Οφέλη από Μορίγγα, Tulsi (Ιερός Βασιλικός), Άμλα Μούρο...
Moringa / Μορίγγα:
Moringa leaves are loaded with vitamins, minerals, essential amino acids, and more. One hundred grams of dry moringa leaf contains:
Τα φύλλα Μορίγγας περιέχουν βιταμίνες, μέταλλα, αμινοξέα, και πολλά άλλα. Εκατό γραμμάρια φύλλα ξηρής Μορίγγας περιέχει:
Drink as a tea, as smoothie and use as deodorant.
Πώς να χρησιμοποιήσετε το Μορίγγα: πιείτε ως τσάι, προσθέσετε σκόνη Μορίγγα σε σμούθης, και σαν αποσμητικό.
Tulsi (Holy Basil) / Tulsi (Ιερός Βασιλικός):
Tulsi is known as the “Queen of herbs” has been recommended for the treatment of bronchitis, bronchial asthma, malaria, diarrhea, dysentery, skin diseases, arthritis, painful eye diseases, chronic fever and insect bites.
Tulsi γνωστή ως η «βασίλισσα των βοτάνων» έχει προταθεί για τη θεραπεία της βρογχίτιδας, βρογχικό άσθμα, ελονοσία, διάρροια, δυσεντερία, δερματικές παθήσεις, αρθρίτιδα, επώδυνες οφθαλμικές ασθένειες, ο χρόνιος πυρετός και τσιμπήματα εντόμων.
It is an excellent antibiotic, germicidal, fungicidal, and disinfectant agent and very effectively protects our body from all sorts of bacterial, viral, and fungal infections.
Είναι ένα εξαιρετικό αντιβιοτικό, μικροβιοκτόνο, μυκητοκτόνο και απολυμαντικό. Προστατεύει το σώμα μας πολύ αποτελεσματικά από κάθε είδους βακτηριακές, ιογενείς και μυκητιακές μολύνσεις.
Amla Berry / Άμλα Μούρο:
Mushrooms, particularly certain wild varieties, are abundant in glutathione and ergothoniene, important protectors against oxidative damage, according to recent research published in Food Chemistry.
Widely varying contents of both glutathione (GSH) and ergothioneine (ERGO) were measured in analysis of numerous species of mushroom conducted by researchers from Penn State University (Centre for Plant and Mushroom Products for Health).
Maitake contained the highest amount of GSH while porcini was richest in ERGO.
The researchers found without a doubt that mushrooms are the highest dietary source of these two antioxidants taken together, and some types are packed with both GSH and ERGO.
Common varieties such as white button and portobello mushrooms contained lower amounts of the two antioxidants than most of the wild species. However, surprisingly, chanterelles - a wild variety in high demand as a culinary delicacy – had the lowest contents of both nutrients.
So What Are the Health Benefits of Glutathione (GSH) and Ergothioneine (ERGO)
Glutathione is a well know powerful antioxidant widely recognised for its ability to maintain immune function, detoxify carcinogens and other toxins. Optimum tissue levels of gluthathione are known to be essential in maintaining health and preventing diseases.
While the exact role of ergothioneine is unclear, previous research has suggested it may help maintain glutathione levels through interaction with other cellular defence systems. Studies in mice have shown a protective effect of ERGO against beta-amyloid plaque accumulation, while some epidemiological trends also suggest ERGO intake may be linked to lower risk of cognitive decline.
The researchers stated that “It's preliminary, but you can see that countries that have more ergothioneine in their diets, countries like France and Italy, also have lower incidences of neurodegenerative diseases, while people in countries like the United States, which has low amounts of ergothioneine in the diet, have a higher probability of diseases like Parkinson's Disease and Alzheimer's," "Now, whether that's just a correlation or causative, we don't know. But, it's something to look into, especially because the difference between the countries with low rates of neurodegenerative diseases is about 3 milligrams per day, which is about five button mushrooms each day."
Importantly, the mushrooms appear to retain their antioxidant content when cooked.
In conclusion, by eating mushrooms you receive a uniquely rich dietary source of antioxidants.
Given the important role of oxidative stress in disease development and the ageing process itself and the well-known protective roles of antioxidants, mushrooms could play an important protective role.
The Biggest Wellness Trend of 2018 ..there's a new green superfood that's about to rock your health world this year.
With every year comes a new haul of health fads and trends, 2018 is expected to shine on moringa, leaving matcha and turmeric in the background.
