Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Why You Should Cook Your Food

Good stuff from a friend of mine..

By Diana Rodgers

I hear and read about lots of people making kale smoothies, consuming raw nuts, and munching salads consisting of raw broccoli. So, I decided to take a look at some research to see what the nutritional costs were to eating raw foods. The truth is, it’s better for your body to consume primarily cooked or lacto-fermented vegetables. Breaking down the cellular structure of vegetables through these methods greatly increases the digestibility and nutrient absorption of nutrients in vegetables. Much of the research I’ve found suggests several reasons why cooking might increase the energy available from meat. These include increasing food intake through positive effects on palatability related to texture and flavor, rendering proteins more digestible through denaturation, lowering the cost of digestion through food softening, and reducing immune upregulation by eliminating foodborne pathogens. Given that textural changes are at least partially responsible for the proposed positive effects of cooking on intake, digestibility, and the cost of digestion, non-thermal processing methods that manipulate texture, such as pounding, may likewise be effective in improving the net energy value of meat.

Foods have been heat-treated for many centuries, since our ancestors learned, by trial and error, to master fire for cooking purposes approx. 700,000 years ago, to modify the taste and preserve nutritional properties of foods. The invention and continuous development of food treatment has had a substantial, if not major impact on the intellectual, societal and economic development of mankind. The health benefits of fermentation have been known for centuries. In 76 A.D., the Roman historian Plinio advocated the use of fermented milks for treating gastrointestinal infections.READ MORE

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