Aip-health News - 28. July
IN THIS ISSUE:
- David Grotto's encyclopaedic functional foods book
- "101 Foods That Could Save Your Life"
- Ordinary foods that can prevent and fight diseases
- Artichoke, broccoli, peppers, romaine lettuce and spinach
- Chocolate, coffee and pecans
According to a recent paper on the subject by the American Dietetic Association, "functional foods" have
been found to provide additional health benefits beyond their basic nutritional content. Many have been enriched,
fortified or enhanced, such as calcium-enriched orange juice or omega-three fortified eggs.
Ordinary foods can have health enhancing properties
Others are just regular foods that have been found to possess health-promoting substances.
"101 FOODS THAT COULD SAVE YOUR LIFE"
David Grotto, a top nutritionist, has written encyclopaedia book on these healthy, "functional foods" which
taste good and to use a cliche, are good for you.
- take a handful of tart cherries before bed to sleep better
- grape juice may be as healthy for your heart as red wine
- potatoes may reduce the risk of stroke
- use honey to help wounds heal faster
- hot peppers may fight skin cancer
ORDINARY FOODS PREVENT AND FIGHT DISEASES
Here's some more about ordinary foods, rich in nutrients, that can prevent and fight diseases:
Actually the immature flower of a thistle plant, artichokes are thought to be one of the world's oldest
medicinal plants. Besides being a rich source of vitamin C, folate, and dietary fiber, artichokes contain
substances that may ease an upset tummy and reduce the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
A member of the cruciferous family that includes cabbage, cauliflower, kale, collard greens and brussels
sprouts, broccoli contains a good many compounds with cancer-fighting properties. Broccoli is also rich in
sulforaphane glucosinolate (dont try to say this at home, boys and girls) a potent antioxidant that has been shown
to stop the growth of breast and prostate cancer cells.
Dark chocolate contains natural substances called flavonoids that improve the health of blood vessels and can
help lower blood pressure. The higher the cocoa content in the chocolate,
the better. Just dont feed it to your pets. Chocolate is toxic to dogs, cats, parrots and horses, reports
Not so rich in nutrients, coffee redeems itself with "off the chart" antioxidant properties, says Grotto.
Natural chemicals in coffee such as chlorogenic acids may help improve blood sugar control. And people who
regularly drink coffee have a lower risk of type 2 diabetes, according to a review of
Pecans are rich in oleic acid, the same healthful fat found in olive oil. Researchers at New Mexico State
University (my alma mater) found that pecans added to a heart healthy diet reduced bad LDL cholesterol more than a
diet without them.
Chilly "hot" comes from a group of phytochemicals called capsaicinoids, which act on pain receptors in the mouth and throat, says
Grotto. Capsaicin phytochemical applied topically as a cream has been found to be an effective treatment for
painful arthritic hands.
Romaine contains more than five times more vitamin C than iceberg lettuce. It is also rich in lutein and
zeaxanthin - substances that help fight macular degeneration in the eye. Romaine
lettuce also contains salicylic acid, the same anti-inflammatory compound found in aspirin.
One of the richest sources of lutein - the pigment that helps protect the eyes from macular degeneration -
spinach intake is also associated with a lower risk for developing cataracts. Glycolipids in spinach are powerful
chemicals with properties that can fight the growth of cancer cells as well. Glycolipids are essential for maintaining the stability of the cell membrane.