Dealing with mood swings, cramps, energy drains, and headaches—not to mention having a job, managing a household, taking care of childrens, maintaining relationships—is all in a day's work for many women and mothers.
Stress can put your health at risk and by choosing your diet wisely, can fend off some of these stresses and diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and breast cancer; strengthen your bones; fortify your immune system; protect and smooth your skin.
Here are the top 10 food to elevate your health!
1) Whole grains: Opt for whole grains such as brown rice, quinoa and oats help in maintaining your cholesterol level, thus, protecting you from heart disease. A Harvard study of more than 68,000 women found that those who ate the most fiber daily were 23 percent less likely to develop heart disease than were those who consumed the least. It also helps solve digestive problems and curb unhealthy cravings.
2) Nuts: This delicious food is known as the powerhouse of essential vitamins, minerals and healthy fats. Almonds are loaded with bone strengthening minerals like magnesium and vitamin E that boost brain health. Walnuts contain rich omega-3 fats, reducing risk of cardiovascular disease. Brazil nut contains selenium that reduce anti-thyroid antibodies, thus, prevent Hashimoto's thyroiditis, an autoimmune disease that affects many women in middle-age.
So, eat a handful of nuts every day and improve your overall health.
3) Apples: Metabolic syndrome—a syndrome that refers to a cluster of conditions like insulin resistance, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol—is the main contributor to heart disease, the leading cause of death in women. While women with unhealthy carbs diet or overweight are most susceptible to metabolic syndrome, even healthy postmenopausal women are also at risk. The Iowa Women's Health Study, which has been tracking 34,000 women for nearly 20 years, found that apples are one of three foods most effective at reducing the risk of death from coronary heart disease and cardiovascular disease among women.
4) Blueberries: Blueberries are one of the most potent, age-defying, antioxidant-rich superfoods. Their potent minerals protect your cognitive, eye and heart health from declining. In one study of 16,010 women, those who ate one weekly serving of blueberries experienced less mental decline during the course of the study than participants who didn't consume any of the little blue fruits. High in antioxidants, they fight against free radicals and wrinkles.
5) Green tea: Green tea helps in fight cancer and heart diseases. It also prevents dementia, diabetes and stroke. In a study of healthy Japanese American women at the National Institute of Health's National Cancer Institute, researchers found that those who drank at least one cup of green tea daily had less urinary estrogen—a known carcinogen of the breast—than the non-tea drinkers.
6) Turmeric: Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide and the second leading cause of cancer-related mortality in women. Scientists have found that one way to reduce the mortality of cancer is through prevention, and that can be accomplished by eating turmeric. This ginger-family spice contains curcumin, an antioxidant polyphenol with chemopreventive properties which have been found to diminish the formation of breast cancer, according to a study in Molecular Oncology.
Don’t forget to pair it with pepper to enhance absorption of curcumin.
7) Tomato: Thanks to their high concentration of the antioxidant lycopene, tomatoes can help protect our DNA from damage that can lead to breast, endometrial, lung, stomach, prostate, and renal cell carcinoma cancers, according to researchers. Serve it with avocado, enjoy a perfect Guacamole, boosts the absorption of lycopene by almost five times!
8) Beets: Besides being a source of many phytochemicals, beets are a unique source of betalain pigments, which have been found to display potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and chemopreventive activity. One of these pigments, betaine, is a nutrient that not only fights inflammation, but also is known to rev your metabolism, positively influences the mechanism for insulin resistance and to boost your mood. That's because betaine has been found to raise serotonin (the feel-good hormone) levels in the brain.
9) Avocado: Avocados are rich in the heart-healthy Omega3 acids, magnesium which is found to have a positive effect on the quality of sleep in older adults with insomnia according to Journal of Research and Medical Sciences. Avocados also contain tryptophan, the precursor to calming and sleep-regulating hormones serotonin and melatonin. Many women suffer from the inability to fall asleep as they go through menopause, by eating avocado might help you regain your sleeping beauty.
10) Kale: Kale earns a womanly superstar status thanks to the rich presence of vitamin K, a potent bone builder and blood clotting agent. University of Toronto researchers found that postmenopausal women who ate diets rich in vitamin K for two years experienced a 50 percent reduction in fractures and a 75 percent reduction in cancer incidence than those who took a placebo. Experts attribute vitamin K's benefits to increasing bone strength through the activation of bone proteins needed to ward off osteoporosis, the crippling bone disease that strikes women four times more often than men.
This article is specially curated to all mothers and women in the celebration of Mothers' Day. If you find them helpful, don't forget to share it with your loved ones!