Oh my Gosh! - What should I eat?
Super foods are full of anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals but they also contain amino acids, which are the basic structural building blocks of proteins. Proteins make up the bulk of all your cells structure. They also act as enzymes for cellular reactions.
There are eight essential amino acids they are:
#1 = Tryptophan which reduces anxiety and depression, helps with migraines, helps the immune system, reduces heart spasms, it is also a natural relaxant and aids in normal sleep, taken with Lysine it reduces cholesterol levels in the blood.
#2 = Lysine improves formation of bone cartilage and connective tissues, it aids in the absorption of calcium, it aids in the production of enzymes, hormones and the production of antibodies that help fight diseases and illness.
#3 = Methionine is the supplier of sulfur which prevents problems with hair, nails and skin. Methionine aids in the liverís production of lecithin, reduces liver fat and helps protect the kidneys. Methionine also aids in reducing bladder irritations and infections and promotes hair growth.
#4 = Phenylalaine keeps you awake and alert, it is used in the brain to produce a chemical that transmits signals between the brain and the nerve cells, phenylalaine helps to improve your memory and also reduces hunger pains.
#5 = Threonine aids in digestion and intestinal tract functions; it also helps reduce liver fat.
#6 = Valine calms emotions and aids with mental vigor; it also aids with muscle coordination.
#7 and #8 work together; they are Leucine and Isoleucine, they help to produce essential biochemical components in the body, production of energy, stimulate the brain and aid with alertness.
There are also non-essential amino acids, why they are called non-essential is some what of a mystery, since all of them are needed for different biochemical reactions in the body as you will see.
Arginine improves immune response, promotes wound healing, aids in regeneration of the liver, and is needed for muscle growth.
Tyrosine aids in healthy functioning of the thyroid and pituitary glands, helps to improve memory and transmits impulses to the brain.
Glycine is required during cell production to release oxygen, it also aids in the production of essential hormones in the immune system.
Serine is essential in storing glucose in the muscles and liver, also aids in the immune system and produces a fatty acid cover to protect nerve fibers.
Aspartic acid aids in the removal of ammonia from the body. Ammonia is toxic to the body and aspartic acid helps to protect our body from the poison until it is expressed through the urine.
Glutamic acid helps improve mental capacities, aids in healing ulcers and helps with fatigue.
Alanine is a source of energy for the muscles, brain and nervous system. Alanine produces antibodies that help the immune system.
Cystine is an anti-oxidant and aids in the protection against pollutants, it can help slow the aging process, it is necessary in the production of skin.
Proline is vital in the functioning of joints, and helps to strengthen the heart muscle.
Taurine is necessary in the removal of free-radical waste from the body, it is a factor that is necessary for changes that take place during aging.
Histidine is found in the blood, it is used to treat several diseases such as RA, (rheumatoid arthritis) ulcers, and anemia. These are just a few of the amino acids that are essential in your diet for better health.
It is very important that you choose foods that are rich in amino acids as well as vitamins and minerals for your health.
Super foods are believed to contain the highest numbers of amino acids, vitamins and minerals. If you go to Google and type in super foods, you will find several sights, all telling you about the same thing, that eating a natural diet will protect you from several diseases and illnesses. Here are the ones that most people agree on, they are readily available in markets: Apples, avocados, tomatoes, bananas, cabbage, carrots, garlic, onions, potatoes, sweet potatoes, oranges, cantaloupe, broccoli, watermelon, dry beans, spinach, kale, salmon and other oily fish, flax seed, oats, soya, blueberries, cranberries, squash, almonds, beets, ginger, olive oil, tea, chili peppers, mushrooms, papaya, pineapple, kiwi, mangoes, apricots, pumpkin, walnuts, yogurt, parsley, sage, rosemary, cinnamon, brussel sprouts, lentils, pomegranates, concord grapes and brazil nuts.
