Five Reasons Why…. You should eat blueberries

Five Reasons Why…. You should eat blueberries

(Image curtesy of Steph on Flickr)

I eat blueberries everyday in my breakfast and here are five reasons why…..

 

  1. Blueberries are rich in phytochemicals – in particular flavonoids which are responsible for the deep blue color of blueberries. Flavonoids are bursting with anti-inflammatory properties which help protect against numerous diseases.

 

  1. Blueberries are rich in Vitamin C – an essential nutrient that helps boost the immune system, lowers blood pressure, improves the mood and helps repair wounds.

 

  1. Blueberries are high in antioxidants – helping protect us against free radical damage that can cause cancer and helps reduces those wrinkles. Blueberries also contain high levels of folate, which helps with DNA synthesis and repair and therefore helps prevents the formation of cancerous cells.

 

  1. Blueberries help improve cognitive function – the anthocyanins in blueberries aid cognitive function by improving memory and motor coordination.

 

  1. Blueberries help protect against cardiovascular disease – our bad cholesterol (LDL) can become oxidized and damaged – a cause of various cardiovascular diseases. Blueberries lower LDL oxidation, helps lower blood pressure, and the anthocyanins reduce the risk of heart attacks.

 

Blueberries can be used in a variety of ways – in baking, puddings, breakfasts, as a snack…  More reasons to try adding them to your diet!

 

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Five Reasons Why….You should add Turmeric to your diet.

Five Reasons Why….You should add Turmeric to your diet.

Photo curtesy of Carol Mitchell

 

Turmeric is an Indian spice that comes from the root of the curcuma longa, a relation of the ginger family.  Nicknamed ‘Indian Solid Gold’ for all its incredible health benefits.  Here are five reasons why you should add a little turmeric into your diet.

 

  1. Turmeric is an anti-inflammatory – the curcumin in turmeric has been show to inhibit various molecules that play a role in inflammation. Inflammation has been shown to have a major role in various diseases such as cardiovascular disease, metabolic diseases – such as obesity and diabetes, pulmonary disease, arthritis and inflammatory bowel diseases.

 

  1. Turmeric can help sore muscles after exercise – turmeric’s anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative properties have been shown to ease the pain of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) that you may have experienced 12-24 hours post exercise.

 

  1. Turmeric improves your blood lipid profile – turmeric has been shown to lower cholesterol levels, in particular LDLs (bad cholesterol) and triglycerides. This is good news as LDLs and triglycerides increase your risk of heart disease.

 

  1. Turmeric can help with IBS – the curcumin in turmeric has been show to reduce bloating, abdominal pain, reduce bowel movements – all the nasty things that come with irritable bowel syndrome.

 

  1. Turmeric can help protect against cancer – the curcumin as well as the phytochemicals (super important nutrients for the body) in turmeric have been shown to have chemopreventive and anti-tumour properties.

 

Turmeric is such a vibrant, wonderful colour and can be added to all sorts of recipes either in powdered form or the fresh root.  Add it to smoothies, soups, curries, scrambled eggs and rice!

 

See my mango, ginger and turmeric smoothie recipe here. Enjoy!

 

Photo curtesy of Carol Mitchell

Photo curtesy of Carol Mitchell

Turmeric smoothie

Turmeric smoothie

Here is my simple but delicious turmeric mango smoothie.  Makes 2 glasses.

Ingredients:

2 x small bananas

1 x mango

1 small piece of ginger

1 1/4 cups of almond milk (or preferred milk)

1 medium sized piece of turmeric

1 heaped teaspoon of lacuma powder (optional)

Method:

Whizz it all together in a blender.  Add a dollop of plain yoghurt if you want a thicker smoothie!

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