The official definition for antinutrients are natural or synthetic compounds that interfere with the absorption of nutrients.[1]    

In this sense, pumpkin seeds’ zinc would be interfered by pumpkin’s phytic acid. However, phytic acids can also be beneficial, in reality, phytates are key molecules in holistic oncology, they help us to better contain and reverse cancer growth, among other processes.

Therefore, phytic acid for Holistic Medicine is less an anti-nutrient than a healthy nutrient.

However, in Holistic Nutrition, preparation is key. And eating pumpkin seeds directly from a pumpkin is somewhat bumpkin. Given that Nature’s seeds carry with them endogenous “insect repellant” to ward off predators, it is culinarily indicated to first soak them and then when possible to sprout these seeds. Grinding can also contribute in the assimilation process. This holistic process usually mitigates phytates’s anti-absorption of minerals like zinc and iron.

In this context then, The Happiness Medicine Institute’s definition for this medical terms includes the conventional charaterization, but goes beyond this mainstream scope by including the notion that true anti nutrients are those that can’t be transformed holistically to be super-nutrients and continue to interfere with nutrient absorption, transduction signaling, gene expression and over-all health even when they are holistically and synergistically prepared.

For example, hard alcohol or white sugar, stripped from its biochemical milieu are true anti-nutrients in that they deplete and-or undermine the body’s vitamin B, magnesium, electrolytes and other healthy molecules. Gluten, Oxalate and Phytates in the mainstream can be anti-nutrients, but in Holistic nutrition, when these proteins are holistically prepared, they can be useful for over-all nutritional assimilation and well-being.

On the other hand, red meat, even organic are loaded with ptomaines, uric acid, deleterious hormones like cortisol and estrogen, inflammatory cytokines and accompanied with amino acid imbalance and types of fats that damage human health and all the more so that they are full of artificial chemicals (meat animals being on the top of the food chain) and broiled or sautéed, that which produces even more deleterious and carcinogenic compounds like acrymalides and benzenes. For casein, the scientific debate is still ongoing.

Holistic Happiness Institute’s list of anti-nutrients can be viewed by scrolling on the right of this link. This list is non exhaustive, more later.

Meanwhile, below, we sum up  what antinutrients are suppose to be for Mainstream Science.

Examples of “Antinutrients”

First off, we have Phytic acid which is usually a top anti-nutrient for mainstream food science because it has a strong binding affinity to minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron, copper, and zinc. This results, goes the mainstream science, in precipitation, making the minerals unavailable for absorption in the intestines.[2][3]  However, nothing is said about how to prepare grains and seeds that contain phytic acid so that they can become super-nutrients.
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Phytic acids are common in the hulls of nuts, seeds and grains and of great importance in agriculture animal nutrition and eutrophication wise due to the mineral chelation and bound phosphatesreleased in to the environment. Without the need to use mill (grinding) to reduce phytate (including nutrient),[4] the amount of phytic acid is commonly reduced in animal feeds by adding histidine acid phosphate type of phytases to them.[5]

Protease inhibitors are substances that inhibit the actions of trypsin, pepsin and other proteases in the gut, preventing the digestion and subsequent absorption of protein. For example, Bowman–Birk trypsin inhibitor is found in soybeans.[6]

Lipase inhibitors interfere with enzymes, such as human pancreatic lipase, that catalyze the hydrolysis of some lipids, including fats. For example, the anti-obesity drug orlistat causes a percentage of fat to pass through the digestive tract undigested.[7]

Amylase inhibitors prevent the action of enzymes that break the glycosidic bonds of starches and other complex carbohydrates, preventing the release of simple sugars and absorption by the body. Amylase inhibitors, like lipase inhibitors, have been used as a diet aid and obesity treatment. Amylase inhibitors are present in many types of beans; commercially available amylase inhibitors are extracted from white kidney beans.[8].  But again, with proper holistic culinary preparation, these inhibitors go away.

Oxalic acid and oxalates are present in many plants and in significant amounts particularly in rhubarb, tea, spinach, parsley and purslane. Oxalates bind to calcium and prevent its absorption in the human body.[9]

But since when is tea, spinach, parsley and purslane anti-nutrient foods ? Purslane is one of the best plants for Omega 3 (ALA), parsley is a great emanagogue very rich in vitamin C, chlorophyl and lots of healthy minerals, tea is rich in ECGC, antioxydants and polyphenols that add year to one’s life and life to one’s years while spinach is a super protein and green food rich in fiber that helps to remove excess oxalates. When prepared holistically and synergistically with different foods, the oxalates in these plants just add nutritional value, including, but not limited to calcium absorption.

