Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The question of vitamins...and enjoy your food

A recent article in the New York Times reported on the lack of significant findings in studies which tried to find a link between taking vitamin pill supplements and disease prevention. For the full article, see the link below.


So what does this mean to me? For one, it reinforces the message that nutrients should be taken into our bodies through the foods that we eat rather than through supplements. Over time a variety of specific nutrients have had their day in the spotlight as being the must-have, popular supplement to have in order to prolong our lives and health. Vitamin C, Vitamin E, and anti-oxidants have all had their day in the sun recently. But is ingesting these nutrients in the form of a pill, the same as ingesting through food? Or can our bodies really benefit from isolating and taking in specific nutrients?

I prefer to eat and enjoy my food rather than thinking about which particular nutrients they may or may not contain. Since the favored nutrient recommendations seem to vary over time, it's hard to keep track and to really know what we "should" be eating. My philosophy has been to consistently eat a variety and hope that over time, I'm getting what my body needs. It's more important to me that my food tastes good and that I enjoy the experience of my meals (at least most of the time).

Speaking of enjoying my meals, I was blessed to be able to enjoy a fabulous lunch on Valentine's Day with my husband at one of my favorite restaurants (Esca in NYC). It was wonderful to be able to savor a variety of different flavors and tastes of dishes that I would not normally be able to prepare at home. Although my children weren't there for that meal, they have seen me enjoy my food on many other occasions. I think it's important that we treat food as something to share and enjoy rather than just the delivery of nutrients for our health. Children will eat better when they enjoy their food and will have little motivation to eat for their longevity or health.

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