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No Horn Ok Please

One of the most irritating things that you can encounter while driving on the road is when a car behind you keeps on honking his or her horn at you for no apparent reason.Admit it, sometimes you do get angry when someone honks their car horns at you and at some point you actually used your horn when you get mad at another driver. But what are some of the specific proper uses of your car’s horn? Is there really a right time to use them? Let me share some based on my experience.

I usually honk my horn when I need to tell someone that I’m there. This is especially common for pedestrians or other cars when they’re in front of me. I really am irritated by pedestrians who just do not look either way when they cross the road.

Sometimes, other drivers tend to drive really slowly and they tend to obstruct the road and induce heavy traffic behind them. This is fairly common on two way one-lane roads. I sound the horn to alert them that,there is a line behind them and there are also other cars that need to pass through. Another similar situation is when you’re at an intersection and the car in front does not move even when the light already turned to green. They probably are doing something else or are distracted so using a horn in this situation is perfectly fine.

Another very important thing that I use the car horns for is to inform another driver that,there’s something wrong with his or her car. I sound the horn to get their attention and probably point at their flat tires, open doors, hanging objects and so on.

On the other hand, you should not blow your car horns in areas such as hospitals, schools and churches unless it is very urgent like emergencies. These places require a quiet environment and should be respected. A lot of drivers disregard this though.

In any case, your car’s horn is a very effective way of communicating with other drivers on the road. It could prevent accidents or any other untoward incidents. Just be considerate and do not blow your horns just for fun especially if your car is outfitted with a powerful set of horns. Just be careful when using it as there are a lot of drivers who really are having a hard time understanding what you’re trying to say. As for me, I don’t use it unless I really need to.

Why is this important?

India is the only country where such advertising of ‘ Use Horn’ ‘Blow Horn’ etc are commonly used . We are advised to blow horn as much as possible to avoid accident. Now a days it is almost becoming a habit to blow horn even when it is not required at all. When the shrill horn irritates you in the traffic intersection or congestion, it also equally irritates others when u blow a horn when it is not required.

One of my friend came from Osaka and I was his travel companion for 15 day or so in side Orissa. I made him irritated in the first few days of my driving with so big horn.As usual he (Mr.Wataru Takatani) was a cool guy and dint protest for few days.But suddenly during one small trip in side the city he could not resist to educate me about the use of Horn.

He said,” In Japan using Horn is a social offence and people don’t use Horn at all.” Just a moment later I realized,why he said this to me. That means, I was ignorantly irritating him all throughout with the use of Horn.This happened 2 years before i.e Oct.2012.Though I knew many a countries don’t encourage people to use horn on road unless otherwise required,I dint know that this can also irritate others .Truly it irritates .

Believe me or not,since that incident with my Japanese friend I have seriously started practicing not using horn while on road.To my amusement, my wife don’t feel secure driving out with me as I don’t use horn on road, my daughter also protests but I say ” I HAVE IMPROVED MY DRIVING SKILL BY NOT USING HORN ON ROAD.

Debu Nayak

OdishaCalling

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Blue Corn? Cinnamon-Flavoured Tulsi? This Farmer Has a Collection of 560 Varieties of Rare Seeds! Debu Nayak,Odisha Calling.

Dr. Rao started Hariyalee seeds, a “family-run farm, which curates species of endangered and heirloom seeds from all over the world” and sells them.

Purple, white and pink lady fingers, blue groundnuts, a round cucumber and more — enter Dr. Prabhakar Rao’s 2.5 acre-natural farm in Bengaluru and you’ll find a range of exotic and rare vegetables like these. Speak with him and he’ll tell you that most of these veggies are no longer found in India.

The 60-year-old holds a PhD in plant breeding and genetics and has spent several years travelling across the world, collecting native indigenous seeds of endangered vegetable species.

An architect by profession and farmer by passion, he returned to India from Dubai after his retirement in 2011.

By this time, he had about 560 varieties of endangered seeds, including Dosakai — a round cucumber the size of an apple that tastes like lemon and is found near the border areas of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka; a purple round eggplant called Kamo, found in Japan; herbs with flowers that have the flavour of lavender and lime, found in Moldavia; and some “unbelievably” sweet chilly peppers.

Also read: These IIT Kharagpur Alumni Show How You Can Grow Organic Veggies on Your Rooftop


“Over the past 20 years, there has been a steady decline in the variety of vegetables we eat. This is because the original vegetables were of native indigenous varieties using which farmers could produce their own seeds every season,” says Dr. Rao, adding that the business model of seed companies is structured in such a way that farmers now have to come back to them every season to buy new seeds.

“They produce seeds that help them make profits. That’s why almost 90% of the vegetable varieties that we eat today are hybrid varieties. As a result, hundreds of varieties of native vegetable species become extinct every year.”

After this realisation, Dr. Rao joined an international organisation called International Seed Savers’ Exchange, while also working as an architect.

It’s a voluntary body of individuals across the world who collect and share seeds of endangered vegetable species.

