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Is Our Food Becoming Less Nutritious? | Why Do Venomous Animals Live In Warm - At Up-Tube.com

Is Our Food Becoming Less Nutritious? Why Do Venomous Animals Live In Warm 2 days ago   07:30

The nutrient content of food is declining. Is it because of soil depletion, selective breeding, or... something else?
Watch my new documentary, VITAMANIA: http://ve42.co/vita

I came across this story as I was making the film Vitamania. When you ask sellers of vitamins why you should take vitamin supplements even if you eat a healthy diet, they will say because our food doesn't contain all the nutrients it once did. This is supposedly due to soil depletion, cold storage, food ripening off the vine, and global transport of out-of-season foods. And to an extent this is true. Foods contain the greatest amount of nutrients if they are eaten soon after they are harvested. An unexpected source of nutrient decline is the increasing amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. It causes plants to grow faster and bulk up on carbs but at the expense of other nutrients, so in percentage terms the amount of nutrients are actually declining. For now this decline is modest so supplementing with vitamin pills is probably unnecessary for most people with a healthy diet but it may be a concern in future.

Thanks to Kate Pappas & Chris Kamen for writing, producing and filming this video with me
Edited by Lucy McCallum
Sound mix by Wayne Hyett
Fact Checking by Calvin Lee and Claire Smith
Thanks to the Collingwood Children’s Farm and Glenn Fitzgerald from the University of Melbourne & Agriculture Victoria

Further Reading:


Comments 3264 Comments

Jon Barnes
You missed something obvious. Maybe in the same way that increased atmospheric CO2 causes an unbalanced inflation of the spatial dimensions and the nutrient density, our selectively breeding larger plants has caused a similar imbalance for similar reasons?
Martin A
Incorrect 7 mins into vid. They can grow big and look the part, green and pest free. They look good and sell in supermarkets. The artificial nitrates and pesticides keep troublesome pests away and the nitrogen added causes good green colour and growth. But it's not just about looking green and being pest free, is it? What about all the micro nutrients in the soil that get upset by the artifical nitrates and pesticides. We can't just say they should be OK because they look the part because that is not so. Well now I've ssen all the vid it's even more ridiculous trying to blame carbon for that which mass produced crops has brought up. Some tomatoes are not even grown in soil just feed nitrates with a distribution system into a water obsorbent materials need we really ask where the nutrients have gone and blame carbon stupid video
The Prophet
Meat has more than enough protein luckily.
Manuj Bhalla
Parallely the market for artificial nutrients (nootropics) is increasing
Dawn Harper
This is amazing!!
James McCarthy
Wondering if reduced proteins in goldenrod affects honey bee colony collapse
I totally agree with him about the impact of global change on food but i feel like this is a multipronged issue. There may not be only one cause...
Ok. I am 4 mins in and already i question some of what he is saying. He says that farmers put effort into the soil so the plants will grow through fertalizer. However they are usuing mostly chemical fertilzer which contains no vitamins or minerals whereas the manure of ruminants contains vitamins, minerals, fertilzer like nitrogen, ammonia etc., and beneficial bacteria. So unless farmers are using healthy manure or adding minerals and vitamins into the soil, plants will have them in fewer quantities. And yes u can use chemical fertilzer to make plants grow big and pretty yet still be fragile and lacking in certain areas...
No animal foods. Sure you are going to be deficient if you depend on those already less nutritious plants.
Samwise The Grey
I really hate how he pronounces, "produce."
Xavier Dupont
Hi Veritasium, great video. Would you know why there is still no perfect diet, such as measure my body metabolism, then infer my needs in all the various chemicals, then produce a menu providing the right chemicals in the right amount? I'm sure the answer is complex, but I would believe that actually no such menu really exists because healthy bodies regulate their nutrient content, while people suffering from diabetes or thyroid disfunction can't have a correct menu without medication. I'm not considering obesity an illnesd here because it's a catch all that miss the actual cause of the problem, which may be triggered by diet imbalances but results in body dysfunction which does not revery to a normal condition when switching back to a more balanced diet and exercise. It works only for some people, but others can't actually do exercise because of dysfunctional adrenal glands and such. So I believe there is a very interesting subject in there, i. e. Is there a petfect diet for healthy people? and no perfect diet for some people unless they use medications ? And what would these perfect diets look like?
Matt Leonard
So in short, food is NOT becoming less nutritious. But plant food is becoming less nutrient dense as they increase in size due to rising Co2 levels
Lucas Pollet
Read the Secret life of plants by peter tompkins
Sim Salabim
3:13 fly pretending to be a bee xD
Kaoutar Kooki
Yes I think do absolutely..and the taste too..all vegetables ..fruits and even meat. cuz of chemical ...the need and greed of us humans:(
Logan Smith
Whole food supplements are the way to go most of the time if you're lacking nutrients
Giuseppe Zompatori
it's not the proteins in vegs but their fiber content that makes you full. LOL
The dairy and meat industry wants you to believe proteins are more important than they really are.
Look at the protein content of human milk, it's only around 2% and it's supposed to allow a young human being to double in size in a very short time.
You don't have protein receptors on your tongue, real carnivores like cats do....
When someone who doesn’t actually understand the science tries to explain science...
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Why Do Venomous Animals Live In Warm Is Our Food Becoming Less Nutritious? 2 days ago   11:40

As a Canadian-Australian, I have always wondered why it is that Australia has so many venomous animals that can kill you while Canada has virtually none.
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But it's not just Australia - it seems like all beautiful, warm places are cursed with venomous native species. So I set out to find the truth: why have all these venomous species evolved in the world's best holiday destinations?

I asked chemists, visited the zoo, interviewed entomologists and snake experts. The answer I found was complicated:
1. The majority of venomous species are ectotherms, cold-blooded creatures whose internal temperatures are governed by their surroundings.
2. This means they have limited periods of activity - mainly while it's warm out, and can only exert short bursts of energy, so they are generally "sit and wait" predators. This may explain why they, more than mammals or birds, evolved venom.
3. It also explains why there are more of these species in warm climates. There are more of all species in warm climates, but this trend is especially pronounced for ectotherms.
4. So there are a greater number of venomous species in warm places, simply because there are more species in warm places. Cold climates still have venomous creatures, like the rattlesnakes of Canada and European vipers.
5. But history also has a role to play. In Australia, there were no snakes until 20 million years ago when a venomous sea snake from Asia encountered the land, sending venomous species to all corners of the continent. Later non-venomous arrivals have done well in the tropics but not as well in Australia's colder climates, so venomous types still dominate there. Hawaii has no venomous land snakes and nor does Jamaica.
6. The recent ice age also would have driven ectotherms from the northern parts of the Northern Hemisphere. This is why there are no snakes in Ireland, for example.

Special thanks to Prof. Rick Shine, Prof. Dieter Hochuli, Prof. Roger Lowe, Prof. Martyn Poliakoff and Taronga Zoo, especially Joe Haddock and Dean Purcell.

Cinematography by Charles Clement