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The Health Benefits of Mangoes

The Health Benefits of Mangoes

Mangoes are abundant during the summer season. Mango is widely known as the “king of fruit”, and that is not without a purpose. It is regarded as a valuable item of diet and a household remedy. It is rich in amino acids, vitamin C and E, flavonoids, beta carotene, niacin, calcium, iron, magnesium and potassium

About 4000 BC ago, the wild mango originated in the foothills of the Himalayas of India and Burma, and about 40 to 60% of these trees still grow in India and Southeast Asia. Also known as Mangifera Indica, this exotic fruit belongs to the family of Anacardiaceae. Though native to Southern and Southeast Asia, the fruit is now also grown in Central and South America, Africa and the Arabian Peninsula also. Today there are over 1,000 different varieties of mangos throughout the world.

Below are the numerous health and nutrition benefits of eating mangoes:

  1. Anti cancer: The phenols in mangoes, such as quercetin, isoquercitrin, astragalin, fisetin, gallic acid and methylgallat, as well as the abundant enzymes, have cancer-preventing capacities. Mango is also high in a soluble dietary fiber known as pectin. Scientist have identified a strong link between eating lots of fiber and a lower risk of cancers of the gastrointestinal tract. A cup of sliced mangoes (around 165 gram) contain 76 percent of the needed daily value of vitamin C, a potent antioxidant which helps protect cells from free radical damage and reduces risk of cancer.
  2. Eye health: One cup of sliced mangoes supplies 25 percent of the needed daily value of vitamin A, which promotes good eyesight. Eating mangoes regularly prevents night blindness, refractive errors, dryness of the eyes, softening of the cornea, itching and burning in the eyes.
  3. Helps in digestion: Mangoes contain digestive enzymes that help break down proteins and aid digestion. It is also valuable to combat acidity and poor digestion because of an enzyme found in the fruit which soothes the stomach. Due to the high amounts of fiber found in mango, it can be a helpful in keeping you regular, thereby helping or preventing constipation.In India, a decoction of the mango peel is given to people with inflammation of the stomach mucus membranes. Eating one or two small tender mangoes in which the seed is not fully formed with salt and honey is found to be very effective medicine for summer diarrhoea, dysentery, piles, morning sickness, chronic dyspepsia, indigestion and constipation.
  4. Benefits to skin: Mango is effective in relieving clogged pores of the skin. What this means is that people who suffer from acne, which is caused by clogged pores, will benefit from mango. Just remove the mango pulp and apply it on your skin for about 10 minutes before washing it. Eating mango regularly makes the complexion fair and the skin soft and shining.
  5. Helps in diabetes: Mango leaves help normalize insulin levels in the blood. Boil a few mango leaves in water and allow it to saturate through the night. Consume the filtered decoction in the morning for diabetic home remedy. The glycemic index of mango is low, ranging between 41-60. So, mango does not have any significant effect in increasing blood sugar levels.
  6. For better sex: The Vitamin E that is abundantly present in mangoes helps to regulate sex hormones and boosts sex drive.
  7. Beneficial for anemia: Mangoes are beneficial for pregnant women and individuals suffering from anemia because of their iron content. Also, vitamin C in the mango enhances the absorption of iron from vegetable food like rice. Generally women after menopause become weak and they should take mangoes and other fruits rich in iron.
  8. Boost memory: Mangoes are useful to children who lack concentration in studies as it contains Glutamine acid which is good to boost memory and keep cells active.
  9. Avoid heat stroke: Unripe mangoes, a rich source of pectin, when steamed and juiced with cumin (jeera), rock salt and sugar, provide an excellent remedy for heat stroke and heat exhaustion in summer.
  10. Weight gain: Mangoes can be beneficial for people wanting to gain weight. A 100 gram of mango contains about 75 calories. Also, raw mangoes contain starch which get converted into sugar as the fruit ripens. So ripe and sweet mangoes when consumed with milk (rich in protein) can be very helpful in weight gain.