This year's shift of interest is in a product that’s expected to have even stronger anti-inflammatory and general health benefits called Moringa Oleifera… know as the “Tree of Life” for its extraordinary vitamin and nutrient density.
In Eastern countries it has been used for generations to treat and prevent diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, anemia, arthritis, liver disease, and respiratory, skin, and digestive disorders.
Moringa has seven times the amount of vitamin C as an orange, four times the amount of Vitamin A than carrots, twenty-five times the amount of iron than spinach and is estimated to contain two grams of protein, Vitamin B6, Riboflavin and Magnesium which can affect different aspects of your health. The powder even makes you feel fuller longer which can cause you to eat less throughout the day.
It's used as a traditional remedy for many ailments, and here are scientifically backed health benefits of consuming moringa leaf:
1. It is Nutrient Dense
Moringa is a rich source of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. It contains significant amounts of vitamin A, C, and E; calcium; potassium; and protein.
2. Free Radical Fighter
Antioxidants fight free radicals, molecules that cause oxidative stress, cell damage, and inflammation.
Moringa contains antioxidants called flavonoids, polyphenols, and ascorbic acid in the leaves, flowers, and seeds.
A study found that leaf extracts had higher antioxidant activity, free-radical-scavenging capacity, and higher inhibition of lipid, protein, and DNA oxidation than flowers and seeds.
This means it prevents the damage and degradation that free radicals cause in the cells of different organs in the body, keeping them healthy and functioning at their best.
Inflammation can lead to chronic diseases like diabetes, respiratory problems, cardiovascular disease, arthritis, and obesity. Moringa reduces inflammation by suppressing inflammatory enzymes and proteins in the body, and moringa leaf concentrate can significantly lower inflammation in the cells.
4. Diabetes / High Blood Sugar
Moringa leaf powder has been effective at reducing lipid and glucose levels and regulating oxidative stress in diabetic patients, which means it lowers blood sugar and cholesterol and improves protection against cell damage.
5. Cardiovascular Benefits
Moringa leaf powder has heart-healthy benefits, particularly in blood lipid control, the prevention of plaque formation in the arteries, and reduced cholesterol levels.
6. Boosts Brain Health
Moringa supports brain health and cognitive function because of its antioxidant and neuro-enhancer activities. It's also been tested as a treatment for Alzheimer’s disease with favorable preliminary results.
Its high content of vitamins E and C fight oxidation that leads to neuron degeneration, improving brain function. It’s also able to normalize the neurotransmitters serotonin, dopamine, and noradrenaline in the brain, which play a key role in memory, mood, organ function, responses to stimulus such as stress and pleasure, and mental health, for example in depression and psychosis.
7. Liver Protective
Moringa contains high concentrations of polyphenols in its leaves and flowers that protect the liver against oxidation, toxicity, and damage.
Moringa can reduce liver damage and fibrosis and reverse oxidation in the liver. Moringa oil can also restore liver enzymes to normal levels, reducing oxidative stress, and increasing protein content in the liver.
8. Has Antimicrobial and Antibacterial properties.
Moringa has antibacterial and anti-fungal properties that fight infections. It's been effective against types of fungi that cause infections on skin and strains of bacteria responsible for blood and urinary tract infections and digestive problems.
9. Enhances Wound Healing.
Moringa has blood-clotting properties in its leaves, roots, and seeds that benefit wound healing and can reduce clotting time, which means it reduces the time it takes for scratches, cuts, or wounds to stop bleeding.
How to Use It
You can drink it as a tea or add moringa powder to your smoothie. The leaf powder was deemed safe in human studies, even in larger doses than normal. The powder has a mild flavor, so it makes for a light moringa tea with a slightly earthy taste.
But you might want to stay clear of seed extract consumption, as they have shown a level of toxicity in immune cells.
Moringa can have laxative effects in large quantities, so a safe dose to introduce it into your food or diet and avoid digestive problems is ½ to 1 teaspoon per day.
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Tulsi nature’s anxiety reliever, also known as holy basil is very well known for its powerful therapeutic properties. It has a rich history dating back, 3,000 years ago to ancient Indian uses.
Tulsi leaves are now regarded as adaptogens (anti-stress agents) and have been used widely to promote health throughout the entire body.
It is commonly consumed as a tea or supplement and used as a natural remedy for anxiety, adrenal fatigue, hypothyroidism, unbalanced blood sugar and as a home remedy for acne.
