Superfoods – Part II
Written By Renee Haxby
When I look at food, I see nutritional contents and cellular metabolism. When I choose foods to add into my diet, it’s usually because of the benefits I receive biologically and psychologically by consuming those individual foods. I am a conscious eater and I understand the chemical reactions taking place within my body when I eat.
Superfoods receive high acclaim because of the high-density nutritional, health and medicinal benefits they provide in our bodies. Individuals will seek out the benefits of different Superfoods in regard to their chosen lifestyle, much like I gravitate towards foods, which fight the aging process by defeating free radical cell damage.
At 51, my lifestyle has changed a lot. I am not as young as I once was. I am no longer a carefree athlete enjoying an active social life. I am now much more aware of how I treat my body, and what I put into it. Therefore, the Superfoods, which made the list in part two, are also my personal favorites!
1. Turmeric is a hot yellow spice used in Indian cuisine. Turmeric has also been used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine because of its magical medicinal powers. Tumeric is considered to be a symbol of Prosperity. Turmeric assists in a whole body cleansing when used properly.
Curcumin is the active ingredient in Turmeric that gives the spice its rich yellow color and pungent flavor. Curcumin is an antioxidant that assists in fighting free radical cellular damage within the body. Curcumin also harbors strong healing properties and acts as an anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and stomach soothing agent. Because Curcumin is anti-platelet, it protects the liver and the heart from diseases such as cancer, heart attack, and stroke.
2. Cordyceps Sinensis is a small fungus that grows by parasitizing on one particular species of caterpillar in Tibet. Cordyceps sinensis has been used in China as an aphrodisiac and tonic for more than two thousand years. This fungus has medicinal properties which appear to be anti-tumor and act as an immune system stimulator.
Cordyceps sinensis is a cardio tonic. It reduces cholesterol, relieves asthma and bronchitis symptoms, and is an excellent source of antioxidants! Cordyceps sinensis is used to treat sexual dysfunction in men because it increases blood flow by dilating the small vessels transporting blood to a particular region. This fungus is also widely used to increase endurance in athletes.
3. Ginger is an Asian herbal root, which has been used in Chinese culinary and medicinal purposes for over 2500 hundred years. Gingerols and Shagoals give Ginger its pungent flavor and are its active ingredients.
Ginger is an anti-inflammatory and is used to decrease the pain of arthritis and joint discomfort. Because Ginger is an anti-platelet, it is used to increase circulatory health in individuals with heart and circulation conditions. Ginger helps decrease nausea and digestive problems, so it’s very beneficial to women who are either pregnant, or suffering from menstrual discomforts.
In recent years, Ginger is being used to fight certain types of ovarian and colorectal cancer cells.
Ginger may be consumed in several forms such as; slicing up the raw root and used in cooking or juicing. The root is also a healthy addition to your diet in a fermented process, in a powdered or crystallized form, or in a tea.
4. Garlic and Onions come from the same plant family and share certain healing properties. Garlic is known as Allium Sativum and Onions are referred as Allium Cepa L. The active ingredient in Garlic is called Allicin, and is where it gets its odor and healing properties from. Before Garlic is crushed, it contains an odorless sulfurous chemical called Alliin. Onions also contain Alliin, and the highest concentrations of the antioxidant enzyme Allinase and the flavonoid Quercertin.
Garlic and Onion decrease cardio-vascular damage, reduce cholesterol, and strengthen the immune system. Garlic appears to prevent the onset of the common cold, is anti-bacterial, protects against internal parasites, and fights fatigue. Onions demonstrate an ability to be anti-hyperglycemic, while managing the effects of diabetes.
5. Hot Chiles and Cayenne Peppers have been cultivated and used in culinary and medical properties in Central and South America for more than six thousand years.
Hot peppers belong to the Capsicum family of vegetables. Hot peppers are used in many ways, and served fresh, dried, or powdered. They are very rich in phytonutrients and vitamins, and contain high levels of carotenoids (A), B-6, C, K, and manganese. The capsicum in hot peppers relieves pain. Therefore, it is an excellent remedy for several sensory nerve disorders.
Capsicum also relieves psoriasis of the skin, and helps to reduce the symptoms of asthma and inflammation of the joints.
6. Macadamia, Almond, Coconut, and Walnut Oils
Macadamia Nut Oil is one of the most heart-friendly oils because it is 85% monounsaturated oil, and contains very high levels of vitamin E, omega 3s, oleic, linoleic, linolenic, and palmitoleic acids that lower LDL cholesterols (bad), and help to maintain HDL cholesterols (good).
Almond Oil has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic medicine to treat skin conditions such as, eczema and psoriasis. Almond oil is a powerful skin and hair moisturizer and antioxidant that can be absorbed through the skin. Almonds are a great source of vitamin E, calcium, and magnesium. Almond oil is also used in aromatherapy sessions to aid in relaxation, as it has a nice sweet aroma.
Coconut Oil is the one fat that diabetics may not fear because coconut oil helps to regulate blood sugar levels. Coconut oil is comprised of 90% saturated fat, although does not cause weight gain. Coconut oil helps improve the absorption of calcium and magnesium, therefore generating strong bones and teeth. Coconut is known to improve skin diseases, aid in metabolism and promotes weight loss.
Recent studies have shown that coconut oil may reverse the signs of Alzheimer’s disease.
Walnut Oil has the highest concentrations of antioxidants of all the tree nuts. Walnut oil is rich in Omega 3 fatty acids, including high levels of Ellagic, Gallic, and Malic acids. Walnut oil is rich in vitamins B-1, B-2, B-3, and E. This oil is also rich in phytonutrients niacin, selenium, phosphorous, magnesium, zinc, iron, and calcium. Walnut oil helps to reduce LDL cholesterols and raise HDL cholesterols, aiding in a reduction of heart disease related conditions.
There are many other super foods which didn’t make it into Part II. I can always write Part III next. I chose these particular foods because their nutrient contents and medicinal health benefits were outstanding! I apologize to you if your favorite didn’t make my list. Please feel free to comment and contact me at www.prodotfit.com and we can discuss it. Until then, I hope I have helped you in your commitment to better health and well-being. God has blessed us abundantly by supplying humanity with a picnic basket of healthy food choices to serve up!
By Renee Haxby
I have always been athletic and competitive. In the 1970’s I was one of the first internationally recognized female bodybuilders. Over the years, my face and physique have been featured on magazine covers, numerous popular editorials and several television commercials. I have worked in the health club industry in both Seattle and Los Angeles, and also as a personal trainer for successful Seattle clients.
Education: BA in Social Sciences and a Formal Minor in Business Administration from Washington State University. I have certifications in food psychology, wellness, and life strategies from The Spencer Institute, NESTA, and the International Sports Science Association.I own and operate PRO.Fit by Renee Haxby in the Pacific Northwest area.
My business motto is “Because I’ve Gone Through it, I’ll Help You Get Through it!”
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Drew Canole is a rockstar in the world of fitness, nutrition and mindset, with a huge heart for others and doing his part to transform the world, one person at a time.
As the founder and CEO of Fitlife.TV, he is committed to sharing educational, inspirational and entertaining videos and articles about health, fitness, healing and longevity. He is also a best selling author and the founder of Organifi, an organic, incredibly delicious greens powder, chock-full of superfoods to make juicing easy no matter your busy schedule.
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