10 Foods You Should Be Eating More Of

19 08 2008

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Image by Pomarc on Flickr via Creative Commons

Image by Pomarc on Flickr via Creative Commons

“The health of people is really the foundation upon which all their happiness and all their power as a state depend.” Benjamin Disraeli

To pursue your Lifestyle Project you probably want to stay as fit and healthy as you can. If you get this covered then it is one less thing to worry about and allows you to focus on your goals.

It is thought that roughly one third of all Cancer deaths may be diet related. You are what you eat is a good mantra to eat by. Here is a list of 10 great foods that are widely available but perhaps don’t feature enough in many people’s diets. Remember it is better to get many of the benefits of Vitamins and Minerals from natural food sources rather than supplements, and remember to try for Organic sources if you can.

Avocados
Thought to be good for the liver, avocados are rich in glutathuine which is a powerful antioxidant that attacks free radicals in the body. They have more potassium than bananas and are a strong source of beta-carotene.

Chilli Peppers (and Jalapenos)
Apart from adding great flavour to foods (I’m a big Chilli fan), Chillies contain a chemical called capsaicin which can neutralise certain cancer causing substances and may help prevent some cancers such as stomach cancer. Add a little spice to your life.

Flax
I take a tea spoon of Flax seed oil (which you can buy at most larger supermarkets) at morning and night. It tastes pretty horrible but you can’t have everything. I has antioxidant properties and can block or suppress cancer changers. Flax is also high in Omega-3 fatty acids which have anti-inflammatory properties, good for joints and aches and the overwhelming evidence is that they help reduce the risk of heart disease. Your body can’t produce Omega-3 so it is important to get it from your food (and better from food than supplements).

Garlic
I love garlic and use it to flavour most hot meals (get the mints out). It contains immune enhancers that appear to increase help break down cancer causing substances. Garlic also has anti-bacterial effects and aside from helping protect against major diseases as well as colds and flu.

Kale (and other Cruciferous Vegetables).
Government recommendations are that you should eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables per day. Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, kale and cabbage contain antioxidants (zeaxanthin and lutein) which help decrease prostate and other cancers. They also contain loads of excellent vitamins and minerals. I’ll often have a side dish of broccoli with my meal to top up my intake.

Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds such as brazil nuts, almonds, pumpkin and sunflower seeds contain great levels of natural protein and EFAs (essential fatty acids). These are good for cell repair and growth, Omega-3 content and energy. Seeds in sprouted form are excellent in salads to add some nice crunch and are extremely good for you.

Papayas
These are packed full of vitamin C that works as an antioxidant and may reduce absorption of cancer causing nitosamines from soil and processed foods (though aim for Organic if you can). Papayas also contain folic acid which is a B vitamin and is great for your Liver amongst other things.

Seaweed (and Sea Vegetables)
These are good sources of protein, vitamin B12, fiber, beta-carotene and chloropyll (remember that from science class?). Many also contain minerals such as potassium, calcium, iron and magnesium. These great sources of the vitamins and minerals could be why Japanese and eastern diets have so such low rates of cancer and heart disease. Sushi anyone?

Green Tea
I’ve been drinking green tea in place of ordinary black tea for years (although black tea still good for you). Green tea is excellent antioxidant are good for general well- being. It is a constant source of research for cancer treatments due to their evidence of healing properties. Green tea is also thought to reduce the likely hood of getting sunburn (and I would support this view through my own experience).

Turmeric
This is a new one on me. Turmeric is believed to have medicinal properties (in fact some medical companies are currently using it in trials) and acts as anti-inflammatory for inflammation-related enzymes associated with some cancers (it is thought to strangle them!). Turmeric has been used for thousands of years as a medicinal herb. In India, it has been used traditionally as a remedy for stomach and liver ailments and to heal sores. I have turmeric with my eggs in the morning which is a great way to get a daily intake easily.

So there you go. Obviously there are loads more foods that are healthy for you, but I picked these ten as there which fairly mainstream foods they are perhaps ones that people don’t have enough in their diets.

Let me know suggestions for other healthy foods in the comments!

DISCLAIMER: The information and advice contained in this post are intended as a general guide to healthy eating and are not specific to individuals or their particular circumstances. All content within this article is provided for general information only, and should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or any other health care professional.

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Beijing Olympics Starts Today: Motivation to Exercise

8 08 2008

This your kind of thing? Please think about subscribing via RSS or eMail (it’s free). Thanks for taking the time to visit! Chris

Image by Jimmy Harris on Flickr via Creative Commons

Image by Jimmy Harris on Flickr via Creative Commons

“Movement is a medicine for creating change in a person’s physical, emotional, and mental states.” Carol Welch

I’m doing well with my Healthy Living Plan (which I am currently researching and experimenting with, but hope to turn in to posts and an eBook later). Part of this plan involves exercise (as you would expect). Everyone knows that they need to exercise. In fact most people probably need to do far more exercise than they currently do. With the Olympics starting today, maybe that will motivate you to dust off your running shoes and venture out.

There are plenty of good reasons to exercise.

  1. Health Benefits. OK everyone knows this, but hard though it may seem to start,  you will soon look and feel better and that will motivate you further.
  2. Get out. Exercise is a great way to get away from your computer, your phone and the distractions of life. You can just focus on the one activity and that is a rare situation for many people in the modern world.
  3. De-Stress. Exercise releases hormones that reduce stress and relieve tension.

There are issues with exercise that people find difficult.

Starting

This could be starting to exercise (i.e. stopping being a couch potato), or starting a run because it is raining. I find that it is best in this situation to just do it, don’t think about it, JUST DO IT! (see my blog post about this here.)

Maintaining

  1. Don’t skip more than one day without exercise. Make this a personal rule. If you miss a day of exercise (excluding one rest day per week that you should have), make sure that you exercise the next day. No excuses.
  2. Reward. Give your self a reward for hitting a exercising target or goal. Perhaps best to make it something constructive rather than a big cream cake (that would kind of defeat the object of healthy living).
  3. Take Little Steps. There is the saying “Don’t run before you can walk”. Build up gradually otherwise you will get too tired or injured and lose you motivation. Set realistic but challenging goals, and don’t increase by more than 10% per week (that’s time, intensity or weight lifted etc).
  4. Accountability. Make yourself accountable for your exercise. Sign up for a 5k run or a super-sprint triathlon. If you are fitter but need to keep your motivation going, sign up for something bigger like a marathon. Make yourself accountable to yourself and others.
  5. Training Plan. Put together a programme for yourself or find one online. If you plan and set out a training plan it will be easier to maintain. Also it is a good idea to keep a record of your progress as a motivator and to look back on your achievements.

Finding the time.

Set up getting fit (or staying fit) as a personal goal, simplify your goals and eliminate what you don’t need to do. Bring it forward in your consciousness and make time (put it in your diary as an appointment you must attend). If it is important enough to you, you will find the time and make time. Maybe you need to force yourself a bit? Get a training partner or sign up to a local club or group.

GO FOR IT!

Here are some links you might find useful:

Leo’s Tips on Minimalist Fitness – fresh off the ZenHabits press (note I drafted my post above in a meeting yesterday before Leo’s posted this morning!)

Cool Running Couch to 5K plan

Tim’s Geek to Freak Programme

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Thanks for reading.

I hope you enjoyed my post. I’d love to hear your comments below or get a Digg or Stumble!