Top Health Benefits of Black Pepper

Originating from the pepper plant, black pepper is an excellent source of a variety of critical nutrients that are necessary for our health. In addition to being delicious, black pepper has been used for centuries as a medicinal agent in a variety of cultures. Today, researchers recognize black pepper as having a variety of health benefits, making it an excellent addition to just about any dish.

 

black pepper health benefits

1. Improves Ability to Absorb Nutrients

Pepper is known to increase the availability of a number of important nutrients for your body, including beta-carotene, vitamin A, and selenium. Pepper also stimulates our taste buds, alerting the digestive system to increase the production of acid in our stomach, and improving our ability to digest foods. Without sufficient gastric acid, food may spend extra time in the stomach, which can cause indigestion or heartburn.

2. Prevents Upset Digestive System

Food that’s under-digested may even pass into the intestines under-digested, which can then allow it to be used as food for gut bacteria, leading to irritated bowels, diarrhea, gas, and constipation. Black pepper also has considerable diuretic, anti-bacterial, and antioxidant properties.

3. A Natural Antidepressant

Piperine, one of the parts of the peppercorn plant, has actually proven to be an effective natural antidepressant by increasing the production of serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is necessary to help regulate your mood, and low levels are correlated with depression.

4. Battles Arthritis

Black pepper has also proven an effective aid in the battle against arthritis thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties. Pepper is also said to improve circulation, which can cause arthritis pain to further decrease, and may even reduce the perception of pain.

5. Weight Loss

The outer layer of the peppercorn plant can actually assist the body in breaking down fat cells, which makes it a good way to lose weight. Anytime fat cells can be broken down, it’s easier for the body to burn that energy for day-to-day activities.

6. Appetite Stimulant

Apart from adding a distinctive flavor to a dish, black pepper has proven an effective appetite stimulant. Researchers have found that the olfactory stimulation provided by pepper can help provide sustained improvements in appetite for anyone with a regular source in their diet.

7. Cancer Prevention

Research from the University of Michigan has found that one of the compounds found in pepper, piperine, can help fight the development of breast cancer. These anti-cancer properties are especially notable when paired with turmeric, a spicy herb native to southwest India.

8. Promotes Healthy Skin

Apart from what pepper can do for you when you ingest it, pepper is also useful in skincare. If you want a smoother complexion, a little pepper may be all you need. This is because pepper can stimulate circulation and oxygen for your skin. It can also act to exfoliate, wiping away dead skin cells and helping the skin underneath breathe. Just combine a cup of sugar with half a cup of massage oil, and a pinch of pepper, stir it together, and rub the mixture directly onto your skin.

9. Provides Relief from Cold

Among its other remarkable properties, pepper is a natural decongestant.  By irritating your mucus membranes, pepper can induce you to have a runny nose, which can help clear the nasal passage. Adding a few pinches of pepper to soup is all you need to help find yourself breathing easier the next time you have a cold.

It’s still worth noting that pepper may cause sneezing, and those who have recently had abdominal surgery should avoid pepper to prevent irritating their intestines. It should also be avoided in high concentrations even in those with a healthy gut, for the same reason. However, in moderation, a dash of pepper may be all you need to see considerable health benefits.

 

 

Top 10 Ways to Manage Hypothyroidism

Thyroid gland is located just below our Adam’s apple and it is a chief gland, associated with metabolism and energy and keeping the functions of cell in check. Hypothyroidism refers to low thyroid function, means your thyroid is not making enough thyroid hormone. It remains undiagnosed because of various unrelated symptoms. In most cases hypothyroidism has nothing to with thyroid problems but with awry immune system attacking thyroid tissue. A dietary change is the primary step in achieving optimal thyroid health naturally. Here are top 10  remedies to manage hypothyroidism.

 

hypothyroidism remedies

 

1. Eliminate Caffeine, refined foods and Sugar from your diet

Eating refined carbohydrates and sugar on regular basis can affect the hormone cortisol and put adrenal glands under stress, which over prolonged period of time can lead to weakened adrenals. Weak adrenal glands puts the body into catabolic state and since thyroid glands controls the metabolic activity of the body, it will try to slow down the catabolic state by slowing down the metabolism and in turn leading to hypothyroid condition.

2.  Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha herb has thyroid balancing effect. It helps in lowering the level of cortisol and balancing thyroid hormone. In India this herb is known as   “strength of stallion” as it has been used since ages to strengthen the immune system. This herb is beneficial for both hypo/hyperthyroidism. This herb also benefits thyroid function by reducing lipid per-oxidation by scavenging free radicals responsible for cellular damage.

3. Intake of Sufficient Vitamin D

People suffering from autoimmune thyroid disorder like Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism, need to get enough Vitamin D. Vitamin D is necessary for balancing our immune system and preventing an autoimmune attack on tissues.

4. Bladderwrack

Bladderwrack is a sea weed especially for people with hypothyroidism (if hypothyroidism is caused due to iodine deficiency) as it contains lots of iodine. It is not used for hyperthyroidism.

