piceatannol aids weight managementObesity is threatening the health and lives of nearly 70 percent of the U.S. population, and indicators of this epidemic are continuing to affect even more men, women and children and place a significant burden on an already failing health care system. Most health-minded individuals understand the importance of eliminating refined and processed foods while maintaining constant blood glucose and insulin levels to achieve individual weight management goals.

Researchers from Purdue University have published the result of a study in the Journal of Biological Chemistry that demonstrates the potent nature of natural compounds found in red wine and many fruits to block cellular processes that allow fat cells to develop. Scientists found that the compound piceatannol, found naturally in the skin of grapes and other fruits blocks an immature fat cell’s ability to develop and grow, opening a door to a potential method to control obesity.

Piceatannol aids in weight management by inhibiting the formation of mature fat cells

The lead study author Dr. Kee-Hong Kim found that piceatannol, an analog of resveratrol found in grapes and other fruit, is converted to piceatannol in humans following its consumption. The team tested piceatannol in cultured immature fat cells called preadipocytes to determine if the compound inhibited the maturity process that results in fully developed fat cells, capable of storing body fat and contributing to obesity.

Dr. Kim commented “We consider that adipogenesis is an important molecular target to delay or prevent fat cell accumulation and, hopefully, body fat mass gain.” The team found that piceatannol bound to the insulin receptor on the immature fat cells, effectively blocking insulin’s ability to control normal cellular cycling resulting in mature adipocytes. The grape-derived compound stimulated the activation of special genes necessary for the fat cell maturation process.

The study authors concluded “Piceatannol actually alters the timing of gene expressions, gene functions and insulin action during adipogenesis, the process in which early stage fat cells become mature fat cells… in the presence of piceatannol, you can see delay or complete inhibition of adipogenesis.” Similar in structure to resveratrol, scientists believe piceatannol may also exert some of the same properties to help combat cancer, heart disease and neurodegenerative conditions.

Piceatannol is yet another natural compound that has demonstrated the ability to influence genetic expression to inhibit the formation of adipocytes or alter metabolism to help achieve weight management goals alongside resveratrol, green tea catechins (EGCG) and irvingia gabonensis. When used to compliment a natural food diet void of wheat and refined carbohydrates, piceatannol may be an important component to achieve natural weight management goals.

Article Source: Piceatannol Red Grapes & Obesity

Originally posted 2014-09-30 13:21:28.

natural healthNatural health is important and if you’ve made the decision that you are truly ready to change your lifestyle and claim your birthright of vibrant health, these are the basic steps that most people need to take in order to restore their health:

Eat Right

If you drill down health to its most critical and essential element, diet plays the most important role, by far. We’ve all heard the old adage, “You are what you eat.” Once you understand the critical role diet plays in health, you will understand the absolute truth of this statement. Your diet provides every single building block your body uses to create cells, to repair tissue, to move, to breathe, to exist.

Common sense tells us, the better your diet, the better your health. But what is the best diet? Hopefully we all know the traditional American diet ranks at the bottom of the list. But which of the many alternative diets hold the top position? Vegan? Vegetarian? Paleo? There are many to choose from. But I suggest, you don’t choose.

We are all individuals with particular likes and dislikes. Unfortunately, we are habitual creatures who seem hell bent on getting stuck in the same patterns and the same ruts. But this is a time of change, so… Take the first step, cleaning out your cupboards and pantry. Toss out all of your processed foods. Get rid of anything refined. Brown rice is ok. Bread is not.

Next, you shop. A healthy diet consists of a wide variety of whole, unadulterated, unprocessed, organic foods. Meat and eggs should be free range AND organic. If you choose dairy (know that goat milk and cheese may be a better choice) be absolutely sure you choose organic. Milk is good for you if it is not pasteurized, but it’s tough finding it. And as far as meat goes, remember if you choose to eat meat, you are eating off of the top of the food chain. If that animal was fed GMO grains, you don’t want to eat it.

Vegetables should be the basis of your diet. A full 80% of your diet should consist of raw, organic, whole vegetables and fruits, more vegetables than fruit.

Grains should be whole. Why lose most of the nutrients? Remember, this new lifestyle of yours is all about nutrient dense foods.

