Superfoods That Begin with “S” – Sweet Potatoes
Often confused with yams, these tubers are one of the healthiest foods on the planet. In addition to countering the effects of secondhand smoke and preventing diabetes, they protect your vision, encourage a good mood, fight cancer, and keep your bones strong.
Sweet potatoes contain glutathione, which a critical and integral part of your natural detoxification system. Here is a great article about it: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-mark-hyman/glutathione-the-mother-of_b_530494.html
Sweet Potatos enhance immune-system health, as well as protect against Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, liver disease, cystic fibrosis, HIV, cancer, heart attack, and stroke.
Sweet Potatoes are also loaded with vitamin C, which smooths out wrinkles by stimulating the production of collagen. A recent study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that volunteers who consumed 4 milligrams of C (about half a small sweet potato) daily for 3 years decreased the appearance of wrinkles by 11 percent.
Healthy eaters know that sweet potatoes are a fantastic carb to include in your healthy eating plan! Why? Because they can enhance nutrient metabolism.
Big things come in small packages – and the tiny sesame seed is packed with huge health benefits. Whether you eat them whole, sprinkled on salads or a stir-fry dish, or use tahini or sesame oil, this is one staple you will want to include in your routine – and here’s why:
Sesame seeds are full of high quality protein, about 4.7 grams of protein per ounce. They are a good source of magnesium, a nutrient that has been known to help lower blood pressure. Sesame seeds also contain calcium. One handful of sesame seeds contains more calcium than a glass of milk. Calcium and magnesium are a great stress-relieving combo. Sesame also contains zinc, which helps boost bone mineral density.
Sesame seeds have the highest phytosterol content of all seeds and nuts. Phytosterol is known to be an anti-cancer compound. -Sesame also contains the calming vitamins thiamine and tryptophan that help produce serotonin, which reduces pain, improves moods and helps you get deep sleep.
Black sesame seeds are particularly rich in iron, so they are especially recommended for people with anemia.
Sesame seeds contain the mineral copper, which prevents and relieves arthritis, and strengthens bones, joints and blood vessels.
Sesame oil is a natural alternative to baby oil. A sesame oil massage improves growth and helps sleep. Diaper rash can be protected with sesame seed oil by rubbing it in. Sesame also moisturizes dry skin.
In Ayurveda sesame oil is used in oral health for oil pulling to reduce dental plaque, whiten teeth and boost overall health. Simply swish about a tablespoon of sesame oil around in your mouth daily for the most benefits. 20 minutes at a time is recommended.
Popeye had the right idea. You have to eat your spinach to grow strong! It may be green and leafy, but spinach, a renowned muscle builder, is also the ultimate man food. Why? Spinach can help fight cancer, improve your cardiovascular health, and improve brain function! It is replete with the essential minerals potassium and magnesium, and it’s one of the top sources of lutein, an antioxidant that may help prevent clogged arteries. Plus its vitamins and nutrients can bolster bone-mineral density, attack prostate cancer cells, reduce the risk of skin tumors, fight colon cancer, and, last but not least, increase blood flow to the penis. “Popeye was on to something,” says Susan Bowerman, assistant director of the Center for Human Nutrition at the University of California at Los Angeles.
Don’t let the idea of eating algae prevent you from enjoying all the benefits that spirulina has to offer. It is loaded with essential vitamins and nutrients. Toss it into a smoothie or add it to your favorite recipe.
Other “S” Superfoods
By Kathy Casey