It is not longer about Proteins, Fats and Carbohydrate (Macronutrients), but mainly about Essential Trace Elements (Micronutrients) such as Vitamins and Minerals, and a large array of Phytochemicals that are essential to a normal immune system. To date, many of the micronutrients contained in food (Phytochemicals), especially originating from comestible plants (i.e. Kale, Watercress and Mustard Greens…), have yet to be named and measured, and studied further to truly understand their role into our health. However, Scientists agree that the more nutrient-dense the food the more phytochemicals present in the food. Eating nutrient-dense food make sense.
The best way to fully rip the benefit of nutrient-dense foods is to eating raw: Make a salad your main dish of every day.
So what is a Nutrient Density Score:
ANDI scores, based on Dr. Fuhrman’s Nutrient Density Scoring System, are calculated by measuring micronutrients in food, including: Vitamins, Minerals, Phytochemicals and antioxidants, and their capacities, based on an equal number of calories for each food. In other word, food is categorised upon nutrient per calorie density scores – The less the calorie and the more nutrient dense, higher the score.
ANDI scores are very complex and are awaiting patenting, and are part of a program to encourage people to choose healthier food and eat more nutrient-dense foods. They are ranked on a scale of 0 to 1000; however, they do not take into consideration: Carbohydrates, Fats (Omega 3, Omega 6, Omega 9 are not included either) and Protein. ‘The most nutrient dense foods: Green Leafy Vegetables such as Kale, Watercress and Mustard Greens – score 1000! All other foods are then scored relative to them‘.
Below is the Eat Right America top ANDI Food Chart (developed by Dr Fuhrman):
It is important to understand that no diet can be based fully on ANDI scores. Nutrient dense foods which are low in calories, are also low in fats; therefore, mixing nutrient-dense foods with lower nutrient density scores foods is a must.
Choosing healthy sources of fats and carbs and avoiding empty-calorie fats is the key - Always, avoid refined oils, sugar (and all other refined and highly-processed foods), and anything white.
Dr. Joel Fuhrman, author of ‘Eat to Live’ and ‘Eat for Health: Lose Weight, Keep It Off, Look Younger, Live Longer ‘, and Eat Right America’s chief medical officer, and at the origin of Aggregate Nutrient Density Index (ANDI) together with Kevin J. Leville, founder and CEO of Eat Right America, in collaboration with Whole Foods Markets as part of the initiative: “Health Starts Here”.
Registered Naturopath, Nutritional Therapist, Iridologist, Lecturer, NLP practitioner and Personal Performance Coach.