Smoothies, Antioxidants and Healthy Eating

Posted on August 16, 2008. Filed under: Antioxidant Blends, Weight Weight Weight | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Smoothies can be a convenient way to take your nutrients on the run. The versatility of ingredients means smoothies can be infinitely tailored to your taste and preferences.  Retail available smoothies, and smoothie products, usually contain pasteurized ingredients which means the fruits and/or superfoods predictably have a loss in some vital nutrients.  The best choice is to make your own smoothie with fresh, organic ingredients.

                                           

An early-in-the-day smoothie takes little time to prepare, and can keep you feeling satisfied and energized through lunch. You can customize your own super foods and add-ins as there are no rules, just endless combinations.  Here’s a healthy smoothie idea that’s full of nutrients and is delicious.

* 2 Tbsps.each of linseeds and hempseeds that have been soaked overnight. This releases their goodness and makes them easier to absorb. (They’re packed with essential fats for physical and mental health.)

* One scoop of our Greens First morning antioxidant blend, or one scoop of our Red Alert afternoon antioxidant blend.

* Frozen Acai berries (high in antioxidants and other powerful nutrients… the current darling in the antioxidant world), or frozen raspberries

* 25 Fresh Blueberries (the age-defying fruit)

* 4 Frozen strawberries (loaded with zinc and other nutrients to help you feel great)

* 1 banana (packed with potassium and one of the best ingredients to thicken and bulk out a great smoothie recipe)

* 1 small packet of Stevia (the sweetener that’s good for you and is highly alkalizing. It’s better to sweeten a smoothie naturally with fruit or sweeteners)

* A pinch of bee pollen (a great longevity foods and also helpful in keeping you from getting colds and flu)

* Enough water to make it a nice consistency (essential to our lives)

There are many other smoothies you can make but the best smoothie is one that offers you healthful benefits and tastes great!

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10 Easy and Great Health Foods From Your Pantry

Posted on July 18, 2008. Filed under: Antioxidant Blends | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

These 10 great health foods meet at least three of the following criteria: (1) Are a good or excellent source of fiber, vitamins, minerals and other nutrients; (2) Are high in phytonutrients and antioxidant compounds, such as vitamins A and E and beta carotene; (3) May help reduce the risk of heart disease and other health conditions;  (4) Are low in calorie density, meaning you get a larger portion size with a fewer number of calories; and/or (5) Are readily available.

     Almonds – Packed with fiber, riboflavin, magnesium, iron, calcium (more calcium than any other nut w/ 75 milligrams (mg) in one serving or about 23 almonds), and vitamin E.  Also a great plant source of protein and most of the fat in almonds is monounsaturated fat – a healthier type of fat that may help lower blood cholesterol levels.

Apples – An excellent source of pectin, a soluble fiber that can lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels, and fresh apples are a good source of vitamin C – an antioxidant that protects your body’s cells from damage, helps form the connective tissue collagen, keeps your capillaries and blood vessels healthy, and aids in the absorption of iron.

Blueberries – They’re are a rich source of phytonutrients (plant compounds) which may help prevent urinary tract infections, improve short-term memory and promote healthy aging.  One cup of blueberries is also a low-calorie source of approximately 3.6 grams of fiber and 14mg of vitamin C in only 84 calories.    

Broccoli – Broccoli is a good source of calcium, potassium, folate and fiber, and broccoli contains phytonutrients – a group of compounds that may help prevent chronic diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes and some cancers. Broccoli is also a good source of vitamins A and C – antioxidants that protect your body’s cells from damage.

Red Beans – Small red beans and dark red kidney beans are good sources of iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper and thiamin. They’re  low-fat and low-calorie sources of protein and dietary fiber, and contain phytonutrients that may help prevent chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and cancer.

Salmon – Salmon is low in saturated fat and cholesterol, and is a good source of protein.  It’s also an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids which is a type of fat that makes your blood less likely to form clots that may cause heart attacks. Omega-3s may also protect against irregular heartbeats that may cause sudden cardiac death, decrease triglyceride levels, decrease the growth of artery-clogging plaques, lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of stroke.

Spinach – Popeye had it right.  Eat your spinach!   The plant compounds in spinach may boost your immune system, and may help keep your skin and hair healthy.  Spinach is a good source of riboflavin, vitamin B6, calcium, iron and magnesium, and is high in vitamins A and C and folate.

     Sweet Potatoes – You can tell sweet potatoes are high in the antioxidant beta carotene by their deep orange-yellow color. Foods rich in beta carotene, which is converted into vitamin A in your body, may help slow the aging process and reduce the risk of some cancers. Sweet potatoes are also fat-free, low in calories, and are a good source of fiber, vitamins B-6, C and E, folate and potassium.

