Posts Tagged Health
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Indulge yourself in the goodness of dark chocolate. This amazing food can provide you with countless health benefits, while leaving a sweet taste in your mouth.
The origin of chocolate dates back to 1500 BC. The cocoa beans were used in Aztec and Mayan civilizations. Christopher Columbus brought these cocoa beans to Spain and later they spread all over Europe while the first chocolate bar was introduced in 1874.
Chocolates are produced from the seeds of Theobroma cacao, commonly known as cacao tree. The tree is native to tropical rain forests of South America and holds significant importance for its beans or seeds that are used for cocoa powder, and cocoa butter. The cocoa beans are then crushed and grounded to get cocoa liquor. Then this cocoa liquor is processed further by mixing sugar and fat and finally you get your favorite chocolate.
There are different types of chocolate available, the taste of chocolate depends on the proportion of cocoa and other ingredients that are used in its mixture. The three main varieties of chocolate are milk chocolate, white chocolate and dark chocolate. Out of these three varieties dark chocolate has the highest amount of antioxidants which makes it the most beneficial variety for your health.
The healthy nutrients you can get from dark chocolate are Potassium, Copper, Magnesium and Iron. You also get flavonoids from chocolate, an important antioxidant for preventing many diseases. In fact, it has 5 times more flavonoids than an apple. These nutrients serve your body with the following health benefits:
Promote Heart Health
A research was conducted in Sweden, over a time period of 9 years to find about the heart promoting benefits of chocolate. In this study more than 31,000 women participated, who consumed one to two servings of dark chocolate per week. A reduced risk of heart failure was observed in these participants.
Another research conducted in Germany proved that consuming a square of dark chocolate everyday can help lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of stroke up to 39%. Thanks to the flavonoids that help with the flexibility of arteries and veins.
It also promotes good circulation because of its blood thinning and anti-clotting properties.
Control Blood Sugar
Good news for diabetics! Dark chocolate ranks low on Glycemic index, which means it won’t spike your sugar levels. The flavonoids present in dark chocolate reduce insulin resistance and helps your body to efficiently use the insulin. Claudio Ferri, M.D., a professor at the University of L’Aquila in Italy says, “Flavonoids increase nitric oxide production, and that helps control insulin sensitivity.”
Did you know that dark chocolate can actually help you to lose weight? A research conducted at the University of Copenhagen, revealed that dark chocolate gives you a more filling effect and lessens your cravings for fatty, sweet and salty foods. So if you incorporate a little portion to your diet you can get optimum health benefits without a weight gain. A cup of hot chocolate is also beneficial for reducing appetite.
A Finnish study revealed that babies born to mothers, who consumed dark chocolates during their pregnancies, were happier and they smiled a lot. So, it is better to use chocolate during pregnancy rather than giving pacifiers to your crying babies after birth. It also relieves stress in mothers-to-be.
Good Mood Food!
An important chemical called phenylethylamine or PEA is present in chocolates, it is the same chemical that the brain creates when you experience the feeling of love. Phenylethylamine also encourages the release of endorphins by your brain, a chemical essential for putting you in a good mood.
Dark chocolates can also relieve stress by reducing the level of stress hormones. It contains serotonin, which acts as a natural anti-depressant.
Dark chocolates contain high levels of flavanols. A research conducted in London proved that flavanols found in chocolates can provide protection against harmful effects of the sun.
Boosts Brain Powers
Researchers at the Oxford University studied long term effects of chocolate consumption on human brain. 2000 participants were included in the study, with age above 70. It was concluded that participants consuming chocolates high in flavanol contents scored high on cognitive tests.
Another study conducted by the researchers at the University of Nottingham, found that drinking flavanol rich cocoa can regulate the flow of blood to the key parts of the brain, as a result its performance is improved.
Provides Cough Relief
Dark chocolates contain theobromine, a chemical that is effective for treating cough. It is as effective as codeine, but unlike codeine it does not cause dullness and tastes far better than it. Maria Belviai, a professor at the National Heart and Lung Institute, in London, says about chocolate that, “It had none of the negative side effects.”
The use of cocoa for treating diarrhea can be traced back to the 16th Century in European and South American cultures. Researchers at the Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute found that the flavonoids present in the cocoa help to bind the protein, responsible for regulating fluid secretion in the intestine, this results in a relief from diarrhea.
Dark chocolate is considered among “one of the best cancer-fighting foods” along with other foods like garlic, blueberries, red wine and green tea. Chocolate works in two ways to fight against cancer. It inhibits the cancer cell division and also reduces inflammation.
