Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Know Your Healthy Foods

If you seem to be a little bit negligent about what you eat, think again...while you are still at your peak, learn to eat healthy..(that includes me).

There are thousands of substances in foods that help protect you from heart disease, cancer and premature aging. Many of them cause the bright colors in autumn fruits and vegetables.

Pumpkins. - Rich in beta carotene, which may reduce the risk of developing certain cancers and heart disease. They may also deter some aspects of aging. They are low in calories, fat, sodium and high in fiber. Seeds are high in protein and are loaded with magnesium and iron.

Butternut Squash. - This is one of the healthiest vegetables around. High in vitamin C and beta carotene.

Pomegranates. - High in antioxidants, such as ellagic acid which reduces inflammation that may be a factor in both heart disease and many types of cancer. Its juice is known to reverse progression of coronary heart disease. There's even good news to that. A new study found out that the juice reduces the growth rate of prostate cancer. It also improves blood flow to your heart and may promote blood flow to sexual organs, potentially improving sexual potency.

Tomatoes. - Rich in lycopene which may help reduce risk of heart disease, breast, lung and prostate cancer. Cooking helps activate lycopene, so tomato paste and sauce may be especially beneficial. They also have vitamins A,C,E and potassium.

Bell Peppers. - Red bell peppers may help boos immune system. They are excellent sources of Vitamin C (3x as much as oranges) and beta carotene.

Ginger. - It contains a compound called gingerol that may lower blood pressure and increase circulation. It may also help relieve migraines and arthritis pain by blocking inflammation causing prostaglandins.

Kale, Swiss chard. - These together with other dark green leafy vegetables contain lutein, which helps protect your vision against macular degeneration and cataracts. Kale is rich in beta carotene, vitamins C,E and folate, as well as calcium and magnesium, important for strong bones. One cup of cooked swiss chard has about a third of your RDA of magnesium which helps keep nerve and musle cells healthy.