Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Healthy Food Choices

In addition to the benefits of the foods mentioned in the Colds, Flu, and Allergy blog, here are some other healthy additions for your diet:

Pistachios - rich in nutrients that keep triglycerides in check. A handful a day can lower your triglyceride levels up to 30%.

Tomatoes - they contain lycopene, which stops LDL (bad cholesterol) from turning into artery-clogging plaque. Incorporating 3 small amounts into your daily diet can make a difference in your health. Even the ketchup on your burger counts! (Also, if you have a dog, especially female dogs, that leave those nasty yellow spots in your yard from urinating... give her a cherry tomato or a tablespoonful of some marinara sauce every day and the spots will stop. Males do it too, but the females are the worst. I feed my dogs tomato and the spots stopped completely).

Black Tea - full of flavonoids that work to dilate blood vessels, improving circulation. Could be helpful to a migraine sufferer too.

Cranberry Juice - rich in polyphenols, which boost HDL (good cholesterol). It is also helpful in deterring Urinary Tract Infections.

Raspberries - the anthocyanins block the storage of fat to prevent weight gain. They also reduce cellular inflammation which helps to flush excess water weight. Eating 1 cup of raspberries a day has been shown to help lose 2 lbs a week.

Grapes - The antioxidant resveratrol increases the activity of SIRT1, the gene that controls the rate at which cells metabolize stored fat for energy. Eating 1 cup of grapes daily can boost fat loss up to 25%. I have also read that the red and purple varieties are better than the green ones. I have also read that concord grapes are the best of the lot.

Grapefruit - Eating half a grapefruit with meals helps women lose weight faster by reducing production of fat-storage hormones. The antioxidants (naringin, apigenin, and d-lilmonene) help stabilize blood sugar.

Nuts - Nuts are chock-full of fiber, good fats and other nutrients that speed weight loss.

Kiwi - It has more vitamin C than any other common fruit. Research indicates that lack of Vitamin C will result in burning less fat.

Beans - Beans ore the best source of a nutrient called "resistant starch", a type of fiber that ferments i the digestive tract and triggers strong hunger control and a 20 - 25% increase in fat burning for hours after its eaten. One cup a day is recommended.

Whole Grains - Eating whole grains lowers risk of major weight gain by 49%, researchers say, due to the fiber and other hormone-stabilizing nutrients.

Dark Chocolate - Just 1/2 a bar of dark chocolate a week will lower your blood pressure and heart-attack risk.

Cherries - Eating about 45 Bing cherries a day relieves the pain of osteoarthritis in the knees. The tart cherries are full of unique antioxidants. A supplement might be easier to manage on a daily basis!

Vinegar - Just two tablespoons of Apple Cider vinegar daily switches on the genes that are key to the manufacture of fatty acid oxidation enzymes. These block the body's storage of incoming dietary fat plus breaks down about 10% of existing body fat. It helps even out blood sugar levels. It also contains acetobacter (a beneficial microbe) binds to illness-causing bacteria in the body and renders them harmless. The vinegar's abundant potassium can flatten bloat by flushing retained water from tissues, help normalize muscle contractions to prevent aches and bring down blood pressure. For best results, use unfiltered, unpasteurized vinegar that doesn't undergo the intense processing that can reduce levels of beneficial compounds.

Warm Milk and Honey - cure insomnia. The milk's calcium calms the nervous system, inducing sleep, while the honey triggers the relaxing brain chemical serotonin. The honey also helps the body absorb calcium to boosts the effects and help you get to sleep faster.

Green Tea and Lemon - supercharge immunity. The citric acid and vitamin C in the lemon rev up the green tea's catechins, which boost immunity and reduce the risk of caner, stroke and Alzheimer's disease.

To speed weight loss, use Macadamia Nut Oil. It's buttery-tasting and boosts metabolism. It contains monounsaturated fats - which are good fats - reducing the risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer. It also reduces cellular inflammation.

To lower blood sugar, use Safflower Oil. This oil significantly lowers blood sugar and body fat, as well as, boosting muscle mass. Buy the cold-pressed variety for the healthiest variety.

To improve your memory, use Grapeseed Oil. It protects brain function by reducing inflammation and protecting against age-related decline. It is loaded with resveratrol.

To prevent heart disease, use Sesame Oil. It lowers blood pressure because it's main phytonutrient, sesmin, relaxes blood vessel walls.

To lower cholesterol, use Avocado Oil. Two tablespoons daily lowers "bad" cholesterol up to 17% and raises "good" cholesterol by 11% in just one week. It is full of antioxidants, Vitamin E, and fatty acids, so it keeps your hair shiny and skin smooth too!

To increase immunity, use Coconut Oil. It is about 50% lauric acid, which strengthens the immune system and kills bacteria and viruses in the digestive tract. It boosts the body's ability to absorb other nutrients also, especially calcium and magnesium.

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