Normally, Candida or yeast is always present in the human body but its overgrowth can cause infections; it can be quite troublesome. Certain foods can increase the growth of yeast and that is why it becomes more important for you to know about these to be able to watch your intake/consumption. Listed below is a list of food and beverages that you should avoid to prevent an overgrowth of yeast in the body.Yeast containing foods such as breads, pizza, cakes, pretzels, muffins and rolls are made of dough that is essentially a breeding ground for yeast. Other fermented foods such as salad dressings and pickles also contain yeast and hence, are best avoided.
Alcoholic beverages such as vodka and beer contain yeast and so their consumption should be limited.
Sugar acts as food for yeast and can lead to an overgrowth of the existing yeast in your body. Ice-creams, candies and other sugary savouries can be quite detrimental in the long run. Soft drinks are also high in sugar content.
Fruits, such as watermelon and honeydew and certain vegetables, such as squash, potatoes and beets also have high yeast content.
Artificial sweeteners, maple syrup or honey should also be avoided because of the high sugar content in them.
Avoid cheese. If you have a history of being lactose intolerant, milk products will decrease your capacity to fight excess yeast.
Processed foods such as chips and frozen foods such as sausages etc. can have hidden sugars that can cause an increase in yeast levels.
Starchy food, such as potato and corn are high in sugar and cause yeast excess in the body.
Beef and dairy products
Candida thrives on moulds which are found in moist and damp areas. Mould contamination is commonly found in beef and dairy products. Grains kept in silos for a long time may also suffer from mold and be prone to yeast overgrowth. Foods that increase yeast in body are also the ones with natural mold content, such as mushrooms, blue cheeses and dried meats.
It is sensible to watch your diet if you suspect a yeast infection. Foods that increase yeast in body are best avoided to control the yeast level in the body. In case of severe infections, it is advisable to consult a doctor for treatment and dietary advice.
A healthy sandwich is a lunchtime favorite for a few good reasons: It's easily packable, cheap to make, and the perfect vehicle for complex carbohydrates, good-for-you fats , fiber-packed veggies, and lean protein. It can totally be the afternoon meal you need to get through the rest of your day. And, despite what grilled cheeses and BLTs would have you think, sandwiches can absolutely help you work toward your weight loss goals .
These eight simple tricks make it easy to cut calories and add nutrients to all your go-to sandwich recipes without sacrificing the flavors you love. If you’re interested in using these ideas to help you lose weight, it’s important to note that weight loss looks different for everyone. Counting calories can be a helpful tactic for some people, but not for others. If you have a history of disordered eating, you should always talk to your doctor before making any changes to your diet.
And remember, weight loss isn’t just about what you eat. Stress levels, sleep habits , and health issues that may be out of your control can all affect how you gain and lose weight. That’s why it’s important to take the time to find a plan that will help you reach your goals in a way that’s healthiest for you.
If you do want to use healthy sandwich ideas to help you lose weight, try out these easy tricks the next time you pack your lunch.
An easy way to cut the calorie count of literally any sandwich? Take off the top piece of bread. This is a trick that Amy Gorin, M.S., R.D., owner of Amy Gorin Nutrition , swears by. She tells SELF that by removing that extra bread, not only are you nixing about 70 to 80 calories, but you’re also making enough room to pile your meal high with extra protein and veggies.
2. Use pita instead of regular bread.
Each piece of whole-wheat bread has about 80 calories, whereas a small whole-wheat pita (2 to 4 inches wide) only has about 70 calories, says Gorin. That’s not a huge difference, but it might be worth trying if you’re looking for small, simple ways to eat fewer calories.
3. Wrap it up—in a romaine lettuce leaf or even a tortilla.
“If you’re looking to cut calories, opt for a lettuce-wrapped sandwich,” Dianna Sinni, R.D., L.D., wellness dietitian and blogger at Chard in Charge , tells SELF. “This can reduce the calorie count by 120 to 200 calories, depending on the type of bread you normally use.”
Still want some healthy carbs on your plate? Use a single whole-wheat or multigrain tortilla instead of two slices of bread. Just make sure that the tortilla you’re reaching for is actually lower in calories, says Gorin, because some can contain even more than those two slices of bread.
4. Throw an egg on top.
Gorin likes to top her sammies with a fried or hard-boiled egg . This is a great way to add 6 grams of extra protein, plus some healthy fats , to make your lunch more satisfying and keep you fuller for longer. Plus, who doesn’t love sopping up that runny yolk with bread?
5. Skip the deli meats.
Gorin explains that even though they’re a super low-maintenance protein source, deli meats often contain a lot of sodium. That’s why she prefers to fill her sandwiches with whole cooked chicken breasts or salmon fillets. Don’t feel like laboring over your meat that long? Canned chicken, salmon, or tuna with no added sodium will work just fine.
7. Or skip the condiments altogether and use concentrated ingredients like caramelized onions and sun-dried tomatoes for extra flavor.
You get a huge bang for your buck with cured, pickled, and cooked ingredients like sun-dried tomatoes, capers, and olives. All are both extremely potent and relatively low in calories, and you don’t need to use a lot to reap the flavor benefits.
8. When in doubt, add more veggies.
As is the case with salads , crunchy, watery, low-cal vegetables are something you can never add too much of to your sandwiches. Gorin likes to throw in tons of everything from alfalfa sprouts to red peppers. And that’s just the beginning of the possibilities. Don’t be afraid to get creative, because almost everything tastes good in sandwich form.
