7 Foods That Will Boost Energy Fast

Want More Energy? Here Are Seven Foods That Boost Productivity

  • April 10, 2021

In light of the stress caused by the pandemic, most of us can agree that we frequently feel uninspired, low on energy, and sometimes experience brain fog. Keeping energy levels high depends on the quality of food you’re eating. Whole, plant-based foods are converted to long-lasting energy that you can burn all day long, whereas simple carbs are quickly burned and may cause you to crash early on in the day. According to Harvard Health, the best kind of food for energy is “a balanced diet that includes a variety of unrefined carbohydrates, proteins, and fats, with an emphasis on vegetables, whole grains, and healthy oils.”

Whether you want to get your morning off to a positive healthy start or you need a mid-afternoon pick-me-up, these seven healthy foods will boost your energy and have you dancing through the day in no time.

1. Beets

It seems appropriate to have beets as the first item on this energizing list. Officially known as beetroots, these popular dark reddish-purple root vegetables are enjoyed worldwide. There are numerous health benefits to eating beets and they are a great way to keep your energy up. In fact, many athletes eat beets specifically because of their energy-boosting abilities. Nitrates occur naturally in beets, which in turn can help improve the productivity of your body’s energy-producing cells called mitochondria. Beets are also packed with essential vitamins and minerals such as folate, magnesium, potassium, iron, fiber, and vitamin C while being low in calories.

This root veggie can be boiled, roasted, slow-cooked, pickled, or even eaten raw sliced thinly, or peeled with a peeler in twirly strips as a salad topper. Add roasted or cooked beets to tacos, over grains, as a side to rice noodles, or even whip them up in a smoothie.

2. Oatmeal

This versatile whole grain breaks down to become energy that is slowly absorbed by your body throughout the day. Oatmeal and oats differ slightly and there are several different kinds. After the oats have been processed, the bran and germ remain intact and their high fiber content can help improve digestion. There are regular oats known as ‘old-fashioned’ oats or rolled oats, quick oats, instant oats, and steel-cut oats; it all goes back to how they are sliced in different ways after being steamed and flattened. Oats are a healthy complex carbohydrate, a good source of vitamins and minerals, contain protein, and help keep you full for longer. Many athletes are fans of oats and have been known to eat them before sports as they are slower to digest and will supply energy evenly.

Overnight oats are a popular breakfast in our home and there are numerous delicious recipes to choose from such as this one.

3. Lentils

Lentils are a staple in our home. These edible seeds from the legumes family are sometimes categorized by color. I prefer the organic orange lentils, often called red lentils (they look orange to me!). The most common lentils are brown lentils and other varieties are green, yellow, Puy, and tiny black ones called Beluga. Lentils are packed with protein (over 25 percent!) and perfect for vegans or vegetarians if you are looking to replace meat in your meals. Due to lentils fiber, complex carbohydrates, and source of iron that sends oxygen throughout your body, they are important for energy levels as well as metabolism. Their high fiber content slows down the process of turning carbs into glucose in the blood and helps prevent blood sugar spikes that leave you feeling tired. Lentils are also low in fat and calories making this energy-boosting food a nutritional powerhouse.

We eat red lentils plain they are so good! No need to soak them first, just rinse them off and boil them in water for about five minutes. (One cup of dry lentils to about 3 cups of water). Once cooked, I sprinkle with pink Himalayan salt. Want something more creative? Lentils are great in casseroles, stews, or Indian Dahl.

4. Bananas

Okay, come on, who doesn’t love bananas? But did you know this popular fruit also gives you loads of energy? Bananas can help improve energy levels because they are an excellent source of complex carbs and contain a good amount of fiber. They also contain potassium and vitamin B6, which can help improve energy. In addition to this, bananas contain amino acids and minerals to give you a boost. They are also a good natural source of sugar and are the perfect food to eat before a workout, hike, bike ride, or walk. Bananas may also help you feel more full so go on and make it a double banana day – have one first thing in the morning and later on as an afternoon snack.

Of course, you can just peel and eat, or click here for a Peanut Butter Banana smoothie recipe or here for an easy oatmeal vegan banana bread recipe.

5. Nuts & Seeds

You likely already know that nuts and seeds are a good source of protein but they are also packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, healthy fats, and fibers. The nutrients in seeds are similar to those of nuts and eating a handful of them together not only tastes great but make a powerful snack. These small but mighty foods are convenient and can increase energy levels while providing a good amount of carbs for a sustained boost throughout the day. There are endless varieties to choose from such as walnuts, cashews, peanuts, almonds, pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds.

Eat ‘em plain out of the bag! Other options include sprinkling on top of a salad, baking them into healthy muffins or bread, on top of coconut yogurt, or in a power bar.

6. Sweet Potatoes

Our bodies digest sweet potatoes slowly because they are a complex carb packed with fiber, so once you eat them you will have a steady supply of energy moving forward. Having sweet potatoes for lunch could boost your energy all the way until dinner. This delicious and colorful root veggie contains antioxidants and is packed with fiber, minerals, and vitamins such as vitamin A, B, C, D. Sweet potatoes also have zinc, iron, and calcium and are good for your immune system while promoting gut health.

Some popular ways to eat sweet potatoes are mashed, baked whole in the oven, cut into wedges and baked, fried in an air fryer, or thinly sliced once cooked on toast with avocado. Sweet potatoes are also delicious in wraps and salads.

