In the beginning there were healthy, whole foods and healthy lifestyles; people took responsibility for
their own health. Now most of the world is dying from food-related illness. Half the world is dying
from not enough food and the other half from too much nutrient-depleted, calorie-dense food. Times
have changed and so has the way we need to look at food, nutrition and our health. Chronic illnesses
such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer are now the biggest killers in developed
countries. The current medical model that focuses on treating, rather than preventing, illness is simply
not working. As individuals we need to take responsibility for improving our health.
For years, a so-called debate has raged over the relative importance of dietary supplements as a
means of maintaining good health and safeguarding against disease. The debate has, unfortunately, not
relied on good science but rather has been fuelled by a very small number of quasi-scientific studies
that have been fraught with controversy. Even the “unbiased” research findings have often been
misrepresented by the medical industry and by popular media in attempts to create the next
controversy. Such an excess of misinformation has led to a strongly divided public and professional
opinion on the place of supplements in our diet.
Most people should be taking supplements because eating a balanced diet all of the time and
absorbing the required nutrients all of the time are almost impossible for people throughout the world.
The argument for supplementation is easily summed up into several main areas, which I cover in
depth throughout this book. The first is that it is no longer possible to get all the nutrients that should
be in our food. Through modern cropping, growing and harvesting techniques, transport, storage and
marketing, not to mention processing and cooking, it is possible to lose 100% of the nutrient value of
the food and, in its place, add toxins. This means that if it is not in the food we eat, we have to get it
from supplementation. The modern day processed “white foods” such as sugar, bread, white rice and
processed breakfast foods are full of empty calories and, often, extra sugar and are low in nutritional
value. Unfortunately these foods now make up a large portion of many people’s food intake.
Meanwhile, most people rarely consume their full share of fruit, vegetables, nuts and beans and other
nutritious foods—or when they do consume vegetables it is usually in the form of over-processed
potatoes without the nutrient-dense peel.