January 18, 2017

Superfoods Shopping List

by Amanda Box, N.D.

Many times when you hear about the latest and greatest superfood, it isn’t something you would typically pick up at your local grocery store.  So often it’s a “newly discovered” berry or plant found in the Amazon Rainforest. Unless you choose wisely, the only thing “super” about the item may be the sticker shock you encounter when you bring it to the register.

I am a believer that most superfoods are more common than you think.  You can pack your body full of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals from common foods at your local grocery store that you may have never known were truly super. The good news is you can get the health benefits of “champagne” superfoods on a club soda budget. And here’s how.

Champaign superfoods

Top 7 Common Superfoods to Add to Your Shopping Cart

1. Broccoli

The first item on this superfood list is the cruciferous vegetable, packed full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytonutrients. The superfood broccoli contains a substance called sulforaphane, which has been identified as an anti-cancer nutrient. This compound can potentially stop and prevent the growth of tumors!

And if preventing cancer isn’t a good enough reason to start incorporating broccoli into your diet, then its high fiber, vitamin C and calcium content should!  Broccoli even contains compounds which help facilitate detoxification and nourish the liver.  When your mom told you to eat your broccoli, she was on to something! (1)

2. Blueberries

Although most berries are high in nutrients, blueberries take the cake when it comes to superfood.  They are extremely high in antioxidants and have many vitamins, phytochemicals and flavonoids.

  • The flavonoids in blueberries come from their deep purple blue color.  These flavonoids protect neurons in the brain, which in turn protect our memory.  (2)
  • The high antioxidant content contained in blueberries have been linked lowering blood pressure, as well as speeding up the metabolism.
  • Anthocyanin, a particular antioxidant in blueberries, has been shown to lower bad cholesterol, prevent heart disease, and inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells. (3)
  • Blueberries also contain fiber and up to 24% of your daily value of vitamin C.

If you can’t find them fresh, buy a bag of frozen blueberries.  Sprinkle them on your morning oatmeal or blend them in a smoothie.  Blueberries are one of the most delicious superfoods!

3. Organic Yogurt

This superfood may be a bit surprising to you, but yogurt is really quite super.  It is not only an excellent source of calcium, but contains nourishing probiotics.

Probiotics are living healthy bacteria that help maintain a healthy digestive tract.  These probiotics:

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God’s Prescription for a Healthy Heart

Precision Blood Pressure Design

Like the concert virtuoso who sets the tension on a violin string with precision, the Grand Maestro of the Universe determined a specific blood pressure, which would be essential to healthy human life. In the Garden of Eden, God looked at the living bodies he meticulously fashioned and said, “It is good.” In other words: even down to the diminutive details we all take for granted or never slow down to notice, all things both micro and macro, internal and external, are now perfectly set for healthy life to flourish and thrive.

Stating the obvious, without blood pressure, life is over. However, too much, or high blood pressure results in the delicate and intricate harmony of every bodily system breaking down. Vascular health determines the well-being and longevity of every cell and organ in the body.

Next time you find yourself sitting with someone both to your left and to your right, one of the three of you is likely suffering from high blood pressure. Researchers report that in 90-95% cases of hypertension (aka, high blood pressure) no known cause can be found. Of course Newton’s Law remains true that to every action there is always an equal and opposite reaction. That being said, something is boiling the blood of millions of people even if the majority of causes are not directly identifiable as medical in nature.

Merry Medicine for the Heart

The Bible says a lot about the heart, and even about the importance of having a healthy heart. Something as simple as joy directly affects blood flow. “A merry heart is like good medicine, but a broken spirit dries up the bones.” (Proverbs 17:22) Aside from the astonishing fact that this verse was written a couple millennia before modern medicine discovered the role of the bones in making blood for the heart, there is this now documentable reality that these seemingly non-biological factors directly affect us physically. This monthly column on the Spiritual Dimensions of Wellness is devoted to what was obvious even to healing practitioners in the ancient world – that a wide range of intangible dynamics, especially emotional factors and spiritual forces, directly impact our bodies for good and for bad.

At funerals I often quote the verse which states how, “None of us lives to himself and none of us dies to himself,” which in context, refers to how dependant we are on God, each other and our environment. If things are not right in any of those three areas there is a direct correlation to our bodies breaking down. Before God ever created human life, he worked for a number of days on the ideal environmental conditions.

Secondary Blood Pressure Contributors

Those who research the mysteries of hypertension often mention in their medical journal articles how, in Eden-like settings like the tropical rain forests, no one has high blood pressure. Granted, these remote tribal peoples often have high mortality rates, but the point is these unknown factors contributing to hypertension are apparently not present.

Chocolate lovers will no doubt delight to know of the 2003 Harvard Study that uncovered the relationship between the Kuna Tribe in Panama having perfect blood pressure and the fact that tribal members drink five cups of cocoa each day. Chocolate has a relaxing effect on blood vessels due to the presence of flavonoids (a type of antioxidants). Flavonoids stimulate the production of nitric oxide, which acts as a blood thinner and increases blood flow.

Dr. Don Colbert in his book The Seven Pillars of Health asserts that something as simple as water will do wonders for our blood pressure as most of us are at least mildly dehydrated each day. Aging and family history of hypertension are considered related but secondary contributors.

Even more significant, medical research has confirmed the direct link to our sedentary lifestyles here in the West as contributing factors to hypertension and a host of other related ailments. For the better part of this past year the issue of health care reform has been debated and continues to make headlines. As contentious as this topic is, we all agree costs are out of control.

What’s shocking is that two thirds of medical costs in America are incurred treating chronic disease. Chronic disease is disease caused by things like poor diets and gluttony, alcohol and smoking, and promiscuity.  One researcher made a convincing case that best way to cut healthcare costs is for people to start living as the Bible tells us to live. Hardly a politically correct plan to promote, even so, it’s not hard to establish the relevancy of the Word of God to healthy daily living.

One True Remedy for Blood Pressure

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