5. Increase protein intake

Protein helps in normalizing the thyroid function. Foods like nuts, eggs, legumes, fish etc are rich source of protein.

6. Add healthy fats

Fats like olive oil, ghee, flax seeds, nuts and nut butters, yogurt , cheese, coconut milk are healthy fats if taken in moderate amount. Insufficient fat in your diet can aggravate hormonal imbalance including thyroid hormones. The 5 Best Healthy Fats

7.  Addition of Omega -3 fatty acids

Omega 3 is vital for thyroid function as they improve the ability of cells to respond to thyroid hormones. They are the building blocks for hormones and control functioning of our immune system.

8. Limit the intake of foods containing goitrogens

Goitrogens are substances in food that suppress the function of thyroid gland. These are found in vegetable such as cabbage, Brussels, mustard greens, kale , turnips etc. People who have hypothyroidism need to have these vegetables in moderation and not regularly.

9. Drink Plenty of Water

Even the water you drink can affect the health of your thyroid; make sure it is free of chlorine and fluorides. These chemicals can block the iodine receptors in  thyroid and affecting normal thyroid function. Make sure to drink plenty of water after every meal. Water eliminates toxic from your body and helps in reducing symptoms associated with hypothyroidism.

10. Practice Yoga

There are yoga asanas (Shoulder stand pose yoga) that massage the thyroid gland and instruct it to release thyroxine thereby helping body metabolism and maintaining thyroid health.

 

 

Health Benefits of Peanuts

Peanuts or groundnuts are rich in fiber, proteins, minerals and both monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids which are essential for a healthy heart. They are also loaded with antioxidants, Vitamin E and folic acid etc. and are easily available round the year. Peanuts have known to have many potential health benefits. In India, peanuts are often relished as snacks. One can enjoy them raw, roasted, boiled, fried!. However, they are also capable of positively influencing many other parts of your body. Read on to discover 10 amazing benefits of adding prunes to your diet.

 

Peanut Health Benefits

1. Helps in Lowering Cholesterol 

Peanuts helps in lowering the level of cholesterol due to the presence of copper in it. Copper not only lowers cholesterol level, it also controls it. It in turn also increase the level of good cholesterol.

2. Reduces risks of Heart disease 

Monounsaturated and Polyunsaturated fats present in peanuts keep the heart healthy. If the level of these fats are balanced, it can result in lowering the cholesterol level in the blood and thus reduce the overall risk of cardiovascular/ coronary heart disease.

3. Regulates Blood sugar 

Peanuts are rich in manganese which plays a vital role in the metabolism of fats and carbohydrates . This mineral in the peanuts helps in the blood sugar regulation.

4. Lower risk of weight gain  

Several studies have shown that people consuming peanuts at least twice weekly are less likely to gain weight than those who don’t eat them

5. Prevent gall stones 

This is one of the amazing benefits of peanuts. They prevent the formation of gall stones and also lowers the risk of developing of gallstones by 25%.

6. Boosts Immunity

Being rich in vitamins, peanuts ensure healthy and smooth functioning of our organs. Vitamins are important for overall growth and they ensure the health of cells and tissues and are responsible for fighting infections.

7. Good Source of Protein

Peanuts  are high source of plant protein. Proteins are required for the  maintenance and repairing  of cells of our body. Proteins make sure that the new cells formed in our body are healthy and the damaged ones are repaired properly.

8. Reduces risk of neural birth defects

Peanuts are rich in folate. Several studies have shown that the intake of folate by women before and during early pregnancy can help in reducing the risk of neural birth defects by 70%.

9. Boosts Memory

Due to the presence of Vitamin B3 in peanuts,  they have been tagged as “brain food”. Vitamin B3 or niacin is vital for normal brain functioning and memory boosting.

10. Lower risks of chronic diseases

According to the research published in International Journal of Epidemiology,  people who eat a lots of nuts are at lower risk of developing chronic diseases including neuro-degenerative disease, respiratory disease, diabetes etc.

As is obvious from the above health benefits, peanuts are a great choice if you want to improve your heart health. Eating pure peanuts is way better and healthier than peanut butter. “Even if you don’t like nuts, it would still be a good idea to eat a handful every day,”

 

 

Benefits of Eating Mulberries

Mulberries are red and black in color with sweet taste and are usually eaten in a dried form. They are rich source of numerous health-benefiting anti-oxidants, minerals and vitamins. Mulberries also contain significant amount of dietary fiber and offers a range of health benefits.

Mulberries

Lowers Cholesterol

Mulberries help in improving and maintain the ratio between the LDL (bad) and HDL (Good) cholesterol. Studies have shown that mulberries being rich in fiber reduce excess fat and lower cholesterol levels. High Level of cholesterol can increase our risk of heart diseases.

Besides maintaining normal cholesterol levels, mulberries have also been found to help reducing the formation of fat in the liver, potentially helping the liver from fatty liver disease.