7. Dark Leafy Green Veggies

Leafy greens such as spinach or kale will promote energy for several reasons. First off they are high in iron, loaded with antioxidants, fiber, and folic acid. Secondly, they contain vitamins A, C, E, and K. Vitamin C helps your body absorb the iron making it a total win for green leafy vegetables. Other dark green leafy veggies to try are Swiss chard, collard greens, and mustard greens – all of which are also a rich source of chlorophyll and low in calories.

While a big hearty salad is an obvious choice, you can also whip up a kale smoothie with at least one cup of healthy greens. Click here for one of our favorites.

Gallery — Star Wars Easter Eggs In Other Movies/TV:

7 Foods That Will Boost Energy Fast

7 Foods That Will Boost Energy Fast

  • April 9, 2021

In light of the stress caused by the pandemic, most of us can agree that we frequently feel uninspired, low on energy, and sometimes experience brain fog. Keeping energy levels high depends on the quality of food you’re eating. Whole, plant-based foods are converted to long-lasting energy that you can burn all day long, whereas simple carbs are quickly burned and may cause you to crash early on in the day. According to Harvard Health, the best kind of food for energy is “a balanced diet that includes a variety of unrefined carbohydrates, proteins, and fats, with an emphasis on vegetables, whole grains, and healthy oils.”

Whether you want to get your morning off to a positive healthy start or you need a mid-afternoon pick-me-up, these seven healthy foods will boost your energy and have you dancing through the day in no time.

1. Beets

It seems appropriate to have beets as the first item on this energizing list. Officially known as beetroots, these popular dark reddish-purple root vegetables are enjoyed worldwide. There are numerous health benefits to eating beets and they are a great way to keep your energy up. In fact, many athletes eat beets specifically because of their energy-boosting abilities. Nitrates occur naturally in beets, which in turn can help improve the productivity of your body’s energy-producing cells called mitochondria. Beets are also packed with essential vitamins and minerals such as folate, magnesium, potassium, iron, fiber, and vitamin C while being low in calories.

This root veggie can be boiled, roasted, slow-cooked, pickled, or even eaten raw sliced thinly, or peeled with a peeler in twirly strips as a salad topper. Add roasted or cooked beets to tacos, over grains, as a side to rice noodles, or even whip them up in a smoothie.

2. Oatmeal

This versatile whole grain breaks down to become energy that is slowly absorbed by your body throughout the day. Oatmeal and oats differ slightly and there are several different kinds. After the oats have been processed, the bran and germ remain intact and their high fiber content can help improve digestion. There are regular oats known as ‘old-fashioned’ oats or rolled oats, quick oats, instant oats, and steel-cut oats; it all goes back to how they are sliced in different ways after being steamed and flattened. Oats are a healthy complex carbohydrate, a good source of vitamins and minerals, contain protein, and help keep you full for longer. Many athletes are fans of oats and have been known to eat them before sports as they are slower to digest and will supply energy evenly.

Overnight oats are a popular breakfast in our home and there are numerous delicious recipes to choose from such as this one.

3. Lentils

Lentils are a staple in our home. These edible seeds from the legumes family are sometimes categorized by color. I prefer the organic orange lentils, often called red lentils (they look orange to me!). The most common lentils are brown lentils and other varieties are green, yellow, Puy, and tiny black ones called Beluga. Lentils are packed with protein (over 25 percent!) and perfect for vegans or vegetarians if you are looking to replace meat in your meals. Due to lentils fiber, complex carbohydrates, and source of iron that sends oxygen throughout your body, they are important for energy levels as well as metabolism. Their high fiber content slows down the process of turning carbs into glucose in the blood and helps prevent blood sugar spikes that leave you feeling tired. Lentils are also low in fat and calories making this energy-boosting food a nutritional powerhouse.

We eat red lentils plain they are so good! No need to soak them first, just rinse them off and boil them in water for about five minutes. (One cup of dry lentils to about 3 cups of water). Once cooked, I sprinkle with pink Himalayan salt. Want something more creative? Lentils are great in casseroles, stews, or Indian Dahl.

4. Bananas

Okay, come on, who doesn’t love bananas? But did you know this popular fruit also gives you loads of energy? Bananas can help improve energy levels because they are an excellent source of complex carbs and contain a good amount of fiber. They also contain potassium and vitamin B6, which can help improve energy. In addition to this, bananas contain amino acids and minerals to give you a boost. They are also a good natural source of sugar and are the perfect food to eat before a workout, hike, bike ride, or walk. Bananas may also help you feel more full so go on and make it a double banana day – have one first thing in the morning and later on as an afternoon snack.

Of course, you can just peel and eat, or click here for a Peanut Butter Banana smoothie recipe or here for an easy oatmeal vegan banana bread recipe.

5. Nuts & Seeds

You likely already know that nuts and seeds are a good source of protein but they are also packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, healthy fats, and fibers. The nutrients in seeds are similar to those of nuts and eating a handful of them together not only tastes great but make a powerful snack. These small but mighty foods are convenient and can increase energy levels while providing a good amount of carbs for a sustained boost throughout the day. There are endless varieties to choose from such as walnuts, cashews, peanuts, almonds, pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds.

Eat ‘em plain out of the bag! Other options include sprinkling on top of a salad, baking them into healthy muffins or bread, on top of coconut yogurt, or in a power bar.