Mangoes can be eaten both raw and ripe. Mangoes are a good source of vitamins and minerals essential for the human body. Always have mangoes in your daily diet as this can benefit your health more than you usual non fiber diet.

Akilah M. El, N.D. is a Naturopathic Doctor and board-certified Master Herbalist with a private practice in Atlanta Georgia and Berlin Germany. Join Dr Akilah El on Facebook and Twitter

For More Health Tips Like This Check Out Our Health Tips Page

The Health Benefits of Eating Fruit

Fruits are such a delight to the senses. Of all the foods available to us, fruits are the most attractive, delicious and enjoyable. Of all natural foods, that is, the foods we can eat in their natural state, fruit is the food we are most attracted to and that first entices our senses. Humans are born with a natural instinct for sweet foods and in nature, that instinct naturally draws us to fruit.

When we are hungry – and I mean really hungry – fruit is often the most satisfying food we can eat. Is there anything better than to devour a delicious ripe mango on a hot summer day? Or to bite into a luscious, freshly-picked apple? Or to enjoy a sweet, juicy ripe orange? Is there any man-made dish that can beat the perfection of a fully ripe cherry?

Fruits have been consumed by human beings going as far back in time as we know, where as grains, legumes and dairy products have only been cultivated for 10,000 years or less, which is just a breath in the life of humanity. Anthropological studies have shown that fruit has been an important part of the human diet for hundreds of thousands of years.

Fruit has always been recognized as one of the healthiest foods there is. In the minds of most people, fruit is seen as a healthy food we should eat more of due to its vitamin content. But even when realizing the exceptional nutritional qualities of fruit, very few people actually give it the place it deserves in the diet. Fruit is still eaten as a “snack” or a “dessert,” but is rarely seen as a staple food. In the mind of the masses, fruit is a “healthy snack” but not something that can really sustain a hard-working man, like meat or bread. They don’t realize that fruit should be a staple in the diet, and has been for thousands upon thousands of years, long before bread and rice were cultivated, and long before cheese, sandwiches and twinkies were invented.

Fruit eating offers many benefits:

* Fruit is the best source of the natural sugar needed for energy.
* Fruit is packed with vitamins, and still represents the best source of vitamins in any food.
* Fruit is packed with anti-oxidants.
* Fruit is easier to digest than grains. Fruit is basically pre-digested. Digesting ripe fruit hardly requires any digestive enzymes, and is thus less taxing to the body.
* Fruit is alkaline forming (whereas meat, fish, grains and legumes are acid-forming).
* Fruit contains an abundance of pure water.
* Fruit is easy to eat. It doesn’t require much preparation.
* Fruit is beautiful. All of our senses are nourished by fruit, not just our taste buds.
* People who eat lots of fruit live longer. A study published in the British Medical Journal (September 2001), showed that fresh fruit offers the best bet for a long life. The results of a study showed that frequent fruit eaters had a 32 percent lower risk of dying from cerebrovascular disease such as stroke, and a 24 percent lower risk of dying from ischemic heart disease, than those who ate fruit less than once a day.
* Fruit contains lots of fiber, which is necessary for optimum digestion.

How To Eat Fruit

Natural Hygienists have known for a long time that fruit doesn’t combine well with other foods. The reason is that fruit contains simple sugars that require no digestion. Thus, they will not stay for a long time in the stomach. Other foods, such as foods rich in fat, protein and starch, will stay in the stomach for a longer period of time because they require more digestion. So if you eat fruit after a meal, the fruit sugar will stay for too long in the stomach and ferment. This is why people experience digestive trouble when eating fruit that way. They then blame that particular fruit for their trouble and claim that they are “allergic” to it.

Natural Hygienists have been recommending for a long time that fruit be eaten alone with no other foods. They have also recommended eating melons alone and avoiding mixing acid fruits with sweet fruits such as bananas. These are great recommendations, but can be definitely be simplified.

