Whole Foods Wednesday – Zucchini

Who likes zucchini? I love it, and its pretty versatile too! We have used it as a base for taco boats, sautéed them, grilled them, and even grown them! Love Zucchini!

Do you know why Zucchini is so widely revered?

Here is a sampling of why!

  • Zucchini is 95% water, low in calories, and high in fiber
  • It’s a good source of Vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant which plays a huge role in keeping your immune system healthy, and aids in fighting respiratory problems. The anti-inflammatory properties help keep your lungs open and clear.
  • The high fiber content also helps lower your cholesterol.
  • It’s good for your heart! Zucchini contains good amounts of potassium that helps reduce blood pressure, and the magnesium content helps keep blood pressure at a steady rhythm.

Oh, and good news for my fellow Diabetics! The abundance of Vitamin B in zucchini benefits us by breaking down the sugar in our bodies, and the fiber and pectin are vital in regulating our blood sugar levels!

In other words, eat more zucchini! 🙂

 

Tip Tuesday – Fall Foods Rich in Antioxidants

Fall brings beauty, cooler temps, an abundance of seasonal foods… and yep, things like colds, allergies, and all that other jazz.

Now, if you are like me, your allergies get worse every year, starting earlier in the season and extending further each year, so I try to get all the boosts I can in addition to a fairly sensible lifestyle (but like anyone else, I am not perfect and am always a work in progress!)

Seasonal foods rich in antioxidants give a nice boost! Antioxidants neutralize free radicals, which prevents them from damaging healthy cells and causing inflammation that leads to chronic illnesses.

Do you have any favorite recipes using some of these?

antioxidant-rich-fall-foods

Whole Foods Wednesday – Plums

Plums take me right back to summer! I would usually have some packed in my cooler for the beach! I love Plums – I like them to have just a tiny bit of firmness to them. And they are good for me!

Plums contain high content of unique phytonutrients called neochlorogenic and chlorogenic acid. These substances help prevent damage, and are particularly effective in neutralizing a particularly dangerous oxygen radical called superoxide anion radical. In addition, they have been shown to help prevent oxygen-based damage to fats. Being that our cell membranes, brain cells and molecules such as cholesterol are largely COMPOSED of fats, preventing free radical damage to fats is a huge plus!

Plums

Plums are a great source of vitamin C, and a good source of vitamin K, copper, dietary fiber, and potassium. They rank low on the Glycemic Index, making them a great snack for someone with Diabetes!

According to https://www.organicfacts.net, “Plums exert anti-hyperglycemic effects and help in combating diabetes. Studies have shown that the consumption of plum extracts aids in the reduction of blood glucose and levels of triglyceride in the body. The flavonoids present in plums exert protective effects against insulin resistance and help to enhance insulin sensitivity in the body.”

Plums rank among the top 10 fresh fruits with the most antioxidant potential, and only blueberries, blackberries, cranberries, strawberries and raspberries have more antioxidants than fresh plums!

And the fun part is, outside of just eating it in hand, there are HUNDREDS of ways to use plums – do you have any favorite ways?

Whole Foods Wednesday – Ginger

Who’s a fan of Ginger?

Ginger

Ginger has a long history of being used as a healing agent. It is a potent anti-inflammatory agent that can help reduce the pain, anti-viral, helps boost your immune system, reduces muscle soreness, soothes your stomach, and so much more!

It is one of nature’s best medicines, and a great way to calm indigestion or reduce stomach pain, reduce inflammation, reduce Cholesterol, and help improve cognitive function.

Because ginger is a natural antioxidant, it can help reduce inflammation that can break down the immune system in the body and leave it open to attack or trigger diseases people are genetically predisposed to.

It contains a lot of essential minerals and healthy vitamins, and is very nutrient dense!

Also, and this is all still relatively new research, so take it with a grain of salt, but preliminary studies show that Ginger  may have powerful anti-diabetic properties.

In a recent 2015 study of 41 participants with type 2 diabetes, 2 grams of ginger powder per day lowered fasting blood sugar by 12% (11)

It also dramatically improved Hb1Ac leading to a 10% reduction over a period of 12 weeks. (Source: Authority Nutrition)

My husband and I like to cook with Ginger – it adds a lot of flavor! I didn’t actually know it was such a powerful component, but all of this makes me super happy, because who doesn’t love to hear that something they regularly use contains so many healing/helpful properties!? I know as a kid, when I was sick, I prefered Ginger Ale, but I never knew all of these benefits!

Do you cook with Ginger?

 

Feel Good Friday – Meditation

Do you meditate? I have been trying to do it more… I am not the best at sitting still and staying in the moment, but I am working on becoming better at this, because this little meditation time is loaded with benefits!

Let’s face it, our minds get quite a workout, and sometimes a little “time out” by way of Meditation can go a long way towards restoring our energy and positive mindset!

Benefits of Meditation

So while my ants-in-my-pants butt needs to be better about sitting still and just letting my mind flow freely, there are tons of reasons to do so, which is why I am making it an active practice. I might only be able to do it for 10 seconds right now, but 10 seconds becomes 20 seconds, and 20 seconds will eventually become 20 minutes… so on and so forth. It’s a process, but a worthwhile one!