Vital Nature: Summer super foods


Rays of solar warmth, long days, and plenty of green trees to provide peaceful shade means it must be summer. This is the time of the year everyone whips out their grills and slabs on the steaks and burgers, when salads are everywhere and no one wants to turn on their ovens. Beans are sprouting, tomatoes are turning and there is an abundance of leafy greens. Summer is also home to an array of superfoods. From berries to garlic, here are some splendid summer remedies and preventatives that you can find—or grow—right in your own neighborhood.

Strawberries are packed with vitamin C, which is highly effective at lessening oxidative stress and is an enzyme cofactor for the biosynthesis of many vital biochemical (scurvy occurs when the body lacks vitamin C). They contain a sufficient amount of manganese, which contributes to the production of collagen in wound healing and helps regulate hormonal functions. Strawberries also contain ellagic acid, which helps protect against UV radiation, as concluded by an animal study by Experimental Dermatology. Tomatoes, the second red fruit on the list, contain Lycopense, which has shown tremendous anti-aging and cancer-fighting properties through much research. It also helps to protect genetic material from disease and damage caused by radiation and other external factors.

Avocadoes are loaded with Omega-9 fatty acids, and catalyze the transformation of fat into energy, boosting the rate of metabolism. They are also known to improve the health of blood vessels, and contain glutathione, a nutrient that block at least thirty different carcinogens, and is required to detoxify many synthetic chemicals from the liver. In addition, research has shown that elderly people who had high levels of glutathione were healthier and less likely to suffer from arthritis. So throw some avocado in your salad and be on your way to good health.

Speaking of salads, stock your stomach with leafy greens this summer (and year round), and help protect the health of your eyes. Plums; most people don’t give them all that much thought, but these purple drupes contain antioxidant acids, neochlorogenic and chlorogenic, which are scarcely sourced from other foods. And for a natural energy drink, try coconut water. Different from coconut milk, which is made by blending then straining coconut flesh and water, coconut milk is the liquid that is found in the center of a fresh coconut. The milk of young coconuts contains many, many vitamins, minerals and electrolytes; it has five times more potassium, which helps cure muscle cramps, than Gatorade or Powerade. Coconut water is also high in healthful antioxidants, and contains a more than decent amount of manganese, magnesium and Vitamin C. Try blending it with watermelon, ice and a spritz on lime for a sweet, refreshing, anti-carcinogenic health drink.