There’s surely more to eating healthy than what just meets your eye. While opting for healthy and nutritious foods such as fruits and vegetables is obviously a good start, that’s all what it is, just the start. Nutritionists bet on the fact that choosing healthy foods is just half of the battle won, and they’re right on the money when they say so. You can only win the other half of the verdict if you eat these nutritious foods the correct way. Slicing your strawberries, overcooking the broccoli or char-grilling the meat will only end up robbing them off the vital nutrients; nutrients that make them what they are and could even make it harmful for your system. As much as you might believe that there could be nothing better than your fix of daily java right after you wake up (or even better, waking up to sliced juicy apples), believe us when we say that there is a better way to consume them all.
Listed below are 8 healthy foods that you might be eating wrong all your life so that you get to eat them right, starting right now:
While maximum chocolates (the ones made from milk) may not be the best reputed health foods, its darker cousin certainly is. Dark chocolates are replete with antioxidants such as epicatechins and flavanols that ensure easy circulation of blood, normalize blood pressure and keep risks related to heart attack or stroke in check. Add to that reduced cortisol (the stress hormone that negatively impacts the body in ways more than one) secretion in the body and better skin health as well.
However, all’s not sunshine with this dark delight. If you have been eating a whole lot of them (a bar each day or more than that) or if the percentage of cacao isn’t that much, you’re likely to miss out on the goods of it. Eat one serving a day (almost the size of one Hershey’s Kiss). It’s always better to eat the plain variant of dark chocolates that have minimum 70 percent cocoa while avoiding peanut butter fills that might contain unhealthy fats and oils.
This perennial vegetable is filled with beta-carotene and Vitamin A, nutrients that do a world of good to your vision while preventing cancer and afflictions of the heart. These also degree down the process of ageing and keep an astounding number of infections at bay. But then none of these could be accruing to your body if you have been eating your carrots uncooked (or undercooked) all this while. Research states that cooking these orange wonder vegetables helps your system absorb all the carotenoids that safeguard your ticker health while giving a solid boost to your immunity. Fortunately, it’s rather easy to work cooked carrots into your daily diet; make them a regular feature inside your casseroles and the evening soup that you savor.
This dark green member of the cabbage family is a reservoir of potassium, fiber, folate and essential vitamins (A, B6 and C). Some studies have concluded that broccoli can beat cancers of the skin and breast. Having said so, it’s easy to eat them the wrong way. Researches from various quarters have come down to the finding that steaming (for not more than 2-3 minutes) might just be the only way that maintains (even increases) the cancer combatting abilities of broccoli. Boiling or overcooking it might make it improbable for the enzyme to transform chemicals known as glucosinolates into the primary cancer-beating agents.
These are one of the few vegetables that are a major storehouse of all the vital carotenoids (alpha, lutein, lycopene and beta-carotene), Vitamin C, E and potassium. Tomatoes are especially rich in lycopene that inarguably has the most ‘anti-oxidant activity’ among the other anti-oxidants. But if you don’t cook the tomatoes on an even flame for 2 minutes, you are most likely to be missing out on the king of carotenoids. Research backs up the claim that gradual cooking the tomatoes drastically increases the lycopene content that ultimately ends up bringing down risks of stroke, cancers of the prostate and other heart woes. You cannot do any better than cooking these red tangy edible fruits.
Milk and tea go together like a dream; however, this pairing needs immediate intervention. The moment you pour milk to your tea, you strip it off all the heart healthy benefits. The milk proteins or caseins decrease the heart healthy compounds present in tea (catechins). Instead, always opt for plain tea or add a dash of lime to it.
Nuts are probably the easiest fix to mid-day hunger pangs, especially now, when time is everybody’s absolute priority. But you have to consume them the right way if you want all the nutritional benefits to hit you. The presence of anti-nutrients such as phytic acid and lectins makes digestion a difficult process, thus causing gut irritation and other digestive concerns. To eliminate such unnecessary nuisance, it is advised to soak the nuts in water overnight and then dry them in the morning before consumption. More specifically, you should soak walnuts, pecans and peanuts for up to twelve hours, macadamias and almonds for 6-7 hours and cashews for a maximum of 5 hours.
Strawberries are a delectable way to stack up on your daily Vitamin C requirements. As per nutrition stats, just a serving of these fruits packs a powerful punch of Vitamin C; about 51.5 mg that’s half of what your body needs on a regular basis. You can double the portion as well for the optimal fix. But there is the catch. Don’t slice the strawberries. Studies state that whole strawberries pack at least 8-12 percent of Vitamin C more than their cut and sliced counterparts. This is because when cut, these vitamins become exposed to the oxygen and light, which then start breaking them down. Refrigerate these fruits to reap the maximum benefits of this wonder vitamin.
While sprinkling a handful of these in your salad, smoothies or yoghurt puts you on a surefire way to reduce risks of cancer and many heart disorders, you might not be benefitting all that much if you’ve not been grinding them down. This is because these small pods have lignans (the main contributor towards flax seeds’ cancer fighting abilities), an abundance of fiber and the heart healthy fatty acids such as Omega 3. Your system isn’t able to break and ground these down, thus compromising on the nutritional value of flax seeds. You could either grind them down completely prior to consumption or buy the pre-ground ones.
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