Nut butters are used widely by all. They are eaten for breakfast and as snacks alone. Peanut butter has been used but there are various other butters such as almond butter, macadamia nut butter, pine nut butter etc… Let us look at cashew butter now widely available.
Cashew butter is an excellent option for those who are bored of allergic to peanut butter. Although unusual it is widely available in the organic forms which is free from pesticides and preservatives.
Let us have a look at its nutritional benefits.
- As any nut butter, it is rich in protein and healthy fats.
- It is high in monounsaturated fats and low in saturated fats and hence is a heart healthy butter and helps to reduce the triglycerides.
- Helps patients with diabetes to maintain their blood sugars as they are very low in carbohydrates.
- It provides the mineral copper which is said to decrease the risk of cancer by its antioxidant properties.
- It is bone healthy butter thereby providing magnesium which helps to strengthen our bones.
So lather on whole wheat bread or add a tablespoon to your milkshake and slurp it up
Capsicum or bell peppers are a commonly used veggie in our diet. If you have noticed refrigerator advertisements on television,you may have noticed these veggies being stacked,making them very colorful, and making you decide that this is the product for you.
Although this veggie is not of Indian origin, it is widely accepted in our cuisine. It comes in various colors such as green, yellow and reds. Great to add in salads, stir fries, food decorations etc.
Lets have a look at their nutritional benefits.
Various health benefits
- Cancer prevention– These peppers add a lot of colour to our diet. They are rich on Vitamin C and Beta carotene, plant form of vitamin A and these are the most important antioxidants. These help to clear the cancer causing substances called as free radicals. These free radicals damage our cells and cause cancers of various kinds.
- Promotes heart health-The free radicals produced on eating unhealthy also damage our blood vessels and cause atherosclerosis, which is the hardening of the arteries. The antioxidants present in capsicum help to clear these free radicals. They reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases as they provide folic acid and vitamin B6 which prevent the elevation of levels of homocysteine, which is responsible for damage of the blood vessels. Hence helps to prevent heart attacks and stroke.The fiber present also helps to decrease the cholesterol levels as well as triglycerides.
- Better Eye sight– The Vitamin C present cuts down the risk of cancer. The beta carotene or vitamin A content of red and orange varieties improves eyesight.
- Helps in weight loss– As the water and fiber content is high in peppers, It helps in weight loss as it increases the metabolic rate and helps in burning calories.
- Helps fight infections- It improves our immunity and wards of cold, fever and many other infections.
- Prevents arthritis- It has been studied that diets poor in Vitamin C can increase the risk of arthritis, hence the vitamin C from capsicum helps to prevent arthritis.
Phew!!!! The list can go on. I love having capsicum as a midday snack as juliennes or strips of capsicum pieces. It helps to mimic the feel of french fries or wafers and they are nutritionally great compared to fries or chips.
So do not forget to pack them in your snack box and a salad is never complete with these veggies!!!!!
A query from a faithful subscriber.
I am a male of 33 years of age,recently diagnosed with Grade 1 fatty liver. How can I get rid of this problem? Besides I am gaining weight around the mid section. Kindly advise me the treatment and food I should follow.
Fatty liver is a common problem seen in many urban parts of India. Most of the time it goes untreated or doctors fail to advise on this condition. This does not produce any visible symptoms , but can put you at the risk of liver inflammation which ultimately can lead to jaundice( hepatitis), liver failure and liver cancer. Initially it stays as a benign condition and is really harmless. But it can progress to a potential slow killer.
Fatty liver Commonly seen in overweight persons and mostly above the ages of 30 and any liver problems are associated with alcohol. But Non Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease(NAFLD) is commonly seen rather than the Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease. So non alcohol drinkers too can get afflicted.
In this condition, the liver consists of excess of fat and the healthy tissues are replaced by unhealthy fats. This makes the liver larger and heavier. This can possibly lead to gall stones.
What can be the various causes for a person to have fatty liver?
- Being Overweight or obese especially in the abdominal area
- Poor diet- high sugar intake, high fat intake
- Elevated cholesterol levels and triglycerides in the blood
- If suffering from metabolic syndrome
- Diabetic for over a long period of time and taking medications for the same
Now the question arises whether is it possible to fatty liver?
Yes, it is definitely possible to reverse the condition of fatty liver if the following tips are followed.
- Reduce the intake of refined carbohydrates in your diet such as white bread, white rice, pasta, noodles, cakes, biscuits, desserts, soft drinks, sweetened fruit juices and also that of table sugar. Avoid breakfast cereals too.
- Increase the amount of fruits and vegetables in the diet.
- Eat whole grains such as brown rice, whole wheat products, oats, ragi, bajra, jowar etc and Pulses and legumes.
- Avoid all kinds of fried food, processed food, high fat foods in general all junk food.
- Avoid red meats such as mutton, beef, pork and opt for fat trimmed meats and white meats such as fish, chicken, turkey. Avoid processed meat or cured meats.
- Switch over to low fat milk products from full cream or full fat milk products.
- Avoid margarine, mayonnaise as much as possible.
- Avoid artificial sweeteners as well. They do not help in the long term.
- Use oils which provided monounsaturated fatty acids.
- Control diabetes with diet, medications and exercise.
- Keep your cholesterol levels in check and reduce triglycerides in the blood.
- Avoid alcohol as much as possible.
Exercise daily to reduce weight and to keep weight in check. Reduce the abdominal fat content by eating smaller meals and by exercising daily by walking, jogging and also bu incorporating yoga in your diet.