You may also like: A Healthy Egg and Avocado Sandwich Under 300 Calories
We all know sugary and fizzy drinks can wreak havoc on our health, and they are found everywhere. From TV commercials promoting diet soda to the enticing menu presented to us at our favorite restaurant, artificially sweetened drinks lie everywhere. The good news is there are healthy drinks out there, even if healthy beverage options may seem limited.
Thankfully, there are many more healthy drinks for you to choose from than you might think — so you won’t go astray from your health goals. These beverages can not only do your health great favors, but can spice up your palette so you won’t grow bored and throw in the towel to living a healthier lifestyle.
So what are the top 20 healthy drinks around, and what makes them so healthy? I’m glad you asked.
Hot chocolate, a popular and cozy drink enjoyed during the cold season, can actually do wonders for your health — if you chose the right chocolate, of course. Dark chocolate contains tryptophan, which is an amino acid precursor to serotonin, the neurotransmitter responsible for having a positive mood and feeling happy. Reduction in blood pressure, cholesterol and improved insulin sensitivity all have been associated with this tasty delight. (1)
2. Lemon Water
Lemons offer more than pleasant smells and sour flavor. The bright yellow fruit comes with potential uses from cleaning and scenting your house to improving your health. Add flavor to your water, help skin conditions, improve hair or add years to our life by utilizing the benefits of lemons. Of course, lemons are known for having high amounts of vitamin C, with a single lemon offering you approximately 51 percent to meet your daily vitamin C needs. (2)
3. Cranberry Juice
Most people think of cranberries as a delicious addition to holiday celebrations in the form of cranberry juice, sauces, stuffing and decorations. Cranberries are rich in health-promoting materials that are essential for all-around wellness. They’re known to store constituents that protect against cancer and cardiovascular disease, and that’s not even half of what cranberries are capable of. They can improve oxidative stress, inflammation and urinary antibacterial adhesion activity to prevent urinary tract infection. (3, 4)
4. Green Tea
Tea is the second most widely enjoyed beverage in the world behind only water. Green tea made from unfermented leaves reportedly contains the highest content of powerful antioxidants called polyphenols, making it one of the top healthy drinks around. Antioxidants are molecules that fight free radicals, which are cell-damaging compounds that damage DNA and even cause cell death. Research points that free radicals contribute to the aging process, as well as the development of a number of medical conditions, including cancer and cardiovascular disease. (5)
Dandelions are everywhere, visibly present throughout most of the year. They make the ground healthy by restoring its mineral health to the depleted soil. Dandelion leaf is used for arthritis, gout, gastric headaches, edema and skin ailments — plus it’s excellent for detoxification due to its action on the liver. The whole plant, especially the roots, is roasted and can be used as a coffee substitute. The high inulin content, especially during the fall season, makes dandelion root a good food source for beneficial gut bacteria. (6)
6. Stinging Nettle Leaf Tea
If you’ve ever gone outside to gather stinging nettle leaves by mistake with your bare hands, you know it feels like you’re being attacked by a group of angry bees. Ouch! Despite it being painful to the touch, this underestimated plant is a powerhouse of benefits.
Stinging nettle is beneficial as a liver tonic and rejuvenator. It has supportive effects on circulation, the immune system, urinary tract, nervous system, respiratory tract, digestive tract and endocrine system. Its high magnesium content may be the reason for nettle tea’s ability to reduce leg and menstrual cramps.
7. Turmeric Tea
Turmeric has been rising quickly in popularity worldwide, especially the golden milk drink. Curcumin is one of the main active constituents in turmeric that gives it its benefits. It is commonly combined with bromelain or black pepper for increased absorption and anti-inflammatory properties. Turmeric has been long used in the Chinese and Indian medicine as an anticancer agent, protecting against wide variety of conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease, toothaches, rheumatoid arthritis, sprains and wounds.
8. Red Raspberry Leaf Tea
Red raspberry leaf tea has a long history in women’s health, particularly during pregnancy and labor to help prevent postpartum hemorrhage. Due to its drying effects of tannins, the leaves are used as a mouthwash in tonsillitis, diarrhea, skin conditions, abrasions and urinary tract infections. Red raspberry leaf is high in nutrients, including B vitamins, calcium and iron, which can help ward off all sorts of conditions. (7)
Thanks to the benefits of raspberry nutrition, red raspberry leaf tea joins the list of healthy drinks.
9. Watermelon Juice
Watermelon is a natural source of most powerful antioxidants. Perhaps no other fruit is as crunchy, thirst-quenching and hydrating than watermelon. It provides a good serving of vitamin C and vitamin A, particularly through its concentration of beta-carotene. The beautiful red color is a source of a potent carotene antioxidant known as lycopene, which may help reduce the risk of prostate cancer. Surprisingly, watermelon contains a higher concentration of lycopene than any other fruit or vegetable known. (8)
10. Parsley Juice
Parsley is a fairly small Mediterranean herb that leaves a nice presentation on your plate. Drinking parsley juice can decrease the risk of cancers, such as breast, prostate and skin cancer. The high amount of flavonoids, known as apigenin, makes it a strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory herb. Folate in parsley encourages cardiovascular health by reducing pro-inflammatory homocysteine, and parsley offers protection from an extensive selection of disorders, including asthma, atherosclerosis, diabetes, colon cancer and more.
