Eggs revisited

Eggs and other foods containing cholesterol have been given an extremely bad wrap over the past 30-years; yet, contemporary research is revealing that cholesterol might not be the cause of cardiovascular disease after all. Rather, the biggest culprit of metabolic syndrome (diabetes, high blood pressure, and coronary heart disease) is the health degrading combination of an American high-carb diet (refined flour, starches, and sugars) with a physically inactive lifestyle. So, don’t ditch the eggs and bacon – lose the donuts and pancakes! Eggs shouldn’t be avoided because of their high cholesterol content.

Every egg is loaded with six grams of high quality protein!  Eggs also contain important nutrients that many people don’t get enough of in their diets, such as choline, biotin, and selenium. And if it didn’t get any better, eggs are an extremely versatile food (fry em’, boil em’, scramble em’), delivered in biodegradable, compostable, and edible packaging.  Thats right, edible – in fact, up until a few years ago, it was common for people to eat the shells, which are 98% calcium!  For more information on eggs, cholesterol, and heart health, click the link below:

Dr. Katz from Yale University on Eggs and Cholesterol

“Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” -Luke 11:11-13. According to Jesus, eggs are a good gift! Interestingly enough, he also mentions fish, which are also incredibly good for health!

Originally posted 2011-04-06 17:12:00.

How many fruits and vegetables do we need daily?

Optimum health absolutely depends on eating enough fruits and vegetables everyday. They are chalk full of important vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients (like quercetin and lutein), polysterols, polyphenols, antioxidants, as well as healthy sugar and fiber. The complexity of these nutrients in their natural forms provide synergistic health benefits that are still a mystery to researchers, benefits that isolated supplements alone don’t provide. Check out the impressive list of recommendations for daily fruit and vegetable intake:

According to the American Cancer Society, adults should eat 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables daily to help prevent cancer.[1] The Linus Paulings Institute, Oregon State University’s micronutrient research lab recommends “four servings (2 cups) of fruit and five servings (2½ cups) of vegetables daily,” not including white potatoes, for a total of 9 servings of fruits and vegetables daily.” [2] The FDA says, ” Moderate evidence indicates that intake of at least 2½ cups [5 servings] of vegetables and fruits per day is associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, including heart attack and stroke. Some vegetables and fruits may be protective against certain types of cancer.”[3] And finally, The Center for Disease Control recommends eating more fruits and vegetables as well. You can use their handy calculator to help you determine how many fruits and vegetables you need each day based on your caloric intake: Fruit and Veggie Calculator

Yet despite all these recommendations, only 1% of children and 3% of adults consume the daily amount of fruits and vegetables recommended by the FDA (an amount which isn’t very high)! I learned about this statistic at a local presentation entitled “Food Justice,” which was primarily about US agricultural and farm policy. Two speakers gave the presentation, one from the Environmental Working Group and the other from Bread for the World. Given the dismal statistic they provided, it is no wonder that disease and obesity are so prevalent in our society! The presenters discussed some of the barriers to eating healthy, including the expensive cost of fruits and vegetables, as well as the lack of access to stores that offer fresh fruits and vegetables (although not as big an issue in Northern California, where fruit and vegetable crops abound). They also argued that a large part of the problem is the disproportionate amount of subsidies the government offers farmers for growing cereal crops, rather than fruit and vegetables. The Farm Bill, which determines the amount and dispersion of subsidies, allocated 170 billion dollars (70% of subsidies over 15 years) for just five grain crops and no subsidies to fruits and vegetable crops, which are considered “specialty crops.” Approximately 50% of the grains went to feeding livestock, and 30% to ethanol.[4][5]

Perhaps one of the best ways to combat this problem is for people to start growing their own vegetables: home and community gardens. Those of us with access to farmer’s markets can also support our local farmers, who usually offer fresher produce with less pesticides than what is found at the local supermarket. Check out the following database to find access to fresh produce near you: Local Harvest

[1]A Cancer Journal for Clinicians
[2]Linus Pauling Institute, Rx for Health
[3]FDA Food Guidelines
[4]Environmental Working Group, “National Analysis”
[5]“Specialty Crops and the 2007 Farm Bill” by Mechel Paggi

Originally posted 2011-03-21 01:48:00.

The Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate

The health benefits of dark chocolate have been well covered by the media, but ongoing research is revealing more wonderful news! Are you looking for an indulgent treat that you can feel good about eating? Maybe you already love chocolate but thought you had to cut out all candy. Well, I have good news — dark chocolate is a creation-based food that you can keep in your diet!

Unfortunately for all you milk chocolate lovers and super sweet tooths, it’s only dark chocolate that has the health benefits. Apparently the milk in the milk chocolate prevents the antioxidant benefits from being absorbed by the body. Also, “dark chocolate” with a lot of added sugar, isn’t truly dark. To get the maximum health benefits, you want to eat your chocolate as dark as possible; I’d say at least 75% pure chocolate. Keep in mind that candy isn’t the only way to enjoy chocolate either. There are a variety of ways to incorporate chocolate in both sweet and savory foods!

Nutritionally, dark chocolate is healthy because it’s loaded with flavonoids and minerals. It’s especially high in one flavanoid called epicathechin, which acts as an anti-oxidant and supports cardiovascular health.[1] Chocolate is also a vasodialator (meaning it expands your blood vessels). A recent study demonstrated that dark chocolate causes a decrease in blood pressure and an increase in insulin sensitivity (both tremendous health benefits) shortly after eating.[2] Another study demonstrated that dark chocolate causes the adhesion of platelets to artery walls to decrease, thus reducing the build up of arterial plaque.[3]
The anti-oxidant benefits of dark chocolate also contribute to it’s ability to lessen the amount of skin damage caused by sun exposure, making it a great post sun-tanning treat (perhaps as a banana and dark chocolate smoothie?).

In addition to containing powerful antioxidants, dark chocolate also supplies an impressive list of nutrients, like iron, magnesium, copper, fiber, and protein. The magnesium chocolate contains is especially valuable, as many Americans are magnesium deficient (by about 100 mg per day). Magnesium is vital for optimum cardiovascular health and energy production. Finally, dark chocolate contains lots of pure energy from saturated fats! You may be surprised that I list this as a good thing, but saturated fats are easily used by the body as fuel, and they don’t cause a spike in insulin or throw off the important Omega-6 to Omega-3 fatty acid ratio.

If dark chocolate is too bitter for your taste, give it a few tries and it might grow on you! I eat an 85% dark chocolate bar on a regular basis and now the 72% bars taste too sweet and not complex enough in flavor. Trader Joe’s has a delicious 85% dark chocolate bar for only $1.49. CBH also offers Organic Cocoa Nibs (pure dark chocolate), which can be used in a variety of recipes. Try them out and enjoy – your heart and taste buds will thank you! If you have a favorite type of dark chocolate, share it with the rest of us by posting a comment below!

Originally posted 2011-03-18 06:12:00.

Vegetables High In Calcium

We are all aware of the importance of calcium, the benefit it has for our body and that it cannot function without it. Calcium is found naturally in dairy products and is added to a plethora of common foods such as orange juice, cereal, soy milk and breads. Most recommendations to add calcium in your diet will point you towards dairy products, but, a common question for many vegans and vegetarians who don’t eat dairy products is, “What vegetables are high in calcium?”

Before we get into specific vegetables and their calcium content we need to look at the difference in absorption of calcium from foods. Calcium is absorbed far better from dairy products than vegetables. Moreover, vegetables that are high in calcium but are also high in oxalic acid, such as spinach, sweet potatoes and beans, don’t provide the body as much calcium as they contain. The Dietary Reference Intakes for Calcium states, “In comparison to calcium absorption from milk, calcium absorption from dried beans is about half and from spinach is about one tenth.” Oxalic acid essentially blocks calcium absorption. Protein and caffeine may also have a negative impact on the retention of Calcium. This must all be taken into account when choosing plant-based calcium sources.

