Who doesn’t love cherries? Known as a superfood, cherries are a small, round and red-coloured fruit. They are eaten all around the world and referred to as one of the most romantic fruits. Not just raw, but cherries can be consumed in many other ways like smoothies, tarts and pies. Along with being tasty and juicy, cherries are one of the healthiest fruits. They are the powerhouse of antioxidants. They are a good source of fibres, nutrients and vitamins. Cherries can also help with sleeplessness, nerve disorders and many other mental health problems. The main two forms of cherries are the sweet and sour cherries. Dark-coloured cherries are apparently more beneficial for health. The dark colour is provided by an antioxidant. The fructose in cherries can provide energy without harming diabetics. Along with that, these little fruits help keep bad breath at bay and help with other oral health problems. From maintaining the heart health to preventing seasonal infections like cough and cold, this summer fruit can prove beneficial in many ways.
Here are some health benefits of eating cherries:
1. Boosts immunity
Cherries can help in boosting immunity. Cherries which are sweet in taste, the ones used in pies and smoothies, can decrease the immune strength of the body. The sour variants of cherries, however, contain much less amount of sugar. Melatonin hormone is naturally occurring in the body. This melatonin is also present in the cherries. It helps in reducing inflammation in body. Inflammation is helpful in maintaining various bodily functions. But sometimes when inflammation increases, body is at a risk of diseases like arthritis. Thus, cherries act as an anti-inflammatory agent. Cherries also contain Vitamin C that can help maintain the immune system. Proanthocyanidin is a colour pigment present in the cherries. This pigment can regulate sensors in the gut.
2. Helps Arthritis
Studies have shown that antioxidants in cherries have helped patients with arthritis. Anthocyanin content is highest in cherries, as compared to all other fruits in the berry family. This Anthocyanin is rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Including cherries in your diet can help in reducing the joint pains. Consumption of cherries can also lower the risk of osteoarthritis and gout attacks.
3. Lowers Cholesterol levels and improves heart health
Cherries contain phytosterols. This compound helps in maintaining immunity and lowers LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. Sour cherries provide similar cardiovascular health benefits like the prescribed drugs. This can help to regulate the fat and glucose levels in the body. Vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals like phosphorus can protect heart against oxidative damage. Cherries can help in reducing the risk of heart attack as it helps in reducing bad cholesterol, regulates the heart rate and prevents the hardening of the walls of arteries.
4. Improves sleep quality
Melatonin in the body also helps in maintaining the sleep cycles of the body. Sour cherries contain high levels of melatonin. Regular consumption of cherries can help boost the amount of the melatonin hormone in the body. This can help you achieve a sound sleep and prevent cases of insomnia. This hormone is most effective when cherries are consumed in the form of juice. A glass of cherry juice a day can help you get an accurate amount of sleep required by the body.
5. Improves brain function
Flavonoids and carotenoids present in cherries are said to improve the brain function. Anthocyanin in cherries acts as an anti-inflammation agent in the brain. Antioxidants in cherries prevent the nervous system from the age-related disorders. Thus, cherries can be helpful with nerve disorders like Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, depression, anxiety etc. It also helps in the improvement of memory.
6. Contains anti-aging properties
Cherries are the storehouse for antioxidants like flavonoids and carotenoids. They are also rich in Vitamin C. These can help in maintaining aging disorders like hair loss, wrinkles, weakening of heart, loss of vision, muscular degeneration and hair loss. Cherries reduce the risk of colorectal cancer and prostate cancer.
7. Helps with Digestion
Cherries are known to be rich in fibre content. The fibres in cherries can help relieve a person against constipation. The acid present in the cherries helps in the treatment of digestive issues. The antioxidants in cherries can help in managing digestive system and also stimulates secretion of bile juices.
8. Helpful with diabetes
The sweet and sour versions cherries contain chemicals like anthocyanins that can help boost the insulin content. This can help in maintaining the blood sugar levels in the body. However, more research is required to see if cherries are helpful for people with diabetes.
These Nutritious Breakfasts Can Give A Kick Start To Your Day: Do Try Them!
Breakfast is undoubtedly the most important meal of the day. It is the meal which kick-starts your metabolism and helps you burn calories throughout the day. Not only is it important for people who are trying to lose weight, it is simply important for a person to stay fit and healthy. Breakfast is the one meal which can give you the energy to do things and focus at your work and school. WebMD says that including breakfast in your diet can have positive effects on your memory and concentration.
Following are some breakfast options suggested by Delhi-based nutritionist Pooja Malhotra, which can give a boost your energy and also keep you warm during the chilly winter months.
Try these healthy breakfast options right now!