Avoid the trap of becoming a vegan, vegetarian, or other “good” diet follower who has simply found a new way to be a junk food junkie. Processed food is processed food. Choose a great homemade smoothie instead of “healthy” cookies.

Get to know your farmer’s markets!

Start growing your own food if you can.

Detox

Good stuff in, bad stuff out. Your body has been accumulating parasites, yeast, heavy metals, and a full array of chemicals your whole life. It’s time to cleanse your body and help it to flush out all of these unwanted substances while cleansing your colon to aid in both digestion and elimination. All of those wonderful foods that you will be putting in your body need a fully functioning digestive system to extract the nutrients that will provide your body with the building blocks it needs to repair and grow tissue, to create neurotransmitters, to create hormones, to maintain and build your immune system, and more.

Detox twice a year for the greatest benefit. And always kill excess candida and balance the gut when you do.

Exercise

Just move. Your lymphatic system needs you to move in order for your lymph to circulate through your body. It has no pump, no other means than the movement of your muscles. Yoga, Tai Chi, walking, rebounding, anything that gets you moving. It’s okay to start off slow and gentle. You don’t need to push it. Once you achieve vibrant health you’ll want to move. It’s one of the signs that you are on the right path. Rebounding, jumping rope, and jogging help detox the lymphatic system.

Article Source: Natural Health Detox Diet

Originally posted 2014-09-27 13:14:51.

brain healthThe complexity of the human body is vast, consisting of trillions of cells working simultaneously to ensure that we take our next breath. While the processes are complex, the method by which they perform is quite simple. In order for our cells to do their job, they need vitamins. Researchers believe that the body requires at least 13 different vitamins to be healthy, according to a report at HowStuffWorks.

Maintaining the recommended daily intake of all 13 vitamins can be challenging, with some falling lower on the priority list than others. A recent study by the College of Public Health and Human Sciences at Oregon State University found that nearly everyone is suffering from vitamin E deficiency, with the exception of those who work diligently to meet the recommended daily intake levels.

At least 90 percent of men and 96 percent of women fail to consume their recommended daily amount of vitamin E, according to a broad survey. This deficiency is particularly harmful for children and women who are nursing, pregnant or may become pregnant.

Vitamin E crucial during early fetal development; beneficial for the mom too

Research suggests that vitamin E is incredibly crucial during the first 1,000 days of an infant’s life, contributing to important neural growth during fetal development that cannot be replaced later in life.

A study which analyzed the effects of vitamin E on experimental animals during early development showed the nutrient’s ability to protect the function of omega-3-fatty acids, which play an important role in brain development.

“It’s important all of your life, but the most compelling evidence about vitamin E is about a 1000-day window that begins at conception,” said Maret Traber, the study’s author.

“Vitamin E is critical to neurologic and brain development that can only happen during that period. It’s not something you can make up for later.”

Researchers believe that vitamin E intake is especially important for young children up to two years old. Higher vitamin E levels and improved cognitive function share a correlation, according to Traber’s study, which was published in Advances in Nutrition.

Children with inadequate vitamin E levels can experience neurological disorders, muscle deterioration, cardiomyopathy, stunted growth, infection and anemia, according to a review of multiple studies. Adequate vitamin E intake is equally important for mothers, with proper concentrations helping slow the progression of diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Scientists recommend adults eat 15 milligrams of vitamin E per day

Foods containing high levels of vitamin E aren’t exactly at the top of our list of most beloved foods, although some are quite tasty. Sunflower seeds are both low in calories and high in vitamin E. You can also obtain the nutrient’s antioxidant properties from pumpkin and sesame seeds by eating a little under one-third a cup a day to meet recommended daily levels.

Almonds are another great source of vitamin E, with just an ounce offering 7.5 milligrams. Swiss chard and mustard greens are great sources of vitamin E; consuming one cup of either gets you 14 to 17 percent of your daily recommended intake.

Also, turnip greens, kale, hazelnuts, pine nuts, avocado, broccoli, parsley, papaya and olives are excellent, healthy sources of vitamin E.