In modern medicine, in the last few decades, several Indian scientists and researchers have studied the pharmacological effects of various parts of the tulsi plant on the immune system, reproductive system, central nervous system, cardiovascular system, gastric system, urinary system and blood biochemistry.
Researchers described the therapeutic significance of tulsi in the management and relief of various ailments, and they established a scientific basis for the therapeutic uses of tulsi. It helps protect organs and tissues against chemical stress from industrial pollutants and heavy metals and physical stress from prolonged physical exertion, ischemia, physical restraint and exposure to cold and excessive noise. (1)
Ten Tulsi (Holy Basil) Benefits Benefits
1. Fights Acne
Tulsi helps kill bacteria and infections, and is believed to benefit the skin and help to treat skin infections both internally and externally. The primary active compound of tulsi oil is eugenol, also the active ingredient in the powerful antimicrobial clove oil, which is widely believed to help combat many skin disorders. Tulsi also contains other therapeutic components, including gamma-caryophyllene and methyl eugenol. Research published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science shows that holy basil may be a natural acne treatment. (3)
2. Protects Against Diabetes
Tulsi benefits appear to include the ability to control blood glucose levels as demonstrated by several test tube and animal experiments, as well as human clinical trials. A randomized placebo-controlled, single blind trial of holy basil leaves points towards holy basil’s anti-diabetic activity. In this trial, patients with noninsulin-dependent diabetes experienced decreases in fasting blood sugar levels, postprandial (after a meal) blood sugar levels, urine blood sugar levels as well as mean total cholesterol levels during the holy basil treatment period. Overall, the researchers conclude that holy basil may be prescribed as part of a treatment plan for people with mild-to-moderate non-insulin dependent diabetes. (4)
3. Helps Fight Cancer
Research shows that people who regularly consume tulsi are less likely to be immunocompromised and less susceptible to developing cancer cells. According to research published in the journal Nutrition and Cancer, tulsi and its phytochemicals (including eugenol, rosmarinic acid, apigenin, myretenal, luteolin, β-sitosterol, and carnosic acid), in some cases, may help prevent chemical-induced lung, liver, oral and skin cancers because they increase antioxidant activity, alter healthy gene expressions, induce cancer cell death, prevent blood vessel growth contributing to cancer cell growth and stop metastasis — which is the spread of cancer from one organ to another. (5)
Tulsi benefits also appear to help protect the body from radiation poisoning and help treat damage from radiation treatment, according to research published in 2016 in the the Journal of Cancer Research and Therapeutics. It selectively protects the normal tissues against the destructive effects of radiation. (6)
In fact, the journal Nutrition and Cancer published an interesting review outlining the important research involving tulsi’s ability to help fight against cancer that we’ve seen in the past several years. The doctors involved in this research agree that conventional chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatments used during the past three decades haven’t been able to contain the disease, plus they have serious side effects. Many natural agents — especially tulsi leaves and extracts from other plants — prove to be nontoxic, easily available and have proven anticancer properties. (7)
4. Balances Hormones and Lowers Stress and Anxiety
Tulsi has a positive physical effect on the body and mental benefits as well. By drinking tulsi tea, or adding tulsi to your meals, you help calm your system and keep your body running smoothly.
According to a scientific article published in 2014 in the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine, there is increasing evidence that shows holy basil benefits can improve physical, chemical, metabolic and psychological stress. More specifically: (1)
Tulsi has been found to protect organs and tissues against chemical stress from industrial pollutants and heavy metals, and physical stress from prolonged physical exertion, ischemia, physical restraint and exposure to cold and excessive noise. Tulsi has also been shown to counter metabolic stress through normalization of blood glucose, blood pressure and lipid levels, and psychological stress through positive effects on memory and cognitive function and through its anxiolytic and anti-depressant properties.
Some other evidence of this stress-lowering effect includes the ability of tulsi to improve reaction times and error rates in human subjects compared to placebo. (8)
Holy basil includes three phytochemical compounds that help achieve these results. The first two, ocimumosides A and B, have been identified as anti-stress compounds and may lower blood corticosterone (another stress hormone) and create positive alterations in the neurotransmitter system of the brain. (9) The third, 4-allyl-1-O-beta-D-glucopyronosyl-2-hydroxybenzene is also able to lower stress parameters in lab studies. (10, 11)
5. Relieves Fever
Holy basil is often recommended as a natural fever treatment, especially by practitioners of Ayurvedic Medicine. Holy basil leaves are thought to act as antibiotic, germicidal and disinfectant agents, which means they can protect us from bacteria and viruses. (9) When we have a fever, it’s proof that our bodies are fighting against an infection. Therefore, with its infection-fighting properties, tulsi may help to fight a fever and restore your health quickly.