The following chart has vegetables categorized by oxalate content, “Low” to “Very High.” Within those categories each vegetable is listed in order from highest calcium content to lowest. As you’ll see, spinach has the highest calcium content, but since it has a “Very High Oxalate” content it is not a good choice for calcium. Be sure to choose from the “Moderate” to “Low” oxalate categories to maximize calcium absorption.

 

Food

Serving SIze

Calcium (mg)

% DV

Calories

Oxalate Content

Dill

2 tsp

63.67

6.37

12.8

Low Oxalate

Basil

2 tsp

59.16

5.92

7

Low Oxalate

Oregano

2 tsp

57.49

5.75

9.5

Low Oxalate

Broccoli

1 cup raw

42.77

4.28

30.9

Low Oxalate

Brussels Sprouts

1 cup raw

36.96

3.7

37.8

Low Oxalate

Romaine Lettuce

2 cups

31.02

3.1

16

Low Oxalate

Cabbage, Green

1 cup raw

28

2.8

17.5

Low Oxalate

Kale

1 cup cooked

93.6

9.36

36.4

Moderate Oxalate

Thyme

2 tsp

52.92

5.29

7.7

Moderate Oxalate

Cinnamon

2 tsp

52.1

5.21

12.8

Moderate Oxalate

Asparagus

1 cup raw

32.16

3.22

26.8

Moderate Oxalate

Fennel

1 cup raw

42.63

4.26

27

Moderate Oxalate

Collard Greens

1 cup cooked

266

26.6

49.4

High Oxalate

Turnip Greens

1 cup cooked

197.28

19.73

28.8

High Oxalate

Mustard Greens

1 cup cooked

103.6

10.36

21

High Oxalate

Celery

1 cup

40.4

4.04

16.2

High Oxalate

Spinach

1 cup cooked

244.8

24.48

41.4

Very High Oxalate

Swiss Chard

1 cup cooked

101.5

10.15

35

Very High Oxalate

Sesame Seeds

0.25 cup

351

35.1

206.3

Very High Oxalate

Leeks

1 cup raw

52.51

5.25

54.3

Very High Oxalate

 

Works Cited for “Vegetables High in Calcium:” 

  1. O’Connor, H. The Oxalate Content of Food. http://www.ohf.org/docs/OxalateContent092003.pdf
  2. National Research Council. Dietary Reference Intakes for Calcium, Phosphorus, Magnesium, Vitamin D, and Fluoride. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 1997.
  3. Agricultural Research Service. United States Department of Agriculture. National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. Release 26. http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/search/list

Photo Source: Kale

Originally posted 2013-12-20 15:29:11.

Apples wake you up!

If you are like most Americans, your day starts with coffee. Hopefully that is not the extent of your morning fuel, but if you feel as though that is all you have time for, consider making a switch. An apple is super easy to take on the go and due to the nutrients packed in this juicy fruit, apples wake you up.

The first reason apples wake you up is the natural sugar found within called fructose or fruit sugar. This type of sugar is more slow acting than table sugar, so instead of getting the dreaded sugar high and crash, it will be a steadier stream of energy.

The fiber contained in an apple helps sustain that energy as well. Fiber slows down the sugar’s digestion in the body and makes the effect last longer. The type of fiber in apples also helps lower the risk of heart disease for an added bonus.

Water found in apples, like any water, can also help to wake the body up. Water is essential for life, so if you think about it, this makes sense. Water helps to wake up all of the cells in your body and jump-starts your metabolism for the day. Dehydration causes a feeling of tiredness, so an apple is a great way to add a little water into your diet.

