Perhaps our mothers knew more than they were letting on when they told us to eat our Brussels sprouts. Cruciferous vegetables—which include broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and kale—have long been favorites among doctors and nutritionists, and for good reason. Like other non-starchy vegetables, they are high in fiber and have a low glycemic load, meaning they have a minimal effect on blood sugar compared to starchier foods and grains. Cruciferous vegetables are a good source of vitamins and minerals (especially vitamin C, vitamin K and folate), and they contain sulfur, which is critical for supporting the liver during detoxification. Interestingly, this...
Tender stalks of asparagus peeking their heads through the soil and emerging after a long winter is a welcome sign of spring. Eaten raw as part of a vegetable crudité platter, or grilled with lemon juice and olive oil, asparagus is a delicious snack or addition to a meal. But this vegetable brings more than nice flavor to the table; it’s also no slouch when it comes to health benefits.
Like other green vegetables, asparagus is a good source of several nutrients, particularly folate and vitamin K1. It also contains significant amounts of iron, copper, and manganese, along with vitamin C and carotenes, the latter of which are the precursors to vitamin A. As a non-starchy vegetable, it’s low in carbohydrate and high in fiber, making it a good go-to for low-carb and vegetarian meals alike.
Hibiscus is an herbaceous plant well known for its showy, brightly colored blossoms that not only are beautiful, but also contain an array of health benefits. Gardeners may strategically use these flowers to attract birds, bees and other insects, while Hawaiian and Tahitian women are known to adorn their hair with hibiscus blossoms. If worn over the right ear the flower marks that the woman is single, but if worn over the left ear the flower declares that she is taken!
There are hundreds of varieties of the hibiscus flower native to temperate, subtropical and tropical areas of the world. Certain species have been chosen as the national flowers of Malaysia, South Korea and Haiti, and as the state flower of Hawaii. In India, the red hibiscus flower represents the Hindu goddess Kali, appearing intertwined with the image of the goddess herself.
Here it comes again. We haven’t even recovered from the holiday candy feeding frenzy that started with Halloween and went straight through Christmas, and already we’re inundated with even more candy leading up to Valentine’s Day and Easter. Even the most iron-willed among us, who are navigating our way through our New Year’s resolutions to eat better, can hardly resist the sugar-crusted marshmallows, and milk chocolates coated in red and pink candy shells. It’s as if those heart-shaped boxes adorned with flowers and lace, and candy wrapped in eye-catching red foil, were designed to tempt us into submission. Aren’t there any treats lurking among this barrage of refined sugar that can give a sweet tooth a little satisfaction with fewer metabolic consequences?
The sense of hearing is certainly a wonderful gift, yet it is one that is widely taken for granted – that is, until noticeable changes start to occur. For many, hearing loss is simply accepted as part of the aging process. However, age-related hearing loss leads to difficulties and frustrations with everyday communication and can greatly contribute to the loneliness and depression that is so pervasive among the elderly.