6. Helps Improve Respiratory Disorders
Holy basil benefits are found in the components of tulsi leaves, including camphene, eugenol and cineole, which help provide relief from congestion and other symptoms of respiratory disorders. Scientific studies have confirmed that holy basil possesses impressive anti-asthmatic abilities and may make breathing easier, which is why it’s a commonly recommended herb for respiratory issues in Ayurvedic medicine.
7. Good Source of Vitamin K
Vitamin K is an essential fat-soluble vitamin that plays an important role in bone health and heart health. It’s one of the main vitamins involved in bone mineralization and blood clotting, but also helps maintain brain function, a healthy metabolism and cellular health. One cup of tulsi leaves has more than your daily recommended value of vitamin K, making it a perfect source to prevent vitamin K deficiency. Plus, vitamin K can be beneficial to your bone density, digestive health and brain function.
Animal studies published in the Alternative Medicine Review also demonstrate that holy basil benefits include cardio-protective properties. In other words, it appears to boost heart health. (10)
8. Dental Care and Oral Health
Tulsi has the power to fight bacteria in your mouth that lead to dental issues, such as cavities, , plaque, tartar and bad breath. Tulsi leaves serve as a mouth freshener because they kill the bacteria and germs hiding in your mouth. (11)
Holy basil benefits include helping to diminish ulcers in the mouth, and in vitro studies demonstrate it can stop the growth of oral cancer cells. (12) For natural dental care, try adding a drop of tulsi essential oil to your toothpaste or drinking one cup of tulsi tea every day.
9. Relieves Headaches
Practitioners of Ayurveda recommend holy basil as a natural headache remedy that can help relieve migraine pain. (13) Some believe this is due to its ability to relieve sinus pressure, and recommend diffusing holy basil essential oil or making tulsi tea to reduce headache symptoms.
10. Supports Eye Health
Our eyes are susceptible to viral, bacterial and fungal infections that can be very dangerous. Thankfully, holy basil benefits include helping to fight these detrimental infections. Tulsi is prescribed in Ayurveda to fight against conjunctivitis — also commonly known as pink eye — thanks to its anti-inflammatory and soothing properties. (14)
Tulsi may also help prevent a range of eye issues, including cataracts. According to Dr. S.K. Gupta of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, topical administration of an herbal eye drop mixture containing turmeric and holy basil extracts helps to counter the oxidative stress and insoluble protein formation that lead to cataracts. (15)
‘The Queen of Herbs’
In traditional systems of medicine, different parts of tulsi — the leaves, stem, flower, root, seeds and even the whole plant — have been recommended for the treatment of bronchitis, bronchial asthma, malaria, diarrhea, dysentery, skin diseases, arthritis, painful eye diseases, chronic fever, snake bites and scorpion stings. (16)
In fact, of all the herbs used within Ayurveda, tulsi is preeminent, and scientific research now confirms holy basil benefits. As mentioned earlier, there is mounting evidence that tulsi can address physical, chemical, metabolic and psychological stress through a unique combination of pharmacological actions.
Possible Side Effects
Researchers have found that holy basil is safe for regular consumption and topical use.
One note to keep in mind is that holy basil (tulsi) may slow blood clotting, so taking tulsi along with medications that also slow clotting might increase the chances of bruising and bleeding. Some medications that slow blood clotting include include aspirin, clopidogrel, dalteparin, enoxaparin, heparin, ticlopidine and warfarin. Due to its influence on blood clotting, you should discontinue use of holy basil two weeks before any scheduled surgery. (17)
The main benefits of tulsi (holy basil) include:
1. Fights acne
2. Protects against diabetes
3. Helps fight cancer
4. Balances hormones and lowers stress
5. Relieves fever
6. Helps improve respiratory disorders
7. Good source of vitamin K
8. Dental care and oral health
9. Relieves headaches
10. Supports eye health
One of the most exciting natural products in current medical research is berberine, an alkaloid found in goldenseal root, barberry bark, Oregon grape root, and coptis (goldthread) root. What is so exciting about the research is:
1. The results from clinical trials in diabetes, high blood pressure, and elevated blood lipid levels.
2. There is very encouraging experimental data in a wide range of modern health issues including cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and others.
