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Top 13 Calming Foods

 

Asparagus – Naturally will increase Folate (Vit B9) levels – Crucial for mental and emotional health

Avocado – Helps block absorption of certain fats that cause oxidative damage

Berrries – Strawberry, Raspberry, Blackberry and Blueberries helps keep blood pressure and cortisol levels at bay after a stressfest.

Cashews – Are high in Zinc, a compound which the body can  not store, low levels of zinc are linked to depression. Also a great source of protein , however snack in moderation as they are high in calories.

Chamomile Tea – High in antioxidants and will help promote a more restful sleep

Dark Chocolate – high in antioxidants, will help lower blood pressure, raise polyphenol and flavonoid levels

Garlic – also high in antioxidants, help combat free radical damage caused by increased cortisol levels when under stress. Garlic, which is high in the compound Allicin can help ward off heart disease, cancer and the common cold

Cooking tip: Saute garlic in broth as opposed to oil, this will help stabilize the potency.

Grass Fed Beef – High in Vitamin C, E and Beta Caretine. GFB is free of homones, anti-biotics and other drugs. According to the British Journal of Nutrition, GFB is lower in saturated fat and has shown to improve blood levels of Omega-3 and lower the pro inflammatory fatty acid levels associated with Omega – 6.  It has been shown to lower chances of cancer, cardiovascular disease and depression.

Green Tea – Loaded with the amino acid Theonine, it is a brain booster helping to enhance mental performance

Oatmeal – Steel cut oats is my preferred choice, this helps produce serotonin levels with its high content of anti-oxidents it’s a major mood enhancer. Another component in SCO is beta-glucan (soluble fiber) and increases satiety.

Oranges - High in Vitamin C which contribute to a strong immune system and one of the top portable foods you can take anywhere with you.

Oysters – High in Zinc which promote a more restful sleep, containing more than half of the RDA recommendation per serving

Walnuts – High in Alpha-linolenic acid, Omega -3, polyphenols which help prevent memory loss. According to Tufts University, consuming walnuts showed some signs of reversed signs of aging

 

The Health Benefits of Sweet Potato 
 
Although they're soft and creamy enough to be put in pies and called dessert, sweet potatoes are also a surprisingly nutritious vegetable. 
 
Sweet potatoes are high in vitamin A, vitamin B5, B6, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, and, due to their orange color, are high in carotenoids," said San Diego-based nutritionist Laura Flores. Plus, they're fat-free, relatively low in sodium and have fewer calories than white potatoes — although they do have more sugar. 
 
Sweet potatoes are one of the best sources of vitamin A; a large one contains more than 100 percent of the daily recommended intake, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Vitamin A is an antioxidant powerhouse, and is linked to anti-aging benefits, cancer prevention and the maintenance of good eye sight.
 
HEART HEALTH
Sweet potatoes are a great source of B6 vitamins, which are brilliant at breaking down homocysteine, a substance that contributes to the hardening of blood vessels and arteries, according to the Harvard University School of Public Health. Sweet potatoes' potassium content is also helpful for your heart, as it lowers blood pressure by maintaining fluid balance, as explained by the American Heart Association. Potassium is also an important electrolyte that helps regulate your heartbeat, controlling blood sugar and maintaining energy.
 
For as sweet as they are, sweet potatoes have a low glycemic index (which means they release sugar slowly into the bloodstream). "Sweet potatoes — unlike other starchy foods that elevate blood sugar rapidly after [they're consumed] due to their metabolism into sugar — will help steady the levels of blood sugar," Flores said. This means you won't get blood-sugar spikes, but you will get a steady amount of energy. Flores noted that this regulation occurs even in people with type 2 diabetes. 
 
Furthermore, the Beauregard sweet potato, an orange-skinned variety grown in North Carolina, is similar to a white-skinned variety used in Japan to make a dietary supplement called Caiapo, which is marketed to control blood glucose in people with diabetes, according to an article in Perspectives, the magazine of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at North Carolina State University. 
 
Researchers have found that the Beauregard "has essentially the same protein patterns" as Caiapo.
 
STRESS
According to the Los Angeles Department of Public Health, sweet potatoes contain magnesium, the go-to mineral for destressing. It promotes relaxation, calmness and a good mood, as well as artery, blood, bone, muscle and nerve health, according to Psychology Today.
 
IMMUNITY and ANTI-INFLAMMATORY PROPERTIES
Due to the color-pigmented vitamins, sweet potatoes are high in anti-inflammatory benefits," Flores said. One sweet potato contains about half of the daily recommended intake of vitamin C. Vitamins A and E also support a healthy immune system and are powerful disease-fighting antioxidants. While orange sweet potatoes contain more vitamin A, purple sweet potatoes are packed with the antioxidant anthocyanin, which is responsible for red, blue and purple colors in fruits and vegetables. According to the Linus Pauling Institute, pigment-related antioxidants have anti-inflammatory properties, which are beneficial to overall health and help mitigate inflammatory disorders.
 
SKIN and HAIR
Vitamin A may help protect against sun damage, according to a 2004 study in the journal Clinical Cancer Research, and vitamins C and E are well-known for their beauty benefits. They encourage healthy, glowing skin and collagen growth.
 
DIGESTION
According to the Cleveland Clinic, sweet potatoes are a good source of dietary fiber, which helps the body maintain a healthy digestive tract and regulates digestion.
 
CANCER PREVENTION
Orange sweet potatoes have been shown to have anti-carcinogenic properties,” Flores said, and the NIH reports that some studies have suggested that beta-carotene may reduce the risk of breast cancer in premenopausal women and ovarian cancer in postmenopausal women. 
 
However, purple sweet potatoes may be even more effective than orange sweet potatoes in staving off cancer. "Purple sweet potatoes have been shown to have better cancer-fighting abilities, with a positive effect on cancer cell growth," Flores said.
 
HEALTH RISKS
If eaten in moderation and prepared in a healthy way (that means not just indulging in sweet potato fries), sweet potatoes are a nutritious, delicious food that should pose no significant health risks. But for a vegetable, they are high in carbohydrates (about 23 grams per medium sweet potato) and calories (about 100 calories). For comparison, one serving of broccoli has about 45 calories.
 
They may also cause some interesting skin-related side effects. "While there aren't any severe health problems associated with sweet potatoes, they are high in vitamin A, which the body stores," Flores said. "When levels get too high, you may notice your skin and nails looking a little orange." This side effect should decrease if you cut down on sweet potato consumption.
 
According to the Mayo Clinic, people with a history of kidney stones may want to avoid eating too many sweet potatoes, as the vegetable contains oxalate, which contributes to the forming of calcium-oxalate kidney stones. 

Michael Scipione began strength training as a hobby at the age of 12. He has made an art and life-long devotion of preparing deliciously healthy food combined with exercise.  He prides himself in taking the step-by-step approach and explains not only how to prepare a healthy meal, but the impact of how eating healthy is a lifestyle. His clientele include all that have a palate and yearning to ‘eat right’.  He has catered a number of events including weddings, corporate dining, charity fundraisers and the Philadelphia premier of the movie “The Back-up Plan” starring Jennifer Lopez.

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A great body starts on the inside. “Sano Life” is Chef Michael Scipione's collection of easy-to-prepare recipes, fitness tips, how to videos, fitness programs that will put you on a path to healthier, tastier eating!

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