PowerFoods

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Red, White, Orange and Brown Pulses Are Powerfoods

By | 2017-10-29T15:39:25+00:00 November 11th, 2016|Meatless Monday, Nutrition, PowerFoods|

So, what are pulses?  Pulses are part of the legume family; they are the dried seed of the legume plants. Pulses come in many shapes, sizes, and colours such as lentils, chickpeas, black beans and kidney beans to name a few.  They are full of so many health benefits and are environmentally friendly too.

6 Health Benefits of Pulses […]

Small Sunflower Seeds Are Packed With Nutrition

By | 2017-10-29T15:39:26+00:00 September 22nd, 2016|Nutrition, PowerFoods|

Delicious nutty sunflower seeds are a popular snack which is undervalued.  They may be small but sunflower seeds are a dense source of nutrients and full of extraordinary health benefits.  Also, the sunflowers are beautiful flowers with an abundance of nutrition.

6 Health Benefits of Sunflower Seeds

[…]

The Thrill of Dill:  Healing and Taste Extraordinaire

By | 2017-10-29T15:39:28+00:00 August 4th, 2016|Nutrition, PowerFoods|

A sprig of delicious dill adds a unique flavor to your food and it is full of health benefits.

Dill’s name comes from the Norwegian word ‘dilla,’ meaning to soothe. Dill has been valued for its many health benefits as early as 1500 B.C. In ancient Egyptian papyrus manuscripts, it was documented as a remedy to soothe flatulence, relieve pain and act as a laxative and a diuretic.

Dill tastes delicious and is also nutritious!

6 Health Benefits of Dill […]

Pecans are Heart Healthy and Delicious

By | 2017-11-21T14:53:09+00:00 April 2nd, 2016|Nutrition, PowerFoods|

Pecans are gourmet nuts with a delicious buttery taste and not just in a pecan pie. Also, pecans have an abundance of health benefits making them a great powerfood  addition to our meals and even our snacks!

‘Pecan’ means ‘a nut requiring a stone to crack’ it in Algonquian.  They are technically a fruit with a single stone or pit, surrounded by a husk, not really a nut.

6 Health Benefits of the Pecan

[…]

Health Benefits of Grapefruit: Weight Loss and Much More

By | 2017-10-29T15:39:31+00:00 January 30th, 2016|Nutrition, PowerFoods|

Grapefruit helps with weight loss!  It does more than help you lose weight, grapefruit is full of many health benefits too.

Remember when a person gorged on grapefruit in the 1980’s and seriously lost lots of weight?  It was highly restrictive but it turns out all those restrictions were not necessary.

Eat half a Grapefruit before each meal; it can help you lose up to a pound a week before sensible meals!

Or eat whatever you usually do and lose 3.6 pounds in 12 weeks. – Research at the Nutrition and Medical Research Centre at Scripps Clinic

Strangely, researchers are not sure how this works. They do know something in the grapefruit balances your insulin levels.  This could  certainly cause weight loss but there may be other factors involved also.  […]

5 Reasons To Love Brussels Sprouts and 7 Tips To Make Them Taste Better

By | 2017-10-29T15:39:32+00:00 December 12th, 2015|Nutrition, PowerFoods|

If you’ve already decided you don’t like Brussels sprouts, it’s probably because at some point in your life someone served you some where their tasty, nutty, sweet flavor was boiled away. When you learn how to cook them properly, you may find them totally yummy!

Brussels sprouts look like mini cabbages and are in fact in the same family.

5 Health Benefits of Brussels Sprouts

1. Keeps Bones Strong and Healthy

Brussels sprouts are full of vitamin K, which is responsible for good bone health.  One cup of Brussels sprouts has over 270 percent of your daily vitamin K requirement. Studies have found vitamin K to be helpful in increasing bone density  and reducing fractures in osteoporosis patients.

2. Helps Fight Cancer

The research for how Brussels sprouts helps fight cancer is vast. Here are a few highlights.

  • Brussels sprouts are a cruciferous vegetable, which have been shown to lower overall cancer risk according to research at Oregon State University.
  • It was found that people who ate greater amounts of Brussels sprouts had a lower risk of cancer, as stated at the National Cancer Institute fact page.
  • Cruciferous vegetables have been found to help inhibit and regulate cancer-causing genes. Cruciferous vegetables are “key to eliminating cancer” according to research at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
  • Also, Brussels sprouts are a glucosinolate-containing cruciferous vegetable, which a 1995 study found reduces colon cancer.

 3. Lowers Cholesterol

When Brussels sprouts are steamed, the fiber components bind with intestinal bile acids, helping them to pass out of the body. This creates a need in the body to replenish lost bile acids, using the existing supply of cholesterol, thus reducing it. Uncooked Brussels sprouts do have some ability to lower cholesterol, but it’s low compared to the process of steaming, according to the Western Regional Research Center.

4. Provides A Good Source of Protein When Combined with a Whole Grain

Brussels sprouts contain a good quantity of protein. There’s 4 grams of protein in one cup of Brussels sprouts. You will get the most protein when you eat them with a whole grain as they need the balance of other amino acids.

