five-a-day

What is a healthy diet?

image for fruits

A healthy diet is one that includes fruits and it has been recommended that our daily diet should include Five-A-Day. We have heard in the media about fruits and a day can hardly go by without us seeing a fruit. Many people have been researching or asking questions on how to be healthy and I have been in this position too.  I have been thinking about fruits lately and today’s post focuses on common fruits we normally buy and their health benefits.
It has been shown that you can lose weight fast without exercise by eating fruits in people with a diet and exercise plan. Common fruits we know includes oranges, apples, strawberries, bananas, and kiwis. This is going to be a short educational post. So sit back, grab a cup of tea, and enjoy the read.

Orange

orangesA fruit eaten by many, orange in colour, rich in vitamin C and very sweet when ripe. Oranges have vitamin C, fibre, potassium, vitamin A and choline stored inside of them.
Vitamin C is known to fight and prevent many diseases such as scurvy, keeps the skin in great condition and helps prevent damage to skin caused by solar radiation.

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Vitamin C helps to prevent scurvy as it is useful in the synthesis or production of collagen (a connective tissue that gives strength to cells and holds them together). If Vitamin C is lacking, then tissues breakdown leading to symptoms such as muscle and joint pain, tiredness, bleeding, and swelling of gums.
Fibre contained in oranges aids digestion, reduces cholesterol levels, lower blood sugar which causes diabetes especially type 2, and has a low glycemic index (does not raise blood sugar quickly). For those concerned about weight loss, oranges are low in fats.
Potassium helps the heart as it is an electrolyte that maintains conduction and electrical activity as arrhythmia (irregular heart beat) can result if it is elevated. Oranges are rich in vitamin A which helps vision because it contains carotenoid, helps you absorb light, and enhances vision in the dark/ night. Vitamin C is present in many fruits and vegetables.

Apple

Green apple covered in water droplets isolated against a white backgroundSeen everyday and I can hardly remember anyone that does not love apples. It can be green or red in colour and it is very crunchy. It is sweet and there is a popular saying that an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Apples are loaded with vitamin C. Nearly half of an apple’s vitamin C content is beneath its surface and hence, it is great to consume apples with their skins which is where its fibre is found.
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Apples have insoluble fibre which aids in quick digestion. Furthermore to digestion-helping insoluble fibre, apples have soluble fibre aka pectin which helps prevent low density cholesterol from building up in the lining of blood vessels. This further prevents atherosclerosis (accumulation of fat in blood vessels that clogs them up) and coronary heart disorder. Ordinary consumption of apples has been shown to have cardiovascular benefits.

Strawberries

strawberryA delicious fruit in my opinion and best eaten with cream. Upon research, I find it is very nutritious. Quercetin, a flavonoid (a group of plant metabolites thought to provide health benefits through antioxidant effects) is a natural anti-inflammatory substance and it reduces the risk of atherosclerosis. It also lower homocysteine levels (homocysteine is an amino acid that damages the inner lining of blood vessels). It also contains potassium that can help the heart and body function properly. Has low glycemic index and fibre that regulate and keep blood sugar stable. Some people believe and use strawberry + baking soda for teeth whitening but different studies read online shows this is not the case as it does not do a great job and reduces the hardness of the teeth.

Bananas

bananaOne carried about by most people, sweet when ripe, fibrous in nature, and yellow in colour. It dissolves in the mouth. Rich in B vitamins, fibre, potassium, and some quantity of antioxidant effect. Banana contains a lot of fibre, has vitamin B6 to protect against high sugar levels and aid weight reduction. It maintains blood sugar level during exercise.
It also helps vision by containing vitamin A in an amount that is sufficient to the body. With its calcium levels, you cannot go wrong as it can help in formation of bones. It contains antioxidants that are known to help athletes as it neutralises lactic acid especially with runners. Footballers also take bananas.

Antioxidants, contained in plants are known as phytochemicals and the body can’t manufacture antioxidants. Therefore, we need an adequate supply from plants (fruits and vegetables) and examples are beta-carotene, lutein, lycopene, vitamins A, C, and E. Different fruits and vegetables contain different type of antioxidants in varying amounts.

Kiwis

kiwiKiwi is another one I enjoy and it is green. The taste is very unique and rough on the outside. Kiwi has a lot of nutritious value. Filled with extra vitamin C than an equivalent quantity of orange, the bright kiwifruit speckled with tiny black seeds is a small fruit approximately three inches long and weighing about 4g. It is an efficient supply of fibre and may possibly also lower cardiovascular disease. Its vitamin C content has antioxidant property. Kiwi’s high degree of potassium helps hold electrolyte balance by means of counteracting the effects of sodium. It’s low glycemic index means it’s great for diabetics. It’s exceptional in smoothie because it brings its distinctive taste and colour to it.

Finally, before the conclude the post we are going to talk about five-a-day and what it means.

Five-a-day

Five-a-day was proposed and backed by the World Health Organisation who stressed the importance for people to meet a daily requirement of fruits and vegetables to reduce the risk of developing diseases such as diabetes and heart problems. Fruits and veggies are a critical supply of nutrition and minerals and we are advised to have a minimum 5 parts of fruit and vegetables every day based on research. There is proof that individuals who devour at least five parts a day have decreased chance of developing heart disease, cancers, and stroke. It forms part of a healthy diet.

Until the next post, try five-a-day and continue on your diet plan. Remember, a fitness plan without a change in diet is futile.

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Inspired by a life goal to influence the next generation of thought leaders, Nyemahame started this website & he wants to see people achieve their highest potential.