The Top 10 Power Foods
The top power foods around us might look humble, ordinary and nothing special, but they are packed with abundant nutritional value. These power foods contain high doses of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, among other nutrients. They help prevent illnesses such as heart disease and diabetes, and they also help boost the immune system, improve memory and concentration; all this while slowing down the ageing process. So let's get to know these power foods...
Almonds contain a very large number of antioxidants that help fight skin wrinkles, aging, cancer, heart disease and stroke. A cup of almonds contains more potassium than a whole banana and more calcium than milk. They also contain magnesium and phosphorus to build healthy bones. Almonds are good sources of vitamin E, zinc, proteins and fiber for healthy skin and a strong immune system.
Beans such as kidney beans, chickpeas, and lentils are low in fat and rich sources of iron, manganese, antioxidants, B-complex vitamins and protein. The high level of fiber in beans also helps to reduce cholesterol levels and the risk of heart disease and diabetes.
Cabbage contains large amounts of glutamine, an amino acid that has anti-inflammatory properties and is beneficial to the heart and circulatory system as well as for treating stomach, skin and intestinal ulcers. The purple cabbage gets its bright color from the antioxidant lycopene, which reduces the risk of prostate problems in men and helps to repair aged and sun-damaged skin.
Garlic is rich in phytochemicals called allylic sulphides that decrease the risk of certain cancers in the body. It also has natural antibiotic and antioxidant effects in the body; this fights colds and flus. Along with this, garlic has heart-healthy benefits such as decreasing blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and preventing blood clots in the arteries.
Oats contain abundant vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants. They are rich in silica, a mineral that is important for bone, muscle and joint health. Oats also contain complex carbohydrates, fats and iron, and are an excellent source of long lasting energy.
Pumpkins are packed with carotenoids, a potent antioxidant that gives them their bright color and helps to protect the body's cells. Pumpkin is also rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, which are important for eye health and reduce the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration, a serious eye disease that can cause blindness.
Berries, including blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, cranberries and red currants, are especially rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Eat a handful of berries every day. You can include them in cereals and salads, eat berries instead of calorie-heavy desserts and use them to make smoothies for breakfast or a snack.
Spinach contains abundant calcium, iron, fiber and the vitamins A, C, E and K. it also contains five times more beta-carotene than broccoli and also has natural cancer-fighting phytochemicals called indoles and sulphoraphane.
Whole grains such as wheat and barley contains significant amounts of the soluble fiber beta-glucan that helps to lower cholesterol and balance blood glucose level. This prevents the risk of heart disease and adult onset diabetes.