21DSD - Day #18 (Nutrient Dense Foods)

Are we really at Day 18, already?? WOW - Almost done!

Here is my Daily Success Log Entry for August 4th. Note: Food portions are approximations. Veggies are local. Meat is local, 100% grass-fed and pasture-raised. Poultry & Eggs are local & pasture-raised:

  • Sleep Time & Quality: 6.5 hours.
  • Exercise: 9,081 Steps (3.6 Miles) and 11 Hours of Good Posture. Morning Walk w/ Tim & Boys.
  • Mood & Energy: Excellent
  • Breakfast: Tomatoes & Cukes w/ 3 slices of prosciutto. Drizzled w/ EVOO & Balsamic Vinegar.
  • Lunch: Egg Salad w/ Roasted Pumpkin Seeds, Shredded Cabbage & Carrots, Homemade Avocado Oil Mayo.
  • Dinner: Leftover Ribeye (from Saturday), Steamed Green Beans, Zuke Fries w/ Homemade Avocado Oil Mayo.
  • Snacks: 1/4-C Roasted Pistachios
  • Notes: 3 More Days!!

In my Recap of Day 16, I mentioned that our bodies metabolize the naturally occurring sugars in whole foods differently than the refined and chemically produced sugars in processed foods. So over the next few days (and last days of our 21DSD πŸ˜„ πŸ’ͺ🏽 πŸ‘πŸ½) I'm going to drill down further into this topic.

Because -- as I have said before -- Knowledge is EMPOWERING. Understanding how our bodies metabolize different forms of sugar will guide us in making better decisions about food. Knowledge is always an essential utensil for your Real Food Toolbox.

So let's dig into this  

Beware of Enriched & Fortified Foods

Nutrient Dense foods the Superhero of foods!

Nutrient Dense foods the Superhero of foods!

Let's talk about "enriched" and "fortified" foods first. "Nutrient dense" is the ratio of micronutrients to calories. Ideally we want to choose foods with high values of nutrient density. This means there are more nutrients than calories.

However, nutrient dense foods do not include foods that have are enriched or fortified. Refined foods like these have been stripped of naturally occurring vitamins and minerals. With synthetic forms of vitamins and minerals added back in the refining process.

Huh??? Folks -- This just ain't normal. Why the heck would food manufacturers strip foods of their naturally occurring nutrients. Then add synthetic forms of nutrients back in?? Honestly, I have no idea. And I don't like to speculate or assume anything. Because we all know what happens when we make assumptions 😏

Just know that if you are choosing enriched or fortified foods because of this notion that these are nutrient dense. Now you know -- these foods are not!

With enriched foods, nutrients that have been lost during the processing of that food are added back. This is a common practice with breads and other grain-based products.

And with fortified foods, nutrients have been added to the foods during the processing. Regardless of whether these nutrients were present in the food before processing. You may have noticed a recent trend in foods with Omega-3 Fatty Acids added to them. Coming soon to a grocery shelf  near you πŸ‘ŽπŸ½

Naturally Occurring Nutrients

Naturally occurring nutrients are synergistically balanced. Meaning our bodies use these nutrients with ease and efficiency.

Naturally occurring nutrients are synergistically balanced. Meaning our bodies use these nutrients with ease and efficiency.

My Recap of Day 16 also introduced the term "naturally occurring nutrients". These nutrients are found in whole, unrefined, unfortified, unenriched, unprocessed foods. And pack a powerful punch because they are synergistically balanced. This means that our bodies use naturally occurring nutrients with ease and efficiency.

How 'bout them Real Foods?? Because Yes -- these whole, unrefined, unfortified, unenriched foods with naturally occurring sugars and nutrients are, in fact, Real Foods. This is why I promote this lifestyle. Real Foods are nutrient dense, synergistically balanced, and just plain old healthy goodness. YUM!!

Food = Nutrition = Energy = Life!

Food = Nutrition = Energy = Life!

Remember that Food = Nutrition = Energy = Life. So pop a forkful of Real Food in your mouth and feel that explosion of Real Good, Real Food Energy. And if you keep pitching forkfuls of Real Food in your bodies, then you'll  be well on your way to lifelong health. How bout them carrots?? πŸ˜‹

In contrast, foods with synthetic forms of nutrients lack the complementary nutrients (co-factors) needed for proper absorption and utilization. Extra nutrients may sound good. And look good on the package. But our bodies simply cannot use these synthetic nutrients appropriately. Synthetic nutrients are  not synergist balanced.

These days we see food products featuring the words "added Calcium", or any other nutrient, somewhere on the packaging (or advertising campaign). Doesn't mean your body will properly absorb and utilize that extra calcium. However, naturally occurring calcium in whole foods that also contain the co-factors of vitamins A, D, K2, and magnesium -- can be absorbed by the body and used to strengthen bones.

Good Carbs vs. Bad Carbs

Now let's put a giant red bow on this article. And wrap up with Carbs 🎁  Recall that sugar -- whether naturally occurring, refined, or chemically produced -- is a carb. There's a lot of discussion/confusion about carbs these days. But here's what's important. There are good carbs and there are bad carbs.

Carrots are high in carbs (12 g) because of 6 g naturally occurring sugars.  But they're all Good Carbs!

Carrots are high in carbs (12 g) because of 6 g naturally occurring sugars.  But they're all Good Carbs!

Which is which depends on just what I've been harping about: Naturally occurring vs. synthetic, enriched or fortified.

And of course, Good Carbs come from the whole, natural Real Foods that are nutrient dense. Good carbs are those found in whole foods like broccoli, cauliflower, butternut squash, green apples, carrots. Because these carbs come from naturally occurring nutrients.

Bad Carbs come from foods that are refined and factory-made. And may be harder to spot because they are hidden behind lots of great marketing and advertising. These campaigns are on a mission to make you feel like you made healthy choices. But now you know that the only labeling that matters are the ingredient labels. Always, Always, Always -- Read the ingredients first. If you can't pronounce it . . . . If it sounds like a chemical. If it is a hidden sugar . . . . The food is refined. And most likely contains bad carbs.

Diane Sanfilippo (the genius who developed The 21DSD) offers this quote by nutritionist Radhia Gleis as a perfect way to wrap our brains around all the refined foods that exist on our grocery shelves.

If it’s popped, puffed, flaked, floured, shredded, or instant, it’s been refined.
— Radhia Gleis, Nutritionist

YIKES!! That's pretty much everything you have in our cupboards, right? All those whole-grain breads and pastas we love. And that high-fiber flaked cereal from several different whole grains? Despite the marketing that promotes the good health that you'll receive. These products are all refined, processed foods.

Simply put, bad carbs are macronutrient and calorie-rich. But micronutrient-poor. We can eat tons of calories in bad carbs but never actually nourish ourselves with the vitamins & minerals (nutrients) our bodies need to be satisfied.

Refined food products are sprayed with synthetic vitamins and minerals and sold to you as nutrient-dense foods. But your knowledge is EMPOWERING. You know these tricks. And are smarter than that. So is your body.

Kick Sugar To The Curb!

Are you ready for a challenge? The 21 Day Sugar Detox is a great way to jump start your Real Food journey. For more information, please Click Here! I KNOW you can do this!!

And please feel free to Contact me with any questions. The 21DSD is such an excellent tool for your Real Food Toolbox that I decided to promote it as an Affiliate.*

If you decide to take this challenge, please let me know. I have received so much support and positive energy from you all. That I would like to return the favor :-)

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