You can obtain vitamin E through some plant oils such as sunflower oil when cooking. Wheat germ oil is believed to be the best source for vitamin E, with just one tablespoon offering 100 percent of the recommended level. Hempseed oil, coconut oil, olive oil and safflower oil are all vitamin-E-rich oils. Unrefined and organic oils are always the best.

Article Source: Vitamin E, critical for brain health

Originally posted 2014-09-25 13:13:12.

Deficient in thiamineVitamin B1 (thiamine) is not a rare vitamin. Small amounts can be found in nearly all foods and many foods have substantial amounts of B1, yet an estimated 20% of Americans are found to be deficient in this extremely important and necessary vitamin. The reason? B1 is generally destroyed when a food is processed.

This connection was discovered due to the disease beriberi. This wasting disease, which could lead to death, was known to be caused by inadequate nutrition, but was found to be more prevalent when the population with a limited diet relied on polished rice as a stable. Comparing these populations with others of a similar diet who ate whole grain rice, the link between B1 and beriberi was discovered.

Deficiencies can lead to a number of symptoms related to the nervous system, including blindness. Alcoholism and heavy drinking can lead to B1 deficiency for a number of reasons including: poor diet, increased carbohydrate intake (from the alcohol), and damage to intestinal mucosa, which can decrease the absorption of B1 by as much as 90%. It is estimated that 30-80% of alcoholics are deficient in B vitamins.

B1 is one of the essential B vitamins that work in concert with other B vitamins to turn carbohydrates into
glucose, providing energy for the body and brain. It is also necessary for manufacturing fats and metabolizing proteins. It is essential for the nervous system.

Age has an effect on our ability to properly absorb and use B vitamins, therefore supplementation is suggested for those 50 years and older. On-going vomiting or diarrhea will deplete the body’s resources of B1. Gastrointestinal diseases may inhibit B1 absorption.

Foods that interfere with vitamin B1 absorption include any food preserved with sulfides, raw fish, shellfish, coffee, and tea.

B1 is used, of course, to treat B1 deficiencies and can be injected into the body or taken orally. It is also used in treatment for ulcerative colitis, heart disease, diabetic pain, AIDS, canker sores, vision
problems, cataracts, glaucoma, motion sickness, and stress. Some athletes use it to improve performance.

Studies have shown that long term use of any one B vitamin may result in a deficiency in other B vitamins. For this reason, it is best to supplement with B vitamin complex for long term use.

Even if you choose to supplement your vitamin intake, diet is the basis of good health and the primary source of essential nutrients. To ensure your vitamin B1 intake is at a good level, eat a diverse diet of whole unprocessed foods, (80% raw). Whole grains, vegetables (asparagus, brussel sprouts, green peas, beet greens, spinach and sweet potatoes), beans and legumes (navy, black, pinto, lima, kidney, lentils, and peanuts, seeds and nuts (sunflower, sesame, flax), along with watermelon and oranges are all good sources of B1.

Article Source: ww.naturalnews.com/hiamine_vitamin_B1_beriberi

Originally posted 2014-09-22 14:29:14.

fruitAn apple a day can help reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) away. In fact, a seven year study out of China indicates that you can cut your risk of CVD by up to 40% by eating a piece of fruit every single day, and the more you eat the more you can reduce your disk of cardiovascular disease.

Cardiovascular disease (stroke and ischemic heart disease) is the leading cause of death in the United States and worldwide. Compared to the United States where ischemic heart disease is the leading cause of CVD death, stroke is the leading CVD cause of death in China.

The Study

The seven year study looked at half a million participants in the China Kadoorie Biobank who had no history of CVD. Over the 7 years of the study, it was found that 18% of the participants ate fruit daily while 6.3% never ate fruit (the average portion a day was 1.5 or 150grams). Compared to the people who never consumed fruit, people who ate fruit daily had significantly lower blood pressure and decreased risk of CVD by 25-40%.

In a separate analysis, the team found that those that ate fruit daily compared to those that never consumed fruit reduced their overall risk of death by 32%. Dr. Huaidong Du from Oxford, UK explained, “Our data clearly shows that eating fresh fruit can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, including ischaemic heart disease and stroke (particularly haemorrhagic stroke). And not only that, the more fruit you eat the more your CVD risk goes down. It does suggest that eating more fruit is beneficial compared to less or no fruit.”

