Healing with Wholefoods, Nutritional Therapy

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Asparagus tips

Awesome Asparagus

This humble vegetable coming into season now is truly a superfood. It has so many health benefits that you can forgive it the slight funky smell it causes to your wee…

Better Mood, Sleep and Digestion

Asparagus is rich in fibre and also contains a noteworthy amount of protein and high Tryptophan levels - an amino acid that is the raw material for our happy hormone (Serotonin) and sleeping hormone (melatonin). Both fibre and protein help to stabilize our digestion and keep food moving through us at the desirable rate.

Better Nutrient Absorption

It has rich concentrations of inulin, a unique type of carbohydrate called a polyfructan. Unlike most other carbohydrates, inulin doesn't get broken down in the first segments of our digestive tract. It passes undigested all the way to our large intestine. Once it arrives at our large intestine, it becomes an ideal food source for certain types of bacteria (like Bifidobacteria and Lactobacilli) that are associated with better nutrient absorption, lower risk of allergy, and lower risk of colon cancer.

Salmon filet with asparagus.Asparagus has a unique combination of anti-inflammatiry nutrients.

Contains Anti-inflammatory Nutrients

Asparagus is being heralded as an anti-inflammatory food because it provides a truly unique combination of anti-inflammatory nutrients, called saponins. One of these saponins (sarsasapogenin) has been of special interest in relationship to chronic, neurodegenerative diseases.

Contains Antioxidants

Alongside these anti-inflammatory Phytonutrients, asparagus provides a wide variety of antioxidant nutrients, including vitamin C, beta-carotene, and the minerals zinc, manganese, selenium, and a small amount of vitamin E.

Asparagus on a plate with other vegetablesAsparagus has antioxidants, phytonutrients, minerals and B vitamins.

Eliminates Excess Water

Asparagus also contains a valuable amount of the antioxidant glutathione (GSH) - one of the body's best-studied antioxidants and detoxifier. With its diuretic asparagine content it has the capacity to eliminate excess water from tissues, helping water retention and kidney problems.

May Reduce Risks of Heart Disease and Type 2 Diabetes

While we have yet to see large-scale dietary studies that examine chronic diseases in humans and asparagus intake, we would expect asparagus intake to show reduced chronic disease risk in two particular areas, namely, heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Plate of asparagus and tomatoes.B vitamins clear the arteries of cholesterol and regulate metabolism and homocysteine.

Very Good Source of B Vitamins

As an excellent source of folic acid and a very good source of vitamins B1, B2, B3 and B6, it also contains the B vitamins choline, biotin, and pantothenic acid. Because B vitamins play a key role in the metabolism of sugars and starches, they are critical for healthy blood sugar management. And because they play a key role in regulation of homocysteine, they are critical in heart health as well.(Homocysteine is a natural metabolic by-product, and when it reaches excessive levels in our blood, it is a strong risk factor for cardiovascular diseases.) In addition, asparagus helps to clear the arteries of cholesterol.

XXXXXX  .We expect to find that asparagus reduces risk for certain cancers.

Risk Reducer for Certain Cancers

As a result of its very strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant nutrient composition, we would definitely expect to see a food like asparagus showing up as a risk reducer for certain cancers. Chronic, excessive inflammation and chronic oxidative stress are risk factors for a variety of cancer types, and both unwanted phenomena are related to deficient dietary intake of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant nutrients-exactly the kind of nutrients that are especially plentiful in asparagus

Changes Metabolic Activity of Cancer Cells

In animal studies and cell studies are clear - asparagus and asparagus extracts can change the metabolic activity of cancer cell types, and these changes are protective in nature and related to better regulation of inflammation and oxidative stress. Cancer cells from the liver are best-studied in this regard. Read tips for preparing asparagus.

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Tips for preparing asparagus:

Thin asparagus does not require peeling. Asparagus with thick stems should be peeled because the stems are usually tough and stringy. Asparagus is best if sautéed whole, using a stainless steel pan, adding little olive oil, a good splash of water - cover and shake the pan from time to time. All it needs is 3 minutes, and then serve with a hint of Himalayan pink salt. Serve asparagus hot or cold.

Asparagus
  • Add cold asparagus to your favourite salads.
  • Chopped asparagus make a flavourful and colourful addition to omelettes.
  • Sauté asparagus with garlic, mushrooms and serve with steamed fish or grilled chicken.
  • Toss freshly cooked pasta with asparagus, olive oil and your favourite pasta flavourings: olive oil, garlic, thyme, tarragon and rosemary - add a handful of walnuts, shavings of parmesan, and voila!

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