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Amino acids are organic compounds, the basic chemical building blocks of life that structure protein. Nutritional science categorizes amino acids as either essential or non-essential. Some amino acids are made by the body, while others, the essential amino acids, must be obtained from foods. Humans need 21 different amino acids to function well.
Of the 20 standard amino acids, ten are non-essential. These are alanine, asparagine, aspartate, cysteine, glutamate, glutamine, glycine, proline, serine, and tyrosine.
There are ten essential amino acids. They are arginine, histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine. Histidine is a semi-essential amino acid needed by young children, but not for adults. Humans must obtain histidine from food. Arginine is an essential amino acid also required by juveniles but not by adults.
The body uses 29 dietary amino acids to synthesize over 50,000 unique proteins and 20,000 enzymes necessary for optimal health. If the body has a reliable source of dietary essential amino acids, it can adequately meet most of its new protein synthesis needs. (10/24/2020)
Antioxidants are natural or human-made substances that may prevent or delay some types of cell damage like oxidation caused by free radicals. Examples of antioxidants include vitamins A, C, and E, the mineral selenium, and carotenoids, such as beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein, and zeaxanthin.
Free radicals are unstable molecules that are naturally formed when you exercise and when your body converts food into energy. Our bodies get exposed to free radicals from various environmental sources, such as cigarette smoke, radiation, air pollution, and sunlight. Free radicals can cause oxidative stress, and antioxidant molecules counteract this cellular stress.
Your body has antioxidant defenses to keep free radicals in check. Diets high in vegetables, fruits, and other plant-based whole foods are rich sources of antioxidants, which contribute to keeping you healthy. People who eat vegetables and fruits daily have lower risks of many diseases. Without antioxidants, free radicals would cause serious harm very quickly, eventually resulting in death. (10/26/2020)
Beets & Beetroot (Beta Vulgaris)
Beets and Beetroot are untypical vegetables, and their taste is distinctive.
Red beet is a swollen root that is dark red and purple in color. Beets come in white and golden varieties, too. Red beet gets its distinctive color from nitrogen-containing water-soluble pigments called betalains.
Beet is an herbaceous vegetable that belongs to the Amaranthaceae family. It originated in India, the Mediterranean areas, and the Atlantic coast of Europe.
Beets are a winter vegetable having a natural sweetness that makes them a versatile ingredient.
There are at least 17 varieties of beets:
- Bull’s Blood
- Crosby Egyptian
- Detroit Dark Red
- Early Wonder
- Golden Detroit
- Lutz Green Leaf
- Moulin Rouge
- Red Ace
- Red Ball
- Ruby Queen
- Touchstone Gold
- White Detroit
Sometimes called table beet, garden beet, red or golden beet, beetroot is the taproot part of the beet plant and is used for nourishment. Humans originally ate beet greens but not the fibrous roots, which were sometimes used in medicine and food coloring.
Beets contain fructose, pigments, amino acids, vitamins, rare trace elements such as lithium, bromine, magnesium, strontium, rubidium, and mineral salts.
Rich in vitamin B, iron, folic acid, and potassium, this sweet and sour tuber brings variety and color to the winter kitchen.
The root of the beet plant is chiefly used in natural and herbal medicines. Beets can help lower levels of triglycerides in the blood, lower blood pressure, and improve athletic performance. (02/26/2022)
Primarily viewed as a means of preventative care, botanicals harness the power of plants to promote holistic health and wellness. In short, botanicals are medicines that are derived from plants and are used in food supplements, medicinal products, personal care products, or pharmaceuticals. Other names include "herbal medicine" and "plant medicine." Botanicals have been used for centuries and are the foundation for nearly half of today's prescription drugs. Botanical ingredients, or plant-derived additives, are known for their healing and medicinal properties. (10/27/2020)
Daily Value (DV) on the Nutrition Facts label is a guide to the nutrients in one serving of food or drink and helps you plan a healthy diet. DVs are based on a 2,000-calorie diet for healthy adults. Recommended intakes of nutrients vary by age and sex, and they reflect the requirements of 97–98% of healthy individuals in every demographic in the United States.
DVs were developed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to help consumers determine the level of various nutrients in a standard serving of food with their approximate requirement for it.
Daily values can tell you whether a food is high or low in a specific nutrient. A value is considered low at 5% or less of a nutrient. A high DV is 20% or more of a nutrient. (10/28/2020)
(Botanical Name: Sambucus nigra)
Elderberry is a shrub or small tree growing up to 20 feet tall. Both the flowers and the berries have a long tradition of culinary use, and they are commonly used in dietary supplements and in traditional medicines. The flowers and purple-black fruit of the elder tree are used in herbal preparations or made into teas, tinctures, encapsulations, jams, syrups, elixirs, and wine.
The berries and flowers of elderberry are packed with antioxidants and vitamins that may boost your immune system. Elderberries may have health benefits, including weight loss, strengthening the immune system, eliminating constipation, reducing blood pressure, lessening stress, taming inflammation, and helping lower A1C for people with diabetes.
Some experts recommend elderberry to help prevent and ease cold and flu symptoms citing its anti-viral properties. Herbalists recommend it for nasal and chest congestion, fevers, and even for allergies like hay fever. Discuss elderberry with your doctor before use for medical purposes. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should not take elderberry. (11/06/2020)
Fat Soluble Vitamins
Vitamins can classify as water-soluble or fat-soluble. A, D, E, and K are fat-soluble vitamins. They are present in foods containing fats. The body absorbs these vitamins as it does dietary fats and stores the excess in your liver, adipose (fat) tissue, and skeletal muscle, then uses them as needed.