Freckles Lettuce (right)

Once in India, he started testing the seeds to find out how many of the them could be cultivated successfully in the Indian climate. He was able to climatically stabilize and grow 142 varieties. It was with these 142 varieties that he started Hariyalee seeds, a “family-run farm, which curates species of endangered and heirloom seeds from all over the world” and sells them.

All the vegetables and seeds available at Hariyalee are hyper-exotic and are usually not seen in the markets anymore. When he had started, Dr. Rao didn’t have enough seeds of every variety and it was difficult to procure them. So he spent the first few years multiplying them to an extent that now they can be sold to home gardeners. He has also shared some seeds with farmers.

The idea is that if enthusiastic home gardeners cultivate these seeds, the varieties will exist somewhere in the world instead of getting lost.

Corn Tuleo Strawberry copy (left) Corn Posugeh Blue copy (top)

Anyone who buys seeds from Hariyalee needs to make just a one-time purchase because they can always produce the next generation of seeds themselves.

“If a bird or animal is endangered, the whole world focusses on it. But somehow, people don’t even know that so many varieties of vegetables are extinct. Desi indigenous varieties have a huge role to play in our lives. These varieties can handle climate change, are tolerant to drought conditions, and are naturally resistant to diseases and pests. Moreover, they are adaptable to natural farming methods. Instead of taking them and making hybrids and genetically modified organisms, it makes sense for us to go back to cultivating them,” says Dr. Rao.


Talking about his process of procuring these seeds, he explains that there are certain places in the world where one can still access old seeds. This is because farmers there have not started practicing the traditional, monoculture type of agriculture yet. These include places in Central Asia, South America, Indonesia, Malaysia, Southeast Asian countries, and remote parts of China.

In these places, one needs to find previous generation’s farmers who usually have seeds of unique varieties.

For example, Bangladesh used to have an eggplant variety called the Bangladeshi Long that has not been available in the markets for 15 years now. It’s a peculiar eggplant with a unique colour and shape and was widely used in Biryani preparations. “I was travelling in West Bengal and was talking to some old farmers about this variety when one of them brought a small dried piece of this brinjal that had a few seeds. Today, I have about 1,000 seeds of that variety,” says Dr. Rao.

He calls himself a part of the generation of scientists that was involved in India’s green revolution — who introduced the application of highly intensive chemical farming and told farmers to dig borewells, use urea, spray insecticides, etc.

“But somewhere deep inside me, I was not completely sure about what I was doing,” he says. We did bring green revolution, it did help bring food security in the country, but I always used to question if what we are doing is sustainable.” This motivated him to change his line of education and he went to Louisiana to study architecture.

Yet, his love for the environment followed him around. Throughout his career, he focused on sustainable architecture techniques to protect the environment.

Today, he conducts curated workshops and on his farm inviting people to come over and learn about sowing and harvesting seeds. He has a team of three people working on the farm, other than his son who returned from the US to join his initiative.

“When I came back to India, the idea was that I would retire from practice and spend time doing things that I love doing. Multiplying indigenous seeds is not really work for me. It’s my passion. After you finish your professional career, it’s very important to have a passion to keep going. I love to get up in the morning because there is always something happening in the farm. It’s exciting and gives me a lot of enthusiasm to live life,” he concludes.

Know more about Hariyalee seeds here and contact the team by writing at farmer@hariyaleeseeds.com

Are Backyard Gardens a Weapon Against Climate Change? by Debu Nayak,’Odisha Calling’.

We already know that backyard gardens are great fun, that they can provide the freshest produce, and that gardening as a child has lasting effects—but what about their impact on the environment?

A researcher from the University of California, Santa Barbara, David Cleveland, set out to find exactly what sorts of environmental effects gardening can have. And his findings, published in the journal Landscape and Urban Planning, are bold: For every kilogram of vegetables you grow yourself, you’re reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2 kilograms, compared to buying from the store.

Of course, the findings get more complicated. The density of vegetables planted matters, because the greenhouse gas emissions were calculated by square meter. The use of grey water—not-dirty-but-not-clean-either water, like reused water from the shower or sink—can also have a big effect on the environmental output, too.

Interestingly, composting at home doesn’t necessarily translate to greenhouse gas savings. The study found that unless very carefully maintained, the methane and nitrous oxide emitted by decomposing compost can throw off the whole goal of reducing emissions. Sending organic waste to a processor that captures those gases to use for power could be a better option.

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The study’s conclusion is pretty interesting: It states that while gardening can definitely have a beneficial environmental effect over store-bought produce (with all the transportation and infrastructure that comes along with retail), it’s the little things that matter. How dense is your garden? What kind of water are you using? How are you monitoring your compost?

This sort of research could lead to much more effective guidelines on how to garden not just for your dinner, but for the planet as well.

17 Creative Ways to Eat More Vegetables,Debu Nayak,’Odisha Calling’.

Including vegetables in your diet is extremely important. Veggies are incredibly rich in nutrients and antioxidants, which boost your health and help fight off disease.

Additionally, they are beneficial for weight control due to their low calorie content.

Health authorities around the world recommend that adults consume several servings of vegetables each day, but this can be difficult for some people.

Some find it inconvenient to eat vegetables, while others are simply unsure how to prepare them in an appetizing way.