5. Promotes Weight loss

One cup of Brussels sprouts has only 56 calories. They are low in fat and have 4 grams of fiber. This fiber has many benefits for your digestive system and gives you that ‘full’ feeling. They are nutrient dense so your body is also satisfied long term.

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Brussels Sprouts Trivia

  • They are spelled Brussels sprouts, NOT Brussel sprouts and NOT brussel sprouts.
  •  A team of scientists with local schoolchildren lit a Christmas tree in London, England from the energy of 1,000 Brussels sprouts!
  • Brussels sprouts are used in Chinese medicine to improve digestion.
  • Brussels sprouts are the most hated vegetable in Britain and America!

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Brussels Sprout Nutrition

One serving of Brussels sprouts will meet your needs for vitamin C and vitamin K for the day. Brussels sprouts are one of the top 20 […]

Surprising Benefits of Sweet Potatoes & Tips For Cooking Them Right

By | 2017-10-29T15:39:33+00:00 December 10th, 2015|Health Tips, PowerFoods|

You can mash them or bake them, or give them a quick fry and sweet potatoes are always delicious!

This starchy superstar is a delicious treat and has become a sentimental staple at Thanksgiving dinners. The good news is that sweet potatoes are actually very nutritious as well as being exceptionally delicious. Read on to discover their health benefits, their history and trivia, and tips for cooking them just right.

Don’t let the ‘sweet’ in sweet potatoes scare you.
They actually have a lower glycemic index then white potatoes. That means they are less likely to produce insulin resistance and its accompanying health problems, including weight gain. Sweet potatoes are a smart carb, very rich in carotenoids, vitamins A, B6, C, potassium, iron and fiber. They provide a wealth of health benefits and are a great addition to your meals.

Did you know that sweet potatoes were cultivated and consumed before the white (Irish) potato?

13 Surprising Health Benefits of Sweet Potatoes

1.  Maintains Healthy Blood Sugar Levels

Yes, sweet potatoes are sweet, but they have a low glycemic index meaning the sugar is released slowly into the bloodstream. Most consumed starchy foods raise blood sugar rapidly; with sweet potato you will not get a blood sugar spike, but you will get a steady amount of energy. Research at the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences found the Beauregard sweet potato to be a low-glycemic index food.

2. Treatment for Diabetes

A study of 61 people with type 2 diabetes saw that those who took the extract, Caiapo, from the sweet potato daily for 3 months had their blood sugar drop with no significant adverse effects.

Caiapo has been used without medical prescription for years in Japan as a food additive for prevention and treatment for diabetes.

“We’re hoping that diet, particularly the consumption of sweet potatoes, will become a more widely used tool in the treatment of diabetes. It has the potential to be more cost-effective than drugs.” – Dr. Jon Allen, CALS professor of food science.baked sweet potato-443x295

3.  Immune System is Strengthened

Sweet potatoes are high in vitamin C, Beta Carotene and vitamin E that support a healthy immune system and are powerful disease-fighting antioxidants.

4. Helps Keep the Heart Healthy

They are a great source of B6 vitamins, which break down homocysteine, a substance that contributes to the hardening of blood vessels and arteries. – Harvard University School of Public Health.

Also, being a good source of potassium, they help the heart by lowering blood pressure according to the American Heart Association. Potassium is also an important electrolyte that helps regulate your heartbeat.

5. Reduce the Chances of Stomach Ulcers

Functional Foods in Health and Disease did a study in 2012 on how effective sweet potatoes were in healing an ulcer. The sweet potato had a potent ulcer healing effect!

6. Good for Weight Loss

Sweet potatoes are a good source of dietary fiber, which slows down digestion so you eat less. This […]

Sweet Colourful Bell Peppers are Full of Health Benefits

By | 2017-10-29T15:39:35+00:00 October 22nd, 2015|Health Tips, Nutrition, PowerFoods|

Colourful bell peppers add a sweet, light crunchiness to a meal.  Their bright red, yellow, orange or green adds vibrant beauty to any meal, whether it’s a salad or a stir fry.

Health Benefits of Sweet Bell Peppers […]

Kabocha Squash – Superstar of Squashes

By | 2017-10-29T15:39:36+00:00 September 18th, 2015|Nutrition, PowerFoods|

Kabocha Squash can turn your kitchen into a fall food festival. With its bright orange color and rich, sweet delicious flavor, it can add a delightful dynamism to any meal. Learn below about its health benefits and how to find and cook it properly.

All squash is good for your health, but Kabocha Squash is my favorite because it tastes so good! Read about Squash the Powerfood.

5 Kabocha Squash Health Benefits

Excellent High Source of Beta-carotene

Beta-carotene converts to vitamin A in the body. Many of the Kabocha health benefits come from the benefits of vitamin A and the powerful antioxidant properties of beta-carotene.

1. Good for Healthy Eyes

Vitamin A is essential for good vision. Often poor sight at night and dry eyes are signs of a vitamin A deficiency according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.

