Connect with us

Whole Grain Benefits

Lemon for Longevity, A Blue Zones Living Best Practice| Well+Good

Published

on

GRowing in a Greek-American household, along with an abundance of extra virgin olive oil, Bergoregano, and fresh garlic, had another ingredient that was inevitably used in almost every dish and served with almost every meal – lemon. And by “used” I don’t mean just as a side dish or to finish off a dish, but eating lemon for a long life means making it a truly integral part by incorporating it in significant quantities and consuming it daily.

As a registered nutritionist, I began to wonder if this ubiquitous citrus is perhaps one of the main benefits of the Mediterranean diet – in addition to the good fats from olive oil and seafood and an abundance of vitamins and minerals from plant-based ingredients. In fact, the Mediterranean region, where lemons have the upper hand, is home to two of the five Blue Zones – the island of Ikaria in Greece and the island of Sardinia in Italy. Lemons are also listed as one of eight top fruits to consume as part of the Blue Zone diet. Read on to learn what makes lemons so good for us and how you can use them more in everyday cooking.

similar posts

Lemon Health Benefits

First and foremost, lemons are a good source of vitamin C, containing about 50 percent of the recommended daily amount in a single lemon and about 20 percent of the recommended daily amount in just two tablespoons of lemon juice. As a powerful antioxidant, vitamin C supports the immune function and protects the skin against free radicals and visible signs of aging as well as sufficient moisture. Hello lemon water! And the power of lemons is not just in their juice.

In fact, most of the antioxidant flavonoids are found in the peel or whole fruit, not in the juice alone. Studies have shown that citrus flavonoids are cardioprotective by improving blood flow and lowering cholesterol, as well as improving glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity, suppressing inflammation, and having anti-carcinogenic benefits. Lemon polyphenols may also have antiaging benefits, according to a study published in the Nature Journal. The citric acid in lemons can also help prevent kidney stones from forming.

Lemons in everyday cooking

Lemon adds acidity, one of the most important flavor elements in a balanced dish. Much like salt, lemon often adds that little extra to make a dish complete. It turns food from matte to light, and also helps penetrate any greasy, rich flavor that can be overwhelming on its own, which is one of the reasons it goes so well with olive oil.

From sweet to savory, there are almost myriad ways to use lemons in everyday meals. Here are some of my favorites.

Lemon juice “the simple squeeze”

A generous fresh squeeze of lemon just before serving can be just the finishing touch it needs. Lemon juice can also be a great base for a light dressing, sauce, or marinade (the acid helps soften proteins) when paired with extra virgin olive oil and fresh or dried herbs.

Examples of when to reach for the lemon include adding it to a broth, green vegetables, lettuce greens (lemon and arugula is one of our favorite combinations), bean dishes including bean dips like hummus, fried potatoes, cooked fish, poultry, or even red meat, alongside many other everyday foods. Lemon juice can also be a great addition to a grain salad when paired with fresh herbs and on the ever-popular avocado toast.

And when it comes to drinks, adding a squirt of lemon to a green smoothie will help maintain the bright green color and add some extra flavor. And of course, fresh lemon water is still our favorite. Starting with a glass in the morning can be invigorating and provide a healthy dose of vitamin C even before your first meal. (Just remember, if you drink lemon water all day every day, it can damage tooth enamel due to its high acidity, but a glass in the morning won’t hurt.) Pro Tip: To get the most juice out of your lemons, roll them Gently back and forth on your countertop or cutting board before using them. You can also try microwaving lemons to extract even more juice … seriously.

Lemon wedges

Citrus segments are the pieces of fruit with no white pulp or skin. Orange and grapefruit segments are often added to composed salads or open toasts, but this can be done with lemons too! To do this, cut off each end of the lemon, stand the lemon on one end and use a sharp paring knife to carefully remove the entire outer skin that is exposing the lemon pulp without the white stones. Then, hold the lemon in your hand and carefully cut around each lemon segment along the inner layers of the skin, pushing them out one at a time. Adding a few lemon wedges instead of lemon juice can be a great way to add acidity to a dish without adding all of the extra liquid. You also benefit from the advantages of the fiber from the pulp.

Lemon peel

All the essential oils of lemon live in lemon peel – and these powerful, health-promoting flavonoids. Lemon peel offers all the aroma of lemon, but without the intense acidity of the juice or the bitterness of the pulp. In combination with lemon juice or used alone, lemon peel can bridge the gap between sweet and savory. On the savory side, lemon peel is a great addition to grain salads, pasta dishes, vegetable side dishes, poultry and seafood-based recipes, dips and sauces, and much more. On the sweeter side, lemon peel can add another flavor element in dishes like overnight oats, smoothie bowls, or fruit-based desserts like cakes. The peel can either be grated finely or carefully cut into larger pieces and then finely chopped.

