Should recipes have nutrients?
Martha Rose Shulman, a delicious food writer and cookbook author, gets a lot of nutritional information in her diet. What do I think about this? This is the interview she borrowed from Zester Daily, which has photos and links to her work.
Many readers of my “health diet” column on the New York times website asked me to combine nutritional analysis with recipes. Today, you don’t have to be a nutritionist to add this information. There are a lot of computer programs that will calculate for you. The problem is that none of the data is particularly accurate. So my editor and I resisted. We question the value of Numbers and know they are too easy to adjust.
I don’t like nutritional data, because I’ve never been a nutritionist in contact with a healthy diet, but as a chef. I’ve been trying to prepare delicious food that doesn’t harm – it’s not too hot, it’s not too fat, and it’s focused on plant-based foods, because that’s the way I like to eat.
In my 20s, I did a degree in toy nutrition, but I always liked the kitchen to the classroom. I reviewed the “nutrition introduction” course, but stopped when we had to remember the formula. I study biology at the university of Texas. My professor, of course, suspected that I was not destined to be the future of science, because I wrote a poem entitled “the Odyssey of my breakfast”, as a poem, verse, etc. He gave me a B +. Once I hit organic chemistry, I dropped out and started teaching vegetarian cooking classes.
However, I do hope that my NYTimes.com readers will be happy. So, after I received dozens of emails asking why I didn’t include these data in my column, I send an email to Marion Nestle, a nutritionist at email (Marion Nestle), asked her if you want to make the software to do these things, I would recommend.
“I don’t know of any easy way to do this,” nestle replied. “All of the software to use the same database to the United States department of agriculture and food companies to provide information, all of which need to explain, one important reason is related to the measurement, if you think about it, you will realize the nutrition with the growth and changes in geographic location, soil conditions, climate, transportation and storage, so the number of database is given only what you actually eat the number of approximation, especially if you don’t have the exact part balance, data is not without significance, is not so important as people think, when I saw the calories are classified as any not to zero at the end of things, I always smile, nutrient measurement is not so accurate.
Nestle brought me to the usda national nutrition database, and I immediately saw her point. After I typed “broccoli,” I offered 15 options, including “broccoli, cooked, boiled, drained, and salted.” “Broccoli, raw;” “Broccoli, flowers, life.” Then, I have to point out a number, whether in grams or cups (how to measure a cup of broccoli?). . But my recipe calls for “a bunch of broccoli florets”. How do they know how much salt I use? Usually, I steam my broccoli – it retains more nutrients than boiling, as far as I know – but it’s not even a choice.
I punch in the garlic. The usda database contains 3 grams of garlic. I called my garlic cloves. The plump weight I like is 6 to 8 grams, and the medium one is about 4 grams. Clearly, the usda’s technicians are not from the Mediterranean.
Nutrient analysis encourages us to look at foods based on carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins and other micronutrients. But “nutritionism” does not lead to better health. Michael Poland speaks eloquently in his book “the defence of food: the eater’s manifesto”. His seven-word maxim says almost everything you need to know about a healthy diet: “eat food, mainly plants, not too much”.
Nestle agreed. “I’m against nutritional information,” she told me. “The foundation of a healthy diet is varied, relatively unprocessed food, not to eat too much, because of the” real “(relatively unprocessed food contains a lot of the needed nutrients, but content and proportion is different, and you don’t have to worry about individual nutrition, because food is complementary to each other. ”
If I think the data is fairly accurate and can be put in context, I won’t mind too much. We know from the study of experimental animals that it is extremely difficult to induce nutrient deficiencies in animals that provide enough calories for food. The best way to avoid undernutrition is to eat a variety of minimally processed foods. If you do this, you don’t have to worry about specific nutrients. Vitamin D may be an exception. To do this, go outside and expose your skin to the sun. Even in winter!