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HAPPY EA T Y O U R S E L F


You are what you eat, so follow Clare Swatman’s carefully compiled A to Z guide to eating for optimum health


W


e all know it, but the truth is, eating properly – proper, nutritious food rather then empty calories – is the only way


to keep us not only looking good, but for our bodies to stay healthy too. What we eat affects everything from our hair and skin, to nails, moods, and even the way our organs function. We spoke to local experts – Tracey Harper and John Kinski – to find out how you can eat yourself healthy... and the foods to avoid.


Avocado Eating avocados regularly can help protect your heart and keep you looking young. They’re full of fibre, vitamin E, folate and potassium, which can help regulate blood pressure and reduce cholesterol. They can also help the body absorb cancer-fighting nutrients such as carotenoids from carrots and other vegetables. They’re high in the good, monounsaturated kind of fat.


22 | Hemel Hempstead Living


Bananas A powerhouse of nutrition: the potassium can reduce blood pressure and so help reduce the risk of stroke and heart disease. Bananas also contain an amino acid called tryptophan which helps boost the body’s levels of the feel-good hormone serotonin. It can also help you sleep.


Carrots Research has shown carrots to contain powerful cancer-fighting compounds known as polycetylenes that destroy pre-cancerous cells in the body. They also contain vitamin A (good for your eyes), vitamin C (helps your skin and is a powerful antioxidant), and lots of B vitamins. And they’re high in fibre to help reduce cholesterol.


Dark chocolate Research has shown that a couple of squares of dark chocolate everyday can help reduce inflammation and so help reduce blood pressure. It can also cause the brain to release endorphins and boost serotonin levels as well as reducing anxiety levels. Tuck in!


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