20 Awesome Superfoods You Need Everyday (Part 1)

awesome superfoods

There are many new and exotic Superfoods arriving in our shops every day. Foods with excellent health track records in their country of origin are finding their way into all manner of products. New recipes calling for these exotics appear every single day. But this week a client who is very diet conscious, always seeking out the foods that give her the most benefits for each mouthful, brought up the subject of ‘Everyday Superfoods’ – good traditional foods that are easy to find wherever you happen to be eating.

This particular client wanted to know just what some of the best plain and simple Superfoods are. Although she regularly eats a wide array of exotic Superfoods, including acai berry, spirulina, maca, edamame, and others, she wanted to know about Superfoods that she can access every day, whether she is at home, work or eating out with friends.

Superfoods is a recently coined term used to describe a group of foods that are light in kilojoules and very dense in nutrients, particularly antioxidants and other essential nutrients that we are unable to make for ourselves. Another requirement of Superfoods is that they are foods found in nature. They are thought to have many extra health benefits and are considered highly beneficial because they provide a solid dose of nutrients for each mouthful.

Superfoods fall into different food categories. Many are vegetables, particularly the green leafy types, or fruits. Many nuts are considered Superfoods because they are rich in antioxidants to clean up free radicals that cause inflammation in your body.

Free radicals are a normal part of metabolism and your body has mechanisms in place to deal with those ones. But free radicals are also produced in your body in response to environmental factors like pollution, tobacco smoke, charred food, trans fats, electrical appliances, mobile phones and can quickly cause much damage that can lead to serious chronic disease.

 

10 BASIC EVERYDAY SUPERFOODS

These are such common foods, now nobody has any excuse not to include as many foods from this list as they can every single day.

 

1 BLUEBERRIESEnjoy some superfoods to honour your beautiful temple!

The deep blue colour of blueberries is the give away that they are rich with antioxidants, ranking highly on ORAC, which measures the antioxidant value of foods. An anti aging superstar, they are one of the best sources of flavonoids around to help preserve memory function  and slow down loss of motor coordination. High levels of the cancer fighting antioxidant, ellegic acid and studies have shown them to have greater cancer fighting capabilities than other fruits. Many recent studies have shown they slow the growth of certain tumours. Anti-inflammatory

 

2 SPINACH

Long before we became aware of the benefits of antioxidants Popeye was onto their awesomeness. Spinach is loaded up with antioxidants and truly a simple Superfood. It contains vitamin C, betacarotene, as well as lutein and zeaxanthin to protect your eyes, with lots of vitamin K for cardiovascular and bone health, as well as iron for strong hair and nails.

3. BROCCOLI

Well known as a nutrient packed vegetable with cancer fighting properties, broccoli is loaded with vitamin C, folic acid and carotenoids (vitamin A) to protect from free radical damage, improve immune function and reproductive health. Broccoli contains high levels of vitamin K to build strong bones and help blood clotting. It also contains significant amounts of fibre, vitamin B2 and potassium.

4. AVOCADO

Delicious avocados are an excellent source of healthy raw monosaturated fat.  They contain nearly twenty nutrients including fibre (10 to 17 grams in each fruit), high levels of potassium, vitamin E, B vitamins, folic acid and lutein for healthy eyes and skin. They protect from heart disease, cancer, diabetes, eye and brain disease. They help stabilize blood sugars, are great for heart disorders and assist with tissue regeneration.  In addition avocados help you properly absorb other fat-soluble nutrients.

5. ALMONDS

Raw almonds are loaded with good (monosaturated) fats and fibre to lower cholesterol and reduce your risk of heart disease and diabetes. Rich in phytochemicals to promote heart and vascular health and a great source of minerals including magnesium, potassium, calcium and vitamins E and B6, they make a great afternoon snack. Munch on them in place of other less healthy options.