Fat-soluble vitamins do not dissolve in water. Unfortunately, there is a risk of toxicity with getting too much of these fat-soluble vitamins stored in your body, but this only happens when consumed in excessive amounts. With that said, fat-soluble vitamins play integral roles in many physiological processes such as vision, bone health, immune function, and coagulation. Because the body stores fat-soluble vitamins, with a balanced diet, the chance of a deficiency is low. (10/30/2020)
Fennel is a vegetable that is white, green in color, and bulb-like in appearance, with green stems and fronds. It is a flowering plant species in the carrot (Apiaceae) family. Fennel is grown for its edible shoots, leaves, and seeds and has a strong aniseed flavor, making it an attractive and versatile ingredient.
It is indigenous to the shores of the Mediterranean. Still, it has become widely naturalized in many parts of the world, especially on dry soils near the seacoast and on riverbanks. An annual, it looks like dill, only slightly coarser. It prefers full sun and well-drained soil. Seeds can be planted as soon as frost danger is past.
There are two common types: Bronze Fennel and Common Fennel, also known as Finocchio (or Florence Fennel). The tender leaves may be diced and used to add a hint of licorice flavor and are great to use with seafood. (05/09/2022)
Free radicals are unstable molecules that form when you exercise and when your body converts food into energy. They are atoms or molecules with at least one unpaired electron, rendering them volatile and reactive. When free radicals react with certain chemicals in the body, they may interfere with cells' ability to function normally. Our bodies also get exposed to free radicals from various environmental sources, such as cigarette smoke, radiation, and air pollution. Antioxidants can stabilize free radicals. (10/31/2020)
Garlic is an amazing herb that adds flavor to food while also providing many medicinal benefits. Herbalists commonly use garlic for symptoms of upper respiratory infections, as a general antimicrobial, and to support both heart health and digestion.
Garlic is potently pungent and spicy. If you are unaccustomed to eating it raw, simply chewing one little clove can be a very intense experience. The taste and aromatics fill not only your mouth, but also your sinuses. When used this way there’s no denying that garlic has a powerful effect. Because garlic is so hot, spicy, and pungent, it is best used for cold and stagnant conditions. (05/07/2022)
An herb is a plant used for medicinal purposes, aromatherapy, flavorings, spices for cooking, and relaxation. Herbs can also be used in nutritional supplements for health and wellness.
The word herb has different meanings depending on the perspective. In commercial terms, herb generally refers to the leafy part of the plant used for culinary purposes. In herbal medicine, it refers to plants used in various forms or preparations, valued for their therapeutic benefits.
Herbs are available in many forms, including fresh or dried products, liquid or solid extracts, tablets, capsules, powders, or tea bags. (11/12/2020)
Herbal tonics are water extractions of nourishing plants and help restore, tone, and invigorate systems in the body or promote general health and well-being. Tonic herbal formulas generally include herbs that are gentle, safe, and life-giving. They are used to build your foundation of health for the long term. You use them daily to ward off illnesses before they get a chance to develop. Why wait for something to go wrong before you attend to your health.
There are general whole-body tonics and system-specific tonics. Generally, think of the word tonics as an umbrella term that covers several herbal actions which include, Adaptogens, Alteratives, Astringents, Bitters, and Nutritives. Tonics tone tissues and help them to function as they were meant to.
Tonics are used in Western herbalism, Traditional Chinese Medicine, ayurvedic herbalism, Native American herbalism, and other systems. Some examples of tonic herbs include hawthorn, licorice, rose, nettle, dandelion, burdock, astragalus, mullein, milk thistle, and raspberry. (11/24/2020)
An elixir is a sweet herbal preparation used for medicinal purposes to promote health or cure an illness. Herbal remedies are a great way to use medicinal herbs grown in the garden. Such elixirs embody an herb's essence through flavor, aroma, and energetics, all affecting the mind and body. Medicinal herbs are steeped in honey or maple syrup, sometimes combining them with brandy or other alcohol, or fermenting them, such as medicinal meads. (12/27/2020)
Nutmeg is known as jaiphal in India. It is an aromatic culinary spice used in many delicacies. Originally from Indonesia, it is the seed of an evergreen tree called Myristica fragrans. This tree is the only tropical tree to bear two distinct spices - nutmeg and mace.
Nutmeg has a rich and sometimes sad history. Its fruit, seed, and mace have been highly prized as both food and medicine for thousands of years. Europeans became so obsessed with this plant that atrocities were committed, and blood was shed.
Nutmeg is most used as a culinary spice. Most nutmeg is ground and sold for use in baking, especially during the holidays. But nutmeg is also a powerful medicine that can be used for anxiety, sleep issues, digestion, colds, the flu, and more.
Nutmeg has been used as an age-old remedy for improving physical as well as mental well-being. From Ayurveda to ancient medicines, nutmeg has been used as a potent spice to improve sleep and immunity. It is packed with minerals such as magnesium, manganese and copper and other essential vitamins such as B1 and B6. (05/07/2022)
Apple's new iPhone 13 Pro Max
There are more reasons to get excited now … with a longer-lasting battery, the iPhone 13 Pro Max will last more than 18 hours!
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