This article will cover 17 unique ways you can incorporate vegetables into your diet, so that you never get sick of eating them.

1. Make Veggie-Based Soups

Homemade Tomato Soup

Soups are an excellent way to consume multiple servings of vegetables at once.

You can make veggies the “base” by pureeing them and adding spices, such as in this tomato soup recipe.

Furthermore, it’s simple to cook veggies into broth- or cream-based soups.

Adding even a small amount of extra veggies, such as broccoli, to soups is a great way to increase your intake of fiber, vitamins and minerals.

For example, this recipe for broccoli veggie soup contains 1/2 cup (78 grams) of broccoli per serving, which provides a significant amount of vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin A and folate .

Here are a few other veggie-based soup recipes for you to try:

2. Try Zucchini Lasagna

Another creative way to eat more veggies is by making zucchini lasagna.

Traditional lasagna is a pasta-based dish made by layering lasagna noodles with sauce, cheese and meat. It’s tasty, but it’s also typically very high in carbs.

A great way to prepare this delicious dish so that it has a lower carb content and more nutrients is to replace the lasagna noodles with strips of zucchini.

Zucchini is a rich source of B vitamins and vitamin C, in addition to trace minerals and fiber .

This recipe for zucchini lasagna is fairly simple to make by combining zucchini with ground beef, cheese and a variety of other veggies.

3. Experiment With Veggie Noodles

Veggie noodles are easy to make, and a great way to get more veggies in your diet. They’re also an excellent low-carb substitute for high-carb foods, such as pasta.

They are made by inserting vegetables into a spiralizer, which processes them into noodle-like shapes.

You can use a spiralizer for almost any type of vegetable. They are commonly used for zucchini, carrots and sweet potatoes.

Once the “noodles” are made, they can be consumed just like pasta and combined with sauces, other vegetables or meat.

Here are some veggie noodle recipes for you to try:

4. Add Veggies to Sauces

Basil Pesto and Spaghetti

Adding extra vegetables to your sauces is a sneaky, unique way to increase your veggie intake.

While you are cooking sauce, such as marinara sauce, simply add some veggies of your choice to the mix, such as chopped onions, carrots, spinach or bell peppers.

You can also puree certain veggies with seasonings and make them into a sauce on their own.

Here are some examples of sauce recipes that incorporate extra veggies:

5. Make a Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Cauliflower is extremely versatile, and there are many unique ways to include it in your diet.

One strategy is to replace regular, flour-based pizza crust with a cauliflower crust, such as this one, which is made by combining cauliflower with eggs, almond flour and some seasonings.

You can then add your own toppings, such as fresh veggies, tomato sauce and cheese.

Substituting cauliflower crust for flour-based crusts is an excellent way to enjoy the delicious taste of pizza, while reducing your intake of carbs and calories.

A cup (100 grams) of cauliflower contains only 5 grams of carbs and 25 calories, in addition to lots of fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, which flour-based crusts lack .

6. Blend With Smoothies

Smoothies make for a refreshing breakfast or snack.

Typically, they are made by combining fruit with ice, milk or water in a blender. However, you can also add veggies to smoothies without compromising the flavor.

Fresh, leafy greens are common smoothie additions, such as in this recipe, which combines kale with mango, peaches, ginger and some other flavorings.

Adding spinach and kale to smoothies is an easy way to get more nutrients.

Just 1 cup (30 grams) of spinach contains 181% of your daily needs for vitamin K and 56% for vitamin A. The same serving of kale provides 206% of your daily needs for vitamin A, 134% for vitamin C and 684% for vitamin K .

In addition, frozen zucchini, pumpkin, beets and sweet potatoes work well with smoothies, which you can try with the following recipes:

7. Add Veggies to Casseroles

Including extra veggies in casseroles is a unique way to increase your veggie intake.

Casseroles are a dish that combines pieces of meat with chopped vegetables, cheese, potatoes and a grain, such as rice or pasta. As you might expect, traditional casseroles are typically very high in refined carbs and calories.

Luckily, you can reduce calories and carbs in your casseroles by replacing the grains with veggies, such as broccoli, mushrooms, celery or carrots.

This casserole recipe incorporates eggs, coconut milk and spices with broccoli, onions and mushrooms.

These veggies contain a combination of several important nutrients, including vitamin C, vitamin K, B vitamins, trace minerals and antioxidants .

8. Cook a Veggie Omelet

Tomato and Asparagus Omelet

Omelets are a great dish to include in your diet if you want to eat more veggies.

They are made by frying beaten eggs with a small amount of butter or oil in a pan, and then folding them around a filling that often includes cheese, meat, vegetables or a combination of the three.

Any type of veggie tastes great in omelets. Spinach, onions and tomatoes are common additions.

You can also add chopped bell peppers to omelets, such as in this recipe, which is a great way to enhance your intake of vitamin C and vitamin A .

9. Prepare Savory Oatmeal

Savory oatmeal is a great dish that will incorporate more veggies into your diet.

Oatmeal is typically consumed as a sweet breakfast food, often combined with fresh fruit, raisins or cinnamon.

