I spent part of last week upset because I was forced to realize that some vegetarian food is processed with chemicals like hexane. I used to be a chemist, so I understand the process and end result. The chemist in me doesn’t care; final product does not have hexane in it, or if it does, any heating of the food will drive any residual amount away quickly. But if you consider the impact on food being processed on the general environment as well as wondering what else is removed from the food during this separation you realize that you shouldn’t be getting all of your nutrition this way. Remember when beta-carotene was considered a anti-cancer wonder and people started getting tons of it in their diet only to find out that large dosages of it can cause cancer? Turns out you need multiple ‘carotene’ together, and not a ton. Soybeans are a bit weird, and how you body deals with lots of soy protein without the fat is in reality somewhat unknown.
Food should not be a reductionist problem; the human body is designed to handle periods of low intake and a variety of foods. There are good reasons we process food in modern society, but being lazy is the one that has won out in American society; me included. So this week, Sunday to Saturday, I’ll attempt at eating nothing processed. By that I mean food that did not go through an extraction process via chemicals. Its much harder then its sounds. On one hand, salted food is fine, and so is skim milk if I wanted. On the other; things that contain stuff like soy isolate (which is in tons of vegetarian food) I’ll pass up. I’m doing this for just a week as I know how difficult this will be. I will post my results here during the week.