Preventing VCD

Along with reducing the amount of hydrogenated fats and sugars you consume and increasing your omega-3 fatty acid consumption, fruit has been previously implicated in helping to prevent CVD. In a 2009 study it was found that eating 2-3 kiwi fruits a day can help significantly reduce your risk of heart disease by lowering LDL cholesterol while raising HDL, also known as “good” cholesterol. The researchers believed this was due to its very high antioxidant concentration.

Likewise, it was found in a study published in the American Heart Association journal, that men who skipped breakfast and instead ate larger meals at night had a higher risk of coronary artery disease. This was hypothesized to be due to some adverse metabolic effects caused by altering the metabolic repair process.

Conclusion

It seems that fruit (along with a healthy diet lacking hydrogenated oils, sugars…etc) can be an easy, healthy, natural way to help decrease your risk of CVD. The team from the China Kadoorie Biobank study said, “Our results show the benefit of eating fruit in the healthy general population and in patients with CVD and hypertension. Fruit consumption is an effective way to cut CVD risk and should not only be regarded as ‘might be useful’.”

Article Source: www.naturalnews.com/fruit_heart_health_cardiovascular_disease

Originally posted 2014-09-20 14:15:54.

foods proven to kill cancer

foods proven to kill cancerIn order to kill cancer and ensure there is no recurrence, the body must be brought into balance and the immune system rebuilt and fine tuned. So how is this feat accomplished? Detox, detox, detox and achieve a slightly alkaline pH, while filling the body with the best, organic, nutritionally dense food available. Your goal is to rebuild a killer immune system as you bathe every non-cancerous cell in your body with nutrition.

For specific foods known to kill cancer, check out the following list:

Omega 3

Oily fish, fish oil, flax seed oil, hemp oil, and healthy oil blend supplements provide omega 3 fatty acids (and other beneficial fatty acids), which fight inflammation and make the body less hospitable to cancer cells. Vitamin D is also known to kill cancer, and you can find many fish oils and some vegan oil blends with vitamin D in them.

Cruciferous Vegetables

Cruciferous vegetables include broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussel sprouts, watercress, kale, collard greens, cauliflower, bok choy, turnips, rutabagas, radishes, arugula, and more. These vegetables contain sulforaphane and other helpful compounds, which help fight tumors, breast, prostate, brain, and colorectal cancers, as well as leukemia. Broccoli sprouts and mature broccoli in combination really pack nutritional, cancer fighting punch.

Berries

Black raspberries appear to reign supreme, though all berries contain cancer fighting phytonutrients and high amounts of ellagic acid, which inhibit tumor growth.

Maitake and Shiitake Mushrooms

Google maitake mushrooms and cancer and the American Cancer Society pops up at the top of the search list. For one brief moment it seemed they might actually be doing their job, but no. They claim there have been no studies to show that maitake or any other mushroom help fight cancer. Continue your search and study after study reveals they do indeed.

Mushrooms boost immune function and are a great source of antioxidants. They are also rich in vitamins C and B vitamins as well as calcium and other minerals.

Tumeric

Curcumin, found in turmeric, inhibits the spread of cancer (metastases) along with its anti-inflammatory and oxidative effects. Tumeric can be found at farmer’s markets in root form. It can be used liberally to spice your food (great on salads or in salad dressing as well as in cooked dishes) with no side effects.

Tomatoes

The active compounds found in tomatoes, carotenoids and lycopene (especially lycopene), are very helpful, especially in the fight of prostrate and pancreatic cancer in men. Seven to ten helpings are week are suggested, both cooked and raw juice. To gain the health benefits of juice, make your own. Store bought tomato juice will be pasteurized. Lycopene is a strong antioxidant.

Folate

Egg yolks, avocadoes, apricots, green leafy vegetables, and pumpkin are among the foods rich in folate. For meat eaters, chicken livers are very high in folate. Studies involving folate or its synthetic form, folic acid, show a significant reduced risk of colorectal cancer. Folate or folic acid ?is essential for the body to correctly replicate DNA.

