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Artichokes – Healthy Eating

Artichokes, which can be eaten or taken as artichoke leaf extract, have been shown to improve various digestive health disorders. They significantly lower blood cholesterol levels, prevent heart disease and atherosclerosis, enhance detoxification reactions, as well as protect the liver from damage. Artichokes are packed with antioxidants, making them incredible defenders against cancer, aging, heart disease, and illness. They boost the immune system and lower cholesterol. Artichokes are packed with vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients that increase health and wellbeing. These include:

  • Quercetin - An anti-carcinogen flavonoid that works as an antioxidant to protect against cancer and heart disease.
  • Rutin - A flavonoid which promotes cardiovascular health, helps prevent cell proliferation associated with cancer, and has anti-inflammatory and anti-allergenic properties.
  • Anthocyanins - Color pigments in Artichokes that are powerful antioxidants. They are associated with a lower risk of certain cancers, urinary tract health, memory function and healthy aging.
  • Gallic Acid - A potent antioxidant also found in red wine and black tea. It has been shown to inhibit cell proliferation in prostate cancer cells.
  • Luteolin and Cynarin - Very powerful polyphenol antioxidants that may lower cholesterol levels. Artichokes are very concentrated in cyanarin, which may also help in regeneration of liver tissue.
  • Caffeic Acid and Chlorogenic Acid - Contains anti-cancer, antimicrobial, anti-LDL (bad cholesterol) and antiviral properties.
  • Silymarin - A powerful antioxidant that may aid the liver in regenerative tissue growth.

One artichoke contains approximately one fourth of the average adult`s daily fiber requirements. It is also packed with vitamin C, potassium, folic acid and magnesium!!

Radishes – Healthy Eating

Radishes are rich in ascorbic acid, folic acid, and potassium. They are a good source of vitamin B6, riboflavin, magnesium, copper, and calcium. One cup of sliced red radish bulbs provides approximately 20 cal, largely from carbohydrates.

Cauliflower – Healthy Eating

Packed with rich nutrients, cauliflower or cabbage flower is one of the commonly used flower-vegetable. The flower heads contain numerous health benefiting phtyo-nutrients such as indole-3-carbinol, sulforaphane etc., that help prevent prostate, ovarian and cervical cancers.

Health benefits of Cauliflower

It is very low in calories. 100 g of the fresh cauliflower head provides only 26 calories. Nevertheless, it comprises of several health-benefiting antioxidants and vitamins in addition to be very low in fat and contains no cholesterol. Its florets contain about 2 g of dietary fiber per 100 g; providing about 5% of recommended value. Cauliflower contains several anti-cancer phyto-chemicals like sulforaphane and plant sterols such as indole-3-carbinol, which appears to function as an anti-estrogen agent. Together these compounds have proven benefits against prostate, breast, cervical, colon, ovarian cancers by virtue of their cancer-cell growth inhibition, cytotoxic effects on cancer cells.

Furthermore, Di-indolyl-methane (DIM), a lipid soluble compound present abundantly in Brassica group of vegetables has found effective as immune modulator, anti-bacterial and anti-viral compound by synthesis and potentiating Interferon-Gamma receptors. DIM has currently been found application in the treatment of recurring respiratory papillomatosis caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) and is in Phase III clinical trials for cervical dysplasia. Fresh cauliflower is an excellent source of vitamin C; 100 g provides about 48.2 mg or 80% of daily recommended value. Vitamin-C is a proven antioxidant helps fight against harmful free radicals, boosts immunity and prevents from infections and cancers. It contains good amounts of many vital B-complex groups of vitamins such as folates, pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), pyridoxine (vitamin B6) and thiamin (vitamin B1), niacin (B3) as well as vitamin K. These vitamins is essential in the sense that body requires them from external sources to replenish and required for fat, protein and carbohydrate metabolism.

Further, It is an also good source of minerals such as manganese, copper, iron, calcium and potassium. Manganese is used in the body as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. Potassium is an important intracellular electrolyte helps counter the hypertension effects of sodium.

Broccoli – Healthy Eating

Broccoli is high in vitamin C, as well as dietary fiber; it also contains multiple nutrients with potent anti-cancer properties, such as diindolylmethane and small amounts of selenium. A single serving provides more than 30 mg of vitamin C and a half-cup provides 52 mg of vitamin C. The 3,3′-Diindolylmethane found in broccoli is a potent modulator of the innate immune response system with anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-cancer activity. Broccoli also contains the compound glucoraphanin, which can be processed into an anti-cancer compound sulforaphane, though the benefits of broccoli are greatly reduced if the vegetable is boiled. Broccoli is also an excellent source of indole-3-carbinol, a chemical which boosts DNA repair in cells and appears to block the growth of cancer cells.

Boiling broccoli reduces the levels of suspected anti-carcinogenic compounds, such as sulforaphane, with losses of 20–30% after five minutes, 40–50% after ten minutes, and 77% after thirty minutes. However, other preparation methods such as steaming, microwaving, and stir frying had no significant effect on the compounds.

Broccoli has the highest levels of carotenoids in the brassica family. It is particularly rich in lutein and also provides a modest amount of beta-carotene.

A high intake of broccoli has been found to reduce the risk of aggressive prostate cancer. Broccoli consumption may also help prevent heart disease.

Pears – Healthy Eating

Pears are a good source of dietary fiber and a good source of vitamin C. Most of the vitamin C, as well as the dietary fiber, is contained within the skin of the fruit.

Pears are less allergenic than many other fruits, and pear juice is therefore sometimes used as the first juice introduced to infants. However, caution is recommended for all fruit juice consumption by infants, as studies have suggested a link between excessive fruit juice consumption and reduced nutrient intake, as well as a tendency towards obesity. Pears are low in salicylates and benzoates, so are recommended in exclusion diets for allergy sufferers. Along with lamb and rice, pears may form part of the strictest exclusion diet for allergy sufferers.

Most of the fiber is insoluble, making pears a good laxative.