Most of us tend to think “it won’t happen to me” when it comes to illness, then look at diet changes and treatments when illness does “happen”. But what if simply making better food choices meant fewer health issues and visits to your GP? Diet-related diseases are on the rise, primarily because society and our busy lifestyles make it easy to swap nutrient-rich fruit and vegetables with convenience foods.
“Our research on diets is giving us increasingly powerful evidence that what you eat and drink does make a difference to your risk of developing common diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and even some cancers,” says Dr Alan Barclay, dietitian and researcher at the University of Sydney. Prevention is always much better than the cure, so here is the food and drink you can choose to avoid illness and disease and rejoice in optimum health.
If you had a peanut allergy, you’d know about it – it’s the most common cause of severe food allergy reactions. Symptoms can be triggered after exposure to even trace amounts – simply touching a surface where peanuts have been can be enough for some people. And the results can be fatal.
Kiwis are rich in vitamin C – an eye-friendly nutrient. As an antioxidant, vitamin C acts against free radicals, reducing the damage they do to your eyes and reducing the risk of developing age-related cataracts. In 2008, the Blue Mountains Eye Study observed over 2400 people aged 49 years and older, and found those with higher vitamin C intakes had a lower incidence of age-related cataracts. Enjoy kiwifruit as a snack on their own or add them to your next fruit salad.
Rich in vitamin E, avocado may benefit your eyes, particularly if you combine them with vitamin C-rich foods, such as tomatoes or capsicum. On top of discovering the benefits of vitamin C, the Blue Mountains Eye Study also found that when antioxidants, such as vitamins C and E are combined, they work synergistically together. With the help of glutathione (an antioxidant also found in avocadoes), vitamin C is able to regenerate vitamin E after it fights against ‘bad’ free radicals. Spread your toast and sandwiches with avocado, instead of butter, and add diced avocado to your salads and wraps.
1: Colds and Flu
A runny nose and a sore throat are two signs that winter has arrived! Colds and flus are spread from person to person, as droplets in the air, when people cough or sneeze. They can be inhaled directly, or be spread when a person touches a surface where droplets have landed. Germs then enter the body via the mouth, nose or eyes. Although generally not life-threatening, they cost our society an enormous amount in terms of medical visits, sick days and general discomfort. While there is no evidence that catching a cold or the flu is related to what we eat, nutrition is extremely important for maintaining our body’s immune function. Boost your immunity with these foods.
Eat citrus fruits