Promote Heart Health

Mulberries contain resveratrol, a flavonoids antioxidant that protects against stroke risk by changing the molecular mechanism in the blood vessels. This compound also reduces the susceptibility of the blood vessels to any damage by reducing the activity of a hormone that causes blood vessel constriction.

Resveratrol also helps in increasing the production of the vasodilator, which in turns maintain the health of blood vessels and reduces the risk of high blood pressure and stroke.

Regulates Blood Sugar Level

People who are diabetics are more prone to rapid changes in their blood sugar levels and need to be careful about the type of food they are indulging in. Mulberries, on the other hand, are one of the fruits that diabetics can relish.

Due to the presence of a compound called as DNJ in mulberries, they are helpful in inhibiting an enzyme in the gut that breaks down carbohydrates and in turn slows down the increase in blood sugar after meals.

Good Source of Vitamins A, C and E

Mulberries are excellent source of Vitamin C, A and E, which are powerful antioxidants. Vitamin C helps the body against infectious agents and prevents inflammation and harmful free radicals.
Vitamin A and E, also helps in protecting the body against harmful effect of free-radicals that are involved in aging and various disease processes.

Build Bone Health

Mulberries contain Vitamin K, calcium and iron and other minerals like magnesium and phosphorus. These minerals are beneficial for the formation and maintenance of bone tissue. Calcium helps in the maintaining the bone density.
With age, our bones become brittle and more prone to fracture. So as to prevent the damage process and prevent conditions like osteoporosis, add calcium rich mulberries into your diet.

Protects against Iron Deficiency Anemia

Mulberries are rich in iron, which is a very vital mineral essential for not only boosting the production of red blood cells but also helps in boosting our metabolism.

The deficiency of iron in our body can result in anemia which weakens the body and slow down body immune system. Healthy levels of iron in your body promote more and efficient distribution of oxygen to important tissues and organs and in turn optimize the functionality of those organs and system. Iron rich foods to fight off Anemia.

Promotes Eye Health

Free radicals can cause macular degeneration and cataracts. Mulberries are found to contain carotenoids named as zeaxanthin which helps in reducing the oxidative stress caused by the free radicals. This compound in mulberries also helps in preventing damage to the retina and promotes eye health.

Enhances Immunity

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and is found in abundance in mulberries. Vitamin C acts against various illnesses, infections and enhances the functioning of our immune system. A single serving of mulberries fulfills the daily requirement of Vitamin C.
Vitamin C along with other minerals presents in mulberries act as a true weapon against illness and promotes the health of our immune system. Foods that boosts our immune system.

Promotes Digestive Health

Due to their high dietary fiber, mulberries can help in improving our digestive health. The dietary fiber helps relieving constipation by bulking up stool and speeding the movement of food through digestive tract. Besides constipation, mulberries also reduce occurrences of bloating and cramping. Natural Remedies for constipation.

Prevent Premature Aging

Due to high content of Vitamin A and E, mulberries are considered as the best food for fighting off Free radicals and protecting against premature aging. Mulberries can help skin looking smooth, reduce blemishes and age spots and also helps in keeping hair and skin healthy by preventing oxidative actions of free radicals. Foods to fight off Free-Radicals

 

 

Health Benefits of Chokeberry

 

Chokeberry, also called as Aronia berries are among the healthiest berries due to their high nutritional content. There are three types of chokeberry, red, black and blue. They are rich in antioxidants, flavonoids, minerals and phytonutrients. The most impressive health benefits of chokeberries include their positive effect on our digestive system and immune system.  Here are some amazing health benefits of chokeberries.

Chokeberries Health Benefits

Good For Your Heart

Chokeberries have the highest Oxygen Radiance Absorption Value (ORAC), which makes this fruit important and healthy for people suffering from cardiovascular disease, arthritis and macular degeneration as well. Chokeberries also reduces bad fat in our blood thus improves the blood circulation. Home Remedies For Reducing Bad Fat

Good For Diabetics

Studies have shown positive effects of chokeberries on the blood sugar levels, especially in diabetics. It reduces the sudden spikes and unusual decrease in the blood sugar level by increasing the insulin regulation. If you are suffering from diabetes-related complications, you can prevent them by adding this fruit into your diet. Foods To Keep Insulin Level Stable

Promotes Eye Health

Due to its high ORAC value, rich antioxidants and phytonutrients content, chokeberries are one of the best natural food for promoting eye health and protecting them from oxidative stress. This fruit not only nourishes eyes but also protects them from sun damage or pollution and improves eye vision. Chokeberries Recipes

Acts As a Natural Remedy for Common Cold

Studies have shown that chokeberries can have a direct effect on common cold and other mild bacterial infections of gut and respiratory tracts, due to its high antioxidant levels. Because of this, chokeberries are known as a best home remedy for preventing and treating flu and common cold. Home Remedies For Intestinal Infections

Reduces Oxidative Stress

Oxidative stress is caused by free radicals, which is one of the factors responsible for the onset of various degenerative and neurological disease. The high ORAC value of chokeberries helps in preventing the cells from free radicals damage. 5 Signs of Oxidative Stress and How You Can Prevent Them