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May 6, 2014

Orthomolecular nutrition and biochemical individuality

by Helene van den Berg

Biochemical individuality considers the nutritional needs of an individual unique to their genetic make-ups (supernutrition – promoting health and preventing disease). The recommended average daily requirements (R.D.R’s – nutrients) are totally inadequate (mediocre nutrition). People need to make more discriminating individual choices in the foods they eat – to select only those foods that are known to contain an abundance of essential nutrients, like amino acids, vitamins, minerals, enzymes, trace elements etc. Our DIFFICULT task is to examine the source from where most of the food supply comes e.g. forced fed animals are unhealthy, heavily fertilized and imbalanced soils, genetically modified foods, commercial interference for longer shelf life etc.

Dr. Linus Pauling’s concept of orthomolecular nutrition means “right molecule” – that each cell to function optimally, must have an abundance of nutrients ready and waiting.

Today the Linus Pauling Institute focuses on:

  • determining the functional roles of micronutrients and phytochemicals in promoting optimal health and to treat and prevent human disease.
  • Determine the role of oxidative stress and inflammation in health and disease and how dietary antioxidants and anti-inflammatories may have protective effects.
  • To help people live a full and productive life, free of disease.

The quality of food we ingest determine the state of the internal cellular environment we create for ourselves. Cells in the body have a certain dependency and interdependency among one another and therefore a chain reaction of breakdown at cellular level, not corrected , can lead to a degenerative disease. Orthomolecular nutrition seeks to understand that, if the biochemical individual integrity of each cell is nourished with optimum nutrients (organic, natural foods) necessary for it’s proper functioning, THEN our internal environment can be aligned with individual human needs and all forms of disease will eventually be controlled. The list of nutrients may be the same for every human being, but the relative amounts may be distinctly different for each person. The answer to a long , healthy life lies in a preventative nutritional health-care program.

Natural health foods is more nutrient dense (higher food value with more vitamins, minerals and more energy value) than processed or refined foods (also loaded with chemicals and toxins).

Processed food have a higher calorie density (fewer mouthfuls provide same number of calories than natural food. Natural food provides more nourishment per mouthful and a person feel more satisfied (biochemically) with less food. Malnutrition is pandemic in wealthy nations, because of the over consumption of foodless foods, which leads to deficiencies and eventually to degenerative diseases (cancer, diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis, arthritis). Fast food chains are to blame!.

Natural foods, with their higher nutrient density and lower calorie content per mouthful, will promote organ reserves (above mere functional ability of maintenance). This concept has far reaching implications for health, recovery, maintenance, longevity and lifetime wellness.

Health should be measured according to biological age (physiologically, structurally and mentally) and NOT chronological age (in years).

Optimal health refers to the most favorable functional capability of the body, measured by evaluating functions, tissue integrity, resistance to disease and resilience to stress, which requires mobilization of the body’s organ reserves. The R.D.A’s fall way below the levels that most people require to stay healthy and well and it doesn’t consider biochemical individuality.

Genotrophic disease refers to the problems of nutrition which are hereditary in nature (cancer, heart disease, auto-immune disease, maturity onset diabetes). Because people differ in their genetic make-up, each person needs varying levels of various nutrients. Genotrophic disease is a direct result of sub-optimal nutrition over a lifetime. By moving to optimal nutrition earlier in life, many of these diseases, can to a large extent, be prevented earlier in life.

Supplementation is one of the best ways to protect ourselves. Generous amounts of water-soluble vitamins are safe. Awareness of the impact of the environment on nutrition and supplementationis key e.g. polluted city air is counteracted by anti-oxidants, vitamin E, zinc, selenium and vitamin C.

We must never underestimate the healing power of nature and the body’s ability to heal itself with the right nutrients.

PREVENTION IS THE KEY!. We have to take care of nutritional requirements BEFORE the onset of metabolic disorders, mental diseases and premature ageing. By helping people to monitor the body’s early warning system when all is not well, many of the crippling diseases could be prevented!!.

Popcorn thought:
Our bodies is the temple of God, indwelt by His Spirit and we should take care of our bodies to glorify God!.

RESOURCES:

  1. http://www.unsystem.org
  2. http://www.functionalmedicine.org
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