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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Spring Clean Your Body

Spring has arrived along with Spring Fever. The desire to clean your house and your body. Months of covering up in sweatshirts is over....reality sinks in when you attempt to put on your favorite shorts. So, I have been heading to the gym. I feel more energized and it is great reconnecting with my old workout friends. When I arrived home, I was doing some cleaning so I put on The Doctors. I occasionally will pick up some very helpful information when I actually listen. Well today's episode caught my ear. I had to sit down and listen.

Top Ten Spring Foods

What you put on your plate can help or harm your internal organs. The Doctors and Liz Vaccariello, editor-in-chief of Prevention, showcase the wonder foods that can improve your body from the inside out.

1. Dandelion
Dandelions have been used for centuries to treat liver problems. The weed is rich in vitamins A, C and K, as well as beta-carotene and antioxidants. Taking a dandelion supplement can help improve production of bile in the liver.

2. Ginger
Ginger root, a diuretic, helps the kidneys flush toxins from the body.

3. Blueberries
Blueberries are the ultimate brain food. The tiny fruit packs a big punch with the highest concentration of antioxidants per serving among fruits. They also helps boost neuron signals in the brain.

4. Salmon
Omega-3 fatty acids, the unsaturated fats found in salmon and other fatty fish, help reduce the risk of heart disease. The American Heart Association recommends that people eat fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids at least twice a week.

5. Avocado
Avocados are high in vitamins C, B6, E, K, as well as potassium and copper, all of which work wonders for the skin. The fruit helps restore hair’s luster as well. See how to make your own avocado hair mask!

6. Spinach
Spinach is high in the carotenoid lutein, a natural antioxidant that can help protect the eyes from cataracts, macular degeneration and other diseases.

7. Broccoli
Broccoli helps condition hair. The vegetable is high in vitamins A and C, which the body needs to produce sebum, an oily substance secreted by hair follicles to keep it healthy and shiny.

8. Flax Seeds
Flax seeds are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids and protein, which help build muscles.

9. JalapeƱos
JalapeƱos contain capsaicin, an active component of chili peppers that has potent antibacterial properties. Capsaicin stimulates secretions that clear mucus from your nose, which relieves nasal congestion and helps fight and prevent sinusitis, or chronic sinus infections. See the sinus buster in action!

10. Celery
Celery is one of the best foods for teeth. The amount of chewing required to break down the crunchy vegetable increases the production of saliva, which helps destroy bacteria that cause plaque.

11. Sunshine
Sunshine is not a food, but it is the best source of vitamin D, which is produced in the body in response to sunlight. Without vitamin D, our bodies cannot properly absorb calcium, and our bones become weak and brittle.

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