The saying "You are what you eat" is from a technical standpoint quite true. Our bodies are made up of the things that we eat, and this is a major reason for the great interest in food and the burgeoning food movement. Many people have correlated processed foods, adulterated foods, genetically modified foods, and foods that have carcinogens as negative to their own personal well being. Those who are attentive to these facts have begun to source better quality, more natural, organic, local and other types of foods that perhaps their great-grandparents ate with the understanding that there is an inherent value in simple, natural healthy food.
The only problem with this move towards healthier food is that even though one may be able to buy a bag of organic carrots, or a local fresh tomato, the actual nutrient levels in these crops vary dramatically with farmer, season, and seed. Some organic carrots are sweet and flavorful and children will fight over them, and some organic carrots have a bitter taste which leaves no one excited about eating them. Those flavor differences correlate very closely with nutritional differences, and getting to the heart of how good each individual crop is, is what we at the Bionutrient Food Association (BFA) are engaged in. The term that we have coined to attempt to get at this point is the Bionutrient. As in, what is the Bionutrient level of that carrot?
Those carrots that have a delicious flavor have a much higher level of bionutrients than that bitter carrot, and those bionutrients are exactly what your body needs as it builds cells, regulates hormones and manages all of its system functions.
As an example, the average human body contains something on the order of 4 trillion cells. Between 60-70% of those cells should replace themselves every 6 months. That means that about 15 billion cells in your body are replacing themselves every day. Each of those cells has a nucleus in it that contains your DNA and each strand of DNA requires at least 45 separate minerals to replicate itself properly. The numbers quickly become more than the average person wants to spend too much time thinking about, but the point is that the nutrients in your food which is what your body uses to build itself with constantly have a key role to play your overall health. As your body begins to find itself without the key minerals it needs to go through its biological processes completely it begins to degenerate.
At the BFA we suggest that underlying nutrient deficiency in our food supply is a causal force in physiological degeneration, and that what is in each of our own self interest as far as a healthy functioning body should and could be an organizing principle around food, the food supply, and more largely ecological and cultural revival.
The quality of the food you eat not only has an effect on your health, but the health of the land it was grown on and your effect on the people you interact with. Let food quality be an organizing principle as we work to build the reality we want to see.