"Healthy Food"

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by Seattle, Sep 29, 2016.

  1. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    https://www.washingtonpost.com/life...5c2d24-ba52-11e5-829c-26ffb874a18d_story.html

    I thought this was a good article and timely given that the USDA is asking for public input on what should be the definition of "healthy".

    The article makes a point (and I agree) that food isn't "healthy". It's either nutritious or it's not. Or rather it's somewhere along that continuum. We are "healthy" or not but "healthy" isn't a word that we should be using regarding food.

    It sounds like it's just semantics but when people consider what might be best to eat they shouldn't be looking for food labeled as healthy or natural but rather just how nutritious it is.

    For most people, we should be looking more at food that is high in nutrition and low in calories. That's not "healthy" baked potato chips or "fat free" products that are high in sugar.

    It's interesting (to me) that the government tries to define and regulate things like the words "healthy" and "natural" on food packaging as if that is going to actually help someone find a better diet.
     
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  3. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    We want our food to be healthy when we kill it.

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  5. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    Food that contains more than the average proportion of carcinogens is unhealthy.

    Sugar is nutritious, especially to people in countries where it's difficult to get enough calories in their daily meals. But in the USA and other prosperous countries, excess sugar is unhealthy for many people whose metabolism cannot process it easily.

    Fortunately, I'm not one of those people. Candy, cake and other desserts comprise one of my major food groups.
     
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  7. timojin Valued Senior Member

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    I believe all food are healthy much it depend on the metabolic process of the individual. My father ate a lot schmaltz on bread He lived to be 89 between his hernia an nursing home finished him off at 89
     
  8. Giuseppina Maher Registered Member

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    NICE DISCUSSION.
     
  9. sculptor Valued Senior Member

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    It seems that when you eat is as/more important than what you eat.
     
  10. timojin Valued Senior Member

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    You have to balance the important vs quantity . If the quality in the quantity is low , then you have to take in a large quantity
     
  11. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    No, if the quality is low you have to get more variety. That is the problem (one of many) with junk food. You can get fat but you still haven't gotten all the nutrients that you need.

    If all you are eating is donuts then eating more of them isn't giving you more nutrients.
     
  12. timojin Valued Senior Member

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    Donut is to dry you might have a drink of milk with it then you might have some eggs in the morning .
     
  13. Giuseppina Maher Registered Member

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    Hi there. Thanks for sharing this. I always prefer to take a healthy and nutritious diet. I adopted this because my cousin put on a lot of fats because of his negligence in eating habits. He is now taking nut of India to lower down his body fats. There are certain side effects of nuts and seeds associated with it. I hope you all take healthy eating habits.
     
  14. CptBork Robbing the Shalebridge Cradle Valued Senior Member

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    In my book, any food is healthy food if it can be consumed as part of a sustainable diet which yields healthy individuals as its result. Some foods may be lower in nutrients but higher in psychological satisfaction (mental and physical health are intimately connected), some foods may be high in nutrients but containing too many calories to fit with your existing diet, etc. etc. As I was suggesting in our Human Science discussion yesterday, one should judge the food based on its results in combination with everything else consumed, not the effects it has in isolation when consumed by starving rats.

    Besides, given that a scientific consensus is generally lacking in terms of what foods are healthy or not and in what sense, and given that science has yet to identify all the nutrients essential to healthy human function, getting good variety in your diet is far more important than trying to find the "healthiest" sources for whatever nutrients you wish to consume.
     
  15. CptBork Robbing the Shalebridge Cradle Valued Senior Member

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    What specifically makes your cousin think Indian nuts will lower his body fat content? Is it for appetite control, or what?
     
  16. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    Getting a "good" variety is all that I am talking about. I'm not talking about something that you've never heard of that comes in a bottle from a health store.

    The psychological impact of a food is BS however. If that were the case junk food would be great for us and there would be no obesity epidemic.
     
  17. CptBork Robbing the Shalebridge Cradle Valued Senior Member

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    How on Earth do you draw such a conclusion? Most people don't succeed on "healthy" food diets, because they're boring and often themselves deficient or excessive in one sense or another. Most people like to eat foods they enjoy and feel more satiated when they enjoy what they eat. Heavily restrictive diets are known to cause high stress levels and exacerbate various mental illnesses and conditions, which will then affect the individual's ability to maintain their diet. If food had no psychological impact, everyone would just eat "healthy" food and there would be no obesity epidemic. An excess of "healthy" food will easily induce obesity just as easily as an excess of junk food, so if you're already getting a decent variety of nutritious foods, carbs, proteins and fats in your diet and have some calories to spare, a slice of cake or two can mean the difference between being energy deficient and powering through a half-marathon.