6. Sweet Potatoes

Our bodies digest sweet potatoes slowly because they are a complex carb packed with fiber, so once you eat them you will have a steady supply of energy moving forward. Having sweet potatoes for lunch could boost your energy all the way until dinner. This delicious and colorful root veggie contains antioxidants and is packed with fiber, minerals, and vitamins such as vitamin A, B, C, D. Sweet potatoes also have zinc, iron, and calcium and are good for your immune system while promoting gut health.

Some popular ways to eat sweet potatoes are mashed, baked whole in the oven, cut into wedges and baked, fried in an air fryer, or thinly sliced once cooked on toast with avocado. Sweet potatoes are also delicious in wraps and salads.

7. Dark Leafy Green Veggies

Leafy greens such as spinach or kale will promote energy for several reasons. First off they are high in iron, loaded with antioxidants, fiber, and folic acid. Secondly, they contain vitamins A, C, E, and K. Vitamin C helps your body absorb the iron making it a total win for green leafy vegetables. Other dark green leafy veggies to try are Swiss chard, collard greens, and mustard greens – all of which are also a rich source of chlorophyll and low in calories.

While a big hearty salad is an obvious choice, you can also whip up a kale smoothie with at least one cup of healthy greens. Click here for one of our favorites.

Molecules from Probiotic-Rich Foods May Combat “Cytokine Storm” in COVID-19

Molecules from Probiotic-Rich Foods May Combat “Cytokine Storm” in COVID-19

  • April 8, 2021

Cytokine

A recent study from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) found that isolated molecules from probiotic-rich dairy products could have potential as novel drug candidates for fighting against pathogenic bacteria and treating inflammatory diseases, including the cytokine storm related to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Findings from the study were published in the peer-reviewed publication Microbiome.

Probiotics are considered beneficial bacteria found in fermented foods like kefir and yogurt. Previous research suggests that probiotics may also support the immune system, improve the diversity and balance of microbial populations in the gut and possibly protect humans from harmful bacterial infections.

A study from Monash University in Melbourne identified two molecules in the gut microbiome, which houses probiotic bacteria, that may play a role in treating severe COVID-19 and  asthma attacks.

In this recent study, researchers from BGU isolated molecules from a predominant yeast in probiotic-rich kefir. These molecules significantly reduced virulence of the bacteria that causes cholera.

According to the investigators, the anti-bacterial effect of the kefir-secreted molecules centered on their ability to disrupt bacterial cell communication and interfered in assembly of bacterial aggregates. They added that the achievement of blocking cell communication with these molecules among bacterial cells represents a promising and potentially effective approach to combating antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

A follow-up study found that the isolated molecules also exhibited anti-inflammatory properties when tested in several different pathological conditions and diseases. In one case, the molecules accelerated the healing of mice that were undergoing a “cytokine storm,” a potentially lethal immune response involved in COVID-19 and another conditions. The molecules isolated from the probiotic yogurt eliminated the cytokine storm and also improved immune system function. The investigators believe that these isolated molecules could thus be used as novel drug candidates for inflammatory conditions.

Professor Raz Jelinek, a corresponding study author, said in a statement that the findings from this study are notable, given that they are the first to demonstrate that molecules secreted in probiotic dairy products can reduce human pathogenic bacteria virulence.

“In fact, our research illuminates for the first time a mechanism by which milk fermented probiotics can protect against pathogenic infections and aid the immune system,” Jelinek said. “Following promising results in animal models, we look forward to administering these drug candidates to humans, for example to patients who are experiencing a cytokine storm due to COVID-19 infection, or people suffering from acute inflammatory bowel pathologies, such as Crohn’s disease.”

“In a reality where antibiotic-resistant bacteria are becoming an imminent threat, the novel molecules discovered by BGU scientists pave a completely new path for fighting bacterial infections by disrupting cell-cell communications in pathogenic bacteria,” added Josh Peleg, chief executive officer of BGN Technologies. “Moreover, the dramatic anti-inflammatory activities of the molecules may open new avenues for therapeutics and scientifically proven probiotic food products.”

BGN Technologies is a technology transfer company of BGU and works to develop and deliver technological advancements from the lab to the market. Since its inception, BGN established more than 100 biotech, hi-tech and cleantech startups.

“Years of breakthrough research have now reached a validation point that led to the establishment of a biopharma company for the further development and clinical evaluation of this exciting new technology that can potentially revolutionize the treatment of bacterial infections as well as inflammatory conditions,” Peleg said.

World Health Day 2021: Foods To Boost Immunity

World Health Day 2021: Foods To Boost Immunity

  • April 7, 2021

World Health Day 2021: Foods to boost immunity

Anthi Naoumi

On 7 April 2021, ‘World Health Day’ will be commemorated globally, under the theme “Together for a fairer, healthier world”.

It is a day to celebrate and recognise the important aspects of global health.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the COVID-19 pandemic has undercut recent health gains, pushed more people into poverty and food insecurity, and amplified gender, social and health inequities.

So what can you do to help your body?

The answer is simple: maintain a healthy and balanced diet! You don’t have to target a specific nutrient or food; you only need to reach the balance. A healthy and balanced diet is already enough to provide you all you need: vitamins A, B6, B12, C and D, as well as the copper, folate, iron, selenium and zinc.

