Food For Thought
Ah summer—an amazing time of year when fresh produce abounds. Many of summer’s fruits and vegetables are brimming with secret health benefits. Here are four particularly good food and beverage choices in the summer—as reported on in EatingWell Magazine. Nothing says summer like fresh sweet corn. Did you know that two antioxidants—lutein and zeaxanthin—in corn may act like natural sunglasses, helping to form macular pigment that filters out some of the sun’s damaging rays? It’s true. The same antioxidants may also help lower your risk of developing age-related macular degeneration—the leading cause of blindness in people over the age of 60.
Eating tomatoes could give you a little extra protection from the sun: consuming more lycopene—the carotenoid that makes tomatoes red -may protect your skin from sunburn. In one study, participants who were exposed to UV light had almost 50 percent less skin reddening after they ate 2 1/2 tablespoons of tomato paste.
Watermelon helps us to stay hydrated, keeps our memory sharp and
our mood stable. It also helps keep your body cool (by sweating) during hot summer months. The good news is that you don’t just have to drink water. You can eat it, too: in addition to delivering skin-protecting lycopene, watermelon is 92 percent water.
Sure, a tall glass of iced tea on a hot day is refreshing, but did you know it might also do your body good? Studies show if you drink tea regularly, you may lower your risk of Alzheimer’s and diabetes, plus have healthier teeth, gums and stronger bones. Tea is rich in a class of antioxidants called flavonoids. Regardless of the variety—black, green, oolong, white or herbal—maximize the power of tea’s flavonoids by drinking it freshly brewed.