14 Feb Eight Foods to Man-tain your health
Forget superfoods! Want increased mental stamina, energy, vitality and improved health? Of course, you do. Well, there’s no need to take the latest wonder supplement or to eat ancient South American berries. Here is a list of foods, yes, real foods, that you can add to your diet to improve your overall health and wellbeing.
Walnuts are a fantastic source of nutrition. They contain polyunsaturated fatty acids, protein, fibre, magnesium and vitamin B6. One study found that walnuts not only reduced the inflammatory load on the brain but also helped to improve a number of neurological processes too. The study’s authors concluded by saying that eating walnuts as part of a healthy diet can be an effective way to slow brain ageing and reduce the risk of neurodegenerative diseases. With evidence like that, you’d be a nutter not to regularly munch on some walnuts.
Tomatoes are high in lycopene, an antioxidant that has been shown to be preventative against prostate cancer. In fact, tomato sauce is extremely rich in lycopene, as heating tomatoes increases its bioavailability. So, tomato sauce sandwiches don’t seem like such a silly idea after all – at least your prostate will approve.
Casanova used to dine on 50 oysters for breakfast. According to some, his exploits were attributed to his high intake of the sea creature. That’s because oysters are high in zinc, which is important for sexual health as well as immunity. While you’re still better off having porridge or grainy toast for breakfast, you may want to eat some oysters at another time of the day to boost your zinc intake.
Turkey contains tryptophan, an amino acid responsible for producing serotonin. Serotonin is often described as the ‘happy hormone’. Include turkey in your lunchtime sandwich or substitute it for chicken to help boost your intake of tryptophan. Your tastebuds will be happy too.
Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids. These fats have been shown to improve heart health by improving heart rate, reducing the risk of blood clots and inflammation, and boosting the good cholesterol. This is surely heartening news in light of the fact that 153 Aussie men suffer a heart attack every day. The National Heart Foundation recommends that we get two serves of fatty fish a week. Regularly including salmon in your diet is a good start.
Eggs are nutritional powerhouses packed with heaps of good stuff like protein, vitamin B12, monounsaturated fat, phosphorous, selenium, iodine, folate and vitamin A. All up, there are 11 different vitamins and minerals naturally found in eggs. They’re also naturally low in salt and sugar. And, because they are high in protein, they help to keep us fuller for longer, so they’re a great option for those looking to shed some weight.
Milk is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, particularly bone-building calcium and it’s packed with slow-releasing energy and muscle-building protein. It’s the perfect post-exercise drink as it is high in leucine, an amino acid that helps to fast track muscle growth and recovery. So show off your bulging biceps and milk moustache proudly!
Baked beans are jam-packed full of nutrients such as vitamins B1 and B6, folate, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, copper, potassium, zinc and selenium. Plus they are low in fat, high in low GI carbs and fibre. Studies have consistently shown that dietary fibre can help to reduce one’s risk of developing bowel cancer. Worryingly, bowel cancer is the second most common cause of cancer in men in Australia. Regularly include baked beans on toast at brekkie or have them as a snack in between meals to boost your fibre intake. Your guts will thank you for it.
Including some of these foods may just be the antidote you need to ward off sickness and disease. That’s eggcellent news.