World Health Day 2021: Foods to boost immunity

Food sources:

As you ascertain, it’s easier to keep in mind to have a healthy balanced diet with various and balanced food choices than have all those nutrient in mind!

Component Note Where to find it
Vitamin A Known as retinol Cheese, eggs, oily fish, fortified low-fat spreads, milk and yoghurt, liver and liver products such as liver pâté
Vitamin B6 Also known as pyridoxine Pork, poultry (such as chicken or turkey), fish, bread, wholegrain cereals (such as oatmeal, wheat germ and brown rice), eggs, vegetables, soya beans, peanuts, milk, potatoes and some fortified breakfast cereals
Vitamin B12 Basically in meat products Chicken, beef, fish, dairy, eggs

Fortified foods: cereal, non-dairy milks and soy products (check the food labels to be sure)

Vitamin C Maybe the most advertised nutrient Citrus fruits (orange, lemon, grapefruit, mandarin), berries, broccoli
Vitamin D An upcoming star! Fatty fish (salmon, trout) as well as enriched food products (dairy, breakfast cereals, juices)
Beta – carotene Find it in natural foods with intense colour Yellow, red and green (leafy) vegetables, such as spinach, carrots, sweet potatoes and red peppers, yellow fruit, such as mango, papaya and apricots
Copper Nuts, shellfish, offal
Folate Broccoli, brussels sprouts, liver (but avoid this during pregnancy), leafy green vegetables (such as cabbage and spinach), peas, chickpeas, breakfast cereals fortified with folic acid
Iron You can better absorb it by combining animal and non-animal sources, and by having vitamin C sources in the same meal Liver (but avoid this during pregnancy), meat, beans, nuts, dried fruit (such as dried apricots), whole-grains (such as brown rice), fortified breakfast cereals, soy bean flour, most dark-green leafy vegetables – such as watercress and curly kale
Selenium Brazil nuts, fish, meat, eggs
Zinc It is better absorbed from animal products Red meat, poultry, seafood

Non animal products: wheat germ, beans, walnuts, whole grains, tofu and fortified foods

Probiotics The germs we want! Fermented foods, such as: yogurt, pickles, sour milk
Protein Dairies, eggs, meat and meat products, fish and seafood, nuts, beans
+ Avoid intense and vigorous weight loss methods, which can make your immune system weak.

Non-nutritional key points:

Furthermore, a good night sleep as well as regular exercise and low stress levels can help your immune system.

What How much Reference
Sleep 7-9 hours of a good night sleep CDC (Center of disease control)
Physical activity ≥150 minutes/week (moderate intensity) WHO (World Health Organisation)

Tips in summary:

  • Healthy balanced diet!
  • Choose food to supplements
  • Various and balanced food choices
  • Consume at least 3-5 portions of fruit and vegetables, daily
  • Have good hygiene practices for your hands and kitchen
  • Have a good night sleep
  • Be physically active
  • Keep your stress levels low

*Anthi Naoumi is a registered dietitian nutritionist at DIETTIPS Diet & Nutrition Center in Thessaloniki. 

*More on GCT: Ten Healthy Reasons to add Feta to your Diet
Add these foods to your meals, recipes and routine for a vitamin C boost

Add these foods to your meals, recipes and routine for a vitamin C boost

  • April 5, 2021

Bell peppers, kale, broccoli and other produce are naturally high in vitamin c.

Sure you can take vitamin C in pill or powdered form, but why not go straight to the source with fresh fruits and veggies?

Sharon Brown, a clinical nutritionist and founder of Bonafide Provisions, spoke to “Good Morning America” about what makes vitamin C so essential in a healthy diet.

“Vitamin C is an antioxidant that is critical for supporting the immune system. It helps our body absorb iron and make collagen — the foundation of all connective tissue, including blood vessels, tendons, ligaments, bone, and skin,” Brown explained. “While you can get vitamin C from supplements and powders, the human body evolved getting its nutrients from food, so it’s always best to try and meet your vitamin requirements through food first.”

Some of her favorite vitamin C-rich foods include broccoli, bell peppers, Brussels sprouts, kale, kiwis, lemons and strawberries.

Because vitamin C helps build healthy tissue, the body can more easily “resist the entry of bacteria and viruses,” Steph Grasso, a Virginia-based registered dietitian who has nearly 2 million followers on TikTok, shared with “GMA.”

Other produce rich in vitamin C includes mango, citrus, tomatoes, dark leafy greens and even potatoes.

Nourish, the vegan cafe that stayed true to delivering immune-boosting foods and drinks amid COVID-19

Nourish, the vegan cafe that stayed true to delivering immune-boosting foods and drinks amid COVID-19

  • April 2, 2021

Sarah Scandone has always loved the presentation and taste of foods that are flavorful and healthy.

It’s spelled out on her impressive resume in the food industry, with the most recent addition being Nourish, a vegan cafe in Philadelphia’s Italian Market.

“I’ve opened restaurants in the Caribbean such as Belize and Jamaica, this is my third restaurant overall,” Scandone recently told AL DÍA News.

In addition to her love for food, Scandone also said she loves mentoring and teaching others about the importance of taking care of your body. It’s why her most recent spot is vegan.

“I’ve been vegan for 22 years and I have a love for natural healthy food. I work with people and meet with people who have health problems and show them natural medicine and herbs that can be used to fight it,” she said.

Scandone initially opened Nourish on South Street a year ago, but the restaurant caught fire, causing her to have to move locations.

