Stay fit this season with these 5 fall foods
Published: Sunday, November 4, 2012
Updated: Saturday, February 23, 2013 14:02
It’s that time of year again. Halloween is over and school work is starting to pile up before final exams.
The days are getting shorter and the weather is finally starting to cool down.
While you may feel tempted by all of the comfort foods during this season, do not let these urges get the best of you.
Try these fresh fall foods instead of your left-over Halloween candy to get the nourishment and energy boost you need to power through until Thanksgiving break.
Many of the below nutritional facts were based off of online articles from Huffington Post Healthy Living and the Livestrong website.
Ever wonder why people say “an apple a day keeps the doctor away?”
Aside from being crunchy and delicious, there are several reasons why you should reach for an apple as an on-the-go snack.
One medium sized apple…
•Has four grams of fiber for only 95 calories. Fiber helps your digestive tract function smoothly and will bind to and remove “bad” LDL cholesterol from your blood stream.
•Satisfies 14 percent of your daily vitamin C needs for powerful immune system function.
•Lowers your risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke because of the high antioxidant and fiber content.
•Gives you an extra boost of energy for long workouts since it contains quercetin — an antioxidant that aids in endurance by making oxygen more readily available to the lungs.
Carve a face in one and eat the other because pumpkin is a yummy, healthy fall food staple.
To prepare: cut pumpkin “meat” into slices, sprinkle with olive oil, salt, pepper and roast them in the oven.
You can also try sprinkles of brown sugar and cinnamon for a sweeter flavor.
Half a cup of cooked, mashed pumpkin….
•Has over 100 percent of the recommended daily intake for vitamin A, which aids vision.
•Contains compounds called carotenoids that give pumpkins their bright orange color. One carotenoid called beta-carotene is a cancer-fighting antioxidant.
•Is a good source of fiber with three grams per one cup, 49 calorie serving.
The seeds in pumpkins are also great for you, and they’re easy to prepare. To do so, just spread and roast on a baking sheet in the oven.
•Are rich in plant-based chemicals called phytosterols that are shown to reduce “bad” cholesterol that clogs the arteries.
•Contain an amino acid called tryptophan that is crucial to the production of mood-altering serotonin. Eating pumpkin seeds might just help you be more positive.
Fun ways to incorporate pomegranates into your diet include sprinkling the seeds on top of a salad, sipping pure pomegranate juice or incorporating pomegranate juice into drizzled syrups and jellies.
Pomegranates (particularly the pulp surrounding the seeds)…
•High in cancer-fighting antioxidants.
•A good source of fiber.
• Packed with potassium — a vital electrolyte for fluid balance, transmission of nerve impulses, muscle contraction and more
•A good source of vitamin C that boosts immune system function.
Sing it with me, “Chestnuts roasting on an open fire. Jack Frost nipping at your nose.”
OK, the addition of chestnuts to our fall foods list may be jumping the gun, but they are worth mentioning because they contain substantial nutritional value...
•3g of fiber per 100g, higher than walnuts, pecans and pistachios
•High in essential fatty acids or “good fats” for cardiovascular health
•Contain vitamin C , an antioxidant that enhances immune system function
•Has minerals such as potassium, copper and magnesium for proper body functioning
•Contains cancer-fighting antioxidants
Go on and try them. What are you waiting for? Time is running out.