We've all heard of Protein, Carbohydrates and Fats. Widely regarded as 3 Macro-nutrients that we require to sustain us. You've no doubt heard of vitamins and minerals which are termed micro-nutrients. But have you ever thought of light as being an important nutrient in your food?
Leteth me explaineth
How do plants produce their stuff - whether it be leaves, branches, stems, flowers, seeds, nectar, fruits or nuts. They use their roots to absorb minerals from the soil, combine them with water that it also draws in from the ground and then uses energy that it receives from the Sun and via photosynthesis converts the photons (energy waves/particles) from the Sun into a usable Energy for the plant to produce stuff.
The combination of all of these factors lead the plant to be able to survive, grow and reproduce (nuts, seeds, fruits, flowers etc) survival of the species is the prime directive of ALL life animal or plant.
If light is the source of Energy for the plant and Energy CANNOT be destroyed - the law of conservation of Energy.
So that light Energy must have ended up somewhere. It's feasible and highly likely that some of that light ends up in the produce of the plant that an animal would eat.
One more step
The fruits of many plants grow above ground so these too are exposed to the Sun. The light from the Sun is what helps to ripen a tomato - take a green tomato off of its vine and put it somewhere dark it will simply go mouldy without ever going red. It is the Sun that gives the fruit Energy to ripen.
Animals eat plants, fruits and vegetables (and other animals eat the animals that eat those plants)
If Energy can only ever be transferred then the Animal that eats these plants will be absorbing the light of that food too. A portion of that animal then becomes light. It's very cells are made up of light (partly)
You and I, my friends, are generally omniverous, we eat all things plant based or animal. I'll leave that choice to you. Either way, you are consuming light Energy from the Sun.
What if food and dieting wasn't that simple - it might explain why someone who eats really well within their calorific "limits" to lose weight never loses weight and someone who seemingly eats not such a great diet (or overeats) may never put on an ounce.
Where you are dictates what light is in your food.
Unless you are misguided, we generally believe that we live on a spherical planet - just like all of the other planets that we can see. We also have an atmosphere - this is really important for refraction.
Light in space is in a vacuum (there's nothing there) - when those light waves interact with the atmosphere they are bent (refracted), the "white" light from the Sun is split more into it's component parts that we see as visible light. When light is refracted it bends at different angles.
If our observer is a plant it will absorb different light depending on what latitude it is at. At higher latitudes there is more atmosphere and a greater angle for the sunlight to bend.
Have you ever been near the equator and experienced a sunset? It's quite fast. When you are at more Northerly (or Southerly) latitudes the sunset appears to go on for ages and will appear redder.
That light, because of refraction will affect the Energy that it gives to the plant in the region in which it grows.
Food nearer the equator will have more violet and blue light stored within it. Foods nearer the poles will have more red and orange light stored within it.
Could light in your food be a source of inflammation?
We all think we know what a healthy diet looks like - a good range of vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds and for most people who eat meat there would be meats, fats and seafood.
All well and good - but did a banana ever grow (outside of a large greenhouse) in the UK? what about avocado? Melons? Brazil Nuts?
These are all deemed healthy foods, and why the devil not - they are chock full of vitamins, minerals, fats and proteins that are healthy for us but what if they are also all grown a lot closer to the equator than we live.
Because of the Earths spin on an angle of around 23 degrees, YOU, probably living in the UK are "tuned" to more lower frequencies of light (redder end of the visible sprectrum) in the winter and higher frequencies of light (more blue and violet end of the spectrum) in the Summer. This will mean that your diet will and should change from Summer to Winter. Eating higher Energy exposed foods in the Summer months and lower energy exposed foods in the Winter.
What foods are your meats eating - is your beef fed from locally produced and sourced natural foods or is it fed a wide range of grains and "unnatural" feeds from around the world. Is your chicken breast from a farm and fed grains from Africa (or wherever) or does it forage locally eating worms, caterpillars, local seeds and plants?
Your whole diet, whatever diet you choose, is made up of WHERE it is from as much as what it is made from - the macro-nutrients.
We also know that light in the electromagnetic spectrum, the higher the frequency the greater the Energy that it contains. UVA, UVB, X-rays and Gamma radiation are known to damage our cells if we over expose ourselves to them, for example Sunburn and Lead aprons for Radiographers.
The light from the Sun doesn't get any stronger but, day times are longer and the frequency of light that we are exposed to is higher energy because of our position on the Earth and the changes in the refraction from the atmosphere.
(for the sake of argument I know that Sun activity does vary with Sunspots and increased magnetic activity but kind of by the by here)
Our food is equally exposed to those changes in frequency and therefore Energy.
The Equinox - when days are equal to night - this is our "zero" position on Earth.
The Winter Solstice - the shortest day - we are as angled away from the Sun as we are going to get - we not only have the least amount of potential sunlight hours but also the least Energy from the Sun (the most Red)
The Summer Solstice - this is the day that we have the most potential for sunlight hours and the greatest amount of Energy from the Sun. We are as angled as towards the Sun as we are going to get in a year.
What I'm trying to say with all of this. To enhance your health should you eat a diet predominately based on food that is grown in the locality that you live?
It is what have evolved to do.
No other naturally living animal eats anything except what is growing near to where it lives which contains the right kind of Energy from the Sun at that time of the year.
If meat isn't around you would eat vegetables, if you live near a river, stream or the sea you would eat lots of seafoods, if vegetables are scarce you would eat meats and fats.
As I mentioned earlier, it's all about survival of the species and before about 200 years ago we wouldn't have eaten any "foreign" foods and nor would any of our food sources been exposed to unnatural products. We have survived on this little island we call home for around 12,000 years and only in the last few hundred years have we eaten anything from anywhere other than what we could grow and produce in our fields. Humans as a species, as we know ourselves now, have only been around for about 200 to 300 thousand years and we survived just fine without importing food.
Health has never been worse, despite our longer years we are getting sicker. in the book the telomere effect it was put like this which i quite like. not a direct quote but this is the gist.
It's not about how long you live, it's about how long you live without disease and illness. The writers coined the term healthspan and diseasespan - you want your healthspan to be as long as possible and disease span to be as short as possible whilst living a long life of 80+ years (this age is at least my goal, perhaps yours is longer or shorter).
I'm not saying this is 100% evidence based but this seems common sense to me when you look at what is quite basic science. It's only when you combine biology, physics, chemisty, maths and common sense where you find the more complete answer.
Key point - eat what is grown in the country that you live in, at that time of year.
Remember - Seafood and Meats "grow" all year around
Fruit, Veg, Nuts, Seeds, Grains will only grow at particular times of the year.