Cherry season is coming soon! Don’t you just love the deep sweetness of a plump cherry? It’s also pretty funny to eat them with the kids and watch them manage the pit situation.
Besides being a sure sign of summer and tasty, cherries are extremely good for you! I have selected four of the best reasons to nourish your bodies with cherries, though there are many more (high fiber, etc.).
- Cherries have a very high anti-oxidant content. The anthocyanins protect against free radical damage, protect DNA, activate detoxifying enzymes, and even slow the growth of human colon cancer cells.
- Cherries help reduce chronic (disease causing) inflammation. Studies have shown a reduction in uric acid levels and c-reactive protein levels. These are both strong indicators of inflammation.
- Cherries serve as a natural painkiller by inhibiting COX-1 and COX-2 enzymes.
- Cherries may even help you sleep! They are one of the few rich food sources of melatonin. http://www.diseaseproof.com/archives/healthy-food-eat-cherries-for-a-healthy-heart-a-good-nights-sleep-and-more.html
Here’s an interesting article on cabbage just in time for St. Patrick’s day. This year, try not to boil it to death. Keep those nutrients to yourself – Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Healthy Best -Leslie
This St. Patrick’s Day, we celebrate the healing prowess of cabbage – one of the traditional staples of Irish cuisine. Like other cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, etc.), cabbage contains powerful phytochemicals with possible anti-cancer effects. Now, new research is investigating the potential of such compounds to counter ulcerative colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease that significantly increases the risk of colon cancer.
Here is the article, entitled “Plant Extract May Be Effective Against Inflammatory Bowel Disease” which was published on the website ScienceDaily.
Researchers at South Dakota State University isolated and administered particular cruciferous compounds to mice afflicted with ulcerative colitis. Among the more impressive results: a whopping 87% reduction in colon inflammation after five days of observation.Further investigation suggests the compounds work in a dose-dependent manner (e.g., double the intake, double the effect), specifically by suppressing genes associated with inflammation.
While more research is needed to confirm these benefits in humans, there are plenty of reasons to eat more cruciferous vegetables, and cabbage in particular. One cup of cabbage contains 80% vitamin K, 50% vitamin C and 10% folate for just 20 calories. High cabbage intake among Polish women (30 lbs. annually vs. 10 lbs. for American women) may contribute to the former’s 66% lower risk of breast cancer. Try an unconventional approach to a time-honored dish with this recipe for Unstuffed Cabbage.
Bonus: Asparagus may be another vegetable to include this St. Patrick’s Day – especially if you’re celebrating with Irish ale. One lab study showed that asparagus extract helped curb liver toxicity.