Alkaloids like berberine are synthesized in plants to serve vital roles in the plant’s cellular metabolism. Obviously, humans can also gain benefits from these compounds. Since early human times plant alkaloids have been among the most important medicinal agents used by humans. They are now enjoying a Renaissance as these ancient medicines are matching the needs of current times.
Berberine-containing plants have been revered for a number of clinical applications through the years. Perhaps most important have been there use in fighting infections, but they have also been used in diabetes. Since the early 1900s, purified berberine has also emerged as a popular natural medicine, especially in China.
What scientific research has focused on in the last decade is building an impressive amount of clinical research in the use of berberine in lowering blood lipids and blood pressure, and improving blood sugar control in type 2 diabetes. Berberine exhibits a number of beneficial mechanisms to produce these effects including an ability to activate the important enzyme called AMP-activated protein kinase or AMPk for short. AMPk is found inside every cell and serves as a “master regulating switch” in energy metabolism. Overall, the activity of this enzyme plays a major role in determining body fat composition and especially the amount of visceral “belly” fat. Here are some of the consequences of low AMPk activity:
· Accelerated aging
· Chronic inflammation
· High blood cholesterol and triglycerides
· Increased visceral “belly” fat
· Insulin resistance
· Mitochondrial insufficiency and dysfunction
· Poor blood sugar control
Obviously, as an effective activator of AMPk, berberine offers great promise in dealing with all of the consequences of low AMPk activity, as well as other health conditions.
A meta-analysis of 27 published clinical trials using berberine as a therapeutic agent in type 2 diabetes, elevated blood lipids and high blood pressure was conducted to answer questions on its safety and efficacy.
Results showed quite convincingly that in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus, berberine along with lifestyle intervention lowered the level of fasting blood sugar levels, after-meal blood sugar levels and glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c) more than lifestyle intervention alone or placebo. When berberine was compared to oral hypoglycemic drugs used in type 2 diabetes, there was no statistical significance between treatment of berberine and these drugs. In other words, the clinical results seen with berberine were on par with the drugs.
The same sort of comparative results seen in type 2 diabetes were found in the treatment of elevated blood lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides) and high blood pressure. Studies also supported that berberine combined with conventional drugs in these conditions is safe and can produce better results than the drugs used alone. Typical dosage for berberine was 500 mg two to three times daily.
Side effects with berberine occurred at much lower rates and were milder than prescription drugs. Side effects were seen mainly at higher dosages (e.g., 500 mg three times a day) and included such as nausea, diarrhea, constipation, abdominal distension, and abdominal pain.
The researchers conducting the meta-analysis concluded that berberine has comparable therapeutic effect on type 2 diabetes, elevated blood lipids and hypertension with no serious side effect or toxicity. Furthermore, the review indicated that berberine combined with conventional drugs in these conditions is safe and can produce better results than the drugs alone.
Berberine is an emerging natural product superstar. Its bright light may end up shining even brighter than curcumin if there is a continued commitment on research. Certainly in all areas where berberine has been currently evaluated, it could be concluded that it has some advantages over curcumin in regards to potential in cancer and other health conditions.
Lan J, Zhao Y, Dong F, et al. Meta-analysis of the effect and safety of berberine in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus, hyperlipemia and hypertension. J Ethnopharmacol. 2015 Feb 23;161:69-81.
Compliments: Dr. Michael Murray
Moringa has been used for decades in it’s native countries as a natural galactagogue (a food or drug that promotes or increases the flow of a mother’s milk). What mothers love most about moringa is that it can be taken like a tea or also mixed with fresh fruit as a smoothie or in a juice. It can be added to food recipes such as soups, salads, breads, cakes and even omelettes or it can just be taken in capsule form.
There have been several scientific studies verifying the increases in milk supply, with one study showing an increase of 152% by day 5! All of those studies are reviewed in one scientific analysis found https://www.researchgate.net/…/262917216_Moringa_oleifera_M…
We are surrounded by a vast range of foods claiming to be healthy. Is it possible that this overwhelming variety of foods is not providing us with everything we need ?
The average Western diet, typical of supermarket food leaves a lot to be desired and can be said that it falls well short of optimum nutrition. Yet paradoxically our need for nutrition is much higher today in order to deals with the added pollution we face every day.
Research finds that our plates lacking in a number of essential nutrients, including calcium, potassium, magnesium, and vitamins A, C, and D. Not surprisingly our health is suffering. We are suffering from over 160 nutrient deficiency diseases. The conditions killing us now in huge numbers are not viruses and bacteria, but preventable degenerative conditions such as heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease and diabetes.