11. Blueberry Juice
Blueberries are an excellent choice to add to your diet because they not only taste great, but they have the highest antioxidant capacity of all fresh fruit. Blueberry drinks improve glucose control and decrease blood cholesterol, lowering the risk of heart disease and diabetes later in life. Anthocyanin, an antioxidant found in blueberries, is a very effective immune builder and antibacterial agent to prevent infections.
Blueberries are surprisingly high in iron, and their vitamin C content reportedly improves night vision, helps build collagen and maintains healthy gums. A handful of blueberries consists of the recommended daily fiber intake to help keep your body regular, and the manganese helps the development of bone and converts carbohydrates and fat into energy. (9)
12. Tart Cherry Juice
Tart cherries contain high levels of phytochemicals, including melatonin, a hormone important in regulating sleep cycle. (10) Cherries also are an excellent source of phenolic compounds, known for their anti inflammatory and antioxidant activity. Phenolic compounds may help yield a protective effect to muscle damage and pain before and during strenuous exercise. (11)
13. Blackstrap Molasses Drink
Blackstrap molasses has a long tradition as a health food and remedy for all sorts of ailments, known for having a low amount of sugar and a high nutrient content. Blackstrap molasses drink is a good source of calcium, copper, magnesium, manganese and potassium. Mixing one tablespoon in water with lemon provides 70 percent of your daily iron requirement, making it the greatest plant-based source of iron available. It contains a small amount of the cancer-fighting mineral selenium as well and is a completely delicious and nutrient-dense sweetener. Look for unsulfured blackstrap molasses from organic sugar. (12)
14. Coconut Water
Is coconut water good for you? Yes, which is why it’s among this list of healthy drinks. It’s rich in carbohydrates, chloride, potassium and sodium and viewed as a hydrating drink of choice in various parts of the world. (13)
Kefir is a probiotic drink that provides that healthy gut bacteria. It, along with other probiotic drinks, promotes efficient digestion by achieving a healthy gut flora, fighting against pathogens and boosting energy levels. Probiotic drinks are “pre-digested” as the sugars in the beverage have been broken down, making them easier to digest creating less work for the pancreas which secretes digestive juices.
Studies have shown that they can help alleviate symptoms constipation, yeast infection, diarrhea, Crohn’s disease, celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome, candida and ulcers. (14)
16. Plant-Based Milk
Are you allergic to cow’s milk and want another non-dairy choice? Plant-based beverages choices, such as almond, coconut, hemp, oat, quinoa and rice milk, may be for you. Almond milk has more vitamin E since it’s made from grounded almonds. Hemp milk made with ground, soaked hemp seeds and water, delivers a significant amount of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids and protein. (15)
Coconut milk has monolaurin, a molecule responsible for antimicrobial properties. Oat milk is rich in fiber and iron and, like rice milk, higher in carbohydrates so these two plant-based milk choices are not the best option for those with diabetes. Choose fortified nondairy milk alternatives with calcium, vitamin D and vitamin B12. Look for unsweetened and reduced sugar options, and limit those with a significant amount of protein. (16)
17. Aloe Vera Juice
The gel of aloe vera has been used extensively in beauty products for years. It’s also been used internally to alleviate arthritis, constipation, coughs, diabetes, headaches and ulcers . One of the constituents, aloe-emodin, has been shown to possess potential anticancer properties as well. Add aloe vera to water, with lemon, and your favorite organic sweetener for a refreshing and tasty drink. (17)
18. Holy Basil Tea
In Ayurvesda, holy basil, or tulsi, is known as “the queen of herbs” and is recommended for conditions such as fever, cough, arthritis, ringworm, and insect, snake and scorpion bites. It’s a potent adaptogen, which are herbs to help your mind and body cope with physical and emotional stress.
Tulsi has been shown to prevent brain, kidney and liver injury by protecting against cellular damage caused by industrial chemicals, pharmaceuticals and pesticides. In additional to protecting against toxic chemicals, holy basil has been shown to protect against the damaging effects of heavy metals as well. (18)
19. Green Vegetable Drinks
Dark green leafy vegetables are nutritious, offering a large amount of vitamins A, C, E and K. The abundant amount of antioxidants called carotenoids protect against cellular damage and help prevent development of many cancers. They also contain a high amount of calcium, fiber, iron, magnesium and potassium. Importantly, dark leafy vegetables have little carbohydrates, cholesterol and sodium. (19)
Dark leafy green drinks supply a significant amount of vitamin K, which helps prevent inflammation and protect bones against osteoporosis. Leafy vegetables may best your best choice when it comes to cancer prevention due to the high amounts of antioxidants. Studies have shown that eating two to three servings of dark leafy greens per week may help lower the risk of certain cancers, especially breast, skin and stomach. The significant amount of folate can help prevent birth defects and improve cardiovascular health as well. Folate is crucial for proper DNA repair and replication and may help reduce the risk of breast, cervical and lung cancers. (20)
Like kefir, kombucha is a fermented, probiotic drink that does wonders for your health. It’s been shown to help prevent disease, support a healthy gut, potentially improve mental state, benefit the lungs, fight bacteria, manage diabetes, support heart health and maintain a healthy liver.