However, you can also enjoy it as a savory meal by adding eggs, spices and lots of veggies.

This recipe for savory oatmeal includes onions, mushrooms, collard greens and tomatoes, all of which provide a healthy combination of nutrients, including vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin A and potassium .

Here are a couple other savory oatmeal recipes for you to try:

10. Try a Lettuce Wrap or Veggie Bun

Using lettuce as a wrap or certain veggies as buns in place of tortillas and bread is an easy way to eat more veggies.

Lettuce wraps can be a part of several types of dishes, and are often used to make low-carb sandwiches and bunless burgers.

Additionally, many types of veggies, such as portobello mushroom caps, sliced sweet potatoes and sliced eggplant make excellent buns.

Lettuce wraps and veggie buns are an easy way to reduce your calorie intake, as one lettuce leaf contains only one calorie. Refined bread is much higher in calories .

Furthermore, replacing flour-based products with veggies is a great way to reduce your carb intake, while consuming lots of nutrients.

The following recipes are a great place to start with lettuce wraps and veggie buns:

11. Grill Veggie Kebabs

Veggie kebabs are a great dish to try if you want to increase your veggie intake.

To make them, place chopped vegetables of your choice on a skewer and cook on a grill or barbecue.

Bell peppers, onions and tomatoes work well for kebabs. You can also use mushrooms and zucchini, such as in this recipe.

12. Enjoy a Veggie Burger

Beetroot Veggie Burger

Veggie burgers are a delicious and unique way to increase your veggie intake.

A burger is a sandwich consisting of a ground meat patty, typically made of beef, that is then placed inside of a bun with various toppings.

Burger patties can also be made by combining vegetables with eggs, nuts or nut flours and seasonings. Sweet potatoes, which are an excellent source of vitamin A and antioxidants, are also commonly used to make veggie burgers .

The following recipes combine sweet potatoes with almond flour, egg and a variety of spices and chopped veggies, such as mushrooms and cauliflower:

You can take these recipes a step further by wrapping your veggie burger in a lettuce wrap, instead of a bun.

13. Add Veggies to Tuna Salad

Adding veggies to tuna salad is a great way to incorporate more vegetables into your diet.

In general, tuna salad is made by blending tuna with mayonnaise, but any type of chopped vegetable can be added to increase the flavor and nutrient content.

Onions, carrots, cucumber and spinach are common additions, such as in this recipe.

14. Make Stuffed Bell Peppers

Stuffed bell peppers are an excellent dish to include in your diet if you want to increase your veggie intake.

They are made by stuffing halved bell peppers with cooked meat, beans, rice and seasonings, and then baking them in the oven.

Bell peppers are a rich source of many vitamins and minerals, especially vitamin A and C .

You can increase the nutrition content of stuffed bell peppers by including lots of extra veggies. Onions, spinach or cauliflower work well, such as in this recipe.

15. Add Veggies to Guacamole

It is fairly easy to add veggies to guacamole, and makes for a unique way to increase your veggie intake.

Guacamole is an avocado-based dip made by mashing ripe avocados and sea salt together with lemon or lime juice, garlic and additional seasonings.

A variety of vegetables taste great when incorporated into guacamole. Bell peppers, tomatoes and onions are good options.

This recipe for veggie guacamole includes onion, carrots, zucchini and yellow squash, which provide a combination of fiber, vitamins and minerals, including B vitamins, vitamin C and manganese .

You can also make guacamole with roasted vegetables, such as in this recipe.

16. Blend Veggies With Meatloaf

Meatloaf With Vegetables

Another way to increase your veggie intake is by blending them with meatloaf.

Meatloaf is a dish made with a combination of ground meat and other ingredients, such as eggs, breadcrumbs and tomato sauce. It is then molded into the shape of a loaf, which is where it gets its name.

You can add just about any type of chopped vegetable to meatloaf, including onions, bell peppers, carrots and zucchini, such as in this recipe.

Additionally, you can make “meatloaf” that is completely veggie-based, like this one, which includes chickpeas, carrots, onions and celery.

17. Make Cauliflower Rice

A unique way to increase your veggie intake is by eating cauliflower rice.

It is made by pulsing cauliflower florets in a food processor into small granules. You can then use it raw or cooked as a substitute for regular rice.

Cauliflower rice is significantly lower in carbs than regular rice, with only 5 grams of carbs per cup, compared to 45 grams in a cup (158 grams) of rice .

Additionally, cauliflower is significantly higher in nutrients than rice. It is particularly high in vitamin C, vitamin K, folate and potassium .

This recipe for cauliflower rice contains step-by-step directions on how to make it, in addition to some ideas for extra ingredients you can add to enhance its flavor.

The Bottom Line

There are many unique ways you can include more vegetables in your diet.

Make “rice” and “buns” with vegetables, or incorporate them into common dishes, such as casseroles and soups.

By making veggies a regular part of your eating habits, you’ll significantly increase your intake of fiber, nutrients and antioxidants.

Eating enough vegetables is also associated with a reduced risk of heart disease and cancer, and may be beneficial for weight control .