“We moved to the Italian Market, we love it here,” said Scandone. 

She also has quite the neighbors on her street, including Blue Corn and Talluto’s.

On top of the traumatic loss of her first location, the COVID-19 pandemic hit Philadelphia in March 2020, leaving other small businesses in a state of panic.

“A lot of people did not know what was going to happen,” she said.

But, as many people found out about the importance of immune health, her business became more and more well known to Philly locals.

“People started to stop by and check out our supplements, smoothies, and other drinks that are filled with antioxidants and vitamins,” she said.

Amid the pandemic, Scandone was lucky in that she didn’t have to close the cafe. 

She actually hired more staff and they became a recognized storefront that provided customers with trustworthy, healthy recipes.

One of the cafe’s specialties are smoothies that are made with elderberries and sea moss, which is important for the gut and immune system, said Scandone.

“I think that we helped people navigate a healthier lifestyle,” she said.

But the New York native also wants customers to know that she and her staff serve out some appetizing and flavorful foods that draw inspiration to her time spent in the Caribbean.

“I sell some foods that carry a Caribbean influence, like vegan oxtail and coconut curry plantains, some other alternatives that have a Caribbean spice to it,” said Scandone.

She also sells plantain nuggets that have also been a hit with customers.

“They are healthier than your average nuggets,” she said.

Scandone also has a cheesesteak that is a healthier alternative to the cheesesteaks Philly locals love to eat.

It is made with sauteed onions, peppers, and veggie steak.

“I just want people to know that we have delicious food that can help you become healthy because your health is your wealth,” she said.

Check out the menu and see what other smoothies and dishes are being served up.

Boosting the immune system: Foods to avoid | The New Times

Boosting the immune system: Foods to avoid | The New Times

  • March 29, 2021

‘You are what you eat.’ Sometimes food can be a cause of illnesses if it’s too sugary or refined. Studies have shown spikes in sugar intake hold down your immune system. When your immune system is compromised, you are more likely to get sick.

Doctors say that if you consume foods and beverages high in sugar or refined carbohydrates, which the body processes as sugar, you may be lessening your body’s ability to deflect disease.

 

The immune system is supported by the intricate balance that comes with a healthy lifestyle. Therefore, a healthy diet, adequate sleep, and exercise, contribute to maintaining the body’s system of defence against illnesses. 

 

Foods to avoid 

 

Emmy Ntamanga, a Kigali-based nutrition consultant, is of the view that if it is possible, reduce or do away with white bread, cookies, cakes, because they are made with white flour, which is high in calories and low in nutrients. Therefore, there is no doubt that it can bestow weight gain and risks associated with obesity or insulin resistance.

He says, drinks such as soda, juices and sweetened teas or energy drinks have been associated with having a negative impact on cardio metabolic health, diabetes risk, body weight, and obesity. 

Ntamanga states that chips are high in fat and calories, which can raise the risk of weight gain and obesity. Studies show that one ounce of plain potato chips, or about 15 to 20 chips, contains about 10 grams of fat and 154 calories. 

A 2015 study in Health Affairs found that potatoes fried in oil (including chips) were among the foods most strongly linked to weight gain. Being overweight or obese raises the risk of diabetes, heart disease and some forms of cancer. The sodium content in chips may negatively impact your cardiovascular health. A high intake of sodium can cause an increase in blood pressure, which can lead to stroke, heart failure, coronary heart disease and kidney disease.

Fast foods (burgers, fries, and milkshakes) are not considered healthy, as scientists say that they are highly processed and contain large amounts of carbohydrates, added sugar, unhealthy fats, and sodium. These foods are high in calories, when fast food frequently replaces nutritious whole foods in your diet, it can lead to many health dangers like skin issues such as acne, and bloating, constipation and increased inflammation.

According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention—CDC, consuming alcoholic beverages more often has long-term health risks over time, excessive alcohol use can lead to the development of chronic diseases and other serious problems including, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, liver disease, and digestive problems, cancer of the breast, mouth, throat, esophagus, liver, and colon. Among other issues like weakening of the immune system, increasing the chances of getting sick, learning and memory problems, including dementia and poor school performance and mental health problems, such as depression and anxiety.

“Since coffee contains a lot of caffeine and caffeine is diuretic, it can make you feel dehydrated and nauseated, cause insomnia, nervousness and restlessness, stomach upset, and vomiting, increased heart and breathing rate, and other side effects,” Ntamanga says. 

A diet high in refined carbohydrates may lead to an increased risk for new-onset depression in postmenopausal women, according to a study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Ntamanga says that refined carbs cause you to overeat, thus gaining weight, and overtime, lead to insulin resistance and type-2 diabetes. Diets high in refined carbs and sugar have also been linked to high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, hyperactivity, and mood disorders.

Eating too much salt is considered harmful to the immune system. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), people should not consume more than 0.17 ounces of salt per day, which is roughly about one teaspoon of salt. More recently, researchers believe that high salt diets may also play a role in the development of autoimmune diseases, chronic inflammation, as well as cancer.

editor@newtimesrwanda.com

10 Foods That May Weaken Your Immune System

10 Foods That May Weaken Your Immune System

  • March 22, 2021

Your diet affects how you feel and how well your body functions.

While a nutrient-dense, well-rounded diet supports your immune system, a diet that’s low in nutrients and high in ultra-processed foods impairs immune function (1, 2).

