THE ROLE OF MICRO-NUTRIENTS IN PREVENTION AND THERAPY–
- A remarkable shift in nutritional research has occurred in the past 50 years. In the first half of the 20th century, nutritional science focused on the discovery of vitamins and description of classic vitamin and mineral deficiency diseases, such as scurvy (vitamin C deficiency) and rickets (vitamin D deficiency).
- Wide spread efforts were then made to fortify the food supply to prevent vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Grains are enriched with B vitamin and iron, salt was iodized, water was fluoridated, and milk and margarine were fortified with vitamins A and D. These measures have essentially eliminated many previously common disorders, including pellagra, beri-beri and rickets.
- However, vitamins and minerals deficiencies remain widespread. For example- there is a high prevalence of inadequate intakes of iron and folic acid among women, and deficiencies of vitamin D, vitamin B12 and calcium are common among older adults.
- Today nutrition is moving into exiting new areas of prevention and medical therapy, particularly with regards to micro-nutrients. The term “micro-nutrients” refers to the vitamins, minerals, trace elements,amino acids and essential fatty acid found in our diets,normally in only very small amounts .
- Modern medicine is discovering that with optimum “micro-nutrition”illnesses can be treated, and in many cases prevented, without relying on more costly (and potentially more dangerous) drugs and surgery.
“The prevention of good health and treatment of disease by varying the concentrations in the human body of substances that are normally present in the body and are required for health.” ~Dr. Linus Pauling