Quercetin, is a polyphenolic flavonoid found in apples that has been shown to provide antioxidant effects. It has also been shown to increase oxygen levels. Over a seven day period, participants in a study who were given quercetin had improved VO2 max levels, or a higher oxygen capacity as well as overall endurance. The higher the oxygen levels in the body, the more oxygen is available to the brain, therefore the quercetin in apples can likely help wake you up.

Dietary polyphenols found in apples are also thought to have a positive effect on blood sugar regulation. Although there are many sugars and carbohydrates in apples, apples’ polyphenol content might help to stop the blood sugar spike, making apples a healthy way to obtain energy.

Other great health benefits from apples include:

Vitamin C: this vitamin is a great antioxidant that can help protect the body from infection and disease.

Great workout fuel: not only do apples have waking powers, the combination of fructose, other types of carbohydrates and water also makes apples great pre-workout fuel.

So why not wake up to a sweet and juicy apple each day? I know after all of this research, I will at least be integrating apples into my diet for some healthy pre-workout energy!

Sources for “Apples wake you up!”:

Originally posted 2013-12-17 07:09:16.

Popcorn as a Healthy Snack

Popcorn as a healthy snack, instead of a decadent, guilty pleasure, may sound like a great idea in theory, but you may worry that some deliciousness might get lost in the “healthy” process. Not to worry! The method you use to pop your popcorn has the greatest effect on whether or not your popcorn is a healthy snack. By using the best popping methods and adding some nutritious ingredients to your popcorn, you’ll have a healthy and delicious snack in your hands in no time.

To make popcorn a healthy snack, the most important thing to remember is to avoid refined seeds oils or trans-fats for popping your popcorn. Instead of using canola, corn, or vegetable oil (which can lead to inflammation and atherosclerosis), use an air popper or pop your popcorn in whole, healthy fats like ghee, coconut oil, olive oil or butter. These types of fats are less prone to oxidation and they don’t throw off the important essential fatty acid balance in your body.  

Once you’ve improved your popping method, use the ideas below to make you popcorn a sweet or  savory snack, naturally loaded with antioxidants and other important nutrients:

Popcorn with a dash of dark chocolate. Think popcorn is as “guilty” as it gets? Add on some dark decadence by tossing a few ounces of dark chocolate in a pot and heating it. Drizzle the melted dark chocolate over your air-popped popcorn for a burst of antioxidants and sticky-sweet deliciousness, sans the fat and carbs of heavy oils or margarine.

Healthy popcorn with a little sass. Add a dash of lemon juice and ¼ peppercorn to 3-4 cups of popcorn and toss for a little extra zing to your bowl without adding on guilt. 

Popcorn as a healthy snack and a party mix. Mix up a little fun by filling a bowl half-full of air-popped popcorn, then add ¼ cup of almond slivers, ¼ cup of banana chips, and ¼ cup of dried cranberries or raisins for a healthy snack medley that’s big on health and flavor. The perfect snack idea for you next get together.

Popcorn with cheese. What snack is just as beloved as popcorn? Cheese! Now you can pair these two snack favorites by shredding some white cheddar (made with milk from grass-fed cows) over your freshly popped popcorn. The heat from the newly popped kernels will help melt the cheese into the corn for a protein, vitamin and mineral infused snack blend that’s sure to please your taste buds.

A healthy popcorn snack with a spicy kick. If you like your snacks low-calorie and with a lot of heat, air-pop a serving of popcorn, then sprinkle on hot sauce sauce, shake and serve. This recipe is sure to please anyone who likes their popcorn with a side of nearly calorie-free fire.

Extra sweet and extra healthy popcorn. Drizzle honey over 3 cups of popcorn, then add ¼ tsp cinnamon and toss for added antioxidants and minerals — guaranteed to satisfy your sweet tooth. 

Popcorn with extra savory goodness. Add ¼ tsp of garlic powder and ½ tsp of rosemary to 3 cups of popcorn and toss for a pop of hearty flavor without added fat or calories.