After much research I found that not all of the foods I studied were true super foods. You have to consider where and how your food is grown. They do however; contain the necessary ingredients to be beneficial in your diet. It is absolutely true that you need various foods that react together for improved benefits in the body. If you consume an avocado you will reap the rewards but if you consume a grapefruit with your avocado they work as a team to fight disease and illness. This is true for most foods, there are however exceptions and they are; Wild salmon, tomatoes, broccoli and broccoli sprouts, kale, spinach, garlic, onions, blueberries, walnuts, pomegranates, depending how and where they are grown, then thereís goji berries, mulberries, goldenberries, sauco berries, acai berries, noni fruit, mangosteen fruit, bee pollen, royal jelly, green tea, sea vegetables, quinoa, and umeboshi plum.
Sea vegetables are true super foods, they contain significant amounts of protein and they also contain all the minerals found in the ocean. They offer 10 to 20 times the vitamins and minerals found in plants grown on land with just a few exceptions. There is a reason for this; we, as a population, have depleted our soils of the necessary nutrients that plants absorb. We also use chemicals and pesticides on our crops, these chemicals and pesticides are non-selective and destroy everything even the micro bacteria and micro fungi that is digested by the plants. When you purchase an apple from the store it is usually lacking most of the minerals that the soil once provided, minerals that are essential to our health. This is not true for the sea vegetables, the ocean is still productive, we have yet to destroy it and therefore it is a rich source for your health. Kelp, blue-green algae, spirulina, chorella, dulse, alaria, sea lettuce, irish moss, kombu, wakame, and nori are all rich in vitamins, minerals and all the essential amino acids.
Some fruits that are grown wild in other parts of the world are also true super foods and are still rich in nutrients because the soils are not depleted. The Mangosteen fruit is native to South East Asia, it has been studied for 20 years by independent labs and doctors for its medicinal uses; it contains 25,000 anti-oxidants, the highest number ever found in one food source, it contains amino acids as well as a vast majority of vitamins and minerals. The Goji berry is native to Asia; it contains amino acids and essential minerals and vitamins. Mulberries are native to Turkey; they are high in vitamin C, iron, calcium and protein. Goldenberries are native to Colombia and Peru, Sauco berries are native to South America, Umeboshi Plum is native to Japan, Noni fruit is native to Polynesia. The Acai berry has 30 times more anti-oxidants than blueberries, all eight essential amino acids and trace minerals. The list goes on, but what you eat is up to you, your health is in your hands.
If you are already suffering with a disease or illness or youíre prone to certain diseases or illness, due to family history, then there are a few things you need to know. If vegetables are cooked at over 118 degrees the heat will destroy most of the beneficial properties. You can not eat as much as you need, which is 8 to 10 servings a day, but there is a solution, you can juice your way to health. The food pyramid has changed which came as no surprise to me, I still have trouble with this type of system, not everyone needs the same things, and every person on this planet is different and has different nutritional requirements.
There are some terms you need to understand before we continue:
Vitamins = nutrients that are necessary to your health, a shortage or an excessive amount for extended periods can cause health problems.
Phytonutrients = these are anti-oxidants that are plant-derived; they help to improve your health but are not required.
Carotenoids = they are in the dark coloring of the skin of fruits and vegetables (pigments), they are also anti-oxidants; there are dozens of carotenoids.
Free-radical = they disrupt living cells by attacking them, free-radicals are missing an electron and they steal one from other cells, they are responsible for all diseases and illness due to their damage. Free-radicals are in air and water pollution, and in junk foods we eat. You can not escape from them; they are a part of life. Free-radical damage accumulates with age if you do not protect yourself.
Anti-oxidants = they neutralize free-radicals by donating their extra electron; all anti-oxidants have an extra electron. Anti-oxidants protect us from free-radical damage. Anti-oxidants are called scavengers; they prevent cell and tissue damage which leads to disease and illness. They are absolutely required for optimum health in very large numbers every day.
Synergy = nutrients that are taken in combinations; these combinations cause the nutrients to become more powerful then when taken alone.
