Foods That Do The Body Great

 Here are a few foods and some of the benefits they provide. Almost all vegetables and herbs provide lasting health benefits. This list is not all-inclusive. There are many more fruits and vegetables out there with health benefits.

In fact, the best health insurance plan or prescription available today, better than Obama Care, is eating healthy. Stay away from man-made packaged, processed, food, and reduce consumption of sugary foods. Avoid drugs and over consumption of alcohol. This will assure you reduced health care costs.

Avocado– A 1996 study done by researchers in Mexico found that people who ate avocado every day for one week experienced an average 17 percent drop in total blood cholesterol. What’s more, their levels of LDL (“bad”) cholesterol decreased and HDL (“good”) cholesterol increased.

 Whole grains The soluble fiber found in whole grains, such as whole-wheat bread, brown rice, and oatmeal binds the cholesterol in your meal and drags it out of your body, when your body needs to utilize cholesterol in the future, it draws on your blood cholesterol supply, effectively lowering your total blood cholesterol level and your risk for heart disease

 Olive oil A 2011 study found that people ages 65 or older who regularly used olive oil (for both cooking and as a dressing) were 41 percent less likely to have a stroke compared to those who never use olive oil in their diet.

Nuts- Almonds are very high in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, vitamin E, and fiber, while walnuts are a great plant-based source of an omega-3 fatty acid called alpha-linolenic acid.” According to the American Heart Association, monounsaturated fats can help reduce levels of bad cholesterol in your blood and lower your risk of heart disease and stroke.

 Fish- Fatty fish such as mackerel, herring, tuna, sardines, and salmon are full of omega-3 fatty acids. Eating fish twice a week can reduce your risk of developing heart disease by decreasing inflammation and lowering triglyceride levels, and it may even help boost your HDL levels.

 Asparagus- Asparagus is one of the best, natural artery-clearing foods around, says Shane Ellison, an organic chemist and author of Over-The-Counter Natural Cures. “Asparagus works within the 100,000 miles of veins and arteries to release pressure, thereby allowing the body to accommodate for inflammation that has accumulated over the years.” It also helps ward off deadly clots.

 Pomegranate- Pomegranate contains phytochemicals that act as antioxidants to protect the lining of the arteries from damage. A 2005 study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that antioxidant-rich pomegranate juice stimulated the body’s production of nitric oxide, which helps keep blood flowing and arteries open.

 Broccoli- Broccoli is rich in vitamin K, which is needed for bone formation and helps to keep calcium from damaging the arteries. Not to mention, broccoli is full of fiber, and studies show a high-fiber diet can also help to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

Turmeric- The spice turmeric is a powerful anti-inflammatory. It contains curcumin which lowers inflammation—a major cause of arteriosclerosis or hardening of the arteries. A 2009 study found that curcumin helped reduce the fatty deposits in arteries by as much as 26 percent.

 Persimmons- Research shows the polyphenols found in this fruit (which has twice as much fiber and more antioxidants than an apple) can help decrease levels of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides.

 Orange juice A 2011 study published online in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that drinking two daily cups of 100-percent orange juice can help reduce diastolic (resting) blood pressure. OJ contains an antioxidant that has been found to help improve blood vessel function.

 Spirulina- A daily 4,500 mg dose of these blue – green algae can help relax artery walls and normalize blood pressure. It may also help your liver balance your blood fat levels—decreasing your LDL cholesterol by 10 percent and raising HDL cholesterol by 15 percent, according a recent study.

 Cinnamon- Just one teaspoon a day of antioxidant-rich cinnamon can help reduce fats in the bloodstream, helping to prevent plaque build up in the arteries and lower bad cholesterol levels by as much as 26 percent, according to recent research.

Cranberries- Research shows that potassium-rich cranberries can help reduce LDL cholesterol levels and help raise the good HDL levels in your body, and regular consumption may help reduce your overall risk of heart disease by as much as 40 percent.

 Green Tea- Green tea is rich in catechins, compounds that have been shown to decrease cholesterol absorption in your body. Another bonus? It may help prevent cancer and weight gain, too!

 Watermelon- A Florida State University study found that people given a 4,000 mg supplement of L-citrulline (an amino acid found in watermelon) lowered their blood pressure in just six weeks. Researchers say the amino acid helps your body produce nitric oxide, which widens blood vessels.

 Spinach- The potassium and folate found in spinach can help lower blood pressure, and according to recent research, one serving of nutrient-packed leafy greens (like spinach) a day can help reduce your risk of heart disease by 11 percent. Enjoy some in salads, omelets, and smoothies.

 Garlic- Garlic has a long history dating back to ancient times of use in treating all kinds of heart-related diseases and hypertension. Studies have shown that high doses of garlic (2,400 mg of deodorized garlic per day) significantly lowered both diastolic and systolic blood pressure. Also, many studies have shown that eating garlic regularly can reduce harmful cholesterol by 10 percent or more. It may also prevent blood clots from forming.

It also contains the strong antibiotic allicin.

Grapes- Red seedless grapes are a good source of lutein – a carotenoid that’s been shown to help reduce early arteriosclerosis. Recent studies have shown that lutein also helps prevent thickening of the carotid artery in the neck, an indication of atherosclerosis. It also lowers inflammation of LDL cholesterol in artery walls.

Cherries- The tiny sweet fruit contains over 17 compounds to clear away clogged arteries of plaque even better than vitamin supplements. These compounds, found in the anthocyanins that give cherries their red color. Cherries hold more antioxidant power than well-known vitamin C and E supplements. Plus being a whole food, you will better absorb all the wonderful nutrients including beneficial fiber which helps to lower cholesterol.

Strawberries- Perfect to toss into your breakfast cereal, strawberries are also loaded with antioxidants, including vitamin C and E, ellagic acid, assorted carotenoid and anthocyanins. They can cut cholesterol levels by 10 percent. Try to buy organic strawberries as they tend to be heavily sprayed with pesticides.

Apples- Apples are a rich source of “quercetin” including potassium and magnesium – minerals that keep your blood pressure under control. A French study found that eating two apples a day can help prevent and reverse “hardening” of the arteries. Red Delicious and Granny Smith varieties of apple are also rich in procyanidins. Apples are also rich in pectin which lowers blood cholesterol.

 Sweet potatoes Full of cholesterol-lowering fiber, potassium, beta carotene, folate and vitamin C, Sweet Potatoes help to lower your blood pressure and keep your arteries clear.

Tomatoes Tomatoes are rich in carotenoid lycopene, an antioxidant that can significantly lower your risk of atherosclerosis nearly in half. Also, antioxident-rich tomatoes may make LDL cholesterol much less susceptible to becoming oxidized – being a first step in the formation of artery-clogging plaque formation which is a major risk factor for heart disease.

Garbanzo Beans- All beans contain both important soluble and insoluble dietary fiber, but garbanzo beans are one of the best – which help to remove cholesterol-containing bile from your body. They are also known to help prevent heart disease.

 Sources: Various

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