Healthy Thanksgiving

6 Superfoods for a Healthy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is an excellent time to add seasonal super foods to your holiday plate to help offset some of the damage caused by high-glycemic indulgences, prevent inflammation, support cellular repair and keep skin glowing during the holiday season. Here are some of my favorite super foods that I include on my Thanksgiving table:

1. Cranberries
These tart little berries are not only delicious and should be enjoyed year round, but are also ranked among the fruits and vegetables richest in antioxidants. They are packed with health-promoting properties and beauty benefits that prevent fine lines and wrinkle damage.
Benefits:
Research shows that water-soluble polyphenol antioxidants in cranberries provide substantial protection against free radical damage to cell membranes (the outer boundaries of the cells). This is key, because a reduction in the number of free radicals in the cell membrane will result in a reduction in the number of free radicals available to damage the cell membrane. Translation? Less damage to skin and other organ systems, and a younger and healthier you.
Thanksgiving Tip:
Instead of buying canned cranberry sauce make your own. Here is one of my favorite quick and easy recipes.
Cranberry Sauce
12 oz. package of fresh cranberries
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
¼ cup raw honey
Zest of one organic orange
Preparation
Place berries and juice in saucepan and cook over high heat until berries begin to pop. Stir continuously to prevent sticking. Add desired amount of raw honey to sweeten as berries gel. When everything is completely dissolved add orange zest. Refrigerate to chill.

2. Winter Squash and Pumpkins
As a dermatologist, I am particularly delighted with the fact that carotenoids neutralize free radicals in the skin, preventing the resulting inflammatory cascade that damages cells and accelerates the internal aging process – which manifest externally as wrinkles.
Benefits:
Carotenoid-rich foods have powerful benefits that help reverse UV damage, block sunlight-induced inflammation, improve skin texture and promote skin renewal.
Thanksgiving Tip:
I like to steam or bake pumpkins and save the seeds to roast and serve as a healthy appetizer. The seeds are rich in antioxidants, act as natural anti-inflammatories and protect against the free radical-initiated inflammation that causes cellular damage.

3. Ginger
To many of us, our sole relationship with ginger was our childhood fondness for ginger bread. Little did we realize that ginger is actually a powerful anti-aging remedy; with many health benefits and a long medicinal tradition throughout the East.
Benefits:
Ginger reduces excess stomach acid and minimizes upset stomachs. It greatly aids in digestion of protein, it is clinically proven as an anti-nausea remedy effective in treating both motion and morning sickness and is an effective non-steroidal anti-inflammatory.
Thanksgiving Tip:
Fresh ginger root is a wonderful addition to vegetables, soups, squash or pumpkin dishes—it is a versatile ingredient that can enhance just about every meal.

4. Turmeric
Turmeric is an Indian curry spice with an ancient history of medicinal use against inflammation. This delicious spice is a close cousin to ginger, and has been used for millennia to flavor, color, and preserve foods.
Benefits:
Like alpha lipoic acid, curcumin, the active constituent of Turmeric, enhances the liver’s ability to eliminate dangerous, carcinogenic toxins and inhibits the pro-inflammatory actions that lead to inflammation-related micro scarring of collagen, which in turn produces wrinkles. Turmeric sensitizes the body’s cortisol receptor sites, and its anti-inflammatory properties are considered comparable to those of the body’s own cortisone-type hormones. We must keep our cortisol levels low to prevent accelerated aging of all organ systems—including the skin.
Thanksgiving Tip:
Add curry powder to deviled eggs or make a curry with leftover turkey and vegetables. The curry powder contains turmeric. Curcumin is one of the active constituents in turmeric and has both anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

5. Cinnamon
This aromatic tree bark has been prized for centuries in Ayurvedic and traditional Chinese medicines for its myriad of health benefits.
Benefits:
The mere scent of cinnamon enhances the brain’s cognitive processing, including attention, memory, and visual-motor speed. Cinnamon also stimulates insulin receptors and inhibits an enzyme that inactivates them, thereby increasing cells’ ability to use glucose. Thus, cinnamon may significantly help people with adult onset diabetes normalize their blood sugar levels. Less than half a teaspoon per day of cinnamon reduces blood sugar levels in persons with adult onset diabetes.
Thanksgiving Tip:
Add a cinnamon stick to your tea or sprinkle it on baked winter squash, sweet potatoes or pumpkin pie to provide blood sugar lowering benefits and provide superior antioxidant protection.