We all begin with a basic genetic blueprint. This gives us weak spots or predispositions to various conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes, asthma etc.. But genetics accounts for maybe 20% of illness. The rest of the 80% is determined by environmental factors.
Our health is the result of a combination of our inherited strengths, weaknesses and our circumstances.
Nutrients are the essence of life. Many sources say we need over 90 nutrients every day to function well. These include 60 minerals, 16 vitamins, 12 amino acids and 3 essential fatty acids.
We can obtain these from the foods we eat. The level of nutrients in our body is affected by two main factors. They are:
· What we put into our bodies in the form of nutrition or food.
· The toxic level of the environment we live in making demands on our nutrients.
Can Wholefood Supplements become Your Health Insurance ?
It is best to try and get these vitamins and minerals and nutrients from whole, minimally processed food (preferably organic) as opposed to supplements.
Fruits, vegetables, fish, and other healthy foods contain nutrients and other substances not found in a pill, which work together to keep us healthy. We can't get the same synergistic effect from a supplement.
Yet given our polluted and stress filled world it can be difficult, if not impossible to get our full quota of nutrients in our diet. We can still look to nature for supplements that are plant derived and from whole, organic, minimally processed and natural sources.
Finding a source of good quality supplements is essential. It is best to avoid synthetic nutrients as they are isolated compounds such as vitamins and minerals produced in a laboratory. Natural supplements may contain other beneficial nutrients not yet discovered; luckily our bodies know what they are for.
Artificial additives and fillers can also be a problem. Supplements that are not labeled natural may include coal tars, artificial colouring, preservatives, sugars and starch.
Usually cheap products have lower nutrient levels and more harmful fillers and additives…this means that quality can come at a price.
Investing in your health brings quality of life.
Nature knows best. In nature each food is a whole food, meaning that it has the perfect combination of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, essential fatty acids plus many unidentified phytonutrients.
Some examples of wholefood supplements to add to your diet are:
Moringa: Gram for gram, moringa leaf contains, 7 times the vitamin C in oranges, 4 times the calcium in milk, 4 times the vitamin A in carrots, 2 times the protein in milk, 3 times the potassium in bananas, 25 times the iron in spinach. Moringa is helpful for anemia, high cholesterol, diabetes, immune stimulant, metabolism booster, increases quantity of breast milk, ant-bacterial properties, anti-cancer properties (inhibits activation of lymphoblastoid – Burkitt’s lymphoma cells and reduction in size of tumours)
Aloe Vera Juice: aids in the healing of stomach disorders, ulcers, constipation, hemorrhoids, and helpful to fight against infections.
Spirulina: detoxifying, vitamins E, B12, C, B1, B5, B6, Beta carotene. It has minerals such as zinc, copper, manganese, selenium, anti-aging, anti-oxidants, Essential fatty acids (EFA’s), enhances and strengthens the immune system.
Chlorella: Is a wonderful detox aid which helps to pull out heavy metals from the body and other toxins such as pesticides and herbicides.
Flax Seed Oil: is high in omega-3’s making it an excellent source for of omega-3’s for vegans. It reduces pain, inflammation, swelling in arthritis and lowers blood cholesterol.
Wheatgrass: is known to be highly nutritious. It defeats nutritional deficiencies, strengthens the immune system, is good for people with cancer and encourages health and healing among many other benefits.
The best ways to add these nutrient dense, wholefood supplements into your diet is by adding them into a smoothie or a fresh vegetable juice.
One of the major problems that dieters face is that they get cravings at night and tend to eat lots of junk food before they go to sleep.
These are added calories, which often makes them put on more weight than helping them lose it.
The six foods which I have suggested have been scientifically proven to help you lose weight if you eat them as a bedtime snack because they are healthy, nutritious and filling foods which are relatively low in calories. They all have an added advantage is that they help improve sleep quality.
1. Cottage Cheese
Cottage cheese is high in protein. It will help to build muscle while you sleep. It is also low in fat and calories. A 1/2 cup of cottage cheese provides you with 13grams of protein which is more than two boiled eggs.
If you have more of a sweet-tooth, bananas are a fantastic late-night snack choice.
They are full of important nutrients like potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin C and fiber. They are also a good source of tryptophan an amino acid which can make you sleepy.
Bananas contain high amounts of fiber. If you choose bananas that are greenish (not fully ripe), then they are also high in resistant starch. Fiber and resistant starch may help you feel full and less hungry, which leads to a reduction in calorie intake.
