The difference between a healthy diet and a diet nutrient dense can be thin, but if even the healthier diet lacks some of the essential nutrients, disorders, illness and genetic disease can occur. The grounding for a healthy life starts from before birth, sometimes just pre-conception, but for some disorders or even conditions, it starts from your grand-parents. We cannot do anything about it if the grand-parents were eating junk food and unhealthy food, or even they did not have a choice and had a lack of food and hence nutrients dense diet. Being vegan and vegetarian for many aspects can be very healthy, if the diet has a nutritional dense food, in others can be quite deficient if the diet is only void of meat and fish or eggs, and filled only with vegetables and fruits. As the body needs protein, fat and carbohydrate to function well, and make neurotransmitters for the function of the brain and a well-functioning mind, as well as the making of hormones and more, the nutrient dense diet needs to be well balanced. It is a fact that as vegetarian and vegan, you might need to eat a bit more of the protein food as vegetables have less in a 100g portion, compared to a 100g of meat or even two eggs. Just watch how long a cow, or a sheep eat a day to understand how much more you need to eat. It can be done, and many vegetarians do have a very good balance and know how much they need to eat and what to include.
Some do take extra supplements as a precaution. Now I am not talking only about vegetarian or vegan as being deficient in certain nutrients or food group. As also many non-vegetarians eat way too much protein or unhealthy fatty food, and not enough green vegetables, fruits, hence they are also very low in certain essential nutrients, such as the omega 3 oil for the brain, vitamin and mineral that you would get from the vegetable and fruits, as well as possibly lack of fiber and a healthy intestinal tract. So, from one hand we have one part of population doing really well with vegetables and fruits, and hence fiber, and the other doing really well in some protein and badly in everything else. We do have some very healthy meat/fish eaters though that will have all the nutrients that they need. What some young women in child bear age is lacking though, is some of the essential nutrients to sustain and grown a very healthy baby or set the ground for the health of that baby when they are adults. Hence even a normal multivitamin and mineral might help prevent deficiency in the baby.
I have talked about other nutrients before, next I will talk about iodine, which in many parts of the world are deficient in, and unless you live near the sea, many people who do not eat iodine regularly in their diet, can be quite deficient. People who do a lot of exercise, live with a lot of stress from work and life, and pregnant women, could be deficient or low in iodine, and they will only know when it is too late. With the knowledge that iodine is excreted in urine, and the only function is to support the thyroid, and hence the metabolism, just see if you are having enough iodine in your diet. Too much iodine, as taken in supplement, also can cause a hyperthyroidism. Which will make you want to run more and be a bit more scattered. Iodine in vegetables and grains as well as fruits, vary according to the soil and the amount of iodide in meat, depends on what type of grass the animal ate and where. Iodide in water also depends on the content of it, in rocks and soils of a particular region. A lack of iodide in water or soil or food can lead to a high incidence of goiter (enlargement of the thyroid). Seawater fish, seaweeds, iodized salt will have the highest iodide level. Once you absorb iodide or iodine, the thyroid is the one gland that will keep it more than other parts of the body.
Iodine is a micronutrient that works in synergy with the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland uses iodine from food to make two thyroid hormones including thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). During pregnancy, iodine requirements are increased by 50% due to increases in maternal thyroid hormone production necessary to supply to the fetus, which does not have a fully functional thyroid gland until 20 weeks gestation. In the growing baby, iodine is important for normal brain and nervous system development. The thyroid needs also zinc, magnesium, and selenium to work at its optimal level. Any deficiency on the above nutrients will lead to the thyroid not working at its optimum at a time of greater demand, which could affect the baby and the mother health. Iodine is found in all fish, seaweeds, iodized salt, liver and meat, eggs. Goitrogens foods are the cabbage family, cauliflower, broccoli, rutabaga, turnips, Brussels sprouts, and mustard greens cassava, soy beans and products can affect the functioning of the thyroid, unless they are cooked or fermented. Arsenic, find in many waters and or in farmland drinking water if a farm uses arsenic, is also goitrogenic (leading to goiter). About 150 to 200 mcg has been recommended dietary intake per day.
© Maria Esposito BSc (Hons) R-Nutritional Therapist – NAET for allergies – R-Craniosacral Therapist – NLP – Angel Guide Certified – Mindfulness Meditation teacher-