Archive for the ‘Vegetables’ Category

Superfood Nutrition for Stress

Saturday, November 24th, 2012

Providing your body with nutrition is intricately linked with nourishing your mind. If your body is unhealthy, you will be more likely to suffer from symptoms of stress, low mood and anxiety. Eating foods that are high in calories but low in nutritional value can cause dramatic spikes in blood sugar and leave you feeling unsatisfied and tense. Eating foods, such as cottage cheese or those high in vitamin C can help combat stress, take the edge off and keep you calm, no matter how tense life may get.

Paying attention to your nutrition can help you nurture your mental health. Try to incorporate the foods below into your daily diet.Superfood Nutrition for Stress

  • Spinach: This leafy green vegetable can regulate your blood pressure and keep you calm. Spanach also contains high levels of Vitamin C, A, B, and K.
  • Cottage cheese: Loaded with protein and calcium, cottage cheese can help you feel satisfied and reduce hunger pangs.
  • Citrus fruits: When you’re stressed, your body releases free radicals that can be damaging to your health. Eating foods that are high in vitamin C can provide the nutrition you need to maintain a healthy immune system and combat health hazards.
  • Chocolate: Although it’s best to avoid excess sugar when dealing with stress, chocolate may activate the pleasure centers in the brain, helping to boost mood and relieve anxiety. Dark chocolate, which has more cacao, can be more effective at reducing stress than regular or milk chocolate. Eating too much chocolate can cause moodiness after the effects of the sugar and caffeine have worn off, so eat chocolate in moderation to regulate your mood.
  • Fish: Fish with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to reduce surges of stress hormones that are released during tense situations. Tuna, an excellent source of omega-3, is also high in vitamins B6 and B12, which support the production of stress-relieving neurotransmitters.
  • Oatmeal: Besides being a great remedy for soothing the skin, oatmeal can also soothe your nerves. The grain stimulates the production of serotonin in the brain, which has a calming effect on the body. Because the body digests oatmeal slowly, the calming effects are long-lasting.
  • Avocado: This rich, creamy, natural treat is packed full of healthy fats, vitamins and minerals used for to combat stress. The healthy fats and high levels of potassium in avocados can also help lower high blood pressure.
  • Beef: Lean red meat is a good source of nutrition and is packed with the mood stabilizers zinc, iron and B vitamins.
  • Asparagus: With high levels of folic acid, asparagus can help you regulate your mood. Folic acid helps create serotonin, a neurotransmitter that contributes to feelings of happiness.
  • Green Tea: Well known for its stress fighting ingredient Theanine, this soothing beverage is also packed full of free radical fighting antioxidants such as vitamin C. Studies have also shown that the act of making tea can help relax the mind.

What foods do you use to balance your stress levels? Share your nutrition secrets in the comments section below.

References –
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Benefits of Cottage Cheese –
Vitamin C Antioxidants -

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High Fiber Foods that Suppress Appetite

Saturday, February 4th, 2012

No matter what diet plan you’re trying to follow, there always seems to be one thing that gets in your way: your appetite! It’s true that you’ll never lose weight if you can’t cut those calories, but doing so can leave anyone feeling hungry and deprived. Before you know it, you’re taking just a nibble of something you know you shouldn’t have. That’s perfectly fine within reason, but you know how easily that habit can get out of control.

However, you can eat sensibly and never feel starved if you learn how to use these high fiber foods to suppress your appetite:

Oatmeal
Skip the instant varieties and go with rolled or steel-cut oats for the best results. This traditional breakfast dish is one of the tastiest high fiber foods out there. Depending on personal preference, you can dress it up with a little brown sugar and dried fruit or even go savory with some low-fat cheese. A low-glycemic food, oatmeal is filled with slow-burning carbs that reduce your natural production of grehlin, a hunger hormone.

Salad Vegetables
This broad category includes all those crunchy raw veggies you’d typically throw into a salad including dark leafy greens, carrots, celery, broccoli and cucumbers, all considered to be high fiber foods. Studies have shown that starting your meal with a healthy salad means that you’ll eat much less during the rest of your meal. Make the most out of this part of your meal with an olive-oil dressing. These healthier condiments aren’t considered high fiber foods, but they are very satisfying and suppress the appetite in a different way.

Apples High FiberApples
Did you know that the common apple has four grams of fiber? That’s more than you can find in a typical piece of whole wheat bread! This fruit has a special kind of fiber called pectin that does even more than keep you feeling full. This substance helps regulate your blood pressure and maintains even energy levels. Toss a little apple and cinnamon in your daily serving of oatmeal for a double whammy of appetite-suppressing goodness!

Flax Seeds
These tiny little seeds taste great on just about anything including oatmeal and salads! They’re high in fiber and protein, but the real beauty is that they’re packed with omega-3 fatty acids. Flax seeds work overtime to regulate your blood sugar and reduce your appetite. As far as high fiber foods are concerned, this is one of the best.

These high fiber foods do their part to suppress your appetite and keep you healthy. Now, you have to do yours by making them a regular part of your meal plan.

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Primrose Oil: Super-Nutrient a Vegetarian Alternative to Fish Oil

Friday, January 6th, 2012

If you don’t like the idea of ingesting any type of animal product, even in supplement form, primrose oil can provide the same benefits as fish oil while allowing you to maintain a vegetarian lifestyle. Extracted from the evening primrose, a plant that displays yellow blooms in the evening hours, this oil contains a high percentage of GLA, gamma-linolenic acid, also known as Omega 6 fatty acid.

Don’t I Need Omega 3s?
Your body does need the Omega 3 fatty acids contained in fish oil, but it’s also capable of converting plant-based Omega 6 compounds into Omega 3s. This provides the same health benefits as consuming them directly through either fish or fish oil supplements.

Primrose Oil and FlowerWhat are the Health Benefits of Primrose Oil?
The GLA in evening primrose oil is reported to support brain function, body growth and overall development. It also promotes hair and skin growth, healthy bones, an efficient metabolism and reproductive health. This vegetarian-friendly supplement has also been shown to help treat or manage a number of diseases including:

  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Ulcerative Colitis
  • Sjogren’s Syndrome
  • Osteoporosis
  • Hypertension

The Future of Primrose Oil
Because of primrose oil’s other benefits, researchers have been looking for new ways to use this vegetarian supplement. So far, it has been found to help with some cancers, especially cerebral gliomas. Primrose oil has shown some promise with skin disorders like atopic dermatitis, mastalgia and some uremic skin disorders.

Sticking with a vegetarian diet doesn’t mean you should ignore the nutrients traditionally provided by animal products.Instead, seek out plant-based alternatives that offer the same health benefits. The omega nutrients are a vital component to your overall health and should not be disregarded just because the most common form comes from animals. Primrose oil is the perfect alternative to the fish oil supplements.

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