Almost daily I am asked by someone what I think of the latest magic potion for what ails them. (Today someone asked about Vitamin C and lysine for their heart because there was an article in the paper expounding on the benefits of these combined items).
My answer to the question of the latest miracle discovery is this: the work of nutrition has already been done. There is nothing new and secret that we haven’t learned that you absolutely need that isn’t already provided by Nature. It’s all there. Everything we need, nicely packaged, whole and balanced just for us.
Did you know that scientists have been able to take apart a whole apple to identify and isolate more than 424 different compounds (including lysine, vitamin C, co-enzyme Q and many of the other latest nutrient “discoveries” of our times?)
We like to take things apart to find out how they work. But taking apart whole foods and mimicking, replacing, reducing or isolating the various pieces is not a good idea.
Once I took a bicycle apart. The pieces lying about the floor certainly did not resemble a bicycle nor were they functioning as a bicycle in that separated state. And even when I put those exact original pieces back together again to resemble my bicycle, I was left with 3 or 4 bolts and washers in my hand! Oops. Sure enough, some miles ride down the road that bike broke down.
That is what scientists do when they create nutraceuticals. They take a piece or pieces of a “natural source” ( such as carbon atoms from coal tar) and perhaps combine more parts from a different “natural source” because ‘more is better’ and then, surround that part with fillers and excipients to trick the body into absorbing it, ensure longer shelf life and greater profit. By the time you take an isolated, fractionated, laboratory produced compound it no longer resembles anything the body can recognize.
Remember those children’s flip-books where you can make imaginary animals by matching a kitty cat head with a frog body? That’s what these man made concoctions resemble to your body’s metabolism.
The next time you find yourself looking for the latest designer steroid to supplement your diet, pause and ask yourself – Are you trying to supplement your diet or substitute for a poor diet?
Cathy Lidster, Health Educator/Energy Nutrition & Allergy Practitioner, offers free seminars monthly (see Ad for schedule). She can be reached at Centennial Building Wellness Centre, 250-314-4106, website: www.cathylidster.com, or email@example.com