My Kind of Healthy Food List
Depending on your level of interest in in depth discussions of nutrition, you may or may not want to read this blog post by Nourishing Gourmet about Weston Price’s travels and studies. I enjoyed it, but then I’m a bit of a nerd when it comes to such things (no, wait, hang on… actually I’m a lot of a nerd about almost everything).
The part I want to bring to your attention is the pdf of nutrient dense foods she links to near the end of the post. There are several nutrients which Weston Price found to be especially important for health, and this pdf lists the foods which are most dense in each of those nutrients (that is, out of commonly available foods in America).
My favorite part of this list is how few vegetables are on it. Don’t get me wrong, I think vegetables are good for you. (Holistic Squid points out almost in passing some of the pros and cons of vegetables in this post. )
Fresh and fermented fruits and vegetables are the superstars of cleansing and detoxing, which is why most Americans feel so much better when they start eating lots of fruits and vegetables. Many people need that kind of detoxing power.
But most people also can’t live on green smoothies forever. I have a personal preference for animal proteins and fats (as in I think I might die if I had to become a vegan), but they also rank high on this list of Weston Price super foods.
Based on this list, a diet high in sea foods (such as salmon, trout, tuna, oysters and sardines) and dairy (especially raw, pastured dairy) will give you a lot of the most important vitamins and minerals you need for a healthy diet. Bone broth, organ meats (in addition to chicken, beef and pork), fermented cod liver oil and eggs also rate high on several of the sections of this list.)
Meat and dairy are the kinds of super foods I can get behind!
For optimal digestion you’re going to also need some fermented foods (kombucha, water kefir, sauerkraut, fermented ketchup… there are plenty of options) and some fiber, which I prefer to get from a combination of whole grains (preferably soaked) and vegetables.
Once again it all seems to boil down to eating a variety of real foods prepared in a variety of ways. Discovering new, cool super foods can be a fun way to add to that variety, but don’t get so caught up in what’s cool in the health food world right now that you neglect the old standbys of simple, real food.