Here are some superfoods you must add to your diet, this winter.
Oatmeal – provides essential nutrients during winters. It supplies your body soluble fibre which is important for a healthy heart. It also contains zinc which supports proper immune function in your body. This slow carb keeps you full for a long time. It can be consumed as porridge, veg oats, veg oats chilla, oats and fruit smoothies.
Basil and ginger – hot cup of tea with basil and ginger beats the winter chill. Tulsi or basil has anti- bacterial, anti- viral and antibiotic properties. And not just tea basil can be added to dips salad soups and other preparations as well. Ginger is effective in curing digestive problems and also possesses anti-inflammatory properties. The antihistamine properties of ginger are effective in treating cold, flu and even bronchitis. It stimulates mucus secretion, thus helping those suffering with pneumonia. Add to your winter dishes or to your hot beverages including teas and soups.
Soup – Soup is a perfect option for winter season. However, just be careful with the amount of salt and cream that you add. Go for soups that utilitize a lot of vegetables, and stick the homemade ones. Ready-to-cook soups are not recommended as they contain added flavours, which do more bad than good to your body. Pick up whole grain breads and crackers. Soup seasoning not only lends a flavour to your hot cup but carry health benefits as well. For instance, onion and pepper seasoning travels into your body in the vapour form, while also clearing your nasal passage.
Dried fruits/nuts – Dried fruits, such as apples, apricots, figs are easily available across all departmental stores. And you should opt for the organic ones always. While having high fibre and carb content, these dried -up fruits are low on fat. You would also have stocked up on nuts (almonds, walnuts, pistachios) for the winter season. They are a rich source of energy for your body.
Top your breakfast cereals with these dried fruits and nuts as they help you keep warm through the winter. These are healthy alternatives to your snack-cravings which increase during the winter season.
Roots and leafy vegetables – Root vegetables include carrots, radish, beetroot, green beans etc. Opt of these veggies either roasted or boiled .You could also add them to your fresh vegetable soup. These provide your body with minerals and vitamins- such as the B- carotene of the carrots and vitamins-A and C from Turnips. Beetroot contain antioxidants effective in fighting cancer and degenerative diseases. Leafy greens such as broccoli, kale, spinach are rich in vitamins A, C and K. They aid in digestion, lowering cholesterol, while also being low in calories. Opt for leafy green super veggies this winter season to nourish your body.
Citrus fruits – Citrus fruits like lemon, kiwi, oranges, grapefruit are the juiciest fruits in winters. These fruits are loaded with vitamin C and are a rich source of flavonoids for your body. These fruits are also effective in maintaining good cholesterol levels while lowering bad cholesterol and triglycerides.
Lemon helps increase metabolism levels of your body, thus helping in weight loss. Guava, a fruit rich in vitamin A and C ,also is a source of potassium, magnesium while helping prevent coronary artery disease in your body.
Spices – Include spices like mustard, asafoetida ( Hing),black pepper, fenugreek, dill seeds etc. in the food. Cardamom is effective in opening the respiratory passages, while cinnamon warms up those who are cold always. Dry fenugreek seeds in your meal acts not only as an appetizer but also generates warmth in the body. Add spices to your food and hot beverages and maintain a healthy winter body.
Cinnamon has very high amount of antioxidants levels. It may help you better regulate your blood-glucose levels. It helps in improving the blood cholesterol and triglycerides levels.
Pecan- It helps in lower the LDL cholesterol and increase HDL. Frequent consumption of nuts in associated with a lowering risk of sudden cardiac death and other coronary artery disease, as well as lowering the risk of Type-2 diabetes in women.
Dark Chocolate – Consuming the flavonoids in rich chocolate, in moderation can be associated with reduce risk for cardiovascular disease.
Prunes – It is very high in antioxidants and a good source of energy in the foam of simple sugars, yet they do not cause a rapid rise in blood sugar concentration, possibly because of high fibre, fructose and sorbitol content. The high potassium content of prunes might be beneficial for cardiovascular health. It plays an important role in prevention of osteoporosis.
Olive oil – Being rich in vitamin-A and E as well as several other minerals and natural fatty acids, it helps hydrate the skin to maintain its elasticity and softness. It also prevents skin ageing, the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, and protects the skin from free radicals damage. You can use extra-virgin olive oil in salad dressings and cooking.
Grapefruit- It contains Vitamin C, an antioxidant that protects the skin from free radical damage. It also has lycopene that helps keep your skin smooth. The potassium present in it can prevent wrinkles and age spots as well as protect the skin against harmful sunrays. The amino acids in grapefruit make your skin more firm and soft. The phytochemicals known as naringin in grapefruit reduces toxins in the liver, which results in healthier skin.
Drink fresh grapefruit juice on a regular basis during the winter.
Avocado – Being a good source of Vitamins A, C and E along with monounsaturated fats, avocado help your skin lock in moisture. Also, this fruit contains folic acid, magnesium and potassium, which are all essential for healthy skin. They help give your skin a more youthful look by reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Carrots – It is loaded with Vitamin A and other antioxidants that can keep your skin healthy vibrant and the glowing. They also prevent the sign of ageing like wrinkles, pigmentation and an uneven skin tone. It contains the carotenoids beta- carotene and lycopene that helps protects your skin against UV damage. Being rich in potassium, they help solve the problem of dry skin. Drinking a glass of carrot juice daily is a great way to keep your skin hydrated from within.
Hope this helps and have a great winter!