Functional Food

All The Health Benefits & The Best Way To Eat Them – Self Improvement Article

Pumpkin seeds are tiny, yet they pack a big punch. These small seeds are a good source of magnesium, iron, and fiber, and it’s about time we take them seriously for their incredible health benefits. You may have heard pumpkin seeds being referred to as pepitas, and technically they are both pumpkin seeds, but there’s a key difference between the two. Pepitas, meaning, “little seeds of squash” in Spanish, are pumpkin seeds without the shell and are only found in…

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How The Keto Diet Might Help You Recover From Lyme Disease – Self Improvement Article

So, why is there so much talk about Lyme right now? In part, it’s because we understand more about these infections and testing is being done more frequently. But in my opinion, and from functional medicine’s perspective as a whole, better diagnosis is only part of the reason. Because our genetics as humans haven’t changed in over 10,000 years, we have to look at what has changed: the world around us. Epigenetic or lifestyle factors like the processed foods we…

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Cayenne Pepper Benefits Your Health In So Many Ways — Here’s How – Self Improvement Article

Beyond being a tasty addition to any wannabe spicy dish, cayenne pepper can do a body a whole lot of good if used the right way. Cayenne pepper itself contains necessary vitamins, including potassium and magnesium, as well as vitamins A, E, C, B6, and K. According to Richard Schulze, N.D., cayenne pepper “cleans the blood, allowing hormonal signals to make their way unimpeded through your system, [resulting in] an enhanced immune response.” Cayenne pepper also contains valuable phytonutrients, making…

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A Compound In Broccoli May Slow The Growth Of Cancer – Self Improvement Article

While we’re practically headed out the door to stock up on these cancer-fighting veggies, Yu-Ru Lee, Ph.D., member of the Pandolfi lab and an author of the paper, points out that in order to get these benefits you’d have to eat 6 pounds of the raw cruciferous veggies, which doesn’t sound too appealing. Luckily, the team is working to make it so we can get the benefits without having to eat that many raw vegetables.  “Either genetic or pharmacological inactivation…

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Eating Nuts During Pregnancy Can Improve Children’s Brain Health – Self Improvement Article

To state the obvious: Pregnancy completely changes a woman’s life. All of a sudden what you do, say, and eat matters much more because you’re carrying a soon-to-be person inside of you, and whatever you do may or may not affect them. But the latest study out of the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal) is promising and delicious—particularly if you enjoy eating nuts. Nuts, as we know, have a myriad of benefits—from their magnesium and healthy fat content to…

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Inulin Foods & Health Benefits – Self Improvement Article

Most people can get enough inulin in their diet by incorporating plenty of the foods on the above list and aiming for 25 to 30 grams of total fiber in your diet per day. Out of that fiber total, try to aim for 5 grams of fiber from prebiotic or inulin foods a day, suggests Dr. Bindiya Gandhi, M.D., American Board Family Medicine–certified physician. Shifting your diet to contain more vegetables, fruits, and whole grains in general will go a…

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The Best Breakfast For Having A Great Poop – Self Improvement Article

Low-carb diets are trendy once again (remember the days of the Atkins diet?), but that means too many people are now leaving an important food out of their diets: oats. Whether you used to eat oats or never got into oats in the first place, you’re missing out! And with gut health becoming more and more of a health concern lately, there’s even more reason why you should be including oats in your diet. Oats are nutritional powerhouses. They contain…

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The Best Foods To Prevent Alzheimer’s – Self Improvement Article

If we know one thing to be true, it’s that good nutrition can be the answer to many of our common health problems. Obesity and heart disease, for example, are leading causes of death in the United States, and nutrition can often successfully treat these. So what about Alzheimer’s disease? As it turns out, you may be able to decrease your risk of developing Alzheimer’s by changing your diet, and there are a couple of hypotheses as to why diet…

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How Walnuts Help Fight Inflammation – Self Improvement Article

As a medical doctor who specializes in gut health and functional medicine, I see how chronic inflammation plays out with a wide range of symptoms. In one patient, inflammation can lead to migraines, asthma, or allergies. For another, it can lead to an autoimmune disease. But underlying each of these potential outcomes is the same root cause: a gut ecosystem that was knocked out of balance and became inflamed. Chronic inflammation plays a role in nearly every disease on the…

