Whole Foods

Whole foods in a farmers market

Whole foods are foods that are as close to their natural state as possible during consumption. To be considered whole, a food must be unprocessed and unrefined, or have been processed or refined as minimally as possible. Whole foods do not contain any added ingredients such as sugar, salt, seasonings, etc. Examples of whole foods include fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, unprocessed meats and fish, whole grains and eggs.

There are many benefits associated with eating whole foods over processed or refined foods. Often when foods get processed, some of their minerals and vitamins get lost in the process. Thus eating a whole food ensures that consumers get all of the rich and natural nutrients a food should have, without harmful additives or preservatives. Numerous studies show that whole foods reduce the risk of contracting cardiovascular disease, several forms of cancer and type II diabetes. Whole foods also cost less than most processed foods.

The difference between whole foods and organic foods is that pesticides can be used to grow whole foods, provided that they undergo no processing post-harvest. Organic foods also must pass certain USDA regulations that whole foods are not subject to. (Photo: Shutterstock)


Why is whole fruit healthier than a smoothie?

Why the foods we love are disappearing (and how we can save them)

Being 'hangry' is a real thing, science proves

What you need to know about processed foods

Clear skin diet: Foods that bring acne relief

Whole Foods' latest whoops? Asparagus water

Whole Foods announces sister chain with lower prices

Whole Foods in low-income neighborhoods see success

Dr. Bronner's soaps takes on GMOs—and loses, this time

Drink wine, help alleviate world poverty

5 ways to introduce whole grains into your child's diet

5 tons of Nutella stolen in Germany heist