Benefits of These Healthy Drinks
Replenish vitamins and minerals
Protect teeth and gums
1. Digestive Aid
When you drink healthy beverages, you get more of the nutritional value because they are in their liquid form, making it easier for you to digest and absorb nutrients. Your stomach won’t have to work as hard to break the food down and pull out the nutrients you need. Liquids skip the chewing process, and the beverage reaches your digestive system at a faster rate.
Probiotic drinks are beverages that have been through the fermentation process. Healthy bacteria found in your gut feed on the starch and sugar in the drink, making lactic acid. Fermentation has been shown to preserve nutrients, including B vitamins, beneficial enzymes and many strains of bacteria while breaking the beverage down into an easily digestible form. (21)
2. Replenish Vitamins and Minerals
Although drinking clean pure water alone is great in most cases, it doesn’t contain high levels of electrolytes and minerals to replenish what was lost during times of illness and strenuous exercise. Since the healthy drinks are at a liquid state, they can be easily digested, making the electrolytes and vitamins easily accessible to help avoid electrolyte imbalance.
Healthy drinks like coconut water may be useful as an oral rehydration therapy, replacing fluid loss in patients who suffer from severe dehydration. With high antioxidant properties, coconut water can help neutralize free radicals resulting from long hours of exercising. (22)
3. Skin Care
Healthy drinks with large amount of vitamin C, such as lemon water, have heaping amounts of antioxidants. In recent studies, vitamin C was found to be the most plentiful antioxidant in human skin, protecting the skin from oxidative stress caused by free radicals. Vitamin C is essential for collagen synthesis, serving as a co-factor for enzymes responsible for cross-linking and stabilizing collagen molecules. The anti-inflammatory properties of vitamin C in healthy drinks may help with conditions like acne and rosacea. It can promote wound healing and prevent post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation as well. (23)
4. Healthy Teeth and Gums
People lack the enzyme L-glucono-gamma lactone oxidase required for the proper synthesis of vitamin C; hence, they must acquire it from natural sources, such as healthy drinks that contain citrus fruits, green leafy vegetables, strawberries, papaya and broccoli. Traditionally, vitamin C foods and drinks were carried by sailors on long journeys to avoid scurvy, a disease of bleeding gums.
Regular consumption of green tea may help your goal into having healthy teeth and gums. Research shows green tea may promote periodontal health by preventing bone loss, limiting growth of bacteria associated with periodontal disease and reducing inflammation. (24) The periodontal prevention effects of green tea has been credited by an antioxidant called catechin. Catechin may also help inhibit the acid-producing bacteria from causing dental caries. (25)
Healthy drinks are great way to feel and look healthier as they cleanse your body from harmful toxins. Healthy drinks are filled with powerful liver-cleansing, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant ingredients known to energize and rejuvenate. (26)
Herbs, such like dandelion, lemon and stinging nettle leaf, have high volatile bitter components, isolating toxins in the body and flushing them out. Bitters also help stimulate gastric juices to promote better digestion, absorption and transportation of toxins. (27)
Don’t be swayed by packaging pleasing to the eye or hidden words — be sure what you are buying is the real deal. When fruit juice is “100% pure fruit juice,” one serving size equals one cup or eight ounces. However, fruit juices lack dietary fiber, which is needed to help keep blood sugar levels at bay. In this case, it is best to incorporate dietary fiber in addition to consuming fruit juices to prevent unnecessary sugar spikes. Fruit juices labeled “cocktails” are beverages filled with sugar and artificial coloring, and most fruit juice is full of hidden, unhealthy additives. (28)
When it comes to soft drinks, they rank the top of the list of being the most unhealthy beverage out there. With tons of sugar and no nutritional value, soda can put you on the fast track of gaining weight, overeating, being dehydrated and developing dental caries.
Reaching for a commercial sports drink after exercise can put your weight-loss goals on hold. Sports drinks are filled with artificial sweeteners, sugar and other additives. Lemon water or coconut water are better options. (29)
Energy drinks are common among college students to pull an all-nighter and increase concentration before exams. Most energy drinks are loaded with caffeine and sugar, giving you a short burst of energy but eventually tanking your energy levels fast. (30)
If you are prescribed medication, you should not use curcumin or turmeric without first talking to your health care provider. Turmeric drinks may interfere with the action of blood-thinners, diabetic drugs, or NSAIDS.
Dandelion drinks should be avoided when having conditions such as bile duct obstruction, acute gallbladder inflammation, acute gastrointestinal inflammation and intestinal blockage.
Final Thoughts on Healthy Drinks
Unhealthy drinks maybe shelved everywhere at your favorite grocery stores and restaurants, but healthy drinks are up and coming in popularity because many are taking an active role to better health.
There are a large variety of dark green leaf, organic fruit, tea and dark chocolate drink recipes that are not only delicious, but provide you with heaping health benefits.
If you want to improve your skin, go on a detox, replenish your electrolytes, healthy teeth and gums, and better digestion, healthy drinks will do the trick.
Unless you are juicing and making smoothies on your own, it is important to look at the nutritional value labels to ensure you are getting most of the fruit and vegetable and not purchasing drinks filled with sugar and artificial flavors.
If you were prescribed medication, consult your health care provider before consumption of some of the ingredients in healthy drinks as they can interact with your medication.