This article lists 10 foods that may weaken your immune system.

There’s no doubt that limiting how much added sugar you consume promotes your overall health and immune function.

Foods that significantly raise blood sugar, such as those high in added sugars, increase the production of inflammatory proteins like tumor necrosis alpha (TNF-α), C-reactive protein (CRP), and interleukin-6 (IL-6), all of which negatively affect immune function (3).

This is especially pertinent in people with diabetes, as they can have elevated blood sugar levels for longer than people with well-regulated blood sugar levels.

What’s more, having high blood sugar levels may inhibit the response of neutrophils and phagocytes, two types of immune cells that help protect against infection (4).

Furthermore, it has been shown that high blood sugar levels may harm gut barrier function and drive gut bacteria imbalances, which can alter your immune response and make your body more susceptible to infection (5, 6).

For example, a 2012 study in 562 older adults found that those who had elevated blood sugar levels also had lower immune responses and higher levels of the inflammatory marker CRP (7).

Similarly, many other studies have linked high blood sugar levels to an impaired immune response in people with and without diabetes (8, 9, 10).

Additionally, diets high in added sugar may increase the susceptibility to certain autoimmune diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, in some populations (11, 12, 13).

Limiting your intake of foods and beverages high in added sugar, including ice cream, cake, candy, and sugary beverages, can improve your overall health and promote healthy immune function.

Summary

Studies have associated high blood sugar levels with impaired immune response. Limiting your intake of sugary foods and beverages can promote better blood sugar management and immune response.

Salty foods like chips, frozen dinners, and fast food may impair your body’s immune response, as high salt diets may trigger tissue inflammation and increase the risk of autoimmune diseases.

In a 2016 study, 6 healthy men first consumed 12 grams of salt per day for 50 days. This was followed by around 50 days of consuming 9 grams of salt per day and then consuming 6 grams per day for a similar duration. Lastly, they consumed 12 grams daily for another 30 days (14).

On the high salt diet containing 12 grams per day, the men had higher levels of white blood cells called monocytes and inflammatory markers IL-23 and IL-6. They also had lower anti-inflammatory protein IL-10, indicating an excessive immune response (14).

Salt may also inhibit normal immune function, suppress anti-inflammatory response, alter gut bacteria, and promote the generation of immune cells that are implicated in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases (15, 16).

In fact, researchers believe that excessive salt intake may be associated with the increase in autoimmune diseases in Western countries (17).

Additionally, eating too much salt has been shown to worsen existing autoimmune diseases like ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and lupus (18).

Therefore, reducing your intake of table salt and high salt foods may benefit your immune function.

Summary

Studies show that a high salt intake may impair normal immune function, promote inflammation, and increase your susceptibility to autoimmune diseases.

Your body needs both omega-6 and omega-3 fats to function.

Western diets tend to be high in omega-6 fats and low in omega-3s. This imbalance has been associated with increased disease risk and possibly immune dysfunction.

Diets high in omega-6 fats seem to promote the expression of pro-inflammatory proteins that may weaken the immune response, while diets higher in omega-3 fats reduce the production of those proteins and enhance immune function (19, 20).

What’s more, studies in people with obesity indicate that a high dietary intake of omega-6 fats may lead to immune dysfunction and increase the risk of certain conditions like asthma and allergic rhinitis (19, 21).

However, the relationship between omega-6 fats and the immune response is complicated, and more human research is needed (22).

Regardless, researchers recommend that you maintain a healthy balance of omega-6 to omega-3 fats, which is considered to be around 1:1 to 4:1, to promote overall health (3).

This means eating more foods that are high in omega-3s — like salmon, mackerel, sardines, walnuts, and chia seeds — and fewer foods that are high in omega-6s, such as sunflower canola oil, corn oil, and soybean oil.

Summary

Eating more omega-3-rich foods and fewer omega-6-rich foods may promote optimal immune function.

Fried foods are high in a group of molecules called advanced glycation end products (AGEs). AEGs are formed when sugars react with proteins or fats during high temperature cooking, such as during frying.

If levels become too high in your body, AGEs can contribute to inflammation and cellular damage (23).

AGEs are thought to weaken the immune system in several ways, including by promoting inflammation, depleting your body’s antioxidant mechanisms, inducing cellular dysfunction, and negatively affecting gut bacteria (24, 25, 26).

As such, researchers believe that a diet high in AGEs may increase susceptibility to diseases like malaria and increase the risk of medical conditions like metabolic syndrome, certain cancers, and heart disease (27, 28, 29).

Cutting back on fried foods like french fries, potato chips, fried chicken, pan-fried steak, fried bacon, and fried fish will reduce your intake of AGEs (23).

Summary

Fried foods aren’t good for overall health and may cause immune dysfunction. Fried foods are high in AGEs and should be limited in any healthy diet.

Like fried foods, processed and charred meats are high in AGEs.

For example, a study that analyzed the AGE content of 549 foods found that fried bacon, broiled hot dogs, roasted skin-on chicken thighs, and grilled steak had the highest AGE contents (23).

Processed meats are also high in saturated fat. Some research suggests that diets high in saturated fats and low in unsaturated fats may contribute to immune system dysfunction (19).

Plus, diets high in saturated fat may contribute to systemic inflammation and harm immune function (30, 31, 32).