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Glycemic Index Diet: How Bananas, Quinoa, Sweet Potato & More Score – Self Improvement Article

The glycemic index was initially developed in the 1980s to help guide food choices for patients with diabetes. It is critical for individuals with diabetes to maintain stable blood glucose levels for optimal health. However, the glycemic index has recently gained popularity in the general public as a way to control cravings, boost energy, and lose weight. In fact, many popular diet plans, like Zone and South Beach, are based on the principles of balancing blood sugar levels. By promoting…

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How To Ripen Avocados Quickly: 3 Different Ripening Techniques – Self Improvement Article

If your Super Bowl snacking plans include mountains of guacamole like ours do, you know there’s nothing worse than remembering day-of that your avocados are still rock-solid. And if you’ve ever tried to bite the bullet and use unripe avocados anyways, you know how disappointing it can be to miss out on the creamy gauc goodness that a perfectly ripe avocado promises. We live in a busy time when it can be tough to plan ahead, especially when it comes…

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Is Breakfast The Most Important Meal Of The Day? Researchers Say Not So Fast – Self Improvement Article

You’ve probably heard the adage “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” once or twice before. It makes sense, right? If we want energy for everything we need to do in a day, we should probably fuel our bodies. If your goal is to shed some extra pounds, however, a new review in The BMJ found your morning omelets and oats may actually not be helping you. Researchers looked at studies relating to breakfast published over the last…

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Low-FODMAP Diet: Foods, Benefits & How To Start It

It’s important to remember that many high-FODMAP foods are considered very healthy. They’re not being restricted on this diet because they lack nutritional value but because many people have sensitivities to this type of carb. Also, keep in mind that low-FODMAP means less dietary fiber, so you might want to consider a low-FODMAP fiber supplement such as rice bran or oat bran. To get started you’ll need to begin the elimination phase. Cut all high-FODMAP foods from your diet for…

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Mediterranean Diet: Foods, Meal Plan, Benefits & How To Start It

The main idea of the Mediterranean diet is to eat real, whole foods and to largely avoid processed foods. In general, you want to try to base your meals around fruits and vegetables (aim for about nine servings a day), whole grains, beans, nuts, and legumes. Add in some healthy fats such as omega-3-rich fish and olive oil. And, if you’re in the mood for meat, stick to lean meats such as chicken and turkey. Here’s a breakdown of what…

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What Are Probiotics? Benefits, Food Sources, Supplements & More

Beyond basic immune functions, probiotics also help with digestion. You’ve probably heard that fiber is good for you, but did you know our bodies cannot actually break it down? That’s where the microbiome and probiotics come in. Gut bacteria feed on the fermentable fiber we eat, sometimes called prebiotics, which are found in many fruits and vegetables such as bananas, oats, and garlic. As the probiotics digest these prebiotics, they release important minerals and produce short-chain fatty acids, which we can…

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Apple Cider Vinegar Diet: Tips, Benefits, Side Effects & More

While the research is promising, there are certainly some potential downsides to adding vinegar to your diet—especially if you consume it with every meal. For one, vinegar is highly acidic and may damage tooth enamel within just a few hours, as well as lead to throat burns if consumed straight, or undiluted. “If you’re going to drink apple cider vinegar, dilute it in water—about 1 teaspoon in 8 ounces water is a good jumping-off point—to avoid burning your esophagus or…

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6 Health Benefits of Vinegar + Types, Uses & Side Effects

In the process of making vinegar, alcohol is converted into something called acetic acid—one of the main science-backed, health-promoting compounds that has been found to help lower blood sugar, reduce fat storage, and suppress appetite, among other good stuff. That sour, biting flavor that accompanies vinegar, pickles, and even sourdough bread? That’s acetic acid. “Numerous studies have linked vinegar consumption to lower blood sugar,” says Jessica Cording, M.S., R.D., CDN, registered dietitian and health coach. “The acetic acid in vinegar…

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Why You’re Not Losing Weight On A Vegan Diet

Vegan diets cause weight loss very predictably. In a huge study of Seventh-day Adventists, those who had adopted a vegan diet weighed 30 pounds less than meat eaters, on average. In fact, essentially every research study shows the same thing: Vegan diets cause big-time weight loss. But what if it is not working for you? That can happen. In my clinic, we use vegan diets for people with diabetes, cholesterol problems, menstrual cramps, migraines, and many other problems. For perhaps…