Carbohydrates are a hot topic in the nutrition world. In one arena, we hear how wonderful carbohydrates are for exercise performance and metabolism, then the next day we hear about a recent study showcasing the potential damaging blood sugar effects of carbohydrate consumption. This constant back and forth leaves the general public dazed and confused on whether carbs are good or bad for our health. The truth is, like with most foods, there are good carbs and unhealthy carbs. How is one ot tell the difference? It can be a bit confusing.
With the rise in certain diets, such as the low-carbohydrate diet or high-fat keto diet, this adds to the bombardment and confusion surrounding carbohydrates. It’s no wonder so many of us aren’t quite sure which direction to go. Should we avoid carbohydrates or eat them? Should we be counting them? This article will explore the science of carbohydrates and what they do for the body — as well as dispel some of the common myths surrounding this infamous macronutrient and how to discern good carbs from bad ones.
What Are Carbohydrates?
What exactly is a carbohydrate? A carbohydrate is a molecule that consists of carbon hydrogen and oxygen atoms that is usually of a hydrogen-oxygen atom ratio of 2:1. Carbs are one of the three macronutrients like protein and fat that we need in varying amounts to meet and sustain our metabolism and energy levels. When we consume carbohydrates, our digestive tract converts them into glucose. This glucose is then burned to produce heat and adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP is a molecule that stores and releases energy as needed by the cells in our body.
Carbohydrates comprise three categories:
Sugars: The first are sugars, which are sweet, small-chain carbohydrates. Some prime examples of sugars are glucose, sucrose, galactose and fructose. (1)
Long-chain glucose: The second type of carbohydrate are composed of long-chain glucose molecules, which get broken down into glucose in the digestive tract.
Fiber: The last type of carbohydrate is fiber, which we do not have the capacity to break down. However, our gut bacteria has the capacity to extract some of that fiber as fuel and convert it into short chain fatty acids. (2) High-fiber foods are also great sources of prebiotics, which serve many functions in the body — like providing fuel for our gut bacteria. Research published in Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience suggests that dietary prebiotics can improve non-REM and REM sleep after a stressful event — one benefit of good carbs that provide fiber. (3)
How exactly does glucose get converted into energy? Glucose gets converted into energy with or without oxygen. It gets transformed into energy with oxygen in the cell organelle called mitochondria. The byproduct of this process involves ATP, heat and carbon dioxide. Our bodies use the glucose as a fuel source for the cells in the body, tissues and organs. Any excess sugar gets stored in the liver and muscle tissues as glycogen, where it can be accessed at a later time. When the glucose gets transferred into energy without the presence of oxygen, the end result is lactic acid, which causes muscle soreness.
Good Carbs vs. Bad Carbs
How do we tell the difference between good carbs and bad carbs? It’s important that we understand the type of carbs we eat because the type dictates how the carbs respond in the body. Whole, unprocessed carbs are considered healthy carbs. Some examples include sweet potatoes, bananas, potatoes, brown rice, yucca, legumes and dates. All these foods have their nutrients intact and have been minimally altered to impact the nutritional value of the food.
Refined carbs are carbohydrates without the fiber content present. They have been altered in such a way that the processing methods strips the food of the many key vitamins, minerals and fatty acids. Examples of refined carbs include fruit drinks, white flour, white rice, white pasta and pastries. Healthy carbs impact insulin levels in the body much differently than refined, processed carbs do.
A 2013 study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology looked at the effects of refined carbs on coronary heart disease. These researchers found that intake of bad carbs lead to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and obesity. (4) Processed carbs lead to a constant blood sugar fluctuation throughout the day, thus impacting overall human performance and longevity.
Researchers from the American Heart Association examined the harmful effects of high glycemic index and high glycemic load foods like processed carbs. The intake of bad carbs correlated with impaired glucose intolerance, greater insulin concentrations circulating throughout the bloodstream, and an overall increased risk for type 2 diabetes and type 3 diabetes — otherwise known as Alzheimer’s. (5)
Not all carbohydrates are considered “bad.” Healthy carbohydrates, which are high in sugar and starch, do exhibit vastly different effects on the body than refined carbs do. For example, purple sweet potatoes are high in various complex sugar molecules, unrefined starches and various vitamins, trace minerals, and phytochemicals like anthocyanins.
A recent study from Kansas State University examined the effects of purple sweet potato intake on one’s health. Researchers found that purple sweet potatoes contain derivatives from anthocyanins called cyandinin and peonidin. These specific compounds show vast improvements in slowing cancerous cell growth proliferation and boosting overall metabolic function and cardiovascular health. (6)
Some other highly regarded carbs include bananas, dates and buckwheat. These particular foods are high in carbohydrates and fiber, as well as chock-full of vitamins, trace minerals, antioxidants and essential fatty acids.
Buckwheat contains roughly 71.5 grams of carbohydrates, 16 grams of fiber and 23 grams of protein in a 100-gram serving. (7) That is quite the impressive nutritional profile. More interesting is that buckwheat ranks medium low on the glycemic index. The glycemic index pertains to how our blood sugar rises after two hours of food consumption. The higher the number on the GI chart, the greater the rise in your blood sugar levels. Foods that break down more quickly elicit a larger increase in blood glucose levels in the bloodstream than carbs that break down at a slower rate. (8)
Buckwheat is also rich in resistant starch. Resistant starch is a specific type of starch that resists digestion, thus making it fall under the category of fiber.It passes into the colon, where it is broken down by our gut bacteria. These nourishing bacteria create these short-chain fatty acids, such as butyrate, which boost colon health by providing fuel for the cells lining the colon. (9)
Another well-known compound that buckwheat exhibits is called rutin, which is one of the main antioxidants present in buckwheat. Research published in Food Research International found that rutin displays protective lipid peroxidation benefits. Lipid peroxidation means the degradation of lipids, or the oxidation of lipids resulting in cellular damage. (10)
Dates are also some of the best good carbs on the planet, especially Medjool dates. They are quite high in glucose, fructose and sucrose and rich in minerals like manganese, potassium, phosphorus, copper, magnesium and selenium. All of these minerals play a role in many functions in the body, like supporting cardiovascular health, intestinal health and nervous system health. Dates are rich in amino acids, soluble and insoluble fiber. These proteins and fibers stimulate the digestive tract to influence a healthy and robust microbiome.
A really fascinating study out of the University of Scranton explored the polyphenol content of dates. The researchers found that dates had the highest antioxidant capacity of any dried fruit. (11) Many researchers suggest that antioxidants play a major role in lowering the mortality rates of cancer and other chronic disease. (12)
How Many Good Carbs Should I Eat?
One of the biggest questions surrounding carbohydrates is: How many grams of carbs per day do you need? To start, I want to emphasize that everyone’s carbs needs varies upon many factors like age, sex, body type, activity/training level and metabolic health. For the general public looking to slim down, a range of 100–150 grams of good carbs is ideal for most to support energy levels and overall vitality. This comes out to be roughly 15 percent to 30 percent of one’s total calories coming from healthy carbs.
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans suggests 45 percent to 65 percent of total daily calories should come from carbohydrates. That equates to about 225–325 grams per day. (13)
The few exceptions would be individuals who are athletes or fitness enthusiasts who are training intensely. They tend to require more carbs to assist in recovery, muscle protein synthesis and hormone support. These individuals would require 150–250 grams of carbs per day.
On the other spectrum, individuals who have metabolic issues like type 2 diabetes or Alzheimer’s tend to gravitate toward a low-carb foods approach, which proves very effective in addressing diabetes and other neurological diseases. They should consume a between 60–90 carbs per day. There are even some individuals who are carbohydrate-intolerant. This essentially means that the person lacks certain digestive enzymes like lactase, amylase, maltase, sucrase and isomaltase to break down and assimilate carbohydrates effectively. (14)
Another quite common approach to quality and quantity of carb consumption that many adopt is taking a cyclical carb consumption approach. The idea behind carb cycling is centered around consuming more good carbs on specific days of the week and then on other days dialing back on the good, unprocessed carbs. Some experts in the nutritional science field suggest that this cyclical carb food approach can assist in accelerating weight loss quicker. Some other interesting benefits to carb cycling include maintenance of lean muscle mass, assisting in exercise recovery, balancing out metabolism and hormone support.
Good Carb Recipes
Looking for some recipes that call for good carbs? Here are some that incorporate healthy carbs:
A key concept to be aware of is that less good carbs doesn’t always translate to better health and performance. Did you know that going too low-carb and/or choosing poor sources of carbs can negatively impact mood, cognitive performance, aging, hormone imbalance, sleep quality and recovery from exercise? In fact, some studies suggest that cutting carbs too low could negatively impact thyroid function by suppressing T3 function. When T3 gets too low, this can lead to unnecessary weight gain, fatigue, brain fog and low mood. (15)
Final Thoughts on Good Carbs
It’s important to understand that we all respond differently to carbohydrate consumption. First and foremost is starting with healthy, complex carbs and then assessing what you feel is the right amount that suits your own unique genetic makeup.
At the end of the day, carbs can be quite nourishing and beneficial for our health and performance. It’s all about emphasizing a mind-set around quality of the carbs over quantity that will ultimately make the difference for you.
You want to stick to good carbs, including buckwheat, purple sweet potatoes, quinoa, dates, bananas and more, while avoiding processed, unhealthy, refined carbs like fruit drinks, white rice and white flour.
Beyond weight loss: The many benefits of banishing belly fat
iStock/Manuel Faba Ortega
Does stubborn belly fat have you frustrated? While we all want to look and feel our best, getting rid of extra belly fat is also beneficial to our long-term health and reduces our risk of serious illnesses. Excess belly fat can lead to heart disease, raise the risk of type 2 diabetes, boost the odds of developing high blood pressure, and more. Keep reading to find out how the following home remedies can help you reduce unwanted belly fat quickly–minus fad diets or latest fitness trends. Also try out these ways to lose weight without a lick of exercise.
Increase your protein intake
You don’t have to hop on the Paleo train and ride it all the way to the station, but increasing your intake of protein and reducing your intake of carbs is one of the fastest ways to lose belly fat without additional exercise. Protein helps to balance blood sugar and lower levels of insulin, a hormone that signals your body to store fat, especially around your midsection. For healthier carb alternatives, skip the white bread and pasta in favor of whole-grain complex carbs, seasonal fruits, root vegetables, and squashes. This is how nutritionists sneak more protein into their diets.
Add coconut oil to your diet
Coconut oil is made up of medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), whereas many vegetable and seed oils are comprised of long-chain triglycerides (LCTs). Studies indicate that many of coconut oil’s benefits are mainly due to its high quantity of MCTs. MCTs are easily digestible, quickly converted into energy by your liver rather than being stored as fat, and may stimulate your body’s metabolism helping you to lose belly fat. Don't have a lot of time? Try these ways to bust belly fat in just one day.
Find a go-to stress reliever
Whether you’re overworked or overwhelmed, chronic stress may be one factor contributing to resistant belly fat. Prolonged levels of the stress hormone cortisol tend to spark your appetite, increase your cravings for comfort foods, slow down your metabolism, and promote abdominal fat storage. Finding calming activities such as meditation, deep breathing, or a soothing bath, will help you manage and reduce your day-to-day stress and help you lose belly fat to boot. This simple things helps you lose one inch of belly fat in just 7 minutes.
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Drink green tea daily
Thanks to its waist-trimming compounds called catechins, green tea is the perfect detox drink to lose belly fat. Catechins speed up your metabolism and aid your liver in burning fat. Consider swapping out your regular coffee intake with green tea; studies have shown four to five cups of the tea is what’s needed to see the benefits. Also, beware of store-bought bottles of green tea that often contain extra sugar, which can override any health benefits. For maximum results, it’s best if you brew your own and ditch the sugar altogether, or replace it with a natural sweetener like stevia that won’t spike your blood sugar. Here are more health benefits of drinking green tea.
Give yourself a bedtime (and stick with it)
A surprising way to lose belly fat without exercise is by catching more sleep. Research shows sleeping for six to eight hours per night will help keep your insulin levels and your stress hormones in check. Plus, you’ll have the necessary energy to burn calories more effectively during the day. Here’s how you can even lose weight while you sleep.
Spice up your meals
Curcumin is an anti-inflammatory component extracted from the herb turmeric. With a few capsules a day, or by adding the pungent spice to your food, curcumin supports a healthy inflammatory response by mediating several inflammatory processes in your body. Research has shown curcumin supports a healthy metabolism and is a great ingredient to add to any recipe to cure your belly fat. To get the maximum benefit of curcumin, look for a turmeric extract that contains at least 95 percent curcumin.
Be a water guzzler
Drinking eight glasses of water each day aids your digestion, reduces bloating, and keeps your metabolism functioning at its best. Plus, replacing your sugary drinks with water throughout the day is a quick fix to decrease your daily caloric intake, which leads to overall weight loss and a trimmer belly. Add a splash of lemon or lime to make a bland glass of water more exciting, and you’ll be well on your way to a trimmer tummy. Here are more tricks for drinking more water every day.
Bhringraj oil can be used for treating various hair and skin problems
2. Fenugreek or
methi dana is one treasure spice that may not have originated in India, but has grown to be an essential part of our culinary fare and culture, as if it always belonged to us. It is no wonder then that Ayurveda recognized its potential thousand years back and continues to make most of its health and
Fenugreek seeds are rich in folic acid, Vitamin A, Vitamin K and Vitamin C
3. Amla There is a reason why our mothers and grandmothers swear by for all their skin and beauty needs.
Amla or Indian gooseberry has been an essential part of hair care rituals in India since time immemorial. Massaging the scalp with
amla oil helps boost
blood circulation. This supplies enough nourishment to your follicles, which then increases hair growth. It also looks after the overall scalp health by removing dandruff and dissolving grease and dirt from follicles. It helps restore optimum pH levels of the scalp that boosts essential oil production. One of the biggest reasons behind
Amla is packed with Vitamin C. The potent antioxidant help keeps the free-radical activity at bay, which can also severely impact the health of hair. You can prepare some
amla oil at home too. Heat some coconut oil in a pan and add two teaspoons of
amla powder. Heat the oil until it turns brown. After 2-3 minutes, turn off the heat and set the oil aside to cool. Collect the oil in a bowl. Apply it on your hair, while it is still slightly warm and massage well. (Also Read:
Triphala powder has been known to reduce dandruff too. You can either apply
Triphala powder mixed with
coconut oil on your hair, or make it a part of your diet. Your diet plays a huge role in the health of your hair. One of the reasons why your hair volume is not up to the mark could be your liver condition and
Acne is not only an aesthetic problem, but it can also cause psychological discomfort. Today, there are many ways to deal with acne including using pharmaceutical treatments with topical preparations and/or undergoing cosmetic procedures.
Homemade acne facial masks with purifying and anti-inflammatory effects are simple, inexpensive, and just as effective. Depending on the ingredients, these masks can also nourish and moisturize your skin.
The EatingWell Diet is a comprehensive plan designed to help you lose weight safely and permanently. At the core of the plan are seven essential steps—each the result of cutting-edge research, put into practice in real people’s lives. They’ll work for you too!
Of course you want to lose weight—that’s why you are reading this—but in order to make a life plan you can stick with, you must be ready—truly ready—to make the commitment. Losing weight will take some time and effort, and it will require you to make some sacrifices. (If it were easy, everyone would be thin!) The first step is to make sure you’re ready to get started. Read more.
The next step on your weight-loss journey is to decide what kind of weight loss makes sense for you. Weigh in, assess your eating habits and make a game plan. That will include long-term goals and more immediate goals too. Read more.
Self-awareness is self-motivation: by keeping track of your behavior, you motivate yourself to change because you become more accountable. Track yourself with a food diary and exercise log—some of the most powerful tools for managing your weight. Read more.
Healthy eating means getting a variety of foods in moderation—not making any food forbidden, but not going overboard on those rich foods that were once special-occasion indulgences. Eat mindfully by knowing the foods that make weight loss easier, and understanding key healthy-eating principles. Read more.
Losing weight is challenging—we can’t expect to do it alone. As you make your way through losing weight, you’ll need to cultivate a network of friends, family, co-workers, professionals and like-minded dieters. Read more.
As you reach your weight-loss goals, you’re ready for the final step: creating a long-term strategy that will help your successes stick for good. Read more.
The EatingWell Diet. Copyright 2007 by Eating Well, Inc. Published by The Countryman Press, P.O. Box 748, Woodstock, VT 05091. It is prohibited to copy, redistribute or transmit this work for any purpose, commercial or otherwise, without the express written permission of the publisher.
This rich body lotion is pure luxury on the skin but won't cost you a luxury price tag.
Moisturizing, Nourishing and smells divine with lavender and rose geranium, it is a great addition for ultimate body care.
Skin loving coconut oil, vitamin E, jojoba oil and beeswax deliver ultimate skin softening and nourishing benefits that leave the skin super smooth and supple.
Lotions are a lighter way to moisturize without the heavy texture of a cream or butter although this recipe does boarder on being a cream, I could not resist leaving it this texture as “creamy and dreamy”.
Anyone who’s ever watched a Skittles commercial has heard the suggestion to “taste the rainbow.” While it may seem counterintuitive that a candy commercial has good weight loss and healthy eating advice, registered dietitians are fans of this guidance. The only catch: That “rainbow” you're talking about is produce , not sweets.
First, a head's up: You should know that when it comes to health and weight loss, it's all about finding what works for you, which may or may not be what works for other people. And if you want to lose weight, it's key to think about where that desire comes from—and whether losing weight is a decision that will ultimately make you healthier and happier. For instance, if you have a history of disordered eating , you should check in with your doctor before beginning a weight-loss plan or changing your dietary habits, no matter how healthy that change may seem. And keep in mind that even if you don't have that history, setting reasonable goals is key. When it comes down to it, weight loss is about a lot more than how many colors you have on your plate. Other crucial factors: how much you sleep, your general stress levels, hormonal changes, and more. No matter where you are on your health and fitness journey, do your best to be kind to yourself, take your time, and listen to your body.
Whether or not you’re trying to lose (or maintain) your weight—maybe you just want to treat your body well in general—eating the rainbow might help you get there. “Everyone always hears to eat more fruits and vegetables,” Brigitte Zeitlin, M.P.H., R.D., C.D.N., founder of the New York-based BZ Nutrition , tells SELF. Specifically, the recommendation is that women between the ages of 19 and 30 eat 2.5 cups of vegetables and 2 cups of fruit each day. Women between 31 and 50 should eat the same amount of vegetables, but downgrade the fruit to 1.5 cups a day (fruit has a lot of sugar).
That all sounds good in theory. In practice, it's easy to fall short of taking full advantage of produce’s potential, including bringing about weight loss. “A more fun, interesting way to approach [eating the recommended amount of produce]—and make sure you’re actually doing it—is to eat the rainbow,” Zeitlin says. This method helps keep you from getting bored with your healthy meals, plus it allows you to eat plenty of nutrient-dense foods without overdoing it on calories, Laura Cipullo, R.D., C.D.N., C.D.E., C.E.D.R.D., owner of Laura Cipullo Whole Nutrition , tells SELF.
“Every fruit and vegetable has different colors based on the different minerals, vitamins, phytochemicals, and antioxidants it contains,” Zeitlin says. For example, sweet potatoes have that delightful orange color because of their beta-carotene , an antioxidant that your body can convert into vitamin A, possibly boosting your eye health, immune system, and skin. By switching up the fruits and vegetables you eat, you’re making sure to get as much varied goodness as possible.
You don’t have to meet an exact number of produce-provided colors at each meal. It’s more about the overall ethos of the “rule”: To maximize fruits' and vegetables’ incredible potential by getting as large of a variety as you can. “You don’t need to have every single color in one meal as long as you’re eating them throughout the day,” Zeitlin says. “Greens can be a good basis, then you can build on that.”
On the flip side, if your plates are regularly filled with various shades of white or brown, it could be a sign your diet isn't diverse enough, meaning you're likely missing out on a lot of nutrients. “If your plates are just one color, you aren’t including a variety of vegetables—you’re probably eating more packaged foods, probably doing more takeout,” Cipullo says.
In addition to phytonutrients, foods that are plants are a great source of fiber , which is great for weight loss, weight maintenance, and keeping blood sugar level. “When you’re trying to make your plate chock-full of colorful veggies, you’re loading up on fiber, which keeps you full for a long time,” Zeitlin says. She's right: Fiber is a bulky nutrient, taking up valuable real estate in your stomach and helping you feel more satisfied than you otherwise might. “When you get enough fiber, you don’t needlessly snack as much between meals, and when you’re heading into your next meal, you’re not as ravenous,” Zeitlin says.
Keep in mind that you can take baby steps when incorporating the rainbow IRL. “I just joined up a CSA—it forces you to get creative,” says Cipullo, who also recommends trying a meal delivery service , or simply making an effort to eat locally. “Then you’ll be eating in season, so it’s going to be varied,” she explains. But all of that can get expensive or seem overwhelming if you're not used to it, so eating the rainbow can be as simple as maximizing the number of colors of produce in your cart on your usual trip to the supermarket.
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