Enough Food, but Malnourished
Americans are well fed, but malnourished. This may come as a surprise, but people who are malnourished are not necessarily starving. Malnutrition is the persistent lack of access to necessary vitamins and minerals in your diet.
Processed foods have replaced whole foods in America. The modern diet consists of lifeless processed foods devoid of most nutrients. Theses foods produce little enzyme activity. They contain little fibrous material.
Ava likes to feed herself!
In addition, these foods are loaded with chemicals, which have been added to make the food look more attractive. Even fresh fruits and vegetables, dairy, grains and meats often contain chemicals from pesticides, herbicides and hormones.
Between the ages of eight and 20 months, children are especially vulnerable to malnutrition. This is the time babies are learning to feed themselves and are weaned. They can develop chronic malnutrition if their dietary needs are not met.
Signs of poor nutrition are thinning or brittle hair, having flaky or brittle fingernails and being physically weak. In addition, chronic malnutrition exposes children to the risk of cognitive disabilities caused by not getting enough nutrients while their brains are developing.
Nutrition is not simply about how much food people consume, but also the quality. People with chronic malnutrition are sometimes overweight as a result of their diets, because they are eating too many calories, but not receiving the vitamins and nutrient needed for health.
An Ounce of Prevention
- Breastfeed a baby for at least six months.
(This is considered the best way to prevent early-childhood malnutrition.)
- Consume plenty of fruits, grains and vegetables.
- Limit foods containing bleached flours, sugars and altered fats.
- If you are having difficulty getting your child to eat whole foods, Click Here for a synopsis of Baby Bites: Transforming a Picky Eater into a Healthy Eater.