6. LENTILS & BEANS

All beans and legumes are beneficial. They are low in fat with lots of iron and B vitamins (including folate). A great complex carbohydrate, they are filling but low kilojoule. They contain magnesium and potassium for heart and circulatory health.  They are an excellent source of protein, and with a low GI they help control rises in blood sugar. Combined with complex grains like oats or barley they provide all the essential amino acids needed for a complete protein.  Perhaps the most nutritious legume is lentils. Also, they are inexpensive! Add them to your diet every week.

apple heart bought7. APPLES

The humble apple is often overlooked in the plethora of new Superfoods around. Apples are loaded with quercetin and catechin, both powerful antioxidants, to protect cells from free radical damage. Apple peel is where most of the nutrients lie so don’t peel them. They are also a great source of fibre. You may like to consider eating organic apples as they are one of the foods that regularly appear on the Environmental Working Committee’s DIRTY DOZEN list of the foods that are most highly sprayed with pesticides.

8. SARDINES & SALMON

Wild caught salmon is packed with omega-3 essential fatty acids to lower cholesterol and your risk of heart disease. It also contains vitamin D and selenium for healthy hair, skin, and nails. Farmed salmon on the other hand, (the only salmon available in Australia) is low in omega-3 and contains contaminants, so to get the benefit of eating salmon you need to make sure it is wild caught. Unfortunately as all salmon in Australia is farmed, the only wild caught one I have ever found is one brand of tinned salmon from Alaska. Wild caught salmon comes from Scotland, Alaska and Canada.
With just as much omega-3 as salmon, sardines are a much better choice in many ways. They are always wild caught so do not contain all the contaminants that you find in farmed salmon. Also being so small you can eat them up bones and all, and they are extra good as then you also get a hefty dose of calcium.

9. EGGS

Eggs are a powerhouse of valuable nutrients, especially if they are organic. They contain the highest quality nutritional protein of all foods containing about 6 grams, and loaded with nine amino acids, eleven vitamins and minerals. These include vitamin A and folate, naturally occurring vitamin B12 for healthy red blood cells, choline for memory and brain development and lutein and zeanthine for protection against eye disease.
Eating eggs for breakfast gives you a great start to the day and studies show that it may lead to you eating fewer kilojoules through the day because they rank highly on the satiety list.
But forget about eating the whites only, it’s the yolk that holds all the nutrients.
By the way, the link between eating eggs and blood cholesterol is an old myth and studies  have shown there is no connection.

10. OATS

Whole grain oats are one of the best sources of both soluble and insoluble fibre to metabolise fats  and promote healthy digestive system. They are low glycaemic to help control blood sugar levels. As well as helping improve your skin, they are brilliant for those suffering from stress and tiredness.  No wonder we’re always been told to eat porridge for breakfast, oats are rich in niacin (vitamin B3), vitamin E and antioxidants.  Packed with protein, they are a great way to kick-start your day.

 

Check back here for Part 2 next week when I’ll give you 10 more basic Superfoods, incuding some that are newer and not quite so common, to eat everyday.

 

What are your favourite Superfoods? Which do you choose to make certain you have some every day?

veg and nuts

 

Disclaimer

All information and opinions presented here are for information purposes only and are not intended as a substitute for professional advice offered during a consultation. Please consult with your health care provider before following any of the treatment suggested on this site, particularly if you have an ongoing health issue.
Source articles

http://foodmatters.tv/superfoods
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/09/10/top-ten-best-superfoods.aspx
http://man.bodyandsoul.com.au/health+nutrition/nutrition+advice/7+superfoods+for+supermen,24531

Top 11 Superfoods That Can Save Your Life

Hail The Pomegranate!

“Pomegranate is a fruit of paradise. There is one seed from Paradise in every pomegranate growing on the earth.”

hail the pomegranate

Autumn has firmly established itself in Melbourne. But along with the welcome rain and cool weather comes an abundance of Autumnal produce. Mushrooms, mandarins, apples and pears in all their autumnal glory and alongside them, the luscious pomegranate.  This week I was delighted to see the first beautiful, generous pomegranates in my greengrocers shop.

Originally hailing from Persia where it has been used medicinally for thousands of years, growth of the pomegranate spread through the Middle East, Asia, the Mediteranean and today is now widely grown across the globe including here in Australia.

