Eat for longevity, energy and beauty Health Beauty &

2016-05-18 06:00
PHOTO: supplied  Kale.

PHOTO: supplied Kale.

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THERE’S been so much conflicting diet advice recently that it is no wonder people are confused about what to eat. But whether you are fasting or banting or detoxing or eating for energy, two hard truths remain:

• Processed foods are bad for you, so choose whole foods close to its natural state.

• We eat way too much sugar so remember to keep fruit portions reasonable as fruit contains lots of sugar.

Luckily we have access to a host of healthy, nutritious food, available at most supermarkets, you just have to make the choice to start including them in your diet. Foods you should buy and try to include in your diet …

Kale

Everyone is talking about kale, and these days it is readily available in South Africa. This leafy green vegetable is a member of the cabbage family and related to other cruciferous stars like broccoli, cauliflower and brussels sprouts.

It’s loaded with vitamins and minerals and powerful antioxidants while being very low in kilojoules.

Watercress

This peppery leaf is perennial, but sometimes difficult to find in shops. If you have access to enough water (keep in mind we’re in the middle of a drought) you should strongly consider growing it. Since it is so high in vitamins­ (especially C and K) and minerals (copper, calcium, potassium, magnesium) and antioxidants while being super low in calories (only 11 grams per 100 gram raw leaves), it is regarded as one of the most nutritiously dense foods on Earth.

Cranberries

Cranberries aren’t indigenous to SA and can’t be farmed here. In fact, the vast majority of the world’s cranberries come from the U.S. They grow in water and the harvest is something to behold. Cranberries have long been hailed as an effective weapon in the fight against urinary tract infections.

Recent studies have shown this is because they contain proanthocyanidins that act as a barrier against bacteria. This is not only good news for those who suffer from UTIs, but reports suggest that cranberries can be beneficial when treating stomach ulcers and can protect the liver and cardiovascular system. Studies also show they work best when in food form, so for best results, opt for the whole berries instead of the juice.

Lentils

In the Bible story Esau sold his birthright as the first born to his brother, Jacob, for a bowl of lentil soup. While this was perhaps a rash decision, at least he got a nutritious meal out of it.

Making Time magazine’s list of the 50 healthiest foods, lentils are a cheap, healthy source of protein and fiber and also contains iron and zinc.

- Women24.

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