Glucosinolates  are said to prevent the uptake of iodine, affecting the function of the thyroid and thus are considered goitrogens. They are found in plants such as broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, mustard greens, radishes and cauliflower.[10] Again, same reasoning as above.

According to Conventional medicine, excessive intake of required nutrients can also result in them having an anti-nutrient action. Excessive intake of dietary fiber can reduce the transit time through the intestines to such a degree that other nutrients cannot be absorbed. However, this effect is often not seen in practice and reduction of absorbed minerals can be attributed mainly to the phytic acids in fibrous food when these are not holistically prepared.[11][12] Foods high in calcium eaten simultaneously with foods containing iron can decrease the absorption of iron via an unclear mechanism involving iron transport protein hDMT1, which calcium can inhibit.[13] But these inhibitions can be circumvented with holistic savior-faire.

Some proteins have also been characterized as antinutrients, such as the trypsin inhibitors and lectins found in legumes. These enzyme inhibitors are said to interfere with digestion.[14] Avidin is an antinutrient found in active form in raw egg whites. It binds very tightly to biotin (vitamin B7)[15] and can cause deficiency of B7 in animals[16] and in humans.[17].  This result could indicate then that humans are not meant to eat raw eggs. However, when eggs are cooked, its cholesterol gets oxidized, and that cholesterol oxidation inhibits proper metabolism and well-being.

Mainstream medicine also claims that many flavonoids are antinutrients. Flavonoids are a group of polyphenolic compounds that include tannins.[18] These compounds chelate metals such as iron and zinc and reduce the absorption of these nutrients[19]  They also inhibit digestive enzymes and may also precipitate proteins.[20] 

However, over-all, flavonoides and tannins, when prepared holistically are some of the best vitality and longevity molecules. Strip red wines from their tannic acids, and they cease to age well and stop producing the anti-aging bang of ripe red wine. (See the Institute’s Wine workshop).

For the mainstream, saponins in plants are also claimed to be “antifeedants,” [21][22] as such, they have been classified as antinutrients.[23]

Discussion and Tentative Conclusion

In reality, antinutrients are found at some level in almost all plant-based foods, essentially because plants can’t walk, they can’t run away from their predators, they therefore protect themselves with natural repellants, many of which humans classify as “anti nutrients”, while most “anti nutrients” that mess up human health are foods that come from  animal putrefaction, animal parasites, animal macro-molecule imbalance, uric acid, cortisol and other deleterious molecules.

Conventional Medicine, modern Agriculture and Bio-technology are now working on eliminating antinutrients entirely by using genetic engineering.  However, as Professor Senalini and other scientists have shown, GMO foods tend to be carcinogenic, mutagenic, anti-microbiota and anti-health.

To the H.M Institute’s knowledge, there is no hard evidence that any genetic engineering modification can make foods more nutritious and improve health and longevity.[25]. 

Moderate and reasonable Hybridization via intelligent selection can be healthy, as has been done for thousands of years, eg, the wild carrot plant being selected in the wild carrot gene-pool to produce savory and healthy organic domesticated carrots.

But artificial genetic modification by taking a gene from a plant to put it in the genome of a fish is tampering with millions of years of evolutionary intelligence, the consequence of which ends up being anti-nutrition and anti-health.

The bottom line is that many traditional methods of food preparation such as soaking, sprouting, fermentation, cooking, and malting increase the nutritive quality of plant foods through reducing certain antinutrients such as phytic acid and oxalic acid.[26]

Such processing methods are widely used in societies where cereals and legumes form a major part of the diet.[27][28]An important example of such processing is the fermentation of cassava to produce cassava flour: this fermentation reduces the levels of both toxins and antinutrients in the tuber.[29]. 

Likewise with cyanide contained in apricot seeds, when holistically prepared, these seeds can help to mitigate cancerous metastasis, just like with certain mushrooms etc. More later.

Text under investigation and in the course of being constructed.


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