Additionally, a high intake of processed meats and charred meat has been linked to various diseases, including colon cancer (33, 34).

Summary

Diets high in processed meat and meats cooked at high temperatures have been linked to increased disease risk and may harm your immune system.

Fast food has been linked to many negative health outcomes. Eating it too frequently may also take a toll on your immune system.

Diets high in fast food and highly processed foods may drive inflammation, increase gut permeability, and cause bacteria imbalance in the gut, all of which can negatively affect your immune health (35).

Fast food can also contain the chemicals bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) and diisononyl phthalate (DiNP), which are two types of phthalates. Phthalates can leach into fast food, for example, through packaging or plastic gloves worn during food preparation (36).

Phthalates are known to disrupt your body’s endocrine, or hormone-producing, system. They may also increase the production of inflammatory proteins that can weaken your immune response to pathogens and cause immune dysregulation (37, 38, 39).

In addition, phthalates may reduce gut bacteria diversity, which can negatively affect your immune system (38, 40).

Summary

Keep your intake of fast food to a minimum. Eating too much of it is associated with health risks and may harm your immune system.

Many food items, especially ultra-processed foods, contain additives to improve shelf life, texture, and taste. Some of these may negatively affect your immune response.

For example, some emulsifiers, which are added to processed foods to improve texture and shelf life, can alter gut bacteria, harm your gut lining, and induce inflammation, all of which can cause immune dysfunction (41).

Carboxymethylcellulose (CMC) and polysorbate-80 (P80) are commonly used emulsifiers that have been linked to immune dysfunction in rodent studies (42, 43).

Similarly, human and animal studies have shown that the common additive carrageenan may induce intestinal inflammation and inhibit immune response, although more research is needed to better understand these effects (44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49).

Lastly, corn syrup, salt, artificial sweeteners, and the natural food additive citrate may also negatively affect your immune system (41).

Summary

Ultra-processed foods contain additives like emulsifiers, thickeners, and sweeteners that may affect immune function.

Eating highly refined carbs like white bread and sugary baked goods too often may harm your immune system.

These are types of high glycemic foods that cause a spike in your blood sugar and insulin levels, potentially leading to the increased production of free radicals and inflammatory proteins like CRP (3, 4).

Plus, a diet rich in refined carbs may alter gut bacteria, which can negatively affect your immune system (5, 50).

Choosing nutritious, high fiber carb sources like starchy vegetables, oats, fruit, and legumes over refined carbs is smart to support immune health.

Summary

A diet high in refined carbs may adversely affect your immune system. Choosing more nutritious carb sources like fruits and starchy vegetables is a better choice for your overall health.

A diet high in saturated fats and low in unsaturated fats has been associated with immune dysfunction.

High saturated fat intake can activate certain signaling pathways that induce inflammation, thus inhibiting immune function. High fat diets may also increase your susceptibility to infection by suppressing your immune system and white blood cell function (51, 52).

Additionally, rodent studies have suggested that high fat diets can cause gut bacteria changes and damage the intestinal lining, potentially increasing infection and disease risk (53, 54).

Researchers are still investigating how different fatty acids affect the immune system, and more human studies are needed.

That said, eating a well-balanced diet high in fiber and healthy fat sources is likely a good way to support immune health.

Summary

Eating a diet high in saturated fat may impair immune function. Following a balanced, high fiber diet is likely a good way to support immune health.

Certain artificial sweeteners have been linked to altered gut bacteria composition, increased inflammation in the gut, and blunted immune response (55, 56, 57).

Increasing evidence suggests that artificial sweeteners, including sucralose and saccharin, may induce gut bacteria imbalances. Some researchers postulate that overusing artificial sweeteners may be detrimental to immune health (40, 58, 59).

Furthermore, some research in rodents and limited case studies in humans also suggests that a high intake of artificial sweeteners may contribute to the progression of autoimmune diseases. However, more research is needed (60, 61).

That said, not all studies agree, and some have shown that moderate daily intake of those sweeteners does not cause changes in gut bacteria or immune function (62, 63).

Summary

Artificial sweeteners have been associated with alterations in gut bacteria that may harm immune function. Additionally, some research suggests that high intake may contribute to the progression of autoimmune diseases.

You can support your immune system by living a healthy lifestyle.

This means limiting foods and beverages that are high in added sugars and salt, processed meats, and fried foods, all of which may have adverse effects on your body’s immune function.

To support your immune system, it’s best to follow a balanced diet rich in whole, nutrient-dense foods and limit your intake of ultra-processed foods as much as possible.

Types Of Foods That Boost Your Immune System -

Types Of Foods That Boost Your Immune System –

  • March 20, 2021

Companies Leverage Emerging Functional Foods and Beverage Market

  • March 19, 2021

FN Media Group Presents Microsmallcap.com Market Commentary

NEW YORK, March 19, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Consumers are increasingly showing interest in functional foods and beverages that provide additional benefits to their health beyond physical nutrition. In particular, consumers are showing more interest in foods and beverages that boost their immunity. Factors such as the aging population and the recent global health crisis have increased consumer demand for these products. The last few years, especially, have seen an increase in the demand for functional foods and beverages, a trend that experts predict will continue to grow at a CAGR of 7.06% by 2026 in North America. With these forecasts in mind, companies such as Pure Extracts Technologies (CSE:PULL) (OTCPK:PRXTF) (XFRA: A2QJAJ), PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP), Keurig Dr. Pepper Inc. (NASDAQ:KDP), General Mills (NYSE:GIS), and Red Light Holland (CSE:TRIP) (OTCPK:TRUFF) are making a name for themselves in this developing market.