Many people have a difficult time eating a meal of fruit alone. They’ll eat a meal of melon and not so long after they’ll be hungry again, for the simple and obvious reason that melons are not calorie dense. Eating a small cantaloupe (200 calories) is not going to sustain you for very long. But because they have read somewhere that mixing melons with other fruits is not allowed, they’ll try to wait until the next meal to eat something else and then will often in the meantime overeat on dried fruits and nuts to compensate.

The solution to this is very simple: since fruit digests so fast, it is possible to eat fruit before any other food. You can, when you are hungry, eat as much fruit as you care for. One type of fruit only would be ideal. Then wait a little bit, 20 – 30 minutes, and have any other food you desire. This can be a salad, a little avocado with tomatoes, some nuts, or anything. It can be cooked food too. If you’ve been trying to follow food-combining rules without success, this new information could be very valuable to you.

The same goes with mixing other fruits together. You can eat all the melon you want, and then, if you are still hungry, eat another type of fruit to satisfy your appetite. It is not necessary to eat melons alone if they are eaten before another foods. You can even have melon and then have an avocado after. The only thing that is important to remember is to have the fruit first – not after, and ideally only have one variety at a time.

In Conclusion

A great way to eat more fruit is to make fresh fruit smoothies. Smoothies need not to be complicated to be tasty. For example, I like to blend bananas with water and have that as a smoothie. When I make that smoothie, I will blend a few bananas with about 1 cup of water and drink it after my exercise session. I also like blending mangoes with other fruits. For example, mango blended with papaya or peaches is amazingly delicious.

Frozen bananas go pretty well in all sorts of fruit smoothies. Try, for example, blending a few frozen bananas with a little water and some fresh berries. You’ll be amazed by the taste.

I hope that this article will encourage you to incorporate more fresh fruit into your diet. In conclusion, remember the following formulas:

Fresh fruit + more exercise + less grains and refined foods = better health and energy

Less fat + more fruit + more green vegetables = even better health and energy

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Akilah M. El, N.D. is a Naturopathic Doctor and board-certified Master Herbalist with a private practice in Atlanta Georgia and Berlin Germany. Join Dr Akilah El on Facebook and Twitter 

For More Health Tips Like This Check Out Our Health Tips Page

Is Coffee Good or Bad For You?

Many have said that our country literally runs on coffee. In my opinion, many people are addicted to large amounts of the energy from caffeine that coffee provides, causing us to feel extreme ups and downs in our nervous system.

Caffeine is a highly addictive compound that many people have come to depend on for the perception of increased energy. Caffeine keeps you going by preventing the chemical adenosine from telling the brain it’s time to relax.

The result is a surge of unnatural energy; but over time, the brain becomes accustomed to the threshold and requires even greater amounts of caffeine to provide the same increase in alertness. This is what makes caffeine products such as coffee so addictive and it explains why the lines at coffee shops are always so long.

Did You Know? Over 70% of the world’s coffee supply may be contaminated with toxic pesticides and chemicals. It’s estimated that just one cup of coffee contains thousands of chemicals, many of which are gastrointestinal irritants and cancer-causing agents. Also, The high heat used in roasting coffee beans causes the natural oils to turn rancid, further contributing to its chemical load.

That said, I always try to provide you with the good and the bad and talk about the key factor with consuming any potentially toxic food or beverage. Ever since I talked about the dangers of drinking energy drinks, I frequently get questions asking me if drinking coffee in moderation ( 3-4 cups weekly) is OK.

So I did a little research (keeping an open mind) on the health benefits, as well as the negative health effects of drinking coffee. I must be honest and say I do enjoy a cup of organic coffee from time to time but when I do drink coffee I always take 1 capsule of MegaHydrate before I drink it, to help neutralize any potential toxins or volatile oils.

I will leave it up to you to determine whether or not you should drink coffee after evaluating the following research.