    Also, note to viewers in general: ignore advice from anyone here or elsewhere who says "eat this and that and it'll magically make you skinny/healthy", unless they can back it up with good, peer-reviewed, independently verified research from a real scientific journal. Advice like that only makes the obesity "epidemic" worse rather than better, because it's simply not true in general without introducing numerous caveats.
     
  18. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Both, of course, are important. You will not be very healthy eating only a wide variety of candies, snack cakes, dried meats and soft drinks.
     
  19. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    I don't see your peer reviewed research.

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    I didn't say food had no psychological impact. That's all that junk food has. I said that it's BS that eating cake is just as important as eating vegetables. You seem to be on a rant against an invisible opponent.

    Eating a healthy diet and then having a piece of cake is not what anyone is talking about. That's not why we have an obesity epidemic.

    In your opinion, why are we having an obesity epidemic?
     
  20. CptBork Robbing the Shalebridge Cradle Valued Senior Member

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    Agreed, but I will submit for clarity that I do in fact consume devilish amounts of junk (generally high-quality baked goods rather than 7/11 crap).

    Which point would you like me to justify with peer-reviewed research? I think it's empirical enough as is that strict "health" food diets don't work for the majority of the Western population or pretty much anywhere that has access to cheap food, as evidenced by the abundance of people who've tried them and failed vs. those testifying to their long-term success. Most people want tasty, enjoyable food on a fairly regular basis, or they start to feel deprived and "cheat" on their diets.

    They also have lots of muscle-fueling calories which can in many circumstances be utilized just as effectively if not more so than the calories consumed from fruits and veggies. There's absolutely no need to eliminate this stuff from your diet if you find it enjoyable and balance it out with your nutritional requirements and restrictions on the whole, as I seem to have been doing successfully for the last 4 years thus far.

    I'm only saying that cake isn't in any way unhealthy if consumed in moderation; it can in fact serve as perfectly good nutrition for certain needs. Not really any worse than rice and butter if you already have a good supply of vitamins and minerals (arguably in fact, some would say it beats things like whole wheat and brown rice due to the toxins commonly found therein).

    I believe it's a simple matter of cheap food being supplied in ready abundance and convenience, unmasking the typical human being's lack of learned self-discipline in modern society, combined with the ease of living a comfortable, sedentary life while machines and a small proportion of the population take care of most physical labour. Even the "healthy" juice stores make it worse by serving up fruits, vegetables and protein in a vastly more quickly-digested, less satiating form, while making their customers feel like they're making a wise nutritional decision and hyping all sorts of miscellaneous nutritional supplements that virtually no one actually needs or benefits from in practice.

    The skinny kids I grew up with had all their meals planned and served by their schools and parents which made portion controls easy, while my own dad was giving stupid advice about how you can eat all the sugar you want as long as you avoid combining it with certain things, and my parents were watching me drink regular Coca Cola by the gallon with no clue how much a difference it would have made there alone just switching to Diet. Oh sure, they did push alternatives such as orange juice which has virtually the same amount of sugar and calories as Coke, just as all sorts of morons push terrible diet advice all over the web up to this very day which only compounds the problem.

    Then there's things like the genetic excuse which has no scientific or physical basis but is nonetheless pushed by so many "authorities" on the subject, making people think their butts and bellies can simply generate fat straight out of the quantum vacuum, that there's nothing to be done about the problem except to enjoy being whatever they are and continue contentedly indulging. The biggest difference genetics could possibly make would be in appetite control and the athleticism which leads to burning lots of calories, but even in this case the nature vs. nurture argument is hardly settled, and I'm one of countless examples of people who've beat out their old lifestyle habits with reasonable measures of long-term success simply through determination, hard work, and having a clue about what I'm doing.

    My (partial) solution to the epidemic is for society as a whole, led by medical and political administrators, to increase the level and quality of nutrition education and information. Most people don't seem to realize just how fattening a typical muffin or croissant is, that all starches turn to sugar once absorbed into the body, or that you can get fat eating apples or any other food with calories just as readily as you can with cookies, if you don't control the portions. Most people have no idea what kinds of foods have what sorts of nutritional contents and effects, let alone the ability to plan their daily meals and activities with this knowledge in hand.

    Most people don't even realize how much power they have to shape their own bodies, let alone the know-how and dedication to put the knowledge into practice. The "best" these folks can often do is to eat/drink at some stoned hippy juice restaurant pushing un-needed and poorly specified "anti-oxidants" and whatnot to justify jacking the price up, then they happily go through their 600 calorie cups of mostly liquid sugar thinking it's doing them nothing but good and that it would be even better to have another serving, if only they had the time, money and appetite for it. For my own part, as a teen I used to hit the gym 4 or 5 times weekly, usually after school, desperate to slim down and completely 100% unaware how counterproductive and destructive it was to be downing big sugary slurpees as my post-workout reward.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2016
  21. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    So I see that you have no ax to grind and that your comments are unbiased.