1. Stuffed rotis
Winter is the time when a variety of vegetables are in season. Stuffed rotis or paranthas made from methi (fenugreek), mooli (radish), gobi (cauliflower), matar (peas) or gajar (carrots) can all make for a delicious and wholesome winter breakfast. You can cook them with ghee (make sure you use it in the right quantity) and eat them with pickle and curd. Stuffed rotis are essentially the traditional Indian breakfast which people have been having for years. Prepare them as your grandmother used to prepare and enjoy them throughout winter.
2. Palak or beetroot roti with mint raita
Palak or spinach is a leafy geen veggie with more health benefits than you can count in your fingers. Similar is the case with beetroot, which is a root vegetable which is incredibly low in calories and is a great source of essential nutrients like fibre, folate and Vitamin C. Beetroot also contains nitrates and pigments which can help in controlling your blood pressure and may improve your overall athletic performance.
3. Egg parantha or scrambled eggs with chapati
Now that is a protein-rich breakfast which can help you keep full for longer. Prepare egg paranthas or eat scrambled eggs with roti for the perfect blend of protein, fat and carbs in your breakfast. Also, do not separate the yolk from egg white. A whole egg will provide you with all essential nutrients.
4. Bajra roti with beetroot raita/bajra khichdi
Bajra is a healthy grain which can be included a weight loss diet as well. You can either make a dough of bajra flour or prepare bajra khichdi as a healthy breakfast option. Bajra or millets has properties that can help in stabilising cholesterol levels in the body. Being rich in fibre, the grain is great for digestion and makes for a healthy breakfast option during winter.
(Pooja Malhotra is a nutritionist based in Delhi)
5 Super Healthy And Warm Drinks To Keep You Hydrated During Winter
Are the teas and coffees failing to keep you warm during the chilly winter? Then need not worry as we are right here with multiple options for warm and comforting drinks during winter. Warm drinking options are important to keep you hydrated during winter. Staying hydrated during summer seems to be way easier as cold and healthy drinks are aplenty. The easiest way to stay hydrated during summer is to simply gulp down a bottle of water. But in winter, the body is usually in need of something which keeps us warm and on-the-go. Keep reading if you want some alternative warm drinks instead of sipping on a third our fourth cup of coffee.
Drinks to keep you warm and hydrated during winter
Well, this is nothing but our very own haldi doodh. It is the traditional drink which is taken when a person is suffering from cold or fever. It is a healing drink which can naturally detox your body and even strengthen your bones.
Ginger, honey, lemon tea:
Yes, this is another traditional drink which can be taken in warm form as well. You can create a tea concoction by adding ginger, honey and lemon to water and bring to a boil. It can make for a refreshing and warming drink during the chilly winter months.
Hot mulled cider:
All you need to do is add cardamom, peppercorns, star anise, ginger, lemon and cloves to apple cider vinegar. Add a tinge of all these ingredients in a cup of ACV and heat it in low flame. The drink is going to make for a flavourful companion to you and your favourite book by the fireplace.
Vegetable/chicken/bone broth or soup:
Soups or broths are filling and extremely warming during the cold winter months. You can either prepare steaming hot vegetable soup or broth or chicken soup or bone breath. Broths and soups are fluids which can help you hydrated during winter while also boosting your immunity and protecting your from catching a cold or infection. Just make sure that their preparation is light and healthy.
Now this is a toasty treat you all have been craving! All you need is some warm milk, cinnamon, vanilla and some almonds. This velvety winter drink is going to be your all time favourite! What’s more is that you can prepare it beforehand and have it when you’re ready for a warm treat for yourself.
Fasting can improve overall health, study suggests
Fasting influences the circadian clock and fasting-driven cellular responses, which together work to achieve fasting-specific temporal gene regulation.
Fasting can lead to improved health and provide protection against ageing-associated diseases, a recent study suggests.
According to the research, fasting affects circadian clocks in the liver and skeletal muscle, causing them to rewire their metabolism, which can ultimately lead to improved health and protection against ageing-associated diseases. The study was published recently in Cell Reports.
The circadian clock operates within the body and its organs as intrinsic time-keeping machinery to preserve homeostasis in response to the changing environment. And, while food is known to influence clocks in peripheral tissues, it was unclear, until now, how the lack of food influences clock function and ultimately affects the body.
“We discovered fasting influences the circadian clock and fasting-driven cellular responses, which together work to achieve fasting-specific temporal gene regulation,” said lead author Paolo Sassone-Corsi.
“Skeletal muscle, for example, appears to be twice as responsive to fasting as the liver,” Paolo asserted.
According to the researchers, fasting is able to essentially reprogram a variety of cellular responses. Therefore, optimal fasting in a timed manner would be strategic to positively affect cellular functions and ultimately benefiting health and protecting against ageing-associated diseases.