Throughout history the pomegranate has been regarded as a symbol of most of the fundamental beliefs and desires of humanity, with almost every part of the fruit having significance. According to Greek mythology the pomagranate even played a role in the change of season, which was said to occur because Persephone ate a pomegranate seed, dooming her to return to the underworld (or winter) for one third of the year. In Ancient Egypt the pomegranate was regarded as a symbol of prosperity and ambition, in China and many other places, of fertility.

It is very easy to understand the magic of the pomegranate given the glossy, glowing skin and the rich generous colour of the distinctive ruby red seeds when the fruit is broken open.

Fruits and vegetables that are brightly coloured tend to be high in antioxidants. These help your body by clearing up excess oxidants, or free radicals, which if left to run wild in your body cause inflammation and lead to disease. The ORAC  score of pomegranates highlights them as one of the ‘richest sources of free-radical scavenging antioxidants’. This makes them a powerful tool to prevent those diseases with a strong inflammatory basis like arthritis, heart disease and cancer.

Pomegranates are rich sources of antioxidant phytonutrients, including flavonoids and polyphenols, which protect against free radicals. They also contain a wide range of other nutrients including most of the B Vitamins (including folate), zinc, magnesium, and iron, amongst others. But they are particularly high in Vitamin C, potassium, and pantothenic acid (Vitamin B5).

Pomegranate seeds are used effectively against heart disease, high blood pressure, inflammation and some cancers, including prostate cancer.

Studies have shown that pomegranate juice may protect against some cancers as well as modify heart disease risk factors. This study showed drinking pomegranate juice for two weeks lowers reduced systolic blood pressure.  And this 2006 study  found that drinking a 225ml glass of pomegranate juice every day significantly slowed the progress of prostate cancer in men with recurring prostate cancer.

Ayervedic medicine employs the healing power of the bark and rind of the pomegranate fruit to treat a wide range of disorders including diarrhoea, dysentery and intestinal parasites; the seeds are used as a heart or throat tonic; the astringent qualities of the fruit are considered useful for stopping nosebleeds or bleeding gums.

 

HOW TO USE POMEGRANATE

With pomegranates now in the shops it is time to reap their benefits. Using them fresh has some health benefits over using the stored juice.

pomegranate juiceJuice

The benefits of pomegranates are so high that you don’t need much to do you good. Even a 30-50ml shot of juice is sufficient to have significant benefits. Rather than using the juice as a beverage it might be wiser to consider it as a herbal treatment and take a smaller amount. Just 50ml a day will sustain healthy heart benefits.

 

Like to read more about pomegranate juice, seeds and oil?  Continue reading…

 

 

 

Disclaimer
All information and opinions presented here are for information purposes only and are not intended as a substitute for professional advice offered during a consultation. Please consult with your health care provider before following any of the treatment suggested on this site, particularly if you have an ongoing health issue.

 

Source articles
http://www.naturalnews.com/031068_pomegranate_superfood.html
http://www.nutritionguideexpert.com/pomegranate-seed-oil-benefits/#
http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/superfoods/Pages/is-pomegranate-a-superfood.aspx
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/08/02/pomegranate-ranked-healthiest-fruit-juice.aspx
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pomegranate

 

Natural Cures For Indigestion

 

Indigestion_20125 NOT free

After enjoying a wonderful meal there is nothing worse than sitting back and finding minutes or even hours later, that you are suffering the discomfort of indigestion.

Acid reflux or heartburn, nausea, vomiting, burping and belching, stomach uneasiness or burning pain, flatulence (gas), abdominal pain, bloating, growling stomach are all symptoms of indigestion, causing the sufferer much discomfort or embarrassment.

Even seemingly unrelated symptoms such as dry coughing, sour or bitter tastes in the mouth, hoarseness and wheezing can be related to acid reflux.

Indigestion is very common and most people suffer from it at least occasionally. With so many lifestyle triggers leading to indigestion this is not surprising.

Drugs prescribed for indigestion are on the increase. Most people use over the counter antacids to find relief but this is one of the worst ways to treat it.

Antacids give temporary relief but can also have side effects such as diarrhea or constipation. Other drugs prescribed fall into two groups – H2 blockers (eg Zantac) and Proton pump inhibitors, PPI’s, (eg Nexium).

