We know that eating around 30% less than the Western average, on a fresh, locally-grown, plant-based wholefood diet including a good variety of raw, fermented, soaked, sprouted and cooked foods, makes the biggest difference to your health, your disease risk and your longevity.
We know that wholefoods are filled with unique life-protecting antioxidants, plant pigments, vitamins, minerals, fibre, carotenoids, flavonoids, trace elements and much more. What we are still guessing is which elements are the crucial ones. Is it vitamin C, selenium, chlorophyll, calcium, liminoids or astaxanthin? This obsession with isolating a magic pill ingredient is where our thinking goes off track.
We do know that natural vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and plant nutrients are ‘the good guys’ that give us the benefits. Instead of surrendering to what works by consuming well-prepared wholefoods, we have tried to take them apart, to copy one tiny aspect, like some kind of magic bullet that will cure our ills. This is the medical drug model and unfortunately it does not work long term. The inherent living power in wholefoods is un-reproducible, un-copy-able and un-improvable.
Apples are better than pills
Eating an apple is always better than trying to find the magical component in an apple, isolating it, extracting it, recreating it from a genetically engineered piece of corn sugar, and then synthesizing this artificial substance into a pill, after 12 different chemical processes in laboratories. Just eat the apple. It is not just the vitamin C that is good for you; it is also the other 63 healthy components in the apple such as rutin, bioflavonoids, soluble fibre, insoluble fibre, minerals, phytonutrition, plant polyphenols and much more.
So what is natural?
The meaning of ‘natural’ is ambiguous and overused. Natural means “existing in, or caused by nature; not artificial; not altered”. Natural ingredients are from plant or animal life and have not changed (except the water is sometimes extracted). When you remove a part from the whole, you get synthetic, isolated, individual or fractionated pieces. Isolated vitamins are partial vitamins, combined with other chemicals.
In a typical multivitamin pill there are 30-50 synthetic nutrients. Eating a fresh salad can give you over 6,000 phytonutrients. Plants contain an unmatchable array of thousands of nutrients and plantioxidants, and no side effects.
Vitamin pills, like drugs, are an invention of scientists
They have a few synthetic chemical vitamins, are full of chemical fillers and are prone to cause side effects. The problem is that vitamins – when not still contained in their original foods – are merely chemicals. Our bodies do not recognize man-made synthetic chemicals as nutrients because they don’t work the same way as foods do. Foods never deliver toxic doses of vitamins. However, large doses of man-made synthetic nutrients can have potent drug-like effects, especially in older bodies which are less able to tolerate it. Taking just one vitamin or mineral will almost always cause a deficiency in another.
Jason wishes to deeply thank, acknowledge and recognise the effort and contribution that the PIF Foundation has provided on a voluntary basis since 2014, as we educated, motivated and inspired change that helps transform the health, vitality and longevity of people all over the world.