Garlic

Even the National Cancer Institute admits garlic “…may reduce the risk of developing several types of?cancer, especially cancers of the?gastrointestinal tract”.
Garlic reduces inflammation, fights free radicals, and fights cancer. Eat it raw or chop it up and let it sit for 10-15 minutes before cooking with it or its beneficial compound, allicin, will not be released.

Grapes

The compound found in red grapes, resveratrol, is a powerful antioxidant that also saves cells from oxidant-caused death. Grape seeds have huge benefits. We recommend you don’t eat grapes without seeds.

Conclusion

An alkaline, balanced diet with plenty of nutrition, and as few toxins as possible, makes the body inhospitable to cancer. Sugar feeds cancer. Processed and refined foods feed cancer. Raw, organic vegetables, especially when grown for maximum nutrient content (as opposed to large scale farming) should be the foundation of any healthy diet. We also recommend that anyone with cancer undergo a full body detox with a supplement regimen specifically designed for your current state of health. For more information on what to do for cancer, check out the first three sources.

Article Source: www.naturalnews.com/cancer_foods_nutrition_research

Originally posted 2014-08-27 12:14:06.

spicesOver the recent years we have been moving further away from the pharmaceutical industry by taking small steps, if you recollect we did an article on how to cure a child from common ailments using an extract from five leaves. But today I’ve cooked up a bunch of spices and common food ingredients that you can use to keep good health and even help and protect you from a range of diseases.

It shouldn’t be surprising that some of the ingredients used in your food can even help protect you against terminal diseases. Lets start off with one of my personal favorites, Garlic.

I know a 70+ year old man who has no blood pressure issues and a perfect blood sugar level that he attributes to his habit of eating three to four raw garlic cloves daily. But this is not just a figment of his imagination, take a look at what this herb has to offer, apart from bad breath that is.

Spices

Garlic

One of Garlic’s main benefits is that it helps reduce Cholesterol. The Linus Pauling Institute’s review of several studies found that people who consumed garlic for three months had a 6% to 11% reduction in total cholesterol. Also since garlic is an antioxidant, it may prevent the oxidation of cholesterol in the arteries.

When you crush Garlic you are immediately greeted by the pungent spell, that is due to Allicin, which is responsible for its medicinal benefits. It’s said that the daily consumption of garlic can help lower heart disease risk by as much as 76 percent. It also thins the blood and hence cuts down on the chances of dangerous blood clots.

Even cancer fears Allicin, especially stomach and colorectal cancer as it flushes out carcinogens even before they can damage cell DNA. If that’s not enough, Garlic has super strong antibacterial and anti-fungal properties and can help with yeast infections, some sinus infections, and common cold.

Turmeric

What would we do without Turmeric – we have mixed it with warm milk for cold and cough, given Turmeric and sugar (to make it edible) for kids when they bruise themselves and as a quick fix for animal injuries.

Turmeric is well known to reduce inflammation, while in Indian medicine its also used to increase appetite and as a digestive aid. Turmeric gets its golden color from Curcumin. Curcumin is considered as a powerful anticancer agent and quells the inflammation that contributes to the growth of tumors. Yes, powerful lab studies suggest that Turmeric helps stop the growth and spread of cancer cells.

There are numerous studies that talk about the benefits of using Turmeric against cancer and animal tests show that it even helps protect from Alzheimer’s disease.

Ginger

Ginger is such a powerful natural medicine that it finds itself not only in Ayurveda but also in the ancient Chinese medical texts. We have been using Ginger to treat cough and cold. It has anti-nausea properties and is a digestive aid. Ayurveda recommends eating raw ginger before meals for appetite as well as digestion.

While in modern times researches have found Ginger effect in combating inflammation and even in reducing the pain and swelling in people suffering from arthritis. Apart from these benefits, ginger can help with Migraines and may even prevent and slowing the growth of cancer. It’s good for the tummy and even makes a cup of tea so delightful to have.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon packs a punch when it comes to fighting diabetes, it helps control blood sugar levels and also cuts down on triglycerides and total cholesterol.

Since it cuts down on the triglycerides and cholesterol its awesome for your heart and as a bonus its also rich in antioxidants. Along with a bunch of other spices, cinnamon has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties as well.