 

Vegetable Juice – Vegetable juice is an easy way to include veggies in your diet and includes most of the nutrients, vitamins and minerals found in the original vegetables.  Vegetable juices that include tomato juice, and tomato juice, are good sources of lycopene, an antioxidant that may reduce the risk of heart attack, prostate cancer and possibly other types of cancer.  (Be sure to choose low-sodium vegetable juices.)

     Wheat Germ – The wheat germ – the part of the seed that’s responsible for the growth and development of the new plant sprout – is a highly concentrated source of niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin E, folate, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, iron and zinc.  It also contains protein, fiber and some fat.    

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Acai is the New Darling of the Antioxidant World

Posted on June 11, 2008. Filed under: Antioxidant Blends | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

       

                               A grove of Acai Palms in Brazil

Acai is the new darling in the antioxidant world.  Acai is a dark purple fruit smaller than the size of a grape and consists of a seed mostly covered in a small amount of pulp.  This fruit grows on the Acai Palm tree and is found in the Amazon Rain Forest of Brazil.  Acai has a berry taste with a touch of chocolate flavor so is tasty and inviting to eat.

 

Acai has been found to have about 10 times the antioxidant level of grapes and twice that of blueberries, plus it has about 10-30 times the anthocyanins of red wine (anthocyanins act as powerful antioxidants).  The Acai berry is rich in healthy Omega 3, Omega 6 and Omega 9 unsaturated fats, and has as much Vitamin C as blueberries.  Other vitamins identified in the Acai berry include Vitamins A, B1, B3 and E in addition to potassium, calcium, magnesium, copper and zinc. 

 

B-sitosterol, campesterol and sigmasterol, three plant or photosterols, have been identified in the Acai berry which have been shown to have health benefits in maintaining healthy heart and digestive function.  It’s also a good source of fiber.

 

Acai’s nutrient mix may assist is:

*  Maintaining healthy function of bodily systems and organs

*  Promoting healthy sleep

*  Supporting the immune system

*  Act as an effective anti-inflammatory

 

The University of Florida has some promising new studies using the Acai berry in cancer research.  Stay tuned for more good news from that sector.

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Free Radicals Are Unpaired Electrons

Posted on June 11, 2008. Filed under: Antioxidant Blends | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    

 

Free radicals are unpaired electrons which, in your body, attack healthy cells so they can acquire the healthy cell’s electrons.  The healthy cells then become free radicals as well.  This multiplication of free radicals can lead to aging, cancer, heart disease, and other degenerative problems.  Ingestion of antioxidants, or foods rich in antioxidants, allows them to donate their electrons to damaged cells.  This slows down or can prevent  degenerative changes in the body.  Eating especially intensely colored fruits and vegetables is a great way to get adequate antioxidants into your body.  Organic phytonutrient-rich antioxidant supplements is also a good choice.  Berries are particularly rich in antioxidants with raspberries, blueberries and strawberries being some of your great choices.  So is the Acai berry, and brightly colored vegetables. 

 

http://greensfirst.com/5039/gf_content2.asp?node=87 

 

 http://greensfirst.com/5039/gf_content2.asp?node=15

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How Do Birds and Berries Depend On Each Other?

Posted on June 4, 2008. Filed under: Antioxidant Blends | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

blueberry

 

For their cycle of life.  Birds eat the yummy berry fruits – blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and more – then fly hither and yon spreading the berry seeds.  The berry seeds have more places to grow and spread, and the cycle repeats.  Phytonutrients are the phytochemicals that give berries their attractive and lively colors.  These highly visible colors attract the seed-distributing birds that feast on the fruit and spread the wealth.

 

Berries, in general, contain vitamins (Vitamins C & E are common), minerals (Manganese and Niacin, too), and fiber (4-9 grams per cup) plus a burst of succulent flavor in every bite.  These fun-to-eat foods may help prevent heart disease and cancer, boost the immune system, have antiviral and antibacterial properties, and slow the aging process.  These healthful benefits are due to the concentration of phytonutrients which have an antioxidant effect (kind of like anti-rust).  Besides the deeply colored berries, strongly colored vegetables, nuts, flax seeds, tea and dark chocolate also tend to be high in the healthful phytochemicals. 

 

Would you rather get your daily dose of phytonutrients and antioxidants from your cup of tea, carrots and broccoli, dark chocolate, or brightly colored berries?

 

“Mac”

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