Thursday, February 16, 2012

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7 Of The Most Popular Antioxidant Fruits

Aside from veggies and herbs, fruits are known to be naturally healthy. Fresh fruits are rich in vitamins and minerals and most importantly fiber and enzymes. Enzymes and fibers help our body to function properly in the process of absorption of nutrients. Enzymes help decrease the ill effects of free radicals in the body while fiber aids in proper elimination of body waste. So basically, what makes fresh fruits the best antioxidant is the presence of fiber and enzymes.

However, the amount of enzymes and fibers varies in each fruit. Some fruits contain more of one particular enzyme yet lack dietary fibers while another is the opposite. Nevertheless, we need to eat a variety of fresh fruits regularly in order to get the most benefits of what they can provide. Listed in this article are few of the most popular fruits that are rich in antioxidant properties.

Prunes – This fruit is rich in potassium and iron. Other natural chemicals and fibers present in prunes aids in digestion and keep a regular bowel movement.

Pomegranate – An exotic fruit that originated in Middle East and Asia, pomegranate is has become popular nowadays because it is found to be rich in antioxidants that keep bad LDL cholesterol from oxidizing. It is also beneficial in keeping the blood from unwanted clotting. Other researchers also claim that it improves the amount of oxygen entering into the heart muscles thus can be beneficial to people suffering from coronary heart disease.

Blueberries - It helps prevent aging. Aside from high dietary fibers, vitamins and minerals, it contains anthocyanins, proanthocyanidins, flavonols, and tannins that inhibits cancer cell development.

Grapes/Raisins – Raisins are dehydrated grapes through sun drying or oven. Despite the process of drying, raisin still contains flavonols but less phenols compared to fresh grapes. It is rich in boron, a mineral that provides protection from osteoporosis especially among women of advancing age. Like other fruits, grape or raisin is rich in vitamins as well as dietary fibers.

Cranberries – It is useful in treating UTI or urinary tract infection. It is also rich in phytochemicals which act as antioxidants by neutralizing the harmful free radicals in the body, thus protects the cells that help fight against heart disease, cancer and metabolic syndrome. Regular consumption of cranberry juice can also prevent stomach cancer and ulcer by killing H.pylori bacteria. A regular consumption of 6 ounce per day will provide optimum health benefits, yet fresh, naturally processed cranberry juice is always highly recommended.

Mangosteen – Rich in xanthones, a class of phytonutrients that help boost the immune system. Mangosteen has been known to prevent Alzheimer disease, heart disease, lowers blood sugar, helps prevent the loss of bone mass, and other host of health benefits not found in other fruits. The benefits of mangosteen are available in specially processed fruit juice or through consumption of fresh fruit.

Apple – The most popular of all antioxidant fruits, apple and apple-derived product such as apple cider vinegar helps prevent many diseases and improves one’s overall health. From cancer to heart ailments, to a simple indigestion and weight management, nothing beats the old proverb, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”

Not only do fruits provide essential nutrients and help strengthen the immune system, but they also stimulate other bodily functions to keep us well nourished. Nevertheless, aside from regular consumption of a variety of fruits, a healthy lifestyle is as important in order to maintain good health.

By: Daryl B. Chapman

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