At the end of the day, you can’t go wrong eating more veggies.

9 Signs That You’re Not Eating Enough by Debu Nayak,’Odisha Calling’.

Achieving and maintaining a healthy weight can be challenging, especially in a modern society where food is constantly available.

However, not eating enough calories can also be a concern, whether it’s due to intentional food restriction, decreased appetite or other reasons.

In fact, under-eating on a regular basis can lead to a number of mental, physical and emotional health issues. Here are 9 signs that you’re not eating enough.

1. Low Energy Levels

Calories are units of energy your body uses to function.

When you don’t eat enough calories, you’re likely to feel tired most of the time.

The number of calories needed for these basic functions within a 24-hour period is referred to as your resting metabolic rate.

Most people have a resting metabolic rate higher than 1,000 calories per day. Adding physical activity can increase your daily needs by another 1,000 calories or more.

Although hormones also play a role in energy balance, generally if you take in more calories than needed, you will store most of the excess as fat. If you take in fewer calories than needed, you will lose weight.

Restricting intake to fewer than 1,000 calories daily can slow down your metabolic rate and lead to fatigue since you’re not taking in enough calories to support even the basic functions that keep you alive.

Eating too little has particularly been linked to low energy levels in older people, whose food intake may decrease due to reduced appetite .

Other studies in female athletes have found that fatigue may occur when calorie intake is too low to support a high level of physical activity. This seems to be most common in sports that emphasize thinness, like gymnastics and figure skating (2, 3).

Yet even light physical activity like walking or taking the stairs may cause you to tire easily if your calorie intake is well below your needs.

Summary: Eating too few calories can lead to fatigue due to insufficient energy to exercise or perform movement beyond basic functions.

2. Hair Loss

Losing hair can be very distressing.

It’s normal to lose several strands of hair daily. However, if you’re noticing an increased amount of hair accumulating in your hairbrush or shower drain, it may be a sign that you’re not eating enough.

Many nutrients are needed to maintain normal, healthy hair growth.

Inadequate intake of calories, protein, biotin, iron and other vitamins and minerals is a common cause of hair loss .

Basically, when you don’t take in enough calories and key nutrients, your body will prioritize the health of your heart, brain and other organs over hair growth.

Summary: Hair loss may occur as a result of inadequate intake of calories, protein and certain vitamins and minerals.

3. Constant Hunger

Hands Holding a Fork and a Knife

Being hungry all the time is one of the more obvious signs that you’re not eating enough food.

Studies confirm that appetite and food cravings increase in response to drastic calorie restriction due to changes in levels of hormones that control hunger and fullness .

One three-month study followed mice who were fed a diet containing 40% fewer calories than usual.

It found that their levels of appetite-suppressing hormones leptin and IGF-1 decreased and hunger signals increased significantly.

In humans, calorie restriction may cause hunger and food cravings in both normal-weight and overweight individuals.

In a study of 58 adults, consuming a 40%-calorie-restricted diet increased hunger levels by about 18% .

What’s more, low calorie intake has been shown to increase production of cortisol, a stress hormone that has been linked to hunger and increased belly fat.

Essentially, if your calorie intake drops too much, your body will send signals that drive you to eat in order to avoid potential starvation.

Summary: Undereating can cause hormonal shifts that increase hunger in order to compensate for inadequate calorie and nutrient intake.

4. Inability to Get Pregnant

Undereating may interfere with a woman’s ability to become pregnant.

The hypothalamus and pituitary gland located in your brain work together to maintain hormonal balance, including reproductive health.

The hypothalamus receives signals from your body that let it know when hormone levels need to be adjusted.

Based on the signals it receives, the hypothalamus produces hormones that either stimulate or inhibit production of estrogen, progesterone and other hormones by your pituitary gland.

Research has shown that this complex system is highly sensitive to changes in calorie intake and weight .

When your calorie intake or body fat percentage drops too low, signals may become impaired, leading to changes in the amount of hormones released.

Without the proper balance of reproductive hormones, pregnancy cannot take place. The first sign of this is hypothalamic amenorrhea, or having no menstrual period for three months or longer .

In an older study, when 36 underweight women with amenorrhea or infertility related to calorie restriction increased their calorie intake and achieved ideal body weight, 90% began menstruating and 73% became pregnant .

If you are trying to conceive, make sure to consume a well-balanced, adequate-calorie diet in order to ensure proper hormonal function and a healthy pregnancy.

Summary: Consuming too few calories can disrupt reproductive hormone signals, leading to difficulty getting pregnant.

5. Sleep Issues

Silver Alarm Clock

Sleep deprivation has been found to lead to insulin resistance and weight gain in dozens of studies .

In addition, while overeating may cause sleeping difficulty, it appears that strict dieting can lead to sleep problems as well.

Animal and human research has shown that starvation-level calorie restriction leads to sleep interruptions and a reduction in slow-wave sleep, also known as deep sleep .

In one study of 381 college students, restrictive diets and other eating problems were linked to poor sleep quality and low mood .

In another small study of 10 young women, four weeks of dieting led to greater difficulty falling asleep and a decrease in the amount of time spent in deep sleep .

