Today, more people are becoming aware of the importance of a healthier diet and overall better nutrition. GMO’s, hormones, antibiotics, pesticides, mad cow, it’s enough to make you open your eyes before opening your mouth.
Proper nutrition, dietary habits and choices play a significant role in the quality of life, health and longevity. More stores now carrying so called “organics” or “all natural” as food companies are competing to gain more shelf space than ever before. It is important however, to truly understand what these terms really mean and if the labeling accurately depicts the true nature of the ingredients. Infomercials are now filled with blenders, juicers, yogurt and natural ice cream makers; some saying it’s the latest trend.
So why juice?
Fruits are low in calories and fat and are a source of simple sugars, fiber, and vitamins, which are essential for optimizing our health. Fruits contain many antioxidants such as poly-phenolic flavonoids, vitamin-C, and anthocyanins. These compounds help keep the human body protected from oxidant stress, disease, and cancer, and help the body develop capacity to fight against these ailments by boosting our immunity level.
The health benefiting properties of fruit are their richness in vitamins, minerals, micro-nutrients, and antioxidants, which help the body prevent or at least prolong the natural changes of aging by protecting and rejuvenating cells, tissues and organs.
Vegetables, like fruits, are low in fat but contain good amounts of vitamins and minerals. All the green-yellow-orange vegetables are rich sources of calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, beta-carotene, vitamin B-complex, vitamin-C, vitamin A, and vitamin K.
Examples of certain antioxidants in fruits and vegetables:
• Carotenes in mangoes, carrots, spinach, oregano
• Lycopene in tomatoes, grapefruit, watermelons
• Resveratrol in grapes, berries, peanuts
• Anthocyanins in chokeberry, broccoli, kale
• Antioxidant vitamins like vitamin A, E and C in large number of herbs, vegetables, and fruits
One example of the medicinal value is the red beet. The root is a rich source of the phytochemical compound, glycine betaine. Betaine has the property of lowering homocysteine levels within the blood. Homocysteine, a highly toxic metabolite, promotes platelet clot as well as atherosclerotic-plaque formation, which can be harmful to blood vessels. High levels of homocysteine in the blood result in the development of coronary heart disease (CHD), stroke and peripheral vascular diseases.
Modern food industry uses many preservatives, artificial colorants, additives, and chemicals in order to enhance the appearance, flavor, and shelf-life of food we eat. However, these compounds ultimately end up accumulating in our body, only to show their deleterious effects in the form of diseases, cancers, and genetic malformations in newborns.
It is imperative to each of us to understand the nutritional requirements of our body. All of us are curious about finding out what is a well-balanced diet in order to stay healthy and to enjoy productive life. A certain level of knowledge about food science is necessary regarding food items’ nutritional value, their antioxidant strength, storage quality, processing methods and consumption. Every effort should be made to have all the nutrients in the right quantities, proportion, and free from harmful germs and chemicals.
Squeeze Me Smoothie and Juice Bar is now open as an expansion at the wellness center at Nova Spa in Rocky Hill. Understanding the need for good diet, the benefits of juicing and how it affects the skin was the vision for the spa’s juice bar concept. The menu is freshly squeezed organic vegetables, nuts, seeds and proteins full of vitamins blended to quench anyone’s thirst or appetite, and refreshingly delightful Organic Fruit Smoothies. Also Express Soups, Garden Salads and Wraps, for the healthy fast food lunch. The fruits and vegetables are certified organic and grown locally when available.
The Squeeze Me Smoothie and Juice bar is open 7 days a week, 11 am until 9 pm squeezing and blending for your health. Stop in for a visit! 1845 Silas Deane Highway, Rocky Hill, 860-919-3860.