Another reason to add it into your diet is that its high in fiber and can also reduce heartburn in some people. Wow, bring on the cinnamon buns and rolls.

Cloves

Who hasn’t used cloves or clove oil to stop a tooth ache? Well with the kind of teeth I have, sticking cloves in my mouth has been part of the norm thanks to its numbing effect. But I wasn’t aware that even people suffering from Arthritis can get relief from the pain as it slows down the cartilage and bone damage caused by the disease.

Yet again, even cloves have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that can protect one from heart disease, stave off cancer and also appear to improve insulin function. Cloves are also known to have killed certain antibiotic resistant bacteria.

Article Source: Common spices destroy disease

Originally posted 2014-08-27 12:09:47.

organic food
Let’s face it, many Americans eat like pigs. They pull up to drive-through windows and they sit down at pancake houses, and they order up a completely GMO meal, full of gluten, refined sugar, MSG, animal fat and sometimes even artificial sweeteners. They wash it all down and repeat the cycle within hours, sometimes three times in one day. Why? Don’t they know? Maybe they don’t care, but they will, later.

Time stands still when you’re sick. The world seems to stop spinning when you’re laid out in a hospital bed, with an I.V. stuck in your arm, waiting for a “diagnosis.”

Time just seems to stop, when you can’t work, you can’t enjoy anything and you’re miserable from some illness, disease or disorder that America seems to feed rather than try to prevent. So who’s feeding who? Are the corporations feeding the humans toxic food, or are the humans using their hands on their own free will to shove sickness into their mouths?

Believe it or not, organic food is a $15,000,000,000 industry yearly now. That’s 15 billion, not million, by the way. Are all THOSE people feeding themselves “life” — a healthy life that’s a choice to make, every meal, every snack, every drink and every personal care product? Of course it is. That’s what brings us to healing the sick with organic food, since your cells are all brand new about every three months. You could make that CHANGE in one season, my friend.

Inflammation Nation

The root cause of most pain, illness, headaches and other chronic sicknesses is simply inflammation. Hundreds of millions of people suffer from inflammation daily, because they do many of the following: Ingest fluoridated tap water, take pharmaceutical medications, take OTC (over the counter) medications, eat genetically modified foods (GMO), eat gluten, get flu shots, drink sodas and diet sodas, chew gum or candy laced with artificial sweeteners, apply topical lotions loaded with chemicals, eat bleached-white foods, eat conventional hormone-laden meat and drink conventional hormone-laden milk. This is just the tip of the iceberg, and the damage becomes exponential, as cells mutate and turn and attack living healthy tissue. That’s cancer.

Even the lack of clean whole food and clean spring water inflames the entire body, the tissues, the muscles and the brain. The heart is overworked and under-delivers the goods (nutrients), because there are none. They’ve been wiped out by pesticides, insecticides, fungicides, algaecides and toxic fertilizers used to grow toxic food for toxic humans in need of… wait for it… Obamacare!

Your cells are in a constant battle. They battle for oxygen and nutrition. Those are your good cells. Your bad cells are in a constant search — for sugar and carcinogens. Which cells will you feed with your next meal, and the one after that, and after that? Which cells will you feed with your next drink or snack, the healthy cells or the cancer cells? Will you “feed the beast” that will destroy you once it has all the power, or will you feed the organic being that you were born to be, the machine with a heart and a brain?

Inside your body is a universe of enzymes, flora and healthy organisms that fuel the fire of thinking and doing and evolving. Will you put that fire out with processed junk science? Cancer cells can not live when your cells have plenty of oxygen. Win the daily battle. Win the long-term war. You are on the battlefield right now, and your hands and brain are your weapons. Use them. Do not pick up another piece of food that contains toxins. Heal your body and your mind, starting right now.

Article Source: Organic food healing inflammation.

Originally posted 2014-08-16 10:28:43.

tomatosCarotenoids are what cause some fruits and vegetables to have bright colors, such as yellow, orange and red. Lycopene is the carotenoid that gives tomatoes their rich colors and is one of the most popular carotenoids found in the diets of many Americans and Europeans. Many carotenoids enable the body to make the vitamin A that it needs in order to be healthy, though lycopene is not one of them.

