are just some of the benefits of whole food diets, there are many more. By cutting out the extra fillers that are in many processed and prepackaged foods, you will not only lose weight, but enjoy many other health benefits as well. If you’re looking to start a healthier lifestyle, a whole foods diet is one for you.
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