Q: Does eating two hot meals a day shock the body?
– John from The Netherlands

A: No. We understand digestion very well and there is no evidence that heating food has any harmful effects on the system. In fact, cooking some foods helps release the nutrients, making them more available for digestion. For example, cooked carrots provide the body with more beta carotene (vitamin A) than do raw carrots. Overcooking produce can decrease its vitamin content, so cook vegetables by steaming, baking, or grilling so they still have a little crunch. Also, cooking deactivates naturally-occurring toxins in some foods, such as meat, soybeans, and potatoes. Cooking also helps lower your risk for contamination. You’d be hard-pressed to get optimal nutrition if you only ate raw or cold foods! -Elizabeth Somer