The Benefits to Drinking Coffee

Organic, high-quality coffee has been shown to provide some health benefits.

  1. Antioxidants – Organic Coffee is full of antioxidants which help reduce oxidation, cell damage, and aging.
  2. Parkinson’s Disease – Studies from Saaksjarvi et. al show that drinking coffee may reduce the risk of developing Parkinson’s Disease.
  3. Type 2 Diabetes – Other studies show that coffee consumption make protect us against type 2 diabetes.
  4. Liver, Gallstones & Kidney Stones – There is a small amount of evidence that coffee may also protect us against cirrhosis of the liver, gallstones, kidney stones
  5. Cognitive Function – Caffeine is a stimulate. Drinking coffee has been shown to increase mental attention in the short term. Some have even suggested that by drinking coffee, we can better cognitive function.
  6. Alzheimer’s Disease – Some studies show that habitual coffee drinking may protect us against developing Alzheimer’s disease later in life

 

The Dangers of Drinking Coffee

And now, here’s a list of the negative effects of drinking coffee.

  1. Heart Disease – There is controversial scientific evidence linking coffee consumption to heart diseases. Some studies even state that “consumption is associated with significantly increased risk of cardiovascular disease.” These same studies have shown a cholesterol-raising effect in some of the chemical compounds of coffee, such as determines, cafestol, kahweol and plasma homocysteine. This may be of-set by some of the antioxidants, but the overall agreement is that coffee may adversely effect the heart.
  1. Blood Vessels – Coffee disturbs the functioning of blood vessels, both in turgidity and tone.
  2. Cardiovascular System – Coffee affects our nervous system, heart rhythms and has been consistently linked to irregular heartbeats. It may also adversely affect blood pressure.
  3. Osteoporosis – Coffee drinking should be heavily avoided by people at risk, or who have Osteoporosis. Studies show a link between drinking coffee and urinary calcium excretion.
  4. Heartburn – Many people report that coffee increases heartburn.
  5. Sleep Disturbance – Coffee, particularly in the evening or at night, can lead to sleep disturbance.
  6. Dehydration – Drinking coffee depletes water reserves in the body.
  7. Addiction – While the FDA recognizes caffeine as “safe,” it is still a drug, as it significantly alters the nervous system, leading to addiction over time.
  8. Extreme Withdrawal Symptoms – You may experience withdrawal symptoms when you try to give up coffee. This can lead to headaches, irritability, body aches, and other more extreme symptoms

Does Coffee Have A Laxative Effect?

Drinking excess caffeine can dehydrate the body and interfere with digestion. Caffeine also interferes with the absorption of magnesium, which is critical in maintaining regular, healthy bowel movements. Coffee over-stimulates the digestive system and can induce a temporary laxative effect, causing the bowels to expel waste before they have the chance to process and utilize vital water and nutrients.

This frequently could lead to a constant state of dehydration and malnourishment among coffee drinkers. This effect is not only due to the caffeine in coffee-the same effects are seen in people who regularly drink decaffeinated coffee.

Coffee is also highly acidic and can lead to an overproduction of stomach acid that can irritate the intestines. Unbelievably, decaffeinated coffee has been shown to trigger even more acid production than regular coffee. This over-production (when combined with coffee’s laxative effects) can cause too much stomach acid to move into the intestines. All this acid can potentially cause damage to the intestinal lining.

NOTE: The best form of coffee is organic, high-quality, and freshly ground. The good parts of coffee that contain antioxidants come from the first brew, when the water passes over the grounds. In a pot of coffee, the first cup or two that comes out has the essential elements that may benefit us. The other 6 cups are less healthy, as they are mostly the acidic, volatile oils and caffeine.

This is the part of coffee that is harmful for the intestinal lining and body. If you drink the first extract by drinking it in the form of espresso, where a small amount of water is rushed over the beans quickly, this allows you to have all the great flavor without the over-extracted volatile oils and caffeine. From my observation, I have seen that most Americans load up on lattes. I am astonished by the fact that, more and more, coffee beverages are sounding more like deserts. Pass on the heavy cream, sugar, whipped cream, chocolate sauces and Italian syrups.