Feeling as though you are too hungry to fall asleep or waking up hungry are major signs that you’re not getting enough to eat.

Summary: Undereating has been linked to poor quality sleep, including taking longer to fall asleep and spending less time in deep sleep.

6. Irritability

If little things have begun to set you off, it could be related to not eating enough.

Indeed, irritability was one of several issues experienced by young men who underwent calorie restriction as part of the Minnesota Starvation Experiment during World War II .

These men developed moodiness and other symptoms while consuming an average of 1,800 calories per day, which was classified as “semi-starvation” for their own calorie needs. Your own needs may be lower, of course.

A more recent study of 413 college and high school students also found that irritability was associated with dieting and restrictive eating patterns .

To keep your mood on an even keel, don’t let your calories drop too low.

Summary: Prolonged low calorie intake and restrictive eating patterns have been linked to irritability and moodiness.

7. Feeling Cold All the Time

Woman Warming Hands on Cup of Tea

If you constantly feel cold, not eating enough food could be the cause.

Your body needs to burn a certain number of calories in order to create heat and maintain a healthy, comfortable body temperature.

In fact, even mild calorie restriction has been shown to lower core body temperature.

In a six-year controlled study of 72 middle-aged adults, those who consumed an average of 1,769 calories daily had significantly lower body temperatures than the groups who consumed 2,300–2,900 calories, regardless of physical activity .

In a separate analysis of the same study, the calorie-restricted group experienced a decrease in T3 thyroid hormone levels, whereas the other groups did not. T3 is a hormone that helps maintain body temperature, among other functions .

In another study of 15 obese women, T3 levels decreased by as much as 66% during an eight-week period in which the women consumed only 400 calories per day .

Overall, the more severely you slash calories, the colder you’re likely to feel.

Summary: Consuming too few calories can lead to a decrease in body temperature, which may be due in part to lower levels of T3 thyroid hormone.

8. Constipation

Toilet Paper

Infrequent bowel movements may be related to inadequate calorie intake.

This isn’t surprising, since consuming very little food will result in less waste in your digestive tract.

Constipation is typically described as having three or fewer bowel movements per week or having small, hard stools that are difficult to pass. This is very common in older people and can be worsened by poor diet.

One small study of 18 older adults found that constipation occurred most often in those who didn’t consume enough calories. This was true even if they got plenty of fiber, often considered the most important factor for proper bowel function .

Dieting and eating too little food may also cause constipation in younger people due to a slowed metabolic rate.

In a study of 301 college-aged women, the strictest dieters were most likely to have constipation and other digestive problems .

If you’re having problems with regularity, it’s important to take a look at the amount of food that you’re eating and evaluate whether you’re getting enough.

Summary: Strict dieting and under-eating can lead to constipation, partly due to less waste product to form stool and slower movement of food through the digestive tract.

9. Anxiety

Although dieting itself may lead to moodiness, outright anxiety can occur in response to very low calorie intake.

In a large study of more than 2,500 Australian teens, 62% of those who were classified as “extreme dieters” reported high levels of depression and anxiety .

Anxiety has also been observed in overweight people who eat very low-calorie diets.

In a controlled study of 67 obese people who ate either 400 or 800 calories per day for one to three months, roughly 20% of people in both groups reported increased anxiety .

To minimize anxiety while trying to lose weight, make sure you’re consuming enough calories and eating a healthy diet that includes plenty of fatty fish to ensure you’re getting omega-3 fatty acids, which may help reduce anxiety .

Summary: Very low calorie intake may lead to moodiness, anxiety and depression in teens and adults.

The Bottom Line

Although overeating increases the risk of developing health problems, under-eating can also be problematic.

This is especially true with severe or chronic calorie restriction. Instead, to lose weight sustainably, make sure to eat at least 1,200 calories per day.

Additionally, be on the lookout for these 9 signs that you may need more food than you’re currently taking in.

9 Impressive Health Benefits of Beets

Beetroot, commonly known as beets, are a popular root vegetable used in many cuisines around the world.

Beets are packed with essential vitamins, minerals and plant compounds, some of which have medicinal properties.

What’s more, they are delicious and easy to add to your diet.

This article lists 9 health benefits of beets, all supported by science.

1. Many Nutrients in Few Calories

Beets boast an impressive nutritional profile.They are low in calories yet high in valuable vitamins and minerals. In fact, they contain a bit of almost all the vitamins and minerals that you need .

Here is an overview of the nutrients found in a 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving of cooked beetroot :

  • Calories: 44
  • Protein: 1.7 grams
  • Fat: 0.2 grams
  • Fiber: 2 grams
  • Vitamin C: 6% of the RDI
  • Folate: 20% of the RDI
  • Vitamin B6: 3% of the RDI
  • Magnesium: 6% of the RDI
  • Potassium: 9% of the RDI
  • Phosphorous: 4% of the RDI
  • Manganese: 16% of the RDI
  • Iron: 4% of the RDI

Beets also contain inorganic nitrates and pigments, both of which are plant compounds that have a number of health benefits.