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Manuka Honey: Benefits, Uses, Buying Tips & More

There are formal Manuka honey grading systems in place to help consumers feel confident they’re getting the real deal. The higher the number or rating for any of these, the more powerful the honey. The most common grading system, which some consider the gold-standard, is the Unique Manuka Honey Factor (UMF). It was developed by the UMF Honey Association in New Zealand, and it grades Manuka honey based on its levels of MGO, DHA, non-peroxide activity (NPA), and leptosperin. Every jar of…

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Golden Milk: 7 Benefits & 3 Recipes For Making This Turmeric Tea

In its most basic iteration, golden milk is a hot or cold beverage that’s made by combining either turmeric powder or fresh turmeric root with the milk of your choosing (cow, almond, coconut, cashew, etc.). Often, several more flavor-boosting ingredients are added to the recipe such as black pepper, ginger, cinnamon, and honey. Black pepper, specifically, is said to boost the body’s ability to absorb curcumin, the main bioactive compound within turmeric. While new-ish to many of us, the origins…

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How To Use Ayurveda To Heal Your Gut

Mind-body (dosha) types and agni types aside, how, when, where, how much, and with whom you eat are all just as important, if not more so, as the food that’s on your plate. Eating too much raw, which is hard to digest if you don’t have adequate agni, eating dinner too late in the day (especially a large, hard-to-digest meal) gives your body little chance to fully digest before bed, just as when it comes to breaking your overnight fast,…

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Queer Eye’s Antoni Porowski Shares His Top 5 Cooking Hacks

When you’re done crying over the emotionally wrenching displays of empathy and understanding on Queer Eye, you should be able to appreciate the actionable tips the fab five share in every episode. If, however, it’s hard for you to see through your streaming tears, we don’t blame you—that’s where their new book comes in. Appropriately aw-inducingly titled Queer Eye: Love Yourself, Love Your Life, the colorful coffee table edition is packed with insights into Tan’s, JVN’s, Antoni’s, Bobby’s, and Karamo’s…

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The 9 Essential Amino Acids: Benefits, Foods, Supplements & More

The essential amino acid lysine helps produce various hormones, enzymes, and antibodies. It plays an important role in the immune system and has antiviral properties, with some research suggesting that it may be effective against herpes by improving the balance of nutrients in the body in a way that slows the growth of the virus. Lysine is also crucial for the production of collagen—the most abundant protein in the body that gives structure to ligaments, tendons, skin, hair, nails, cartilage,…

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Marco Borges, Author Of The Greenprint, On Plant-Based Eating & Effective Change

Marco Borges is the founder of 22 Days Nutrition, a New York Times best-selling author, and author of his new book The Greenprint. Marco joined us back in 2017 on the mbg podcast to discuss what led him to create 22 Days Nutrition and why he’s inspired to share his passion for plant-based eating with the world. A self-proclaimed eternal optimist (and it’s true), an advocate for sustainable living, and a believer that change begins with us, Marco is one…

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The Smoothie Recipe Rosario Dawson Sips For All-Day Energy

It would be an understatement to call Rosario Dawson a busy woman. The actress, famed for her roles in Sin City, Rent, Men in Black II, and more, currently stars as Claire Temple in five of the Netflix/Marvel series, including Daredevil and Jessica Jones, in addition to running a sustainable fashion line, doing philanthropic work, raising a daughter, and partnering with Quaker to spread the word about their classic oats. It’s not a surprise then that she’s figured out a few tricks to keep…

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Healthy Ingredients To Always Have On Hand

Whole 365 Frozen Broccoli Broccoli is the No. 1 vegetable that I prefer to buy frozen over fresh. As I wrote about in my article on how to save money on healthy food, a farmer once told me that he never buys grocery store broccoli because it’s lost so many nutrients by the time it hits the shelves. The freezing process, though, retains the nutrients, and having it always hand makes it easy to make soups, quick stir-fries, grain bowls,…

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How To Stay Motivated To Eat Healthy & Workout

When I first started working out, I went to yoga classes in Manhattan. I live and work in Brooklyn, and it took me about an hour to take the subway to the studio, check in, change my clothes, and settle in on my mat. Making my way home took a similar chunk of time, turning a one-hour workout into an effective three-hour commitment. If I went after work, I knew I wouldn’t be able to make other plans; if I…

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