The problem with these drugs is that they reduce the amount of acid in your stomach. This may seem beneficial. However, in many instances the problem behind indigestion is actually that your stomach is producing insufficient stomach acid, not excess. When you do not have enough stomach acid you are unable to properly digest food, and digestive problems occur.

The drugs can easily mask imbalances and lead to more serious problems. They may cause many side effects – for example they may lower your levels of vitamin B12, cause nausea or vomiting, headache, bruising, constipation or diarrhea, increase the risk of fractures and the risk of infections. Plus, once you start you need to keep taking them because they cause a rebound effect. This is where the indigestion symptoms return even worse than they previously were, if you stop taking the drug.

 

CAUSES OF INDIGESTION

Acid reflux occurs when the valve between the stomach and oesophagus (LES) does not close properly, allowing small amounts of stomach acid to spill over into the oesophagus.

Bloating or gas may be due to the fermentation of some trigger foods or foods that are difficult to digest. It can also be due to swallowing air during eating. It may also be a symptom of a disorder such as Coeliac Disease.

There are many Lifestyle triggers for indigestion including:

  • Being overweight
  • Drinking too much alcohol
  • Smoking
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Medications (including aspirin, thyroid meds, or Oral Contraceptives)
  • Eating trigger foods and drinks
  • Overweight
  • Eating too fast
  • High-fat foods
  • Pregnancy

 

Some of the common trigger foods include:

  • Fatty meats
  • Deep fried foods
  • Chocolate
  • Peppermint
  • Alcohol in excess
  • Coffee
  • Cola

Stress lies behind many cases of indigestion. Keeping a record of your moods and the times when you feel stressed, rushed, anxious, worried, overworked or even uneasy can help you identify emotional triggers for your indigestion. Once you work out what situations trigger the problem, regularly undertaking activities such as meditation, yoga, qi gong, tai chi or relaxation exercises goes a long way towards reducing stress levels and the symptoms of indigestion.

 

PREVENT INDIGESTION

While prevention is ideal it is not always possible.

But you can make changes in your lifestyle that will help reduce symptoms:

  • Avoid putting pressure on the stomach, avoid tight clothes.
  • Avoid carbonated drinks.
  • Eat small meals – five to six over the day, and eat them slowly
  • Eat fibre (40g a day)
  • Avoid spicy foods
  • Drink coffee (including decaffeinated) and tea in moderation
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Avoid ice cold food and drinks which can inactivate digestive enzymes
  • Avoid cocoa and foods containing it
  • Avoid eating in the three hours before you go to bed
  • Undertake practices to relieve stress
  • Stop smoking, avoid tobacco
  • Lose weight
  • Reduce processed and sweet foods

Foods like kefir, sauerkraut and miso contain probiotics to restore the natural balance and function of your gut. Or take a probiotic supplement containing Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria. Not only do they restore the bowel flora, they also help your digestion. Taking Spirulina will also increase healthy bacteria in your digestive tract.

Vitamin D is important for stomach health. If you are not getting adequate sunshine or normally wear sunscreen, increase your Vitamin D intake. Source it from cod liver oil (which is also rich in omega 3) or take a supplement.

You can help increase your natural production of stomach acid, hydrochloric acid, by including Himalayan salt in your diet. This ensures your body gets enough chloride to make sufficient hydrochloric acid, plus it provides 83 trace minerals that are needed by your body in order to function well.

One way to identify any food triggers that may be causing your digestive problems is to keep a food diary over a few weeks.

bloated-green-man

NATURAL INDIGESTION RELIEF

Homeopathy for Indigestion

There are a number of Hoemopathic remedies that can effectively stop the symptoms of heartburn and indigestion when selected and taken in accordance with homeopathic prescribing guidelines.

Ipecacuahna is one of the most commonly used homeopathic remedies for acute nausea and vomiting which is not relieved by vomiting. The tongue is surprisingly very clean. Symptoms get worse from warmth but improve a little in the fresh air..

Nux-vomica is great for acute nausea especially when the result of overeating, drinking alcohol or coffee, or digestive problems which are made worse by therapeutic or recreational drugs. It is often accompanied by constipation, flatulence or heartburn. Symptoms are made better by warmth and warm applications.