Summary: Beets are loaded with vitamins and minerals and low in calories and fat. They also contain inorganic nitrates and pigments, both of which have a number of health benefits.

2. Help Keep Blood Pressure in Check

Heart and Blood Pressure Measurement

Heart disease, including heart attacks, heart failure and stroke, is one of the leading causes of death worldwide.

And high blood pressure is one of the leading risk factors for the development of these conditions.

Studies have shown that beets can significantly lower blood pressure by up to 4–10 mmHg over a period of only a few hours .

The effect appears to be greater for systolic blood pressure, or pressure when your heart contracts, rather than diastolic blood pressure, or pressure when your heart is relaxed. The effect may also be stronger for raw beets than cooked beets .

These blood pressure-lowering effects are likely due to the high concentration of nitrates in beets. In your body, dietary nitrates are converted into nitric oxide, a molecule that dilates blood vessels, causing blood pressure to drop.

Blood nitrate levels remain elevated for about six hours after eating dietary nitrate. Therefore, beets only have a temporary effect on blood pressure, and regular consumption is required to experience long-term reductions in blood pressure .

Summary: Beets contain a high concentration of nitrates, which have a blood pressure-lowering effect. This may lead to a reduced risk of heart attacks, heart failure and stroke.

3. Can Improve Athletic Performance

Several studies suggest that dietary nitrates may enhance athletic performance.

For this reason, beets are often used by athletes.

Nitrates appear to affect physical performance by improving the efficiency of mitochondria, which are responsible for producing energy in your cells .

In two studies including seven and eight men, consuming 17 ounces (500 ml) of beet juice daily for six days extended time to exhaustion during high-intensity exercise by 15–25%, which is a 1–2% improvement in overall performance .

Eating beets may also improve cycling and athletic performance and increase oxygen use by up to 20% .

One small study of nine competitive cyclists looked at the effect of 17 ounces (500 ml) of beetroot juice on cycling time trial performance over 2.5 and 10 miles (4 and 16.1 km).

Drinking beetroot juice improved performance by 2.8% over the 2.5-mile (4-km) time trial and 2.7% over the 10-mile (16.1-km) trial .

It’s important to note that blood nitrate levels peak within 2–3 hours. Therefore, to maximize their potential, it’s best to consume beets 2–3 hours before training or competing .

Summary: Eating beets may enhance athletic performance by improving oxygen use and time to exhaustion. To maximize their effects, beets should be consumed 2–3 hours prior to training or competing.

4. May Help Fight Inflammation

Beetroots Cubes

Chronic inflammation is often associated with a number of diseases, such as obesity, heart disease, liver disease and cancer .

Beets contain pigments called betalains, which may potentially possess a number of anti-inflammatory properties .

However, most of the research in this area has been conducted in rats.

Beetroot juice and beetroot extract have been shown to reduce kidney inflammation in rats injected with toxic chemicals known to induce serious injury .

One study in humans with osteoarthritis showed that betalain capsules made with beetroot extract reduced pain and discomfort associated with the condition .

While these studies suggest that beets have an anti-inflammatory effect, human studies are needed to determine whether beets could be used to reduce inflammation.

Summary: Beets may have a number of anti-inflammatory effects. However, further research in humans is required to confirm this theory.

5. May Improve Digestive Health

Dietary fiber is an important component of a healthy diet.

It has been linked to many health benefits, including improved digestion.

One cup of beetroot contains 3.4 grams of fiber, making beets a fairly good fiber source .

Fiber bypasses digestion in the stomach and heads to the gut where it either feeds the friendly gut bacteria or adds bulk to stool.

This can promote digestive health, keep you regular and prevent digestive conditions like constipation, inflammatory bowel disease and diverticulitis .

Moreover, fiber has been linked to a reduced risk of chronic diseases including colon cancer, heart disease and type 2 diabetes .

Summary: Beets are a good source of fiber, which is beneficial for digestive health, as well as reducing the risk of a number of chronic health conditions.

6. May Help Support Brain Health

Human Brain on White Background

Mental and cognitive function naturally decline with age.

For some, this decline is significant and may result in conditions like dementia.

A reduction in blood flow and oxygen supply to the brain may contribute to this decline .

Interestingly, the nitrates in beets may improve mental and cognitive function by promoting the dilation of blood vessels and thus increasing blood flow to the brain .

Beets have been shown to particularly improve blood flow to the frontal lobe of the brain, an area associated with higher-level thinking, such as decision making and working memory .

Furthermore, one study in type 2 diabetics looked at the effect of beets on simple reaction time, which is a measure of cognitive function.

Simple reaction time during a computer-based cognitive function test was 4% faster in those who consumed 8.5 ounces (250 ml) of beetroot juice daily for two weeks, compared to the placebo .

However, whether beets could be used in a clinical setting to improve brain function and reduce the risk of dementia remains to be seen.

Summary: Beets contain nitrates, which may help increase blood flow to the brain, improve cognitive function and possibly reduce the risk of dementia. However, more research in this area is needed.

7. May Have Some Anti-Cancer Properties

Cancer is a serious and potentially fatal disease characterized by the uncontrolled growth of cells.

