This is Article 1 of 8 Articles that summarize key points from the book SuperFoods HealthStyle: Proven Strategies for Lifelong Health by Steven G. Pratt, M.D. I will cover other topics in subsequent articles.
We all hear and read about the many excellent foods that are good to eat and good for us. Of course, we always hear about eating fruits, vegetables, and nuts.
But that’s an extensive list to sort through. It would be easier to have a few superfoods you can always enjoy. So to help you in your efforts to lead a healthy lifestyle, you can use the list put together below as a quick reference list of 9 superfoods. These 9 superfoods and 14 others are found in the book Superfoods HealthStyle, by Steven G. Pratt, M.D.
Apples are an excellent food for many reasons, including the ability to reduce the risk of type-2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and certain cancers. Also, they benefit the respiratory system by preventing asthma and lung cancer.
When you eat apples, your body gets vitamin C, potassium, fiber, antioxidants, and polyphenols. Furthermore, research shows that the real advantage comes from the cooperative interaction between these components.
To get the best advantage for your health, eat a wide variety of apples. And ensure that you eat the peel, which holds many more antioxidants than the internal parts. The saying, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” is true.
Avocados can assist your body in absorbing more nutrients from the foods you eat. For example, fat-soluble phytonutrients, like beta-carotene, are more easily soaked in by the body because of the monounsaturated fat in the avocado.
Avocados also trigger your body to stop eating, which helps you lower your weight. In addition, they are calorie-rich at 48 calories per ounce. So, consume one-third to one-half an avocado two to three times a week for optimum results.
3. Dark Chocolate
Try dark chocolate when you want a little indulgence with your healthy food. This is because dark chocolate contains lots of polyphenols, a natural anti-inflammatory that lowers blood pressure. However, please remember that only dark chocolate has blood pressure-lowering qualities. These qualities are not in the other type of chocolate, milk chocolate.
A study issued by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2000 showed that the effect on blood flow from high-flavanol cocoa was similar to taking low-dose aspirin. This means that dark chocolate could be used to treat conditions like minor headaches or pains.
One of the recommended dark chocolates is Newman’s Own Sweet Dart Chocolate. Dr. Pratt has discovered that it has more polyphenols than any other dark chocolate he has tested. In addition, chocolate is high in calories, just like avocado does. So do not eat more than 100 calories daily.
4. Olive Oil
The advantages of the Mediterranean diet have lately come up in many discussions about healthy eating. Well, one of the main elements of this diet is olive oil, which has tremendous benefits. Olive oil is a perfect replacement for other oils and fats. It has been shown to lower blood pressure, improve the health of your cardiovascular system and reduce the risk of colon and breast cancer.
Take a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil that is cold-pressed and greenish daily to improve your health. This green color helps you get high amounts of polyphenols.
Garlic, another component of the Mediterranean diet, is excellent for your cardiovascular system. Regular consumption of garlic reduces your blood pressure, triglyceride levels, and LDL(bad) cholesterol. It also has anti-inflammatory capabilities and antibiotic properties.
Eat one clove several times a week to get all the health benefits of garlic. Even though raw garlic is best, cooked garlic is also good. Do not forget that fresh garlic has more health benefits than dried garlic and garlic supplements.
Many lists of healthy foods do not contain honey but don’t let that fool you. Daily consumption of honey reduces cholesterol and blood pressure, reduces the amounts of antioxidants in the blood, and helps to prevent constipation.
Reach for honey and not sugar if you are running low on energy. Honey does better at maintaining blood sugar and energy than other sweeteners. And choose dark types of honey over light ones because they are higher in antioxidants and flavor. But, again, one to two teaspoons a couple of times a week can do the trick.
Pick up a kiwi or two to get vast quantities of Vitamin C and E that can reduce the risk of osteoarthritis, asthma, and colon cancer and boost your immune system. An interesting point to remember is that dietary vitamin E appears to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. This is because when you eat kiwis, you get vitamin E without the calories that most other foods rich in vitamin E, like nuts and oils, contain.
Another good ingredient of kiwis is lutein. It decreases the risk of cataracts and macular deterioration. You can consume one kiwi twice or thrice a week to get all the above benefits and reduce the risk of blood clots.
The benefits of onions are pretty much the same as those of garlic. So, you can just reread the benefits of garlic.
Try eating dishes having onions at least three times a week, and make sure that you let the onions sit for 5 to 10 minutes after you cut them open. Be careful; if you apply heat too soon, you will deactivate the thiopropanal sulfoxide. This substance in the onion gives us the most heart benefits. And remember, more intense onions are better for your health.
Pomegranates have a lot of phytochemicals like potassium, which is excellent for lowering blood pressure. Research also suggests that pomegranates can reduce the risk of atherosclerosis and slow the progression of prostate cancer.
Try four to eight ounces of 100% juice several times a week instead of battling with the tiny pulpy seeds to get your dose of pomegranate. Remember, stay away from juices with added sugar.
My Next Blog Article
The next blog post that is a continuation of this one is Nutrition: The Superfood That Keeps You Healthy.
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