Remember, people who do not sleep enough tend to be much more overweight than those who do.
Almonds encourage restful sleep. You only have to eat a handful or two as a bedtime snack. They are especially high in magnesium which. Studies have shown that a magnesium deficiency greatly affects melatonin levels, circadian cycle and sleep disorders. Consuming 500mg of magnesium per day significantly improved sleep quality, sleep duration and other factors contributing to insomnia.
One handful of almonds contains about 150 mg of magnesium, which is a very healthy dose of this mineral… and remember to stick to one to two handfuls of almonds at the most.
Turkey Provides Protein and Helps Regulate Sleep. It is a relatively low calorie meat, high in protein and a good for weight loss as it reduces appetite much more effectively than fat or carbs. Turkey is also high in tryptophan which promotes good sleep.
5. Canned Tuna
In the USA 40% of the people are thought to be vitamin D deficient. A vitamin D deficiency is linked to many health problems including sleep disorders. It is also linked to sleep apnea.
Tuna is an easy and filling snack before bed, and a wonderful source of vitamin D. A small 85g tin of tuna contains 50% of your daily vitamin D requirements. Tuna also has omega-3 fats, which are important for body and brain function.
To be honest, we should all be eating far more omega-3 fatty acids. Optimal body and brain function, as well as restful sleep, are important for weight loss.
Cherries when in season as another quick, juicy and quick bedtime snack choice. A cup of cherries is only 50 calories. A super weight-friendly choice !
In a study, cherries have been shown to improve sleep and even help treat sleep disorders. They reduced the severity of sleeplessness equal to that of the herb valerian. Cherries also increase the body’s secretion of the sleep hormone melatonin which is responsible for good quality sleep.
Good nutrition, weight loss and sleep are all inter-related. If you want to lose weight you need to get a good night’s sleep. Eating before bed does not have to be bad for you. You just need to eat small servings of nutritious foods that help to keep you satisfied and some may even help you get a good night’s sleep.
So how do skinny people do it “? Chances are you know of someone who seems to effortlessly control their weight, while you may struggle with yours.
So what healthy eating and healthy lifestyle habits do these individuals have that keeps them slim with seemingly very little effort?
Would you like to control your weight for good? These are the common lifestyle habits that these people share:
1) They do not ‘diet’
They are not concerned with the latest diet fad. Evidence suggests that slim people consume a basic healthy and balanced diet.
The problem with diets is that they tend to create a feeling of restriction and deprivation.
This can lead to an excessive focus on food and eating, fueling binges and an obsession with food which basically negates any benefits associated with the original diet.
The bottom line here is that if a diet feels restrictive, it is unlikely to help you with weight control in the long term. It is best to create healthier eating habits for life. Diets don’t work. An authentic Mediterranean diet incorporates the basics of healthy eating.
2) They exercise, a lot
Skinny people and individuals who lost weight and kept it off, exercise for at least an hour each day. That may equate to a 2000- plus calorie burn every single week.
3) They eat plenty of fruits and vegetables
No surprises here — they eat 7-10 servings or 3 1/2 - 5 cups of fresh fruits and vegetables every single day. The daily recommended intake is a minimum of 2.5 cups of vegetables.
The more fresh produce you add into your diet, there is far less room for other high calorie foods. You naturally eat less of them and in smaller quantities.
4) They think quality over quantity
This is one to note! Long term weight control is not about focusing on what you should not eat. It is about enjoying good quality food, high calorie or not.
It means enjoying a small serving of good quality cake, rather than eating an entire packet of biscuits. Good quality dark chocolate or a glass of red wine.
Mindful eating … stop and think before you put something into your mouth. Is it worth the calories? It is not just the calories that we should think about. Is it beneficial to our health?
5) They shop smart
Inspecting your grocery bill is one of the easiest ways to check the quality of your diet. If processed, high fat snacks in colourful packaging are about 2% of the items then you’re doing well!
On the other hand, if you regularly buy these junk foods, then you’ve lost the battle. If you buy them, then you’re eating them.
If you know you should not be eating them for either weight loss or health reasons, then you’ve got to get honest with yourself and stop buying them… and don’t use the kids as excuses. They shouldn’t be eating them either!
6) They cook at home
Meals prepared at home are healthier and have considerably less calories than take-out meals.
Many popular lunches bought in restaurants or take-aways can contain almost double the calories of the same meal you prepare for yourself, while restaurant meals can contain an entire day’s worth of calories. If you simple must buy food, make sure you make healthier choices and get a quinoa or tuna salad.
Cooking at home is an easy step towards weight control.
7) They stick to their healthy eating habits
It does not matter if it is Christmas, a major birthday, or winter time. Individuals who control their weight maintain diet structure.
There is no such thing as taking a day or even a week off their diet, rather there is a one off heavier meal or occasional treat, and the normal diet resumed straight after.
8) They eat healthier snacks
Forget packaged snacks, low fat treats and processed foods. Snacking means something light and nutritious for those in control of their weight.
Fruit, veggies nuts and goat’s yoghurt or cheese are all great choices for snacks.
9) They don’t do food guilt
Forget diet talk and cycles of deprivation and bingeing depending on what you have eaten.
Food is not used to soothe emotional states and there is an understanding that at times we will overindulge and consume higher fat, higher calorie foods, but it all evens out eventually.
There is no guilt or compensatory behaviours associated with eating. It all comes down to healthier habits, the occasional treats and balance.
10) They watch their weight
Skinny people watch their weight. They may weigh themselves or, just simply feel how their clothes fit on them.
This means that you notice when you start putting on weight and you do something about it. You can respond quickly and take the steps required to reverse weight gain, before it becomes significant.
In Canada, nearly 12 years after it was first introduced, the federal government decided to ban partially hydrogenated oils in all food sold in the country.
So what are trans fats ?
Partially hydrogenated oils are the main source of trans fats, which are known to raise LDL the “bad cholesterol” and lower HDL the “good cholesterol”.
According to Russel de Souza, a dietician, nutrition epidemiologist and assistant professor in the Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence and Impact, he states that “gram for gram, no other fat appears to affect heart disease as much as trans fat.” Trans fats also increase inflammation in the body and are harmful to the cells that line the arteries.
In animal studies, trans fats have been linked to weight gain—notably belly fat—and may hamper the ability of insulin to drive blood sugar (glucose) where it needs to go.
What are partially hydrogenated oils?
Hydrogenation, complete or partial, is a chemical process in which hydrogen is added to liquid oils at high temperatures and pressures, to turn them into a solid form. This new product behaves like saturated fat, and can be used for baking and cooking by the food industry.
Partially hydrogenated fat molecules have trans fats, and they may be the worst type of fat you can consume.
What is a trans fatty acid ?
Fats are either saturated or unsaturated, which is a way of describing their chemical structure.
Saturated fats are solid at room temperature, like a stick of butter. Unsaturated fats are liquid at room temperature, like olive oil. Trans fats are semi-solid at room temperature owing the position of one (or more) of its chemical bonds being in the "trans-" rather than the "cis-" position.
There are two types of trans fats: natural and artificial. Artificial trans fats start off as vegetable oils, which are liquid at room temperature.
To make trans fats, ordinary vegetable oil, like safflower oil, is hardened by treatment with hydrogen at high temperatures and pressures. This chemical reaction converts a liquid into a semi-solid or solid, that behaves like saturated fat, and can be used for baking and cooking by the food industry.
In what kinds of foods can it be found?
Trans fats can be found in many foods – including fried foods like doughnuts, and baked goods including cakes, pie crusts, biscuits, frozen pizza, cookies, crackers, and stick margarines and other spreads. You can determine the amount of trans fats in a particular packaged food by looking at list of ingredients on the Nutrition label of the food.
Is it worth your while avoiding trans fats ?
Definitely so ! Studies have shown that even a small amount of trans fats (2% of energy) can raise your risk of heart disease by 30%.
Gram for gram, no other fat appears to affect heart disease this much.
Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations and World Health Organization came up with the recommendation that the contents of trans fatty acids (TFA) in human dietary fats should be reduced to less than 4%.14
Denmark was the first country to introduce ban on the consumption of partially hydrogenated oils.15 It is generally believed that because of Danish Government’s efforts in reducing TFA consumption from 6 gm to 1 gm per day over a period of 2 decades, the deaths among Danes due to CHD have dropped by 50%.16
It is important that more consumers become aware of the dangers of consuming trans fats, then in this way indirect pressure is put on the manufacturers by not buying their products if they use hydrogenated oils. They will eventually have to change their formulations without trans fats and the industry must come up with a product that consumers will like just as much, and keep costs reasonable.
Barbara is a qualified nutritionist offering Health, Nutrition & Lifestyle Counseling. She gives Healthy weight loss advice and promotes the Mediterranean diet. She is the author of the Med Life Diet - creating healthy lifestyle habits and attitudes for life !