The antioxidant content and anti-inflammatory nature of beets have led to an interest in its ability to prevent cancer.

However, the current evidence is fairly limited.

Beetroot extract has been shown to reduce the division and growth of tumor cells in animals .

One test-tube study using human cells found that beetroot extract, which is high in betalain pigments, reduced the growth of prostate and breast cancer cells .

It is important to note that these studies were performed in isolated human cells and rats. Further research is necessary to determine whether similar effects would be found in living, breathing humans.

Summary: Studies in isolated human cells and rats have shown that the pigments in beets may help reduce the growth of cancer cells.

8. May Help You Lose Weight

Weight Scale

Beets have several nutritional properties that should help you lose weight.

First, beets are low in calories and high in water .

Increasing your intake of low-calorie foods like fruits and vegetables has been associated with weight loss .

Furthermore, despite their low calorie content, beets contain moderate amounts of protein and fiber. These are both important nutrients for achieving and maintaining a healthy weight .

The fiber in beets may also help promote weight loss by reducing appetite and promoting feelings of fullness, thereby reducing overall calorie intake .

While no studies have directly tested the effects of beets on weight, considering its nutrition profile, it’s likely that adding beets to your diet can aid in weight loss.

Summary: Beets have a high water and low calorie content. Both of these properties are beneficial for weight loss.

9. Delicious and Easy to Include in Your Diet

Bottle Of Beet Juice

This last one is not a health benefit, yet it is still important.

Not only are beets nutritious, but they are also incredibly delicious and easy to incorporate into your diet.

Beets can be juiced, roasted, steamed or pickled. Also, they can be bought precooked and canned for convenience.

Choose beets that are heavy for their size with fresh, unwilted green leafy tops still attached.

Dietary nitrates are water soluble, so it is best to avoid boiling beets to maximize their nitrate content.

Here are some delicious and interesting ways to add more beets to your diet:

  • Beetroot salad: Grated beets make a flavorful and colorful addition to coleslaw, or try this recipe for a delicious roasted beetroot and goat cheese salad.
  • Beetroot dip: Beets blended with Greek yogurt make a delicious and healthy dip like in this recipe.
  • Beetroot juice: Fresh beetroot juice is best, as store-bought juice can be high in added sugars and may only contain a small amount of beets. Juicing fresh beets with citrus and ginger, such as in this recipe, makes a tasty juice.
  • Beetroot patties: For a meat-free alternative to burger patties, try this recipe for beetroot and bean patties that are healthy and easy to make.
  • Beetroot leaves: Beet leaves can be cooked and enjoyed like spinach in recipes like this one, so don’t throw them out.

Summary: Beetroot is a delicious and versatile vegetable that is easy to add to your diet. Choose beets that are heavy for their size with green tops still attached.

The Bottom Line

Beets provide some impressive health benefits.

Not to mention, they are low in calories and a great source of nutrients, including fiber, folate and vitamin C.

Beets also contain nitrates and pigments that may help lower blood pressure and improve athletic performance.

Lastly, beets are delicious and versatile, fitting well into a healthy and balanced diet.

20 Foods That Are High in Vitamin E, DebuNayak,OdishaCalling, Bhubaneswar.

Vitamin E is a group of powerful antioxidants that protect your cells from oxidative stress. Adequate vitamin E levels are essential for the body to function normally.

If you don’t get enough, you may become more prone to infections, experience impaired eyesight or suffer from muscle weakness.

Fortunately, vitamin E is widespread in foods. As a result, you are unlikely to become deficient unless your nutrient absorption is impaired.

Nevertheless, everyone should try to eat plenty of whole foods rich in vitamin E.

In the United States, 15 mg of vitamin E per day is considered enough for the vast majority of adults. This daily value (DV) is selected as a reference on nutrition labels in the US and Canada.Below is a list of 20 foods that are high in alpha-tocopherol, which is the most active form of vitamin E .

This article also provides five lists of vitamin-E-rich foods, categorized by food group.

20 Foods High in Vitamin E

Vitamin E is a common nutrient found in most foods. A few foods, including cooking oils, seeds and nuts, are exceptionally rich sources.

1. Wheat Germ Oil — 135% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 20 mg (135% DV)
100 grams: 149 mg (996% DV)

2. Sunflower Seeds — 66% DV per serving

1 ounce: 10 mg (66% DV)
100 grams: 35 mg (234% DV)

3. Almonds — 48% DV per serving

1 ounce: 7.3 mg (48% DV)
100 grams: 26 mg (171% DV)

4. Hazelnut Oil — 43% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 6.4 mg (43% DV)
100 grams: 47 mg (315% DV)

5. Mamey Sapote — 39% DV per serving

Half a fruit: 5.9 mg (39% DV)
100 grams: 2.1 mg (14% DV)

6. Sunflower Oil — 37% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 5.6 mg (37% DV)
100 grams: 41 mg (274% DV)

7. Almond Oil — 36% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 5.3 mg (36% DV)
100 grams: 39 mg (261% DV)

8. Hazelnuts — 28% DV per serving

1 ounce: 4.3 mg (28% DV)
100 grams: 15 mg (100% DