Superfoods for Super fitness: Continued

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Superfoods are foods and herbs that have a unique concentration of nutrients that synergize together to boost potential. These foods are typically loaded with a combination of critical fatty acids, anti-oxidant phytonutrients, and essential amino acids.

 
Ginger- the Natural blood thinner

-Ginger is grown as a root and is a flexible ingredient used in drinks such as tea, beer, and ale… or in cooking. It’s used all over the world. Historically, ginger has a tradition of being effective in alleviating gastrointestinal symptoms. Almost every culture has historically used the ginger health benefits for its powerful ability to enhance immunity, improve digestion, relieve nausea and reduce inflammation.

Ginger is composed of several volatile oils that give it its characteristic flavor and odor: zingerone, shogaols, and gingerols. These oils are powerful anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal, and anti-parasitic agents. In addition, ginger inhibits cancer cell formation while firing up our body’s own inborn ability to destroy cancer cells.

Ginger is also an important part of an anti-inflammation, natural pain-relief program. Additionally, ginger helps to protect the body’s stores of glutathione (the super anti-oxidant and free radical destroyer).

Ginger is also very high in potassium, which aids in electrical energy production and detoxification. It is a great source of manganese, which protects the lining of the heart blood vessels and urinary tract. Ginger appears to have blood thinning effects similar to that of Aspirin and may help prevent the accumulation of platelets that can lead to clogged arteries and increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

Lentils

Lentils are a part of the legume family. These small seed-like vegetables are nutrient dense and inexpensive, making them an ideal superfood. 

Lentils are rich in complex carbohydrates, a nutrient that boosts the metabolism and helps the body to burn fat. They are an excellent source of fiber, which can help reduce cholesterol levels. Lentils are also an outstanding source of folate and magnesium.

The health benefits of eating lentils are numerous. Because they are high in protein and low in fat, lentils make an excellent substitute for meat, and they can help improve heart health. Lentils also contain phytochemicals that help block the action of cell-damaging free radicals, which can cause everything from cancer to neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s.

Like fruit and veggies, lentils contain phytoestrogens that are believed to help with many menopausal symptoms. Rich in iron, lentils can also improve energy levels and alleviate the fatigue many women suffer during menopause. If those aren’t enough reasons to add more lentils to your dinner plate, they are also known to boost libido, which often takes a hit when menopause approaches.

The Aronia Berry – for healthy blood

-The superfood status Aronia has earned is largely attributable to its very strong antioxidant properties. In fact, aronia berries have the highest antioxidant capacity among berries and other fruits. These antioxidants properties, in turn, can be attributed to the phenolic compounds present in aronia berries, although the high levels of vitamin C found in these super-berries may also play a role.

Antioxidants are believed to protect against many degenerative diseases, such as cancer and heart disease, and to slow down aging in general. They are also a crucial component of anti-wrinkle diets as they can help protect your skin from the harmful effects of environmental pollutants, tobacco smoke, the sun’s ultraviolet radiation, and other factors that cause your body to produce free radicals.

Touted as the new and latest superfood – this one better than other superfoods such as acai berries since they’re native to North America – aronia berries aficionados claim that the berries are practically a miracle food helping to diminish one’s risk of just about every health problem – from colon cancer to high blood pressure to heart disease while increasing all of those good buzz-wordy things your body needs, including boosting the immune system and providing anti-oxidants.

 
Ginseng- lifts your spirits-

Although Ginseng has been around for more than 5,000 years, it has just recently come to the forefront as a “Super Food”. Besides the benefits of Ginseng, just its naturally healthy vitamins and phyto-nutrients (healthy components) alone classify this herb as a super-food, and some have even referred to it as the “king of all herbs”. As herbs for health go, Ginseng is extremely rich in anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals and other essential components that we need to maintain a healthy body and mind.

Ginseng is rich in so many vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that it supports health at the cellular level. Ginseng also provides you with a “boost of energy,” by supporting stamina and athletic endurance as the body processes waste products.  Ginseng is one of the best ways to combat fatigue. One of the greatest properties of Ginseng is its ability to provide an all-natural boost of energy. Try replacing your morning cup of coffee with Ginseng, and you may be pleasantly surprised that it is naturally caffeine-free.  The fatigue resistance is entirely metabolic, meaning you get hours of energy without having to digest harmful levels of caffeine.  Ginseng Tea is a great way to eliminate coffee from your diet!

Ginseng Tea is also known to soothe the stomach, including during nausea, by supporting the stomach lining.

Flaxseed

-This versatile grain has begun to receive well-deserved attention for its ability to help fend off the major life threatening diseases including cancer and heart disease.

A rich source of minerals, omega-3 fatty acids, phytoestrogens, and soluble and insoluble fiber, abundant evidence supports the value of flaxseed in preventing diverse illnesses such as heart disease and cancer, as well as helping to address common ailments such as menopausal complaints and digestive irregularity.

The phytoestrogens so richly present in flaxseed—known as lignans— have proven, in numerous studies, to have great value in blocking hormone-dependent cancers, including breast and prostate cancer.

As part of a snack or meal, it’s easy to incorporate tasty and nutritious flaxseed as a staple ingredient in your own diet.

Chocolate Flaxseed Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp. crushed flaxseed
  • 3 tbsp. water
  • 1 cup flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • ½ cup cane sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dark chocolate flakes (at least 70%)
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts

 

Preheat oven at 350˚F. In a small bowl, mix crushed flaxseed and water. Set aside and let it expand. Mix flour, baking powder and salt. In a separate bowl, stir together the coconut oil, both sugars, vanilla extract, and the flaxseed mixture.

In small sections, keep adding the flour mixture until a cookie dough has been processed. Add the chocolate flakes and walnuts.

Roll small heaps of cookie dough and place on parchment paper (will make approx. 24 pieces).

Bake for 8-10 minutes, until they are lightly browned. Remove from oven and let them cool for 2 minutes.

 

2nd of 3 Articles on Super foods- to be continued…

I hope that you found these hints helpful and wish you a great rest of the summer. If you have any questions or comments about this article, homeopathy, or any other of our offered services and products, please contact us at (519) 603-0505 and we will be happy to talk to you. Or, to book an appointment, please call us or go online to www.kwhomeopathicmedicine.com

Irene Schwens, C.Tran., DHMHS