An important thing to understand about nutrition is that it is virtually impossible to be deficient in any one specific nutritional ingredient. When one is looking for a specific type of nutritional deficiency, one is looking at a “predominant” nutritional deficiency.
The predominant nutritional deficiency is the nutrient which is most obviously missing. There can be two reasons for the nutrient being missing:
The nutrient is not present in your diet.The nutrient is present in your diet but is not being used by your body due to other deficiencies.
Of these two, the second is the most likely, and quite frankly the only possible candidate. As an example:
Chromium is known to control diabetes — but only in a diet that is complete in all other nutritional elements. Nutritional elements work hand in hand; they need each other. To properly look at a nutritional deficiency and its resulting physical condition or disease, one must know that one is looking at a predominant nutritional deficiency.
Once you understand this, you can begin to fix nutrition in order to get well.
A Look at Diabetes as a Whole
Diabetes manifests itself as a blood sugar problem; your blood sugar (glucose) is too high. Glucose is, however, an important element which determines how much energy you have available. If one wants to attempt to resolve diabetes one must look at the entire energy production system of the body, not just the end result: glucose!
Per the National Institute of Health, diabetes has attendant risk factors, it puts one in danger of other ailments as listed in the chart below:
As you can see, many issues are listed as “attendant risks” of diabetes. This is of extreme interest to the nutritionist, since one can plot all of these attendant risks as nutritional deficiencies.
When one does so, it becomes clear that a predominant nutritional deficiency of chromium, in diabetes, comes with many underlying deficiencies. This becomes clear when we plot this same chart of conditions with the predominant nutritional deficiency associated with each condition.
Conditions with their Matched Predominant Deficiency
This chart of attendant risks to diabetes (this chart is incomplete and serves only to illustrate to point of predominant nutritional deficiency), clearly shows a host of related nutritional deficiencies.
Nutritional elements do not work by themselves, they work as a whole.
Any known health issue attributed to a specific vitamin or nutritional element is therefore evidence of an underlying general nutritional deficiency.
The rule is, single nutritional deficiencies exist only in theory, not in practice.
The first two nutritional elements, that all other nutritional elements depend upon for proper function, are protein and fatty acids.
Complete protein provides all the amino acids needed to build the structure of any type of cell in the body. Protein, however, cannot be used in the absence of adequate fatty acids (found in fats and oils). Proteins and fats need to be available to your body at the same time and you need to have the entire B complex available in order to cover each aspect of digestion.
Fatty acids are also essential to digestion, and they are needed to transport fat-soluble vitamins such as A, D, K, etc.
Fats are needed to promote good stomach flora to aid digestion. These stomach flora in turn are capable of producing vitamin B if it is lacking from a diet. Lack of fats or healthy oils pretty much guarantees a deficiency of B vitamins.
When attempting to repair a predominant deficiency, this will be impeded by the less visible deficiencies which always exist.
The nutritional deficiency of a single vitamin will never fix when treated by itself — such a deficiency exists only in theory and not in practice.
The entire diet needs to be looked at and changed. Predominant deficiencies can then be fixed through a temporary increase and supplementation of that predominant deficiency but without taking the rest into account it will fail.
This can give nutrition a “bad name”, the supplement recommended did “not work”. Most likely the advice was right, but it failed to take into account the body as a whole. There are roughly 60 major nutrients, they all influence each other, none work alone.