Popcorn as a healthy snack is a great idea for anyone who wants to lose the unhealthy fats and high-sodium that usually comes standard with a bowl of this savory popped treat. Try any of these simple recipes to knock out the health-sabotaging, fattening toppings and enjoy popcorn as a snack that’s packed with health and more flavor than ever.

Sources for “Popcorn As a Healthy Snack:” 

Originally posted 2013-12-11 14:25:47.

Are almonds fattening?

Honestly I chose to answer the question, “Are almonds fattening?” because the idea of attributing any one food to making a person fat drives me nuts (no pun intended). For the sake of discussion though, let’s dive into it.

Almonds are a favorite food of mine, so I will admit to some bias. I love adding them to cereal, onto toast, or mixing them in with  baked goods for some added texture and nutrition. I also used to stop at the farmer’s market every year for a small bag of roasted almonds coated in a cinnamon sugar glaze as a semi-healthy treat. I adore eating something tasty while also boosting my nutrition for the day.

Let’s break down the nutrition facts to getter a better picture of whether or not almonds are fattening.

One fourth cup of slivered almonds, which is quite a bit if you think about it, is only 156 calories. As with most nuts, the profile of the almond is high in fat, but this type of fat is a heart-healthy one. Natural fats, like those found in almonds, are required for many things in the body including brain function and the digestion of fat soluble vitamins. Almonds’ fat content isn’t enough evidence to say that they’re fattening!

Almonds pack protein, fiber and a variety of vitamins all in one little nut. Almonds contain potassium, which helps balance out the sodium in your body, as well as phosphorus and magnesium, which are important for bone health. Magnesium might also help manage cortisol, a stress hormone that can cause negative biological consequences (including weight-gain) when out of balance. Almonds also contain vitamin E, which is great for healthy skin and nails.

The thing about almonds is that some people do not enjoy them plain, but feel the need to have them roasted and salted. One fourth cup of roasted and salted almonds can add over 100mg of sodium as well as extra fat in the form of oil, which is added to help keep the salt attached to the almonds.  So, if you’re going for the healthiest almond option, dry roasted almonds with lower sodium are the best.

But are almonds fattening?

Let’s think about this for a moment. What exactly is it that makes a particular food (such as almonds) fattening or not? Is it fat content? Is it high carbohydrates? Is it large amounts of protein or calories?

How about none of the above?

That’s right. No single food will “make you fat,” whether it contains fat or not. Yes, certain foods do not contain the nutrition that our bodies need, but that does not mean once that forbidden food hits your lips it heads straight to your hips. That is not the way the body works.

How and why is fat stored in the body?

Fat is stored when the energy from any given food is not used up in a given amount of time. The stored fat can be used for fuel later on if the body is desperately in need of energy. Fat is not the first form of energy the body burns, but that is a whole different discussion. To give a very broad answer, fat is stored when the incoming calories are higher than the output of calories.

It is important to look at the full picture when asking questions like, “Are almonds fattening?”

Because the fact of the matter is, yes, any food can make you fat. This includes almonds if we eat too many or if our energy expenditure is less than the amount of calories we eat. The great thing about whole foods like almonds, however, is that they are more likely to satisfy you than refined foods, which means you’ll be less likely to store extra fat from eating almonds than, say, almond roca. 

Are almonds a nutritious source of food that we should be incorporating in our diet? Absolutely, yes.

And not just because I am nutty about them.

 

Tell me…

What is your favorite kind of nut?

What are your thoughts on “fattening” foods?

 

Sources for “Are almonds fattening?”:

Originally posted 2013-12-06 16:16:11.

