Part Two Why Should You Eat Super Foods

Hope you enjoyed reading my first blog about super foods and the amazing health benefits. Here is part two why should you eat super foods.

Dark Chocolate

Yes you really can eat chocolate!!! This treat is packed with heart protective antioxidants, as well as bone supporting minerals magnesium, manganese, copper, zinc and phosphorus. Chocolate also contains phenylethylamine, which triggers the release of endorphins to boost mood and motivation. Eat a few squares a day to reap the benefits, that doesn’t mean a full block.

Walnuts

Are you feeling stressed? Munch on a handful of walnuts – studies show that the omega-3 fatty acid alpha linolenic acid helps your body handle stress more effectively and lower blood pressure. Walnuts provide protein, fibre, omega-3 and folate so they are an excellent little nut.

Beans And Pulses

Beans and lentils are a good source of iron and folate, which are needed for the production of healthy red blood cells and are particularly important for menstruating women, who are at increased risk of iron deficiency. They are also packed with antioxidants, fibre, protein and slow-release carbohydrates, making them a great source of energy. As an added bonus they are a good source of magnesium which is an essential mineral for energy production and preventing muscle cramps after exercise.

Avocado

Avocado’s are high in fat, but this type of fat can assist in getting you a flat stomach. They are a rich source of healthy monounsaturated fats which have been known to help disperse fat around your middle. Avocados also contain potassium, magnesium, folate, protein and cholesterol lowering plant sterols.

Flaxseed

Flaxseeds are a rich source of fibre, add one or two heaped dessert spoons of milled flaxseeds to your daily diet because this is an excellent way to ease PMS and acne. They also contain omega-3 fatty acid.

Broccoli

Broccoli is rich in plant compounds known as indoles and isothiocyanates, which have cancer fighting properties and help to eliminate excess oestrogens from the body, which are linked to some forms of cancer. Broccoli is also a PMS fighting food because it contains folate which boosts mood and calcium which helps with cramps and is so diuretic, so can help reduce bloating. It also contains vitamins A and C and iron. Aim to have two to three servings a week.

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Milk

A glass of semi-skimmed milk may be the solution if you suffer from PMS and stress. It is a good source of calcium and vitamin D, which together can help ease premenstrual symptoms. Milk is a source of tryptophan, which the body converts into the sleep hormone melatonin. You could try a cup of warm milk if you are prone to sleepless nights.

Bananas

I personally don’t like bananas, but if you are in need of a boost they are packed with nutrients that can help soothe and lift your mood, and are a natural source of tryptophan, which the body converts into the mood boosting neurotransmitter serotonin. Bananas are also rich in carbohydrates, making them ideal for when you crave comfort foods and they are a brilliant source of vitamin B6, which can help boost energy levels.

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Turmeric

This spice contains the anti-inflammatory ingredient curcumin, which can help ease muscles after a workout. Curcumin has been shown to protect against some cancers. You can add a tablespoon of turmeric to curries, soups an stews.

Eggs

Eggs are packed with protein therefore making them more satisfying than carbs and can promote lean muscle. They are great to have as a snack if you are feeling hungry. Also great to have for breakfast.

As you can see it isn’t that hard to include these foods in your diet and like I said in my last blog, you don’t have to include them all at one. It is worth a go if it can improve your health and how you feel. Hope you have enjoyed reading part two why should you eat super foods.

Karen x

How To Make Chickpea Power Salad

Looking for ideas for a different salad, then try the chickpea power Salad.

Chickpeas are a great source of energy and full of vitamins and minerals.

This recipe serves 2 people.

Ingredients

1 yellow pepper
1 can of drained chickpeas
Lettuce leaves of your choice
6 cherry tomatoes
1 clove of crushed garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp of balsamic vinegar

Method

Divide the lettuce leaves between two bowls.

Chop the tomatoes and divide between the two bowls.

Divide the chickpeas between the two bowls.

Chop the pepper and split between the bowls.

In a jar with a lid pour in the olive oil, balsamic vinegar and crushed garlic.

Give the jar a good shake so all the ingredients mix together and share between the bowls.

You may also like to try this Easy To Make Energy Balls or Flatbread Pizzas With Chickpea and Basil Pesto

Serve and enjoy.

This is super fast to make, therefore is great to take for your lunch or a quick and easy tea.

Hope you enjoy it if you give it a try.

Karen x

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Why Should You Eat A Rainbow?

When you are eating your five a day consider how many different coloured varieties you are having. They can have so many health benefits.

Red

Red peppers, tomatoes, rhubarb, radishes, strawberries, cherries and raspberries.

These contain Lycopene which is an age defying antioxidant, that may protect cells in the prevention of heart disease, help to protect from sun damage and against certain cancers.

Yellow

Bananas, pineapples, grapefruits, squash, yellow peppers, lentils and chickpeas.

In these you will find Beta-cryptoxanthin – a phytochemical that helps with vitamin and mineral exchange between cells. They may also help to protect against rheumatoid arthritis and heart disease.

Orange

Oranges, nectarines, peaches, Mango, sweet potato, satsumas, apricots, carrots, red lentils and baked beans.

Contain Alpha and Beta-carotene – this gets converted to vitamin A in the body, which is essential for vision, immune function and antioxidants. This helps protect your skin from ultraviolet damage. It is also good for bone health and builds new cells.

Purple

These include currants, raisins, plums, sultanas, prunes, blueberries, blackcurrants, blackberries, grapes, aubergine, beetroot and kidney beans.

In these foods you will find Anthocyanidin – this helps protect against pain and inflammation and may support healthy blood pressure. They may also have anti-ageing properties by preventing the breakdown of collagen in the skin.

Green

Avocado, melon, apples, gooseberries, pears, courgette, cucumber, peas, spinach, broccoli, lettuce and salad leaves, asparagus, cabbage, spring greens and kale.

These foods contain Lutein – a carotenoid that’s good for skin hydration and elasticity, and helps reduce the risk of cataracts and protects the eyes. Avocadoes and leafy greens are also rich in vitamin E which can hep prevent wrinkles and strengthen cell membranes.

As you can see it is definitely worth eating a rainbow of foods and your body will thank you for the amazing health benefits.

Karen X

Are You Deficient In Vitamin B3 – Niacin???

Are you suffering from any of the following symptoms????

Depression

Anxiety

Irritability

Digestive disturbances

Insomnia

Dermatitis, skin rashes, acne, rough inflamed skin, peeling skin

Inflamed skin

Inflamed mouth – bleeding or tender gums

Tremors

Allergies

Headaches or migraines

If you have a few of the symptoms it might be worth having a think about what you are eating.

In need of more energy!!!

Main Functions of vitamin B3

Acts as a coenzyme responsible for cell respiration.

Essential for energy production.

Crucial for brain function (involved with the production of serotonin which affects your mood – wellbeing and happiness)

Helps to balance blood sugar levels.

Maintains healthy skin, nerves, brain, tongue and digestive system.

Main Food Sources

Mushrooms

Chicken

Turkey

Fish

Whole grains

peanuts

milk products

It could be that simple to start you on your way to feeling better. I always say everything in moderation. The only foods I tend to avoid is milk products as they affect my sinuses, but one of my favourite foods is cheese, so I am just aware of how much I have.

Karen x