While choosing chocolate make sure it contains at least 70% of cocoa. Remember! Chocolates are high in fats and sugar, so it is better to consume them in moderate amounts. Mary Engler, Ph.D., a professor of physiological nursing at the University of California at San Francisco, suggests taking no more than 200 grams or 7 ounces of dark chocolate in a week. Also look for labels saying sugar contents less than 10 grams.
> Men lose about 40 hairs in a day and women lose 70 hairs in a day.
> Your blood has same amount of salts in it as an ocean has.
> You are taller in the morning than you are at night.
> Heart circulates blood in your body about 1000 times each day.
> Eyelashes last about 150 days.
> There are 500 hairs in an eyebrow.
> The average human body contains approximately 100 billion nerve cells.
> It is not possible to sneeze with open eyes.
> Bones are 4 times stronger than concrete.
> Average life span of a taste bud is only 10 days.
> You are born without knee caps and they don’t appear until age of 2 to 6 years.
> Children grow faster in springtime
> Eyes stay the same size throughout life but nose and ears never stop growing.
> We born with 300 bones but end up with 206 bones when we are adult.
> Human skull is made up of 26 different bones.
> Hair is made of same substance as fingernails.
> Our entire body functions stop when we sneeze, even your heart beat.
> Tongue is the strongest muscle in human body.
> Typical person goes to bathroom six times a day.
> Food takes 7 seconds to reach stomach from mouth.
> Children have more taste buds than adults.
> Sneeze blows air out of nose at the speed of 100 miles per hour.
> Largest muscle in your body is one on which you are sitting on.
> Smallest bone of body is in ears.
Originally posted at: http://foodstorageandsurvival.com/how-to-make-rice-water/
Making rice water is really easy and uses ingredients right out of your food storage. Rice water is useful when somebody is having stomach issues like vomiting or diarrhea. It is calming to the upset stomach, amazingly bland, starchy, and gets some nutrients in your patient.
To make rice water you need rice and water, that’s all. Put two tablespoons of rice in a pot with 1 cup of water. Don’t add salt. You don’t get a cup of rice water from a cup of water because some of it soaks into the rice. I double or triple this and refrigerate the leftovers.
Bring the water to a boil and boil until the rice is tender. Strain the rice out and the milky liquid that is left is rice water. You can eat the rice, add it to a soup or casserole, or feed it to the chickens if you want. If you boil too long, your rice water will be pretty thick. You can just thin it back down with some regular water if it’s thicker than you’d like.
Let the rice water cool before serving it to your patient. You can drink it warm or cold. Great for queasy tummies young or old.
I have always tried my best to recycle/up-cycle in my families lives. I have always felt bad throwing these container from milk/juice out. (If you do please cut them down and recycle them). I came across this idea and wanted to share it with you. Follow the diagram above and cut with an exact o knife – and please be careful.If the knife slips (which it will want to do) there could be a nasty cut. Fold over and attack a velcro dot as shown. Makes a nice little snack/sandwich container.
How To Plant A Tree In Your Yard
Planting a tree is not just a matter of digging a hole and dropping it in. If you want your tree to have healthy growth, then that will require patience and careful preparation. Take a look at these steps for how to grow a strong and healthy tree in your yard.
- Choose the species carefully and plant at the right time of year. Select a species that is native to the area. Plant your tree during its dormant phase, which is usually over the winter, somewhere between late autumn and early spring. This will allow it to establish itself in time for the growing season.
- Choose a site for your tree. Make sure to avoid any cables or pipes and to choose a sunny area. Dig a hole that is about 5 times the width of the tree’s root ball so that it has plenty of space to spread its roots. Dig the hole with a raised section in the center for the root ball to sit on – this will keep it out of any water that may collect and in turn stop the tree from drowning. Loosen the dirt around the edges of the hole to allow the roots to spread out more easily.
- Remove the tree from its container by gently tipping it out of the pot or cutting the side of the bag from the roots. You can leave a mesh container on as the roots will grow through the holes and it will help keep the soil together. Remember, you want to keep as much of the existing soil on the root ball as possible. As you are handling the tree, be sure not to leave the roots exposed to the sun or wind as they may get dried out and damaged.
- Plant the tree. Place the tree in the hole and check the height. All of the roots should be covered, but the trunk should remain fully exposed. Add some manure into the hole to feed the tree as it grows, and add water. Mulch around the tree to keep weeds away and moisture in, but take care not to touch the tree trunk with the mulching or it could rot. Water again after an hour or so. Then water regularly until the tree is fully established.
With a little bit of planning and some care, you will have a tree that will last for many years.
About the Author: Philip Brown is a lover of green, healthy lawns. A former lawn care professional, Philip now spends his time sharing what he knows with others and blogging about it at The Lawn Enthusiast.