Pure Extracts Orders First Shipment of Functional Mushrooms

Pure Extracts Technologies Corp. (CSE:PULL) (OTC:PRXTF) (XFRA: A2QJAJ) is a plant-based extraction company with a state-of-the-art facility located in British Columbia. In November 2020, the Company released its roadmap for the processing of functional mushrooms, setting a target to have the first products in the market in the first quarter of 2021. The Company has made significant steps since the announcement, including registration with the Natural and Non-prescription Health Products Directorate.

Towards its goals of launching new products, Pure Extracts announced on March 16 that it ordered its first shipment of functional mushrooms through its fully owned subsidiary Pure Mushrooms Corp.

Through Pure Mushrooms Corp., Pure Extracts plans to enter the mushroom extraction sector. Pure Mushrooms has already developed three premium functional formulations – Reishi, Maitake, and Lion’s Mane – which are available in safe and convenient vegan capsules. The sales of its Reishi and Maitake formulations are expected to commence in April, while those of the Lion’s Mane formulation are expected to commence in June through the Company’s e-commerce store. According to Pure Extracts, each formulation may be able to generate up to $15,000 in gross sales per month.

Reishi mushrooms have been used for centuries in Eastern medicine to provide immune support and antioxidants, to increase energy and resistance to stress, and to nourish the heart. Maitake mushrooms have also been a staple in Japanese and Chinese cultures as both a supplement and food. These cultures use Maitake mushrooms to combat stress, support the immune system, and provide antioxidants that are beneficial to the heart and brain.

Commenting about the order, Ben Nikolaevsky, CEO of Pure Extracts, remarked, “We are excited to be ordering the first Pure Mushrooms products to launch our direct-to-consumer online store. The functional mushroom wellness market is experiencing robust sales as many consumers are trying to boost their immune systems in the light of the COVID-19 pandemic. As we build-out our mushroom extraction facility, we plan to bring more products to the market.”

Food and Beverage Companies Using Innovative Products to Capitalize on the Expanding Market

PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP) has made steps to increase its footprint in the rapidly expanding functional beverage market with the recent launch of its Bubly Bounce line of energizing functional drinks. Unlike the regular line of Bubly, Bubly Bounce is a flavored sparkling water drink with 35 mg of caffeine added. Bubly Bounce lacks the sweeteners normally found in carbonated soft drinks and comes in a variety of flavors, including mango passion fruit, triple berry, citrus cherry, blueberry pomegranate, and blood orange grapefruit.

In 2020, Keurig Dr. Pepper Inc. (NASDAQ:KDP), a leading beverage company in North America, took a minority stake in the daily nutrition shakes brand Don’t Quit from celebrity fitness trainer Jake Steinfeld. These shakes target the adult nutrition market and contain 26 essential vitamins and minerals, as well as 10 g of protein. Unlike other products in this market, the Don’t Quit shakes are free of artificial flavors, sweeteners, soy, and also corn.

General Mills (NYSE:GIS) owns probiotic yogurt brand Yoplait, which, in addition to its probiotics, is an excellent source of calcium and a good source of vitamin D. The probiotic yogurt market is gaining in popularity among both adults and children, with experts expecting it to continue growing at a CAGR of 6.3% through to 2031. Probiotic yogurt can help to increase one’s digestive health.

Red Light Holland (CSE:TRIP) (OTC:TRUFF) entered a non-binding letter of intent with Halo Labs Inc. to create a joint venture with plans to become a licensed psilocybin manufacturer. The joint venture would then supply the products to licensed service centers in Oregon. “Clearly we are very excited with the recent results of Oregon Measure 109 where progressive Oregonians have voted in favor of becoming the first state in the US, to allow the use of psilocybin, for therapeutic use. We take pride at Red Light Holland in our self-regulated responsible adult use psilocybin legal product (iMicrodose packs in the Netherlands), which we feel could become a model for the development of the Oregon regulated market to potentially treat chronic mental health issues like anxiety, depression, and addiction,” said Todd Shapiro, Red Light Holland’s CEO and Director.

As consumer demand increases, companies such as Pure Extracts are leveraging innovations in product launching to take advantage of the rapidly expanding functional food and beverage market.

For more information on Pure Extracts Technologies Corp., click here.

DISCLAIMER: Microsmallcap.com (MSC) is the source of the Article and content set forth above.  References to any issuer other than the profiled issuer are intended solely to identify industry participants and do not constitute an endorsement of any issuer and do not constitute a comparison to the profiled issuer. FN Media Group (FNM) is a third-party publisher and news dissemination service provider, which disseminates electronic information through multiple online media channels. FNM is NOT affiliated with MSC or any company mentioned herein. The commentary, views and opinions expressed in this release by MSC are solely those of MSC and are not shared by and do not reflect in any manner the views or opinions of FNM. Readers of this Article and content agree that they cannot and will not seek to hold liable MSC and FNM for any investment decisions by their readers or subscribers. MSC and FNM and their respective affiliated companies are a news dissemination and financial marketing solutions provider and are NOT registered broker-dealers/analysts/investment advisers, hold no investment licenses and may NOT sell, offer to sell or offer to buy any security.
 
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