Homeopathic Pulsatilla can be helpful if the indigestion is the result of eating pork or rich fatty foods. Symptoms include bloating sometimes a headache. They do not feel thirsty and find some relief from cool, fresh air.

Carbo-veg gives relief from bloating with lots of offensive gas, which is sometimes released by drinking carbonated drinks.

Natrum phos is an important homeopathic remedy for indigestion with sour belching, sour tasting vomit and a yellow colour on the tongue. Good for those who get indigestion from eating fats. You can take Natrum phos as either a Homeopathic preparation or as a Cell Salt (Schuessler’s Tissue Salts).

Take Homeopathic preparations in the 6th potency, or the 30th potency if you are familiar with Homeopathic prescribing guidelines.

These are only a few of the hundreds of different Homeopahic remedies that help indigestion and give fast effective relief. If you are not familiar with the intricacies of Homeopathic prescribing consult a practitioner.

Herbs for Indigestion

In addition to changing poor habits there are many wonderful herbs to aid your digestion.

Ginger  tea can give immediate relief for heartburn or indigestion. It can also help reduce bloating. Shred some fresh ginger root and pour boiling water over. Allow to steep for ten minutes, strain and drink.

Fenugreek seeds coat the lining of your stomach to relieve symptoms. Add one to two teaspoons to your food or eat separately.

Licorice root can be an effective treatment for reflux. It stimulates the production of digestive secretions that help reduce reflux. Take one or two tablets before meals or bed, or take as a tea to stimulate saliva and prevent symptoms. Make certain it is deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL) particularly if you suffer from hypertension.

Bitter herbs. Herbs such as dandelion root, caraway, fennel, yellowdock, blessed thistle and gentian, found in Swedish Bitters, are some of the bitter herbs that promote better digestion because they encourage gastric secretions including saliva, hydrochloric (stomach) acid and digestive enzymes. They can treat or even prevent reflux. Take bitters just before eating to get the digestive juices flowing.

Holy Basil or Tulsi, has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic medicine to treat many disorders including stomach disorders, nausea and stress. Sipping a cup of Tulsi tea could help combat your indigestion by reducing the actual stomach symptoms as well as addressing the stress behind them.

Peppermint.  Many people find peppermint tea an excellent digestive soother. However it can have the opposite effect for nearly half the population, causing heartburn If this applies to you try chamomile tea instead. Peppermint relaxes smooth muscle of your digestive tract to ease cramps, gas and nausea. It can soothe disruptions in the bowel caused by nervousness, overeating or diet changes.

Charcoal.  If you suffer from excessive flatulence taking activated charcoal in the hour or two after your meal can help reduce the gas. Be careful about taking it on a regular basis as it can interfere with the absorption of nutrients.

Slippery Elm Powder taken before meals helps heal irritated digestive tracts. It is mucilaginous and becomes gel-like when in contact with water to coat, protect and soothe the digestive tract. It comes as a powder to add to drinks or in capsules.

Apple Cider VinegarMany people swear by apple cider vinegar. One tablespoon of ACV and one tablespoon of honey in a glass of pure water before meals can ease heartburn.

Lemons. Eating lemon before a meal can prevent heartburn or take some lemon juice in a glass of warm water. Lemon also stimulates bile production to help break down fats and improve digestion.

 

Chronic heartburn and indigestion is a serious problem and can be part of an underlying illness. Consult your health care practitioner if symptoms persist.

What’s your favourite kitchen cure to sort out for your digestive problems?

NO INDIGESTION

Disclaimer

All information and opinions presented here are for information purposes only and are not intended as a substitute for professional advice offered during a consultation. Please consult with your health care provider before following any of the treatment suggested on this site, particularly if you have an ongoing health issue.
Source articles

http://www.undergroundhealth.com/natural-heartburn-and-indigestion-remedies/
http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/ART02882/acid-reflux.html
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/06/05/natural-ways-to-relieve-heartburn-symptoms.aspx
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/andrew-weil-md/indigestion-natural-remedies-for-relief_b_812458.html
http://www.homeopathic.com/Articles/Using_homeopathy_for_ailments/Homeopathic_Medicines_for_Indigestion_Gas_an.html