Health Benefits of Ginger

The health benefits of ginger may not be as well known to you as its spicy taste, which can pep up everything from salads to casseroles. This strong-flavored root has been used for thousands of years, and was once a popular remedy for everything from nausea to bronchitis. Ginger is still one of the most popular spices in use today, for both its food-boosting flavor and its amazing health-boosting side effects. Here are a few of the health benefits of ginger:

Ginger provides health benefits during pregnancy: Morning sickness, as any expecting mom knows, can strike any time of day and add misery to what should be a magical, joyous time. Research has shown that ingesting ginger can treat morning sickness, or the nausea and vomiting that can occur during a pregnant women’s first trimester. Consume 1g of ginger daily to alleviate the symptoms of morning sickness.

Ginger for an upset stomach: When it comes to treating nausea, ginger isn’t just for expecting moms! Studies indicate that children and adults can benefit from the nausea and upset stomach reducing effects of ginger. Consult with a physician before treating upset stomach in children under 2-years-old with ginger to ensure you administer the proper dosage. Adults may take 1g of ginger daily to alleviate upset stomach and nausea.

Ginger may provide relief for osteoarthritis: If you are suffering from pain and swelling caused by arthritis inflammation, ginger may provide some safe and natural relief. Research has shown that ginger’s anti-inflammatory compounds, called gingerols, can alleviate inflammation. Take 250 mg of ginger 4 times a day to treat osteoarthritis symptoms.

Ginger to relieve symptoms of  Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS): Irritable bowel syndrome, a condition that causes unusual contractions in your large intestine that can lead to diarrhea, constipation, pain and gassiness, has affected between 10 – 20 percent of the population at some point. Studies have shown that using ginger as a herbal supplement can treat the symptoms of IBS. Take 1g of ginger daily for IBS relief.

Health benefits of ginger for motion sickness: Some studies indicate that powdered ginger may help alleviate motion sickness, or a state of dizziness and nausea caused by a disruption of a person’s balance or equilibrium, often brought about by travel on a plane, boat or car. Do not exceed 4 g of powdered ginger daily to treat motion sickness.

Ginger for heart disease: Some preliminary studies suggest that ginger may help prevent blood from clotting and help lower cholesterol, both of which can reduce your risk of heart disease. Ask a doctor before taking ginger as a natural treatment for heart disease.

Health benefits of ginger for digestion: The next time you have that unpleasant abdominal discomfort after a large or spicy meal, just try some ginger. Studies have shown that ginger can be used to effectively treat the symptoms of indigestion and sooth your stomach. Take 1g of ginger daily to alleviate indigestion. 

Enjoy the health benefits of ginger by consuming this spicy root as an extract, in capsule form or as a tea. Consult your doctor before using ginger as a natural treatment for serious health conditions. You can also enjoy ginger in common foods and drinks like ginger ale, gingerbread, and just in time for the holiday season, gingerbread houses! A health-booster and amazing flavoring for sweets, soups, teas and many recipes, ginger is a beneficial, aromatic treat any time of year.

 Sources for “Health Benefits of Ginger:” 

Originally posted 2013-12-05 12:18:43.

Is quinoa fattening?

Quinoa has quickly become one of the most popular health foods on the market. It’s high in protein and fiber, it’s gluten-free, and it’s a good source of a number of vitamin and minerals. But… is quinoa fattening? Quinoa is relatively high in calories, and it can require a few extra “fixings” to make it taste good, so this is actually not a bad question — especially if you’re trying to lose a few extra pounds.

The answer to the question “Is quinoa fattening?” is a little more nuanced than whether or not quinoa contains fat. With only 4 grams of fat per 1 cup serving, quinoa is actually a low fat food. What really gives quinoa its potential to be fattening is the total amount of calories and carbohydrates it contains. In 1 cup of quinoa there are 222 calories and 35 grams of carbohydrates. 

