Why supplementary vitamins and minerals are necessary for health and vitality

WFMCwShad&Star_175Americans are overweight and suffering from a multitude of chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s disease and on and on…because of mineral deficiencies!  That is the conclusion of Dr. Joel Wallach, who first started thinking about it more than half a century ago and has amply confirmed his conclusion with intensive research, articles and decades of practice as a veterinarian and naturopathic physician.

It all started when Wallach was a child on his father’s farm and wondered why the livestock were  given salt blocks and mineral blocks and the family, which ate their produce off the same land, did not consume the supplementary minerals that were so routinely supplied to the livestock.

Later Wallach learned that four years before he was born, in 1936, the U.S. Senate was concerned about the ongoing loss of minerals in the soil. Senate Document 264 stated that people were beginning to have health problems related to mineral deficiencies…because “millions of acres of land no longer contain enough of certain minerals.”

Immediate action was taken to ensure healthy livestock, for that was the livelihood of many Americans in that era, but apparently no acknowledgement was made linking the health of the soil and the needs of humans to the same supplemental needs of livestock! Farmers for many decades have used a simple fertilizer known as NPK… nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. It was cheap and the farmers were thrilled.  NPK gave the maxiumum yield in terms of tons and bushels per acre.

The problem, says Dr. Wallach, is we need 90 essential nutrients… 60 minerals, 16 vitamins, 12 essential amino acids, and 3 essential fatty acids. Healthy plants can manufacture vitamins, amino acids and fatty acids…but they cannot manufacture minerals missing from the soil..

“It only takes 5 years for crops to deplete, extract, or mine the minerals out of farmlands or rain soil, so you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that over 90 years….we have been deficient in our soil in America and as a result our food is deficient, and as a result we spent $1.2 trillion for healthcare last year.” (Dr. Wallach made the preceeding statement in the late 1990s. Healthcare spending in 2012 was $2.7 trillion and is expected to reach $3.9 trillion by 2015.)

Continuing posts will focus on the missing nutrients and why they are vital for our health.

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