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Whole Foods vs. Supplements: Which Is Best? with Stephen Van Vliet

Whole foods versus supplements – the message we seem to get from healthcare providers and public health advocates is that we should be getting our nutrition from whole foods. However, we are bombarded with advice on nutrients absolutely everywhere, and sales of nutritional supplements are always on the rise.

If you’re a parent, it can be difficult to process all of the information on the subject, so that’s what we’re talking about today.

On the show this week, I welcome Dr. Stephan van Vliet, a postdoctoral research associate in the Duke Molecular Physiology Institute who focuses on the effect of diet, particularly whole foods, and physical activity on muscle metabolism, body composition, and health span.

Previously, Dr. van Vliet worked as a research associate in the Center for Human Nutrition at the Washington University and St Louis School of Medicine – so there really is nobody better to digest this information with.

Listen in on our conversation about the benefits and drawbacks of protein and nutritional supplements, especially when dealing with young athletes.

With information about how to balance a whole food diet and building muscle and athletic performance, this episode has all the tools you’ll need to make informed decisions around your child’s food intake.

“I would always recommend parents to go with a food-first approach with child athletes. Protein supplements are perfectly safe, but you might be missing out on some key nutrients, especially for a growing child.” Click To Tweet

Click here to get my vegetarian protein sources

What You’ll Learn about Whole Foods or Supplements:

  • How fitness marketing drives the preconception that athletes need supplements to be successful.
  • Why protein supplements can be part of a healthy lifestyle.
  • How a whole food diet can eliminate the need for supplements.
  • Why protein from different sources has varying effects on muscle recovery and building.
  • The importance of fat, cholesterol, and how it affects the body, especially for growing children.
  • What to consider when making decisions about supplements as the parent of an athlete.
  • The best whole food protein sources for parents to focus on.

Listen to the Full Episode:

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I was a food plater. Yes, a plater of food for my kids. I've changed my ways.