Category Archives: Fitness|Lifestyle|Food>Nutrition

Foods that Help Prevent Flu

Foods that Help Prevent Flu

Come monsoons and we all keep stocked up on flu medicines and have enough hand sanitizer and tissues to last for decades. But have we considered how our diet affects our health? Most people opt for orange juice and chicken noodle soup when they feel the sniffles coming on, but those aren’t the only foods that can help ward-off disease. Here we have got a list of healthy foods that can prevent flu.
There are several vitamins that provide body the immunity to fight against flu. Vitamins A, C and E as well as other nutrients are important in boosting immunity and are found in a variety of foods like carrots, almonds and bell peppers.
We’ve mentioned some tasty foods to boost your immunity!
Garlic
garlic
Strong-smelling foods like garlic can stink out sickness thanks to the phytochemical allicin, an antimicrobial compound. A recent study has found that people taking allicin supplements suffered 46 per cent fewer colds and recovered faster from the ones they did get. So start cooking with it daily — experts recommend two fresh cloves a day.
 
 
 
Tea
Cup of tea with mint, isolated on white
Several studies on tea have found that drinking five cups of black tea a day quadrupled the body’s immune defence system after two weeks, probably because of theanine. Tea also contains catechins, including ECGC, which act like a cleanup crew against free radicals. Even the health experts suggest drinking one to three cups of black, green or white tea every day.
Yogurt
 
Bowl with yoghurt
The digestive tract is one of your biggest immune organs, so keep disease-causing germs out with probiotics and prebiotics, found in naturally fermented foods like yogurt. One serving a day labelled with “live and active cultures” will enhance immune function.
Dark chocolate
DarkChoc
Luckily, fending off illness doesn’t mean you can’t indulge your sweet tooth. The high dose of cocoa in dark chocolate boosts the immune system’s ability to defend against infection. Nutrition experts agree that dark chocolate deserves a place in healthy diets. High doses of cocoa support T-helper cells, which increase the immune system’s ability to defend against infection. Sweet!
 
 
Almonds
AlmondHeart-healthy almonds provide the immune-boosting antioxidant vitamin E, which can reduce your chance of catching colds and developing respiratory infections. You’ll need more than a serving of almonds for your daily dose though, so try fortified cereals, sunflower seeds, turnip greens and wheat germ, too.
 
 
 
 
Carrots
Carrots
Yellow and orange veggies, like carrots, contain beta-carotene that prevents many infections. This compound is converted to vitamin A in the body, which helps increase T-cells and boost immunity.
 
 
 
 
Ginger
gingerThe natural plant compound gingerol, which is found in fresh ginger, can help fight off infection. This root is used to spice up entrées as well as side dishes.
 
 
 
 
 
Fish
best-diet-fish
Oily fish—including salmon, tuna, and mackerel—are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, compounds that help reduce harmful inflammation in the body. Chronic inflammation prevents your immune system from working properly, and can contribute to colds and flu as well as more serious diseases.

Five Power-Packed Breakfast Recipes that are Quick & Easy

Five Power-Packed Breakfast Recipes that are Quick & Easy

 “Never Work Before Breakfast; If You Have to Work Before Breakfast, Eat Your Breakfast First”

~Josh Billings

…and isn’t this just so true? Breakfasts are one of the biggest and the most important meals, which set the tone of the day. We often find ourselves struggling with our breakfast meals because of packed timelines and tighter deadlines. In the super fast era that can get increasingly demanding, we need our body and mind to be stable and be fit to quickly adapt to daily challenges thrown at us. This calls for a nutrient-packed breakfast, which will give us energy till the mid of the day before a snack or sometimes even lunch. This does not take much time and whoever said a balanced breakfast needs time and energy have not met us.

Have a look at these delicious meals that take less time to be served and even lesser time to be consumed.
Quinoa Yogurt Parfait
imageIngredients: 1/3 cup of boiled quinoa, ¾ up of plain & low fat Greek yogurt, a pinch of cinnamon, 3 to 4 walnuts and ½ cup berries
Nutrition Content: 328 calories, protein 25 grams, 49 grams carb, and 11 grams fiber
Our thoughts: Quinoa is a superfood with and when combined with Greek yogurt, it amplifies in power and offers a wholesome nourishment along with fueling the body for the long day. Just throw everything in a bowl and devour your senses. The cinnamon is bound to add some sweetness whereas nuts offer much needed omega-3s.
Greek Yogurt with Berries & nuts
Ingredients: A small container of low fat Greek yogurt, Nuts of your choice (walnuts, almonds, goji berries, cashew nuts), 1 or 2 tablespoons of crunchy cereal, ½ cup berries.
Nutrition Content: 210 calories, 16 grams protein, 5g fat, 38 grams carb, 3 grams fiber
Our thoughts: A creamy delight, this recipe is super simple and will be done in no time. You can simply add all the ingredients in the desired quantity and dig in. This is a filling bowl, rich in protein content and will keep you going for a long time. The cherry on the cake, berries will add a host of antioxidants while the nuts are home to vitamins, iron, minerals and taste.
Mushroom & Spinach Omelet
Ingredients: 3 egg whites, 4 to 5 leaves of baby spinach, 1 to 2 thinly sliced mushrooms, salt to taste and some butter or olive oil for greasing the pan.
Nutrition Content: 248 calories, 16 grams of protein, 15 grams carb, 5.8 grams fiber
Our thoughts: We think omelettes are the best thing that could happen to breakfasts. Eggs were born to add an edge to the first meal of the day and with a protein rich content, it just falls perfectly in the purview of power packed breakfast meals. The richness of iron comes from the spinach and the green color makes it picturesque as well. Mushrooms are light & add the right amount of oomph to the flavor. If you do not fancy mushrooms, why not add onions or tomatoes?
The Green Warrior Smoothie
imageIngredients: 1 medium celery stalk, 1 cup spinach, 1 cup kale, 1 cup chopped cucumber, 2 tablespoon mint leaves, ½ cup Greek yogurt, 5 to 7 ice cubes
170 calories, 25 grams protein, 15 grams of carbs, 8.7 grams fiber
Nutrition Content: 170 calories, 25 grams protein, 15 grams of carbs, 8.7 grams fiber
 Our thoughts: The warrior smoothies are made up of natural ingredients and offer a complete meal. A full meal yet light on the digestive system, you could have them any time of the day when the time is of essence. All you need is a blender or a juicer mixer with all of the above ingredients and you are done. It’s quick, it’s quality over quantity and it gets the job done!
Cinnamon, Chia with Cottage Cheese & Apples
Ingredients: ¾ cup of grated low fat cottage cheese, 1 sliced apple, some cinnamon (as per taste), 2 tbsp. chia seeds
Nutrition Content: 327 calories, 29 grams protein, 44 grams carbs, 47 grams fiber
Our thoughts: Do not be boggled by the extra calories of this meal, apples and cinnamon when mixed with chia & cottage cheese offer a great combo. A good amount of protein with omega 3 and a lot of fiber will make your body happy and healthy. Just put all the ingredients together and voila! A great dish awaits you on a busy day.
Any more recipes to share?