 What About Coffee Substitutes?

If you would like to kick the coffee habit, try substituting store-bought coffee with natural grain coffee.

Grain coffee is to coffee as herbal tea is to tea, and grain coffee is naturally caffeine and toxin free. Grain coffee is a ground mixture of grains, nuts, and dried fruit and provides only natural flavors. Grain coffee is available in regular drip coffee-maker and instant brands.

These coffee substitutes come in a variety of flavors: vanilla nut, java, hazelnut, chocolate mint, almond amaretto, etc. A great way to transition to grain coffee is to mix it with regular coffee as you scoop the dry grounds into your coffee filter.

So if you normally use 4 scoops of ground coffee, then try 3 scoops of coffee with 1 scoop of grain coffee for the first week. Continue to transition gradually until you have eliminated your consumption of regular coffee altogether.

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To learn more about the harmful effects of caffeine please visit our webpage here www.celestialhealing.net/caffeine.htm

How To Prevent Sugar From Aging Your Skin

Too much sugar packs on pounds, as we all know, but did you know it can also cause wrinkles?

At blame is glycation, a natural process in which the sugar in your bloodstream attaches to proteins to form harmful new molecules called advanced glycation end products (or, appropriately, AGEs for short). The more sugar you eat, the more AGEs you develop, according to  Fredric Brandt, MD, a dermatologist in private practice in Miami and New York City and author of 10 Minutes 10 Years.  The good news about sugar-damaged skin: It’s never too late to turn back the clock. Here, five steps to start following today:

1. Limit sneaky sweeteners. It’s not easy to eliminate sugar completely. Even whole grains, fruits, and vegetables turn to glucose—the type of sugar that fuels glycation—when digested. But limiting added sugar can help. Some guidelines: Keep added sugar to no more than 10% of total calories. Many prepared foods contain hefty amounts of sugar hidden under ingredient-list aliases like barley malt, corn syrup, dextrose, fruit juice concentrate, maltose, maple syrup, molasses, and turbinado. And avoid high fructose corn syrup, which is believed to produce more AGEs than other types of sweetener.

2. Take 1 mg of vitamins B1 and B6 a day. These vitamins proved to be potent AGE inhibitors in a number of published studies, says David J. Goldberg, MD, a New York City–based dermatologist and a clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. B1 and B6 are plentiful in food, but taking a multivitamin–most of which deliver at least 1 mg of both Bs–ensures you’re getting the daily value of 1.1 mg for B1 and 1.3 mg for B6 (1.5 mg after age 50).

3. Slather on broad-spectrum SPF 30 sunscreen (even when it’s cloudy). Significantly more AGEs occur in sun-exposed skin than in protected skin, according to a British Journal of Dermatology study. And those pesky rays poke through clouds, so make it a ritual.

4. Wear and eat your antioxidants. These free-radical fighters help keep sugar from attaching to proteins, so replenishing their supply is a real skin saver. Do so by eating more antioxidant-rich fruits, nuts, and vegetables, such as cranberries, walnuts, and red bell peppers, and by applying topical antioxidants, such as green tea and vitamins C and E.

5. Try new ingredients that protect skin from sugar. A growing number of products contain compounds like aminoguanidine (say that 5 times fast) and alistin, which may block the formation of AGEs. “These compounds attach to molecules that start the glycation process and prevent them from binding to collagen and elastin,” explains Karyn Grossman, MD, chief of the division of dermatology at St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica, CA. In a study on Prescriptives Anti-AGE Advanced Protection Lotion SPF 25, which contains both ingredients, skin treated with the product had 21% fewer AGEs after 8 weeks than untreated skin. Sweet!

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To read more about anti-aging methods please visit Our Websitewww.HealingPowerHour.com