How Come Whole Foods Matter to Our Health?

Dr Juli Mazi ND
4 min readSep 13, 2022

Fruits, grains, and vegetables are staples in the conversation about whole-food diets. An unskinned chicken breast is a better choice for your health than a bag of processed chicken nuggets. However, many of the healthy elements in processed meals are destroyed in the preparation process. When grains are refined, they lose some of their nutritional value, such as the bran and coatings. During the enrichment process, some of their natural nutrients may be restored artificially. As a result, the finished product is probably not as healthy as the source material.

The staples of a whole-food diet are fresh fruits and vegetables. Your chance of acquiring the cardiovascular disease and dying from any cause is reduced by eating these foods. A whole-food diet has its benefits, but it also has its drawbacks. One of them is that it encourages people to eat less meat and other animal products, which might be good for their health but could also cause them to develop an unhealthy connection with food.

While the health benefits of eating a whole-food diet are well-documented, this approach also comes with some drawbacks, including more time and money commitments. The goal of a whole-food diet is not weight loss but rather a shift in eating habits for life. Meal preparation takes time and might turn into an unhealthy preoccupation with food.

Eating raw, unprocessed, and chemical-free whole foods is ideal. In addition to lowering cholesterol, lowering obesity, high blood pressure, and high blood sugar, this diet also helps those with other health issues. The ability to do so also makes it possible to steer clear of many unhealthy processed meals like ice cream and junk food. If you’re trying to trim down without compromising on nutrition, a whole-foods diet is your best bet.

Fruits and vegetables are examples of entire, unprocessed foods that make up a whole-food diet. They are an excellent option for folks who are trying to eat more healthfully because they haven’t been adulterated with artificial ingredients or chemical preservatives. Raw nuts and seeds, in particular, are a wonderful supplement to a whole foods diet. Select nuts that haven’t been flavored with salt, sugar, or anything else. You should also stay away from honey-containing nut butter because they are a sugar bomb and a processed product disguised as whole food.

A whole-food diet, unlike other diets, is more of a way of life than a set of rules to follow. Whole foods, as opposed to processed and refined meals, are emphasized in this approach. Also, cut back on the amount of sugary and fatty foods you eat. Fruit juices should be avoided because of their high sugar content and low nutritional and fiber content.
Reduced risk of diabetes, heart disease, and stroke are all connected with eating a diet high in whole foods, which are naturally rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

Research has linked a diet rich in whole foods to improved weight control, reduced hypertension and cholesterol levels, and a decreased likelihood of developing either obesity or type 2 diabetes. The high antioxidant content of the diet also helps reduce inflammation caused by metabolic syndrome. Omega-3 fatty acids, which may be found in abundance in fish, have been shown to reduce “bad” cholesterol while simultaneously raising “good” cholesterol. Both insulin sensitivity and heart rate regulation can benefit from this fatty acid.

While eating a diet based on whole foods has many health benefits, some items should be avoided. You should limit your intake of processed foods like canned soup and freezer dinners, for instance. Still, if a dish has had only minimum preparation, it’s probably fine to eat till the end. Frozen veggies and fruit and less processed snacks fall within this category. Sugary and artificially flavored meals should also be avoided.

Whole foods also provide the highest concentrations of vitamins and minerals, making it easy to achieve nutritional balance with less time and effort spent shopping. Phytochemicals and natural plant components are found in many whole foods and have been shown to have various health benefits. Antioxidant-rich foods, such as those high in flavonoids and carotenoids, can shield your cells from free radicals.

Rather than being a strict regimen, adopting a whole-food diet for health is a way of life that centers around the consumption of natural, nutritious foods. The diet does not dictate any particular foods to eat and is meant to be a permanent lifestyle change, rather than a temporary one. Fruits, vegetables, lean meat, nuts, and legumes are all part of a whole-food diet.

The immune system, the chance of developing chronic illnesses, and general health are all bolstered by eating well. Obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, neurological disorders, and lung ailments are only some of the numerous problems that are exacerbated by chronic inflammation. Inflammation can be reduced, illness prevented, and general health enhanced by eating a diet high in fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains.

A person’s health can greatly benefit from a diet of whole foods and a reduction in bad habits. Chronic illness risk can be reduced by changing lifestyle factors like not drinking or smoking. Quitting smoking is a great strategy to lessen your chances of developing heart disease, developing cancer, and dying prematurely. As an added note, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises that individuals obtain at least 7 hours of sleep nightly. This is vital to one’s bodily and emotional well-being. Knowing your hereditary risk for chronic diseases is crucial to take preventative action, making knowledge of your family history of these diseases essential.

One of the most effective methods to avoid and treat chronic illnesses is to eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. The chance of developing several chronic illnesses, such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes, is significantly decreased by following this diet. Furthermore, the diet is high in anti-inflammatory antioxidants and phytonutrients.



Dr Juli Mazi ND

Dr. Juli Mazi is a registered primary care physician and a Doctor of Naturopathy (N.D.) based in Napa, California.