Whole lemon

To get most of the benefits of the lemon, it is ideal to use it whole and consume all of the parts of the lemon. While the raw white pulp has a bitter taste, it becomes softer when cooked. Throwing halved lemons on the grill, in a roaster, or straight into a saucepan of broth or soup while they’re cooking are all great ways to enjoy whole cooked lemons – but one of the healthiest ways to consume whole lemons is in fermented ones Shape. also known as canned lemon, which is very common in North African cuisine and other parts of the Mediterranean.

Preserved lemons are made by storing whole lemons with salt in sterile jars and fermenting them for several weeks. Recipes that include the ingredient often state “chopped canned lemon,” which leaves many chefs unsure of which parts to use. (The peel, pulp, and even the juice from the glass are all edible and delicious!) But thanks to New York Shuk, which specializes in Middle Eastern staples, canned lemons are now available as a mixed paste that contains the Guess and offers all the benefits of the whole lemon plus intestinal healthy probiotics from lacto fermentation. I love this canned lemon paste in almost everything from salad dressings to dips to marinades and more.

Oh hello! You look like someone who loves free workouts, discounts on cutting-edge wellness brands, and exclusive Well + Good content. Register with Well +, our online community of wellness insiders, and activate your rewards immediately.

Whole Grain Benefits

Can It Help You Lose Weight? – Cleveland Clinic

Published

on

What do you think of when you think of Chia? Maybe it’s pudding, or maybe it’s quirky houseplants. For some TikTokkers, it’s breakfast. They started putting these tiny seeds in water and drinking them to satisfy their hunger – or so they say.

The Cleveland Clinic is a not for profit academic medical center. Advertising on our website helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. politics

Is there any truth to this trick? Registered nutritionist Beth Czerwony, MS, RD, CSOWM, LD explains the science behind the seeds, including whether to try or toss this trend.

The benefits of chia seed water

Chia seeds are incredibly healthy, a source of fiber, protein, and various nutrients. They’re also whole grains, low-carb, and low-calorie, with only about 100 calories per ounce.

They come from Salvia hispanica, a purple-flowered plant of the mint family that grows in Mexico and Guatemala. And although the seeds themselves are tiny – much like poppy seeds – they are quite high in nutritional value. You are loaded with:

  • Antioxidants: These substances protect you from free radicals that contribute to cancer and various diseases and can affect the aging of your body.
  • Fiber: Chia seeds contain 11 grams of fiber, which is vital to gut health and will help you feel full longer. (More on that in a moment!)
  • Protein: Protein is sometimes referred to as the “building blocks” of your body and is vital to the health of your muscles, skin, bones, and more. It is also the key to losing weight and building muscle, along with other health benefits.

And that’s not all. “Chia seeds are considered a superfood,” says Czerwony. “They have some nice vitamins and minerals like phosphorus, magnesium, iron and zinc – although honestly not that many people have these deficiencies.”

Can Chia Water Really Help You Lose Weight?

Chia seed water is exactly what it sounds like: a spoonful of chia seeds falls into a glass of water. But why?

Chia seeds can take up 12 times their own weight. When they get wet, they swell and take on a gelatinous texture – which is a polite way of saying they get pretty slimy. Think tapioca, but less flavorful.

The idea behind drinking chia seed water is that the wet seeds will enlarge and take up space in your stomach so you won’t get hungry. This, in turn, can make you feel less hungry and ultimately help you lose weight.

So does it work? In a word, yes. Kind of.

“The chia seeds mix with the water and your gastric juices and they expand in the stomach,” confirms Czerwony. “It keeps you full longer because it takes up space and all of that soluble fiber slows digestion.”

When your digestion slows, your body releases blood sugar more slowly, preventing the peaks and troughs in blood sugar that cause increased appetite (also known as “hangry”).

The risks of chia seed water

But Czerwony warns against going overboard with the chia seed water. While it’s okay to do something every now and then to stave off the late craving for snacks, it shouldn’t be viewed as a key method of weight loss.

For starters, eating chia seeds isn’t an alternative to a healthy diet – just a handy trick that can be used occasionally. And if you swallow a lot of fiber, make sure you swallow plenty of water too, or you could end up with quite uncomfortable digestive problems, including constipation, gas, and gas.

