Why you can’t survive on only swiss chard

Part 1: How to interpret the Nutrient Balance Indicator

Very few foods contain all the essential nutrients; and the ones that come close don’t provide enough calories — that’s why you need to eat a variety of food. These visual representations at nutritiondata.com give you a quick way to see an ingredient’s strengths and weaknesses.

When you look at the charts below, you’ll see there are colors radiating out.  Green is Dietary Fiber, Blue is Protein, yellow is “bad” stuff you shouldn’t eat too much of (saturated fat, cholesterol, and salt).  Minerals are in grey and vitamins are pink, details below:

Part 2: Whole Wheat Flour Versus White Flour


The first chart, 48, is whole wheat flour — you can see at a glance how much more nutrition it has than the second chart, 20 un-enriched white flour.

34 is Enriched white flour. These have been added: Thiamin, riboflavin, Niacin, Folate, and Iron.   But there’s a good chance that won’t do a lot of good, because Vitamin Pills Don’t Work.

Part 3: Other Kinds of Flour

40 Barley Flour

29 Whole grain yellow corn flour

32 Rice flour, brown

Part 4: Nutrient Balance of Lentils, Split Peas, Small Red Beans

If you grind your own flour, consider adding up to 5% lentils – they have a higher score (58) and more protein.  You’d need to eat 8 and ¾ cups of boiled lentils (or 53 split peas) to get 2000 calories.   59 is California red beans (small).


Part 5: Now You Can See Why You Should Eat Your Leafy Greens

93 Raw Swiss Chard, packed with just about everything but vitamin D and B12.  However: you would need to eat 23 pounds, or about 300 cups of raw Swiss chard to get 2,000 calories.

85 Green Beans.  You’d need to eat 12 ½ pounds, or 45 cups, of cooked green beans to get 2,000 calories.

48 Sweet white corn, boiled, no salt.  You’d need to eat 4 pounds, or 11 cups of corn kernels, to get 2,000 calories.

Part 6: Why You Should Always Eat Your Potato Skins!


52 Potato baked, flesh and skin.   42 Potato baked, flesh only.

You’d need to 4 ¾ pounds, about 7 very large potatoes and their skins to get 2,000 calories.

You can see that if you don’t eat the skin, you lose fiber, protein, vitamin K, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Folate, Pantothenic Acid, phosphorous, Manganese, Magnesium, Iron, and Calcium

If you do an internet search to try to find out about the nutrition in potato skins, it’s hard to find an article that says they’re good for you or that it matters.



About Alice

I've milled and baked with whole grains for many years, because whole grains are delicious, and white flour is missing the nutrition that protects you from cancer, stroke, heart disease, diabetes and many other diseases. Plus it's a good emergency food.
This entry was posted in Nutrition, Nutrition at a Glance. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *