It’s important to get your daily requirements of fruit and vegetables and it is recommended that you get 5 servings daily. Fruit and vegetables can help maintain your weight and keep your heart healthy , but what exactly are the benefits of the different fruit and vegetables available ?
– They say they keep the doctor away but for what illness do they claim to help with ? It is said that apples will not only protect your bones but also help protect you against certain types of cancers. One study even showed an increase benefit to those suffering from asthma . Are you a diabetic then an apple may help lower the body’s need for insulin due to the pectin found in apples which supply galacturonic acid .
- with a good source of fibre , vitamin B2,C ,E copper and potassium pears promote good cardiovascular, colon and protection against macular degeneration . Pears are often a good starter food for the weaning of infants as they have a low occurrence of allergy.
- known best for their antioxidant benefits these root vegetables are rich in beta-carotene. An antioxidant can slow or prevent oxidative damage to our cells and bodies. Free radicals are by-products from oxygen that our body use which cause the oxidative damage. Antioxidants attack the free radicals there-fore protecting and repairing the damaged cells Carrots have also been linked to anti-cancer benefits as well as cardiovascular benefits.
The anti –cancer benefits have mostly been linked to colon cancer due to the high fibre contained in a carrot . Let’s not forget the one benefit everyone seems to know , vision health . Carrots seem to give the population a reduced risk of cataracts and better vision . With so many benefits carrots seems to provide why wouldn’t we all make them a part of our daily meals!
- containing vitamin C and other active ingredients which promote health such as phthalides, which may help lower cholesterol, and coumarins, that may be useful in cancer prevention. Celery can also protect you with its protective vitamin C. Vitamin C helps promote a good immune system and good health.
- high in dietary fibre , high level vitamin E , C, iron, folic acid and beta-carotene. Cholesterol-lowering agents are also present in broccoli helping to lower your risk of heart disease and stroke . Broccoli is also an excellent detoxification tool for your body.
- decreased risk of hypertension, protection for your heart and blood vessels, antioxidants and a decreased risk of chronic inflammatory diseases leeks certainly pack a punch .Leeks are loaded with vitamins C, K , B6 as well as manganese and iron . Leeks are best cooked after waiting 5 minutes from the time they have been cut to ensure the valued nutrients are preserved within the food .
- low in calories and high in vitamin A, courgettes are also a good source of potassium which are important to reduce blood pressure . Along with many other vegetables courgettes can help prevent cancers and is said to cure asthma . Vitamin C which is also found in courgettes can help to promote eye health.
- With increased ripening this wonder veg will increase the amount of nutrients it gives off. Studies have shown that if allowed to ripen more, once the veg is bought and brought home it will continue to increase the amount of vitamins it provides. High heats can damage the nutrient content so it is important to use a low heat for a short amount of time. As with many other vegetables, peppers no matter the colour are rich in Vitamin E, C, contain antioxidant benefits as well as anti-cancer benefits.
- as most of these vegetable nutrients are found near the green edge it is important to peel like a banana rather then cut the outside shell with a knife. Begin by cutting the avocado in half and twisting it off the seed. Remove the seed from the other half then cut in halve lengthwise again. Using yours fingers peel back the avocado to reveal your nutrient rich food. What is left is the rich carotenoid antioxidant green flesh full of vitamin B potassium and folic acid. Avocados are also boosters when paired with other foods such as spinach or salsa. As we all can see fruit and vegetables have a very good source of vitamins and can help fight cancer along with a list of other ailments.
Be wary of one main point , overheating your daily 5 as this will cause them to lose all those superb nutrients you work so hard to get !
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