The 4 Nutrients Missing in the American Diet (and What YOU Can Eat to Fix That)

The 4 Nutrients Missing in the American Diet (and What YOU Can Eat to Fix That)

You eat a well rounded diet, but you’re still deficient in XYZ. Confused? Us too. But to everyone’s surprise, there are 4 key nutrients missing from most Americans’  diets. The good news? You can fix that with a few simple hacks!

1. Potassium

Have you ever stopped to think: what is potassium? Why is potassium good for me? What foods contain potassium, and are these incorporated in my diet?

Don’t worry -- you aren’t the only one. According to a 2013 study (1) 98% of adults are deficient in potassium, meaning they don’t get the 4700 mg recommended each day. This is because as society has progressed, Americans have moved away from traditional plant based diets, reducing our consumption of foods such as bananas, beans, figs, potatoes and spinach (which have fueled our bodies for forever with the potassium needed to function properly). And…while it may not be feasible to eat the EIGHT bananas, or the SEVEN avocados you need in a day to reach this level, potassium supplements may be a great addition. 

2. Dietary Fiber

Studies show that ONLY 5% of Americans meet the daily recommendation for dietary fiber, a carbohydrate found in plant-based foods. Dietary fiber comes in two forms as 1) soluble fiber, which helps maintain steady blood sugar levels and 2) insoluble fiber, which promotes regular bowel movements and prevents constipation. Soluble fibers include (but are certainly not limited to): oats, flax-seeds and legumes. Insoluble fibers are found in your whole grains, nuts and seeds. That being said, consuming too much dietary fiber -- upwards of 60g a day for the average adult -- can have the opposite effect, causing bloating, gas and constipation. This is why at B.T.R. NATION we pack 6-8g of dietary fiber in EACH and EVERY one of our bars. Not too little, but not too much, it's just right -- one bar a day might just be the golden ticket!

3. Calcium

Next up…drumroll…#CALCIUM: “for healthy bones, muscles and teeth!” 40% of Americans are deficient in calcium, a micronutrient found in many dairy products, leafy greens, beans and fish. Unlike dietary fibers that are strictly carbohydrates, calcium is found in three macronutrient groups: carbohydrates, fats and proteins! So make milk your best friend, or broccoli -- your body will thank you later. 

4. Vitamin D! Vitamin D builds our immune system, aids brain development, and allows our bodies to absorb calcium. We take in Vitamin D from each encounter between our skin and the sun, however, less than 60% of American adults get their suggested daily dose. The best thing you can do for your body, mind, and soul is to get some sunshine each day (after you slather on the SPF, of course!). If you still haven’t figured out the nicest way to tell your boss that twelve hours a day isn’t working for you, you might want to supplement (or increase your sardine and egg yolk consumption -- whatever floats your boat.)



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