One cup of Kabocha Squash has 93 percent of the amount of Vitamin A required for the day.

 2. Helps Decrease Heart Disease

In a study of 1899 men aged 40 to 59 years, it was found that those with higher amounts of Vitamin A had a decreased risk of incident CHD. Kabocha squash is very high in vitamin A.

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3. Good for Weight Loss – Low in carbohydrates

One cup of Kobocha Squash has only 40 calories compared to Butternut Squash, which has 60 calories.

 4. May Help Fight Cancer

The American Institute for Cancer Research reports that squash may help fight cancer and heart disease while protecting your vision, immune system and skin.

 5. Good for Healthy Skin

It is high in vitamin A. Research sited by the University of Maryland Medical Center  has found vitamin A to be important for skin health and skin problems due to aging.

Kabocha Squash Trivia

It is known as Japanese squash. It is similar to Butternut Squash, but much sweeter. Its growing season lasts well through the winter.

Portuguese sailors took the Kabocha Squash with them from Cambodia to Japan in 1541. Their name for it was Cambodia abóbora and the Japanese shortened it to Kabocha.

Winter squash, or Pumpkin on its tree

Squash History

  • All the hard-shelled squashes are uniquely from the western hemisphere as far back as 3,000 BC. They were honored by the natives as being one of the ‘Three Sisters’ (Beans, Corn and Squash).  These were sustenance foods for many of the ancient people.
  • Europeans did not get to eat squash until after Columbus. In northern Europe they did not grow well as the climate was too cool and the summer season too short. France and Spain embraced the squash and created many unique varieties.

How to Buy and Store Kabocha Squash

  • Look for a squat pumpkin shape with hard knobby looking skin.
  • It weighs an average of three pounds and has spotted or blotchy dark green skin.
  • Make sure the squash is […]

Tomatoes are Tasty and Full of Health Benefits

By | 2017-10-29T15:39:38+00:00 July 15th, 2015|Health Tips, PowerFoods|

The red of tomatoes is what makes them full of health benefits, even when you are enjoying them as a refreshing juice or tomato sauce. Tomatoes are fat burning, help prevent cancer and are a very heart healthy food.

Tomato Health Benefits

What scientists have found is that their high quantity of lycopene, the phytochemical that creates tomatoes’ ruby red complexion that makes them very health benefiting. The lycopene is a powerful antioxidant that inhibits free radicals, which are a destructive substance in the body. It binds to free radicals, keeping them from creating cell damage that can result in diseases such as heart disease and cancer.

The strongest health benefit is their ability to reduce the risk of heart disease. You can also find lycopene in other red foods like watermelon, apricots, red grapefruit, guava and papaya.

1. Helps Reduce Risk of Heart Disease tomato benefits
The highest average intake of lycopene was linked to almost a 30 percent reduction in the incidence of cardiovascular disease and coronary heart disease.
“We’ve shown quite clearly that lycopene improves the function of blood vessels in cardiovascular disease patients. It reinforces the need for a healthy diet in people at risk from heart disease and stroke,” says Dr. Joseph Cheriyan from the University of Cambridge.
Lycopene concentrations in the blood have been found to be protective in the early stages of narrowing of the arteries. When your arteries are narrowed, blood flow to the heart slows down. The research found that people with high levels of lycopene in their blood have lower rates of heart disease.
A diet rich in tomatoes was found to increase “good” HDL cholesterol levels by 15.2 percent. A diet high in tomato products reduced “bad” LDL cholesterol levels by 13 percent in one Finnish study.. In one study observing people with an average age of 54 years from 10 European countries, lycopene may be at the root of the cardio-protective power of a diet rich in vegetables. Tomatoes are high in potassium, which helps regulate blood pressure.

2. Lowers Risk of Cancer
Tomatoes are rich in beta-carotene and lycopene, help lower some types of cancer and slow down the rate of other types of cancer.
Tomatoes reduce breast cancer due to high amounts of carotenoids (alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, lycopene and total carotenoids), according to research from the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.
Tomatoes may help prevent prostate cancer. This study found that men who ate more than 10 portions of tomatoes or tomato products per week have an 18 percent reduced risk of prostate cancer compared to men who ate less than ten.
Consuming tomatoes and tomato-based products have been shown to lower the risk of a variety of cancers. The cancers that lowered the most were lung, stomach and prostate cancer. Research also indicated that tomatoes may help prevent cancers of the breast, cervix, oral cavity, colorectum, esophagus and pancreas. “It is critical to recognize that the current […]

Time to enjoy Tasty Mushrooms with Amazing Health Benefits

By | 2017-10-29T15:39:42+00:00 February 25th, 2015|Nutrition, PowerFoods|

Mushrooms are more than a delicious addition to your meal, they are full of health benefits too.  There are over 140 thousand types of mushroom-forming fungi.  Whether it is a small button mushroom or a large brown one it is a powerfood to be added to make meal extra tasty. 

There are close to 100 types of mushrooms being studied for their health benefits and a small number found to be very beneficial for boosting your immune system. Learn the 8 health benefits of the mushroom.  […]

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