If you think about it though, 222 calories really isn’t that much. Even if your daily caloric need is low and you’re on a 1,000 calorie diet, 222 calories would only meet about 1/4th of your total caloric need for the day. So far so good. But have you seen 1 cup of quinoa? It isn’t much, and you’re not just going to eat plain quinoa. You’ll need something on it. If you have it for breakfast, you’re going to want to add some milk and honey. For dinner you might cook it up with some olive oil or tomato juice and veggies. The calories can quickly add up. There is some potential that quinoa could become a vehicle for a few extra calories, but overall I’m not convinced that quinoa is a fattening food.

Is quinoa fattening? I’m more inclined to argue just the opposite. Even the 35 gram or carbohydrates isn’t all that problematic. Your body needs some carbohydrates during the day, and the type of carbohydrates found in quinoa are the best kind. Quinoa’s starches make excellent fuel for your brain and muscles. On top of that, 1 cup of quinoa contains 8 grams of high quality protein and a full spectrum of vitamins and minerals. Quinoa isn’t an empty source of fattening calories — it’s a highly nourishing food for restoring and energizing your body.  

If you’re really trying to lose excess fat, my only recommendation would be to eat quinoa for breakfast instead of for lunch or dinner. Eating quinoa in the morning will give your brain thinking fuel, boost your metabolism, and give you plenty of time to burn off those carbohydrates. For more information about quinoa, including how to cook it, read our more in-depth article on quinoa.

Sources: USDA Food Database
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Originally posted 2013-12-04 10:11:29.

The Health Benefits of Rosemary

health benefits of rosemaryThe health benefits of rosemary abound, making this spice much more than just as an aromatic addition to countless beloved recipes. For centuries this little herb has been used to treat everything from nightmares to baldness. Even today, rosemary is considered a health booster in a lot of surprising ways. Read on to discover the health benefits of rosemary, and find out why this spice deserves a space not just in your kitchen, but in your medicine cabinet as well.

Rosemary benefits hair growth: For those of us who suffer from baldness, help might come in the form of an aromatic herb. Studies indicate that massaging the scalp with rosemary oil, in combination with other essential oils, may treat alopecia, or hair loss, by increasing blood flow to the scalp and stimulating the re-growth of hair.

Rosemary for memory health: Studying for an exam? You may want to prepare with a little rosemary aromatherapy! A recent study suggests that inhaling the scent of rosemary oil may temporarily enhance memory by elevating concentrations of a compound known as 1,8-cineole, also called eucalyptol, in the bloodstream. Concentrations of 1,8-cineole has been linked to improved cognitive function and memory.

Rosemary for cellular health: Rosemary may provide health benefits right down to your cells! Rosemary contains antioxidants called polyphenols, a type of chemical found in many fruits and vegetables, which help fight free radicals that can damage and destroy cells. Healthy cells leave you less susceptible to diseases and can even contribute to longevity.

Rosemary for stopping food-borne pathogens: Disease-causing microorganisms found in food, also known as food-borne pathogens, have been linked to serious illnesses and even death in animals and humans. Studies have shown that rosemary extract contains antimicrobial properties, and can effectively neutralize common food-borne pathogens such as S. aureus and B. cereus.

Rosemary for muscle pain: Rosemary oil, when used topically, may alleviate muscle pain and is currently an accepted treatment in Europe. More studies are needed to confirm its efficacy.           

Rosemary for healthy digestion: The next time you have upset stomach or bloating from indigestion, you may want to try some rosemary leaves. Rosemary leaf, when consumed, may help ease upset stomach and is a recommended indigestion treatment used in Europe.

The health benefits of rosemary make this aromatic spice a must-have in every household. Take no more than 4-6 grams of rosemary as a dried herb, and consult with your physician before consuming rosemary to treat serious conditions. From promoting hair growth to alleviating muscle pain, this herb serves up some surprising health-boosting effects. So sprinkle plenty of rosemary on your favorite dinner recipes, sip it as a tea, or use it as an oil or tincture to get the most from this great-for-you spice.

Sources for “The Health Benefits of Rosemary:”

Originally posted 2013-12-03 13:44:49.