6. The Allium Family
Garlic is a superstar member of the allium family, which also contains onions, leeks, chives, leeks, shallots, and scallions. Garlic contains a special compound known as allicin, which must be crushed to be activated. Cooking pretty much destroys allicin; so use raw, crushed garlic to maximize health benefits.
Benefits:
Garlic has the ability to lower total cholesterol while raising the HDL (good) cholesterol, provides antifungal and anti-bacterial protection, reduces the risk of blood clots- the leading cause of stroke and heart attack, lowers blood pressure and lessens the risk of atheriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries).
Thanksgiving Tip:
Add garlic or any member of the allium family to your savory Thanksgiving dishes to enhance flavor and increase antioxidant health benefits.

I wish you and your families a safe and healthy Thanksgiving.

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Food Cravings? Here Is What Your Body Really Wants.

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If you crave this…. What you really need is… And here are healthy foods that have it:

Chocolate. Magnesium Raw nuts and seeds, legumes, fruits

Sweets. Chromium Broccoli, grapes, cheese, dried beans, calves liver,
Carbon Fresh fruits
Phosphorus Chicken, beef, liver, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy, nuts, legumes, grains
Sulfur Cranberries, horseradish, cruciferous vegetables, kale, cabbage
Tryptophan Cheese, liver, lamb, raisins, sweet potato, spinach

Bread, toast. Nitrogen High protein foods: fish, meat, nuts, beans

Oily snacks,
fatty foods. Calcium Mustard and turnip greens, broccoli, kale, legumes, cheese, sesame

Coffee or tea. Phosphorous Chicken, beef, liver, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy, nuts, legumes
Sulfur Egg yolks, red peppers, muscle protein, garlic, onion, cruciferous vegetables
NaCl (salt) Sea salt, apple cider vinegar (on salad)
Iron Meat, fish and poultry, seaweed, greens, black cherries

Alcohol,
recreational drugs. Protein Meat, poultry, seafood, dairy, nuts
Avenin Granola, oatmeal
Calcium Mustard and turnip greens, broccoli, kale, legumes, cheese, sesame
Glutamine Supplement glutamine powder for withdrawal, raw cabbage juice
Potassium Sun-dried black olives, potato peel broth, seaweed, bitter greens

Chewing
ice. Iron Meat, fish, poultry, seaweed, greens, black cherries

Burned food. Carbon Fresh fruits

Soda and other
carbonated drinks. Calcium Mustard and turnip greens, broccoli, kale, legumes, cheese, sesame

Salty foods. Chloride Raw goat milk, fish, unrefined sea salt

Acid foods. Magnesium Raw nuts and seeds, legumes, fruits

Preference for
liquids
rather than solids. Water Flavor water with lemon or lime. You need 8 to 10 glasses per day.

Preference for
solids rather
than liquids. Water You have been so dehydrated for so long that
you have lost your thirst. Flavor water with lemon or lime.
You need 8 to 10 glasses per day.

Cool drinks. Manganese Walnuts, almonds, pecans, pineapple, blueberries

Pre-menstrual
cravings. Zinc Red meats (especially organ meats), seafood, leafy vegetables, root vegetables

General
overeating. Silicon Nuts, seeds; avoid refined starches
Tryptophan Cheese, liver, lamb, raisins, sweet potato, spinach
Tyrosine Vitamin C supplements or orange, green, red fruits and vegetables

Lack of appetite. Vitamin B1 Nuts, seeds, beans, liver and other organ meats
Vitamin B3 Tuna, halibut, beef, chicken, turkey, pork, seeds and legumes
Manganese Walnuts, almonds, pecans, pineapple, blueberries
Chloride Raw goat milk, unrefined sea salt

Tobacco. Silicon Nuts, seeds; avoid refined starches
Tyrosine Vitamin C supplements or orange, green and red fruits and vegetables