Fuel-up with Superfoods and Train Better

An active lifestyle calls for a diet that will allow you to sail through the day seamlessly. In the current times, being brisk is the key.

Hence men and women both, ensure that they never settle for less—while working or when they work out. Today, when lives are being increasingly defined by hectic schedules and ambitious undertakings, are people left with the time and leisure of preparing healthy meals? Protein supplements or energy bars can at times be unreliable due to some not so healthy ingredients. What is to be done then? Herein appears the option of capitalising on the superfoods. A natural way to consume the right mixture of proteins, minerals and vitamins is, to reach out to a Superfood.
powerfoodsSuperfoods are like mini capsules with high potency that work both as an energy-source & medicine. Whether it is a quick Hiit workout or a hot yoga class, superfoods address all our needs—helping maintain high energy levels, better immune system, enhanced sleep patterns & better body shape. These natural foods reduce the risks posed by supplements and nourish the body. Working at the cellular level, they alter the hormone production and can be referred to as adaptogens. By lowering down the production of cortisol, they accentuate the production of serotonin (happy hormone) and remove stress, anxiety and considerably lower the risk of autoimmune diseases.

We have collated a list of five Superfoods that take no or little preparation time, but are undeniably effective.

Berries
Blueberries, Strawberries, Goji berries, don’t be fooled by their size. These small berries are highly potent. Goji berries are known to have 15 times more iron than spinach, 500 times more Vitamin C than oranges, a rich source of protein & contain 18 amino acids. Strawberries are low on calories, high in antioxidants & contain collagen that is the building block of our skin.

Berries for health
Berries for health
Blueberries are anti-inflammatory in nature, low on the glycemic index, lowers BP & rich in Vitamin C & K. You could add these to any dish for enhanced flavor & goodness.
Pro tip: Soak the Goji berries at night for better taste.
Seeds
The true joys of life lie in small things and this holds true especially in the case of seeds. Chia Seeds, Hemp Seeds, Quinoa, Pumpkin Seeds, Sunflower Seeds, Flax Seeds, seeds offer a wide range to choose from and mind you, they are delicious! I add a good amount of chia seeds, quinoa & pumpkin seeds to my diet for Omega3s, protein, magnesium, iron, fiber & calcium. They are portable, quick to snack on and do not add to unhealthy forms of fats.

Pro Tip: Instead of buying trail mix, buy them separately and mix yourself.

Chia Seeds in a small bowl (on dark wooden background)
Chia Seeds in a small bowl (on dark wooden background)
Nuts
I have to say, I am nuts about nuts and why not? The goodness of walnuts, almonds and cashew nuts can leave you full & craving for more. But the fact that nuts are loaded with good fats, they must be consumed in moderation. These are great for repairing the muscles with the protein content, omega 3s, calcium and polyphenols, which makes them good for heart health as well.

Pro tip: As per Ayurveda, soak almonds, cashew nuts & walnuts overnight to reverse their hot nature in summer season.


Greek Yogurt
Owing to their probiotic nature, Yogurts are great for the gut ecosystem. They enhance digestion, improve immune system & works well with lactose intolerant population as well. This tangier & thicker version of yogurt is rich in proteins, contains good bacteria, is low on carbs and high in calcium. As per the famous health website ‘livestong.com’, one cup of greek yogurt is 50% less sodium than normal yogurt, contains about 13 to 20 grams of protein and contains only 9 grams of carbohydrates.

Pro Tip: Buy small quantities to consume quickly because Greek Yogurt has a tendency to go rancid rather quickly even when refrigerated.

Spirulina
Yet again a great & a natural source of protein to help with strength training, weight loss or body building, Spirulina has been a hit with people living an active lifestyle for a long time. A storehouse of 8 amino acids, it has 65% concentrated protein and heals the muscles faster. It contains high amount of iron, a high source of Vitamin B1, B2, A & K and because it is derived from blue green algae, it is rich in phytonutrients, chlorophyll & other enzymes.

Pro tip: Spirulina powder is more potent than the capsules.

Superfoods are surely the best bet to supplement your daily diet. But what should not be forgotten is that they are ‘supplements’ all the same and cannot ‘replace’ your everyday balanced diet. So a nutritious wholesome meal plan, peppered with these superfoods is the way to go!