How Important is a Varied Diet?
Can’t you just eat the same healthy foods every day? Technically, yes, but there is one potential downside.
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Josh writes: “I eat a healthy diet, but I tend to eat the same foods over and over. For example, I eat spinach every day for lunch. I know a varied diet is supposed to be best. Can some healthy foods be bad for you if you consume them too frequently?”
Josh is right: A varied diet is usually touted as the ideal—but why? After all, the ability to choose from a wide variety of foods—no matter where we live or what time of the year it happens to be—is, to a certain extent, a modern luxury. Many of our primitive ancestors thrived on extremely limited diets that might have included just one or two protein sources, a single type of grain, and a small selection of local, seasonal fruits and vegetables. In fact, these indigenous diets are often held up as being far superior to the modern diet.
So why all the emphasis on a varied diet? For those who would prefer to keep it simple, couldn’t you just come up with one healthy meal plan and eat it every day? Although it’s clearly not essential, a varied diet does offer at least two advantages.
Variety Covers Your Bases
Variety Keeps You Safe
Secondly, variety is an easy way to avoid over-exposure to a potential hazard.