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    Seriously, most of your comments have to do with "hippy" restaurants and unfounded claims from "health food" stores. You admit that your diet as a kid was crap and the skinny kids parents served more healthy meals.

    It seems that your real point is that everyone should pump iron like you and eat crap. Junk food isn't the only food that tastes good. Actually, when you stop eating junk food and then try it, it doesn't taste so good.

    If people don't do well with "healthy" meals it's either because they are still "addicted" to sugar or they just don't have any experience with preparing tasty healthy meals. As you mentioned you need satiety which you can get from fats and from some bulk to your meals. Avocado and sweet potato will provide that (along with many other foods).

    I think you are arguing against some pet peeve that you have developed in your mind against the excesses of the health food industry rather than against the eating of regular healthy food. People ate fruits, vegetables and meat for years and years without causing an obesity epidemic. That was largely caused by excess sugar.
     
  22. CptBork Robbing the Shalebridge Cradle Valued Senior Member

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    As an example of how poorly educated and disciplined our society is when it comes to exercise and nutrition, it was amusing recently to go visit a Pita Pit restaurant for lunch with my trainer, who happens to be a hall-of-fame former pro athlete, and watch as all the overweight folks ordered fatty meat pitas with poor total protein content, and we were the only ones in the place who ordered our sandwiches on white flour pitas rather than whole wheat. In fact, there's only one sandwich on the menu which I find suitable for my own personal needs, and I have to double up on the tuna just to give it the right nutritional balance. Frequently they will run out of white flour pitas because hardly anyone ever orders them, even though most people find them better-tasting and the science shows them to be nearly identical in nutritional content and metabolic effects to their dirtier, more "natural" cousins.
     
  23. CptBork Robbing the Shalebridge Cradle Valued Senior Member

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    Yes, most of the health information accessed and promoted by the general population at large is utter rubbish, and that's a major reason why the general population doesn't know how to moderate itself properly. My parents were particularly awful with their habits and nutritional beliefs, even though they were both highly educated and my mom's a doctor.

    Most people seem to find that junk food actually tastes better than ever after being deprived for a long time, which is another reason health food diets rarely ever work long-term for people who weren't raised on them. No, I don't advocate for pumping iron and eating junk as a lifestyle; that's what many roid-pumping bodybuilders advocate, and why ordinary non-juiced amateur trainees get fatter and weaker on their advice. Many roided bodybuilders also advocate eating high-calorie health food diets centered on boiled chicken, oatmeal, brown rice and protein powder, with similar results for the natties who naively follow. Pumping iron doesn't burn that many calories compared to intense, long-duration cardio, yet most bodybuilders falsely think the latter significantly interferes with the former when in many ways there's actually a mutual synergy and benefit.

    I advocate making junk food a regular part of the ordinary person's diet, balanced with lower calorie nutritious foods and protein sources. If you do lots of cardio like I do, then you can simply get away with eating more, and more of those calories can come from junk since you're already getting lots of protein, vitamins, minerals and fibre as is. I do not advocate shunning junk food in any way whatsoever unless you have a specific health condition such as diabetes which needs to be carefully regulated; rather, I advocate for moderation in all things, as has been frequently preached for thousands of years. You don't need to be a Viking Ninja Warrior or eat like one to be in great physical health, and telling people that they absolutely must eat this way is simply closing off avenues for weight loss and muscle gain which they could otherwise live with and be satisfied long-term.

    Avocado and sweet potato can and will make you just as fat as potato chips and ice cream if you don't moderate the portions, as will bread, rice, potatoes, pasta, fruit, meat and anything else with calories; most people find such a lifestyle rigid and unmanageable in the long-term, which is why they typically crash and burn when following advice like yours.

    I'm against things like people trying to ban sugar or pretending it can't be part of an extremely healthy lifestyle, just because that's what a bunch of poorly-researched woo woo BBC documentaries tell their viewers. Even more irking is when they pretend that fruit sugar or starch acts differently once it's been absorbed into the body and that you can therefore indulge on this stuff to your heart's content. Many fruits are even worse than table sugar, because they possess high fructose-to-glucose ratios and therefore have very limited use in fueling the body, and they mostly turn to fat once the liver's topped up. Most health advice available on the web, and indeed on these very forums, is utter CRAP and can potentially cause more harm than good for people seeking reasonable and sustainable ways to recompose their bodies.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2016

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