You can overcome some of these problems if you grow your own food or buy organically grown fruits and vegetables (which are generally fresher because they cannot be stored as long). Commercial fruits and vegetables are frequently sprayed with toxic chemicals. Many of these substances are harmful, and they accumulate in body fat, with deleterious health effects over the years. A good example is DDT, which is still present in human fat tissue although its use was banned years ago.
Many of the pesticides prohibited in the United States have been freely sold to third world countries, which then export foods to the US. Controls on the use of pesticides and other chemicals are not strict in many of these countries. The workers who apply these chemicals frequently have diseases that are the result of their high exposures. Certain nutritional supplements can help counter the ill effects of many of these poisons. They include vitamins C, E and B complex, carotenes, bioflavonoids, and others. Of course, it is also wise to choose untreated foods as much as possible.
Stress Increases Needs
Although we seem to live in a time of great stress, I believe that this is not unique to our age. There have always been many stressors that have adversely influenced human health. Earlier generations did not have the advantage of high-dose nutrients to help diminish the toll of these stressors in their lives.
Stress, whether emotional or physical or due to injury or illness, depletes the body of nutrients, especially vitamin C, the B complex and zinc. Vitamin B6 and pantothenic acid are also particularly important in times of stress. Vitamins C and E and zinc promote the healing process. A comprehensive approach to good health includes practices that aid in stress management, regular exercise and proper diet. Diet and nutritional supplements provide the building blocks to form a healthier, more vital organism.
You may have heard of someone's grandparent who lived to a ripe old age with little attention to diet or nutritional supplements. This is quite possible. However, it is important to realize that potential human life span is well over 100 years. Living to 80 or 90 years may result from growing up with cleaner air and water, fresher food, fewer chemical exposures and lesser availability of highly processed foods. Also, many people who survive a long time have numerous health problems. In spite of these occasional reports of decadent oldsters, we are seeing more frequent and earlier degenerative diseases. Remember, the quality of life is more important than the quantity. Dietary supplements can promote what most of us would preferÑgood health and vigor in all stages of life, including later years.
There is great individual genetic variation. You may have inherited a strong constitution, but is it really wise to wait 40 or 50 years to find out? Nutritional supplements help people who have greater genetically determined needs to remain vigorous and active well into old age. Many poor health habits, such as consumption of sweets, alcohol, caffeine, highly processed foods and artificial food additives, lack of exercise and high stress, increase nutrient needs. The typical American diet is a sad joke. It would be hard to design a diet that could do more harm to health than the one most Americans eat every day.
Stress reduction and relaxation techniques, body therapies and exercise programs are part of good health, but nutritional supplementation is extremely important to the comprehensive approach to health care and preventive medicine. Specific chronic and acute illnesses can be treated with large doses of nutrient supplements. They can usually reduce or eliminate the need for drugs or surgery.