“Too much of a good thing is too much,” says Czerwony. “If you eat a lot of fiber and don’t drink enough fluids, the chia seeds begin to absorb the fluid in your intestines and cause hard bowel movements.”

How to make chia seed water

Czerwony recommends adding a tablespoon or two of chia seeds to a glass with 2 to 10 ounces of water. If you’ve never consumed the seeds, you may want to start with a smaller amount to see how your body can handle them.

And while you might want to soak the seeds in water for a few minutes before consuming the concoction, don’t wait too long. “You have to drink it pretty quickly to get it down before it sets,” advises Czerwony.

The texture of chia seed water can be a little off-putting to say the least, so flavor yours with lemon, lime, or whatever else makes it tastier.

Alternatives to chia seed water

Not excited about swallowing gelatinous goop? Chia seed water isn’t the only way to get some fiber without overdoing calories.

“Chia seed water is all the rage right now, but it doesn’t do anything to your body that you can’t get from other sources of fiber,” says Czerwony. They get the same effects from a large salad or bowl of healthy oatmeal that will keep you full longer than foods that are low in fiber.

However, if chia is sold for sale, you can still enjoy the benefits of chia seeds without drinking them in water. Here are just a few other forms that you can enjoy them in.

Continue Reading

Whole Grain Benefits

The 7 Best Brain-Friendly Breakfast Foods

Published

on

ANDYou already know you should be eating breakfast every day – and that doesn’t mean ordering an oat milk latte and calling it good. Listen to us: When you feed your body the right nutrition every morning, it’s not just about filling up your energy tank. Eating a quality, nutritious breakfast will actually help you perform better at work (and play) and improve your overall brain health, according to research. “Emphasizing the words ‘high quality’ and ‘nutrient-rich’ is key,” said Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, FAND, author of the Family Immunity Cookbook.

For example, a study published in the journal Nutrients in April 2021 found that teenagers who ate a nutritious breakfast had better cognitive performance in school than those who didn’t. A small 2016 study in Neuroscience & Medicine showed that certain areas of the brain experience significantly higher levels of activation when young adult participants eat a nutritionally balanced breakfast versus a sugar-filled breakfast. And a 2019 study published in the Journal of Psychophysiology concluded that skipping breakfast can negatively affect short-term cognition, particularly disrupting the attention process (i.e., the ability to pay attention).

similar posts

If that’s not convincing enough, get it from a registered dietitian: Amidor says eating breakfast daily should be “top priority”. (Not to mention the fact that having breakfast can also improve your mood and emotional well-being.)

While there’s no official time you should have breakfast, Amidor recommends eating within an hour of waking up, even if it’s small – like a fruit yogurt or a slice of whole grain toast with peanut butter. “You don’t need a complicated breakfast, but it should have multiple food groups of nutritious foods,” she adds.

Remember, however, that eating for optimal brain health and cognitive function is not just related to your morning meal. “It’s becoming more and more about the overall pattern of what you eat and drink in a day, in a week, and so on, versus each individual food item,” said Maggie Moon, MS, RD, author of The MIND Diet.

However, there are some breakfast foods that are better than others when it comes to targeted boosting cognitive function and overall brain health. Read on for top recommendations from two nutritionists for brain-friendly breakfast foods.

The 7 best brain-friendly breakfast foods according to the RDs

1. Salmon

Fancy some smoked salmon when you wake up? Ooh, you send. But you’re in luck – this fish provides tons of omega-3 fatty acids, especially DHA and EPA, says Amidor. Salmon is an excellent breakfast choice, especially because DHA makes up a significant portion of the fat in your brain and is therefore critical to brain development, she adds. Research shows that DHA, either alone or in combination with EPA, contributes to improved memory function in older adults. Amidor recommends topping a slice of seedless rye bread with whipped cream cheese and an ounce of smoked salmon and sliced ​​vegetables, or integrating smoked salmon and vegetables into an omelette. You can also try smoked salmon on a mushroom bagel or Better Bagel, or add it to a salad for the best brunch at home.

2 eggs

Speaking of omelets … as it turns out, the humble egg is also one of the best brain-friendly foods out there. “Easy to cook but to make things more decadent, an egg contains both choline and lutein, two vital nutrients that help the brain develop in our early years and then protect it from cognitive decline in mid-life “Says Moon, citing a 2018 report on the benefits of egg cells published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition.

Learn seven ways to eat eggs without scrambled eggs. Tired of dirtying a pan? Microwave pre-made egg bites like Appleton’s Market Power Veggie Bites for the next best option.

