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13 Most Powerful Super-Foods (March 29, 2008 - 9:18 a.m.)

I woke up late this morning (I didn't get much sleep yesterday because I was recording the sond mentioned in the previous entry), and was checking email. I found an email from one of the lists I subscribe to, this one called "Digestive Health." You see, I believe that by simply reading all of the "healthy tips" emails, I will lose weight and be healthier.

Stop yelling at me, I'm joking...


Anyway, this one referred to an article about "13 most powerful super-foods." Hmm...I'm thinking I'm all over that. I could be..."super man if I eat "super foods, right?

So, seriously, here is the list.

1. Avacados--good...I like those a lot. Turns out they are packed with fiber, lutein (an antioxidant), and monounsaturated fat, which is apparently ok.

2. Apples--I like those, too. Again, lots of fiber and antioxidants, both in the fruit and the skin.

3. Blueberries--So far, so good. Blueberries are apparently "anti-aging agents." Studies show that eating blueberries slows impairments in motor coordination and memory that accompany aging. Plus they also reduce inflammation.

4. Cabbage--uh-oh. Just lost me. Lessee...Eating cabbage more than once a week cut men's colon cancer odds by 66 percent. Cabbage also stimulates the immune system, kills bacteria and viruses, and is a good blood purifier. But can't they make it not taste so horrible??

5. Fish and fish oil--Whew, back to stuff I like (I'm already taking a car-sized fish oil pill everyday). Eating fish helps cut the risk of heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer's, stroke, diabetes, and arthritis. The fatty varieties may also help alleviate depression. Plus there's the whole Omega 3 fats thing. But there's a warning...Avoid mercury-containing varieties like shark, swordfish, king mackerel, tilefish, and albacore tuna. Chunk light tuna is apparently ok.

6. Garlic--Another one I like. Primarily, it keeps the vampires away. But outside of that, there are, apparently, other benefits. Research shows that garlic lowers total cholesterol and triglyceride (blood fat) levels, helping prevent clogged arteries. Garlic also tops the National Cancer Institute's list of potential cancer-preventive foods. Whole baked garlic helps detoxify the body of heavy metals like mercury (from fish) and cadmium. Garlic also acts as an antibacterial and antiviral, boosting resistance to stress-induced colds and infections. Wow. But the smell...

7. Mushrooms--Yeah, baby. Oh, wait..they mean eating them, don't they? Mushrooms are strong boosters of the immune system, especially ones with Japanese names that can't spell or pronounce. Mushrooms such as maitake help prevent and treat cancer, viral diseases, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure. (Copy/paste is a wonderful thing...) Also Shiitake (I'm not going to try to pronounce that) mushrooms lower blood cholesterol by 45 percent.

8. Almonds--love those, too. Again, like avacados, lots of monounsaturated fat and fiber, both of which lower cholesterol. And even though almonds are relatively high in fat and calories, studies show that eating almonds can actually help with weight loss (their protein, fiber, and monounsaturated fats provide the feeling of fullness, preventing overeating).

9. Eggs! Woot! *gets up and dances a happy jig* Hallelujah!!! THE BEST PROTEIN SOURCE ON THE PLANET!!, it says! In addition to containing all nine essential amino acids, eggs are loaded with nutrients. "And for God's sake, eat the yolks," says Bowden. People avoid the yolks because they fear cholesterol, but egg yolks contain choline, which helps protect heart and brain function and prevents cholesterol and fat from accumulating in the liver. I'm so happy!!!

10. Flaxseeds--Ok, what? I don't know this one. It's apparently loaded with "alph-linolenic acid," an essential fatty acid that reduces inflammation. Hm...Gandhi endorsed them. Gandhi himself proclaimed, "Wherever flaxseed becomes a regular food item among the people, there will be better health." Also, like many of these, great source of figer. I just don't know what you do with them.

11. Pomegranates--weird fruit, this one...but, three times the antioxidants of red wine and green tea. The juice reduces artery-clogging placque. May also slow aging and protect against cancer.

12. Red Wine--(NOT the whole bottle, silly). A small amount of any kind of alcohol each day does your heart good by increasing HDL cholesterol and reducing the risk of blood clots. "Red wine also contains powerful antioxidants, reservatrol and saponins, which may provide additional cardiovascular benefits," says Anding. Resist a refill, however: More than one drink daily has been linked to high blood pressure.

13. DARK CHOCOLATE--*falls out of chair in a fit of ecstasy* AHAHAHAHA....Yesyesyesyesyes!!!! Flavonols, baby! Only real cacao contains flavonols, so look for chocolate that boasts a high percentage of cacao (60 percent or more). Dark chocolate also has fewer calories than other varieties, and when eaten in moderation, it lowers unhealthy LDL cholesterol and prevents plaque from building up in your arteries.

So there you go. I'm personally heading to the grocery store. Think I'll make a avacado/almond/dark chocolate omelet. Ok, that's kind of gross, but you never know...I'm never tried chocolate and eggs together, except in, you know, cake. And flour and sugar were most definitely not on the above list.

Happy eating!!!

TTFN, y'all!

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