Notice that the list above states that people agree that blueberries are a super food. Not all foods have been studied, take the cherry; itís deep rich red color is full of carotenoids or it would not have that great color. The cherry has not been extensively studied yet. What does this mean for you? Be wise and eat fruits and vegetables that have the darkest and richest colors, in combinations, to receive maximum benefits. Do not make the mistake that others have made and write off all the unlisted fruits and vegetables, everything that grows in the ground has benefits for your health. Your food choices are a life or death decision, so do your research and find the best solutions for your health.
Beans may reduce the risk of heart disease; lentils support heart health; berries of all kinds have synergistic effects and are scavengers of free-radicals; citrus fruits are all full of anti-oxidants; vegetables steamed on low heat are a great source of fiber and complex carbohydrates; sea vegetables are bursting with carotenoids, vitamins, minerals and amino acids and can be found in many forms, tablet or powder. Sea vegetables support your whole body; green leafy vegetables are bursting with eye health nutrients as well as supporting the heart, brain and bones. Nuts help reduce the risk of heart disease; oats are a prime source of complex carbohydrates and full of fiber. Cold water - wild fish, not farm raised, contain beneficial omega-3 fatty acids, necessary for coronary heart health. Wild salmon, trout and tuna all contain different amounts and should all be consumed; seeds and nuts help balance hormones and have anti-oxidant activities; soy packs a punch with its anti-oxidation effects; mangosteen fruit is bursting with anti-oxidants and works in your entire body for your overall health.
There is some evidence that men and women need different nutrients to support biological needs. Men need to protect themselves against prostate cancer, bladder cancer, testosterone levels, sperm counts, heart disease, and high blood pressure. Men should add five tomatoes, or five servings of tomato sauce, a week to their diet to protect them from prostate cancer. Three oysters a day have the full dayís supply of zinc which is essential for the male reproductive system, testosterone and sperm counts. Men are three times more likely to get bladder cancer than women; broccoli, brussel sprouts and cabbage, eaten five times a week, shows a reduction in this disease according to the studies. Eating a handful of un-salted peanuts every day helps lower your bad cholesterol levels, helping to reduce the risk of heat disease. Potassium can reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke. Watermelon and other melons can help reduce your chances of developing high blood pressure.
Women need to protect themselves against gallbladder disease, breast cancer and fight osteoporosis. Women tend to be anemic due to low iron levels, and women suffer with menopausal hot flashes. Women with low vitamin C levels are more likely to develop gall bladder disease than those with higher levels of vitamin C; papaya has twice the amount of vitamin C than an orange. Flaxseed is rich in an estrogen like compound called lignans. Make sure to get the seeds and grind them in a coffee grinder. You can put them on cereal or mix in muffin mix as there are no lignans in flaxseed oil; lignans have effectively slowed tumor growth in women that already have breast cancer. Vitamin K along with vitamin D and calcium are all important nutrients for fighting osteoporosis. Women that get enough vitamin K are 30 percent less likely to suffer factures in their later years. Collard greens are the best source for this protection, although dark green leafy vegetables, brussel sprouts, spinach and broccoli are also good sources. Women tend to be lower in iron than men due to menstruation and this can cause sever fatigue. To get the highest doses of iron you should try buffalo meat, you get an easily digestible 3 milligrams of iron in a 3 oz portion of this very lean meat. In later life women tend to suffer with the dreaded hot flashes. There may be relief found in tofu. A half cup of tofu contains 30 mg of isoflavones, which are plant chemicals that have a structure that is similar to estrogen, and may offer some relief from hot flashes.
For men and women alike, make sure to add super foods to your diet, such as; sea vegetables, mangosteen fruit juice, Goji berry juice, or other berry juices.
Being healthy takes effort on your part, do not put your health into someone elseís hands, they are not you and their nutritional requirements may be different than yours. Everyone is an expert when it comes to their own health, read and listen to the information but please make an informed choice for yourself.
Do the research! Your life and the quality of your life is in your hands.
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