Eggs are so nutritious that this nutritionist actually calls them nature’s multivitamin:

3. Oatmeal

We get it – another dietitian who recommends oatmeal for breakfast comes as no big surprise. However, there’s a reason oats are so popular with nutritionists: as whole grains, they have been linked to improved cognitive functions like better reading comprehension and improved fluency in speech. Moon says she prefers steel cut oats, which are closer to the whole-food form of oats and have a comfortably chewy texture.

In a hurry in the morning? Try packaged, high-protein oatmeal (without all the added sugar) like mush or oats overnight.

4. Turmeric

Incorporating a pinch of this yellow spice into the first meal of your day can improve your brain health. It contains a chemical called curcumin that has been shown to have memory and cognitive benefits in both healthy adults and those with Alzheimer’s disease. Try this breakfast smoothie recipe from Amidor: puree the carrots, orange juice, cinnamon and natural Greek yogurt in a high-performance mixer and then sprinkle with turmeric. Or try oatmeal with a handful of turmeric-containing trail mixes like Toodaloo for crunch and brain benefits.

5. Berries

Who doesn’t love fresh berries for breakfast? A simple morning meal of plain Greek yogurt with fresh strawberries, blueberries, and chopped almonds is a brain-boosting start to the day, says Amidor. A review in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry showed that anthocyanins, the pigment in berries that give them their rich color, can help protect your brain cells from oxidation and help promote communication between brain neurons. (By the way, pomegranate is another fruit that is amazing for brain health.)

If you can’t get your hands on fresh ingredients, Sow Good Freeze Dried Fruits can be stocked up with the same diet and no additional ingredients. Freeze-dried fruits can also be a life-saving snack for travelers.

6. Coffee

Hallelujah! You’d better believe coffee makes the list (but be careful: drinking too much has the opposite effect). Research suggests that having a cup of joe (black) in the morning improves reaction time, improves alertness, and helps us think more clearly. According to Moon, this may be due to the combination of caffeine and antioxidants, as well as the coffee’s ability to improve the brain’s functional connectivity, which is how well different regions of the brain communicate with each other to get tasks done.

Skip the cafe and make yourself at home. Brands like Explorer Cold Brew Co. and Copper Cow Coffee make it more interesting and easier to be your own barista.

7. Water

OK, so this is absolutely not a food – but hydration with H20 is crucial when you wake up to start your day and your mind. “We call it ‘brain water’ in our home because it’s so important to brain health,” says Moon. Our brains are nearly 75 percent water, which means that even mild dehydration can affect cognitive performance and negatively affect your mood as well.

Really in a time constraint? In a pinch, grab a protein bar specially formulated with nutrients to promote brain health, like Mindright or Mosh.

Oh hello! You look like someone who loves free workouts, discounts on cutting-edge wellness brands, and exclusive Well + Good content. Register with Well +, our online community of wellness insiders, and activate your rewards immediately.

Our editors select these products independently. Well + Good can earn a commission when you shop through our links.

Continue Reading

Whole Grain Benefits

‘MIND’ diet may protect against cognitive decline

Published

on

Share on PinterestIn people with Alzheimer’s disease, following the MIND diet can help slow cognitive decline. WP Simon / Getty Images

  • Alzheimer’s disease and other age-related diseases that cause cognitive decline have been linked to pathological changes in the brain, including an unusual build-up of protein deposits.
  • Although the extent of these brain pathologies has been linked to cognitive impairment, some individuals with brain pathologies maintain healthy cognitive function.
  • A recent study suggests that following the MIND diet, a diet used to improve brain health, may slow cognitive decline in people with Alzheimer’s disease.
  • The study found that the association between following the MIND diet and better cognitive health was independent of the pathological conditions of the brain.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia. Approximately 1 in 9 adults over the age of 65 in the United States currently has this condition.

Alzheimer’s disease is linked to the unusual buildup of protein deposits called beta-amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain.

These protein deposits are believed to be responsible for the damage to brain cells and, consequently, for the impairment of cognitive function observed in Alzheimer’s disease.

Interestingly, not everyone with high levels of these brain pathologies or markers for Alzheimer’s disease will experience cognitive decline. This ability to maintain normal cognitive function in the presence of brain disease is known as cognitive resilience.

In addition, older adults 65 and older who engage in physical activity and activities that provide mental stimulation are likely to have better cognitive performance regardless of their level of Alzheimer’s-related brain pathologies.

Although some recently investigated drugs for Alzheimer’s disease can reduce the levels of beta-amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain, the interventions investigated to date by scientists have shown limited success in slowing the decline in cognitive function.

This underscores the importance of identifying lifestyle factors that can slow the progression of cognitive decline regardless of changes in Alzheimer’s disease-related brain pathologies.

Some studies suggest that the Diet with Dieting Methods to Stop Hypertension (DASH) and the Mediterranean Diet can improve cognitive function. Based on these studies, the two diets were combined into a hybrid MIND diet specifically designed to improve brain health.

The MIND diet emphasizes the consumption of green leafy greens, other vegetables, berries, legumes, fish, nuts, and whole grains while restricting the consumption of butter, cheese, and red meat.

Previous studies have shown that the MIND diet can slow age-related cognitive decline and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

Recently, researchers at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago investigated the ability of the MIND diet to improve cognitive function in older adults regardless of the pathological level of the brain.

Summing up the research results, the first study author Dr. Klodian Dhana, Ph.D., told Medical News Today, “We found that a higher MIND diet score is associated with better cognitive function regardless of Alzheimer’s disease and other common age-related brain pathologies, suggesting that following the MIND diet can strengthen cognitive resilience in older adults. “

Understanding the mechanisms underlying the effects of diet and other lifestyle factors on cognitive function could help researchers develop new treatments to slow cognitive decline.

Given the presence of brain pathologies in a significant number of older adults and the lack of treatments that can slow cognitive decline, such treatments could be immensely useful.

The study results appear in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.

The new study analyzed data collected by the Rush Memory and Aging Project (MAP) from 569 deceased people. The Rush MAP is a longitudinal study of adults over 65 years of age with the aim of identifying environmental and genetic factors associated with the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

The Rush MAP conducts annual assessments to assess cognitive health, lifestyle, and risk factors associated with Alzheimer’s disease. The study also performs post-mortem analyzes of brains donated by participants to assess changes related to Alzheimer’s disease.

In the new study, researchers used a questionnaire to calculate the MIND diet score based on how often the study participants consumed foods that were considered healthy or unhealthy according to the MIND diet.

The researchers had access to data from comprehensive cognitive tests carried out shortly before the participants died. After a participant died, the team performed a post-mortem analysis to identify brain changes related to Alzheimer’s disease and other conditions known to lead to age-related cognitive decline.

About a third of the study participants had a clinical diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease prior to their death. However, the researchers were able to identify Alzheimer’s disease in two-thirds of the participants based on the high levels of brain pathologies revealed in the post-mortem analyzes.

The researchers found a positive correlation between the MIND diet score and cognitive function before the participants died. In addition, the MIND diet score was associated with a slower decline in cognitive function with age.

Notably, the association between the MIND diet score and cognitive function was independent of the extent of Alzheimer’s disease-related brain pathologies.

Similarly, the level of brain pathologies associated with other disorders did not affect the association between the MIND diet score and cognitive function.

These results were based on participants’ self-reports of their eating habits during the annual assessments. To minimize the possibility of these reports being inaccurate due to cognitive impairment, the researchers re-analyzed the data after excluding people with mild cognitive impairment at the beginning of the data collection.

The relationship between the MIND diet and cognitive function persisted even after the analysis was restricted to people without mild cognitive impairment.

The researchers observed similar results when the analysis only included people with high levels of Alzheimer’s-related brain pathologies. This further suggests that the association between the MIND diet score and cognitive function was independent of the extent of Alzheimer’s disease-related brain pathologies.

Taken together, these results indicate that the potential effects of diet on cognitive function are unlikely to be mediated by modifying the extent of brain pathologies associated with Alzheimer’s disease and other brain disorders.

“The [strengths] of the studies [include] high quality assessment of nutrition and cognition and availability of neuropathological data, ”said Dr. Dhana.

Similarly, Dr. Nikolaos Scarmeas, Associate Professor of Clinical Neurology at Columbia University in New York City:

“This is a pretty important study as it hasn’t looked at the relationship between diet and brain neuropathology. Very few, if any, studies have information on both ends: dietary habits and cognition throughout life, and measurements of brain changes through autopsies. “

Dr. Scarmeas was not involved in the latest study.

The study authors also note that the investigation had some limitations. For example, they acknowledge that the nutritional information may be inaccurate because it was self-reported. To address the potential inaccuracies in the nutrition reports, the researchers averaged the MIND diet score from reviews over several years.

“The caveat is the generalizability of the results as this study was conducted on older white volunteers,” added Dr. Dhana added.

Regarding future research directions, Dr. Dhana: “I think it is of great scientific interest to identify other changeable lifestyle factors that are independent of [Alzheimer’s disease] Pathology and other common brain pathologies. “

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2017 Zox News Theme. Theme by MVP Themes, powered by WordPress.