The cancer-preventing benefits of lycopene
Though the body does not use lycopene to make Vitamin A, it still adds a very valuable component to the diet. Studies have shown a positive correlation between those people with a diet high in tomatoes, and, therefore, lycopenes, and having a lower risk of some forms of cancer. This type of diet has been shown to be particularly helpful for reducing the risk of getting prostate, cervical, skin, bladder, stomach and lung cancers.

Other benefits of lycopene
As if the cancer-reducing benefits of lycopene were not enough, there are other health benefits of eating a diet rich in tomatoes. Researchers have found that the risk of heart disease can be lowered by such a diet. The risk of macular degeneration, which is a disease that often occurs as a person ages and can result in blindness, and lipid oxidation, the damage that occurs to normal fat cells that can then cause both inflammation and disease, have also been shown to be reduced by eating a diet that includes a variety of tomato-based dishes.

Lycopene is an impressive antioxidant which helps block the free radicals that can cause disease. Studies have also shown that lycopene helps protect DNA, cellular fats and enzymes while also lowering the levels of bad cholesterol, LDL, and boosting the immune system. While other foods, such as watermelon, apricots, papaya, pink grapefruit and guava, are also a significant source of lycopene, tomatoes contain the most concentrated amount of the carotenoid.

The form of tomatoes matters
While tomatoes eaten in any form deliver a powerful amount of lycopene, there are some methods of preparation that increase the amounts. Studies found that the levels of lycopene in the blood were greatest after study participants had eaten cooked tomatoes, compared to their levels after drinking tomato juice or eating raw tomatoes. In addition, by combining the consumption of tomatoes with oil or fat, such as the cheese in a pizza or a drizzle of salad oil, the amount of lycopene absorbed by the intestines is increased. For those people who want to supplement, lycopene is available either as a liquid or as soft gels.

Eating a diet rich with tomato-based foods gives the body a number of health benefits that are difficult to replicate in other ways. For best results, eat cooked tomatoes several times each week.

Originally posted 2014-04-11 12:07:44.

strawberriesGastritis, a condition in which the stomach lining becomes inflamed, can be caused by a number of factors. Too much alcohol consumption, viral and bacterial infections, taking aspirin or ibuprofen, having an autoimmune disorder and even stress are common culprits behind this digestive problem. That’s the bad news.

The good news? European researchers have uncovered the powerful ability that strawberries have to combat gastritis.

How strawberries help heal gastritis
“The positive effects of strawberries are not only linked to their antioxidant capacity and high content of phenolic compounds (anthocyans) but also to the fact that they activate the antioxidant defences and enzymes of the body,” explains one of the researchers, Sara Tulipani. Their studies showed that ingesting strawberries led to a reduction in the appearance of stomach ulcerations, post-ethanol consumption. Bottom line: The ripe fruit contains substances that can help prevent the start of inflammation at the cellular level.

This finding led them to conclude that strawberries are among the most important fruits to fight inflammation and also paved the way for others to look deeper into new stomach inflammatory diseases and related treatment options.

The Mayo Clinic advises people with gastritis to eat a diet that consists of low-acid fruits and to avoid spicy, fatty foods. Strawberries make the list of low-acid fruits, as do pears, raspberries and apples.

It’s also advised to try to minimize stress levels, reduce alcohol consumption and speak with a doctor about switching pain relievers, since they can aggravate the stomach lining. Activities such as yoga or meditation can help with relaxation, and enjoying healthier drinks such as water can help keep stomach problems at bay.

Other health benefits of eating strawberries
Strawberries are good for reducing inflammation of not only the stomach inflammation but other kinds as well, including in the joints. In fact, the Harvard School of Public Health conducted a study which showed that women who ate 16 or more strawberries weekly were less likely to have C-reactive protein (CRP) in the body, a telltale marker of inflammation.

Strawberries have also been shown to improve eye health, suppress cancer cell growth and regulate blood pressure. Of course, to help avoid health issues related to pesticide consumption, be sure to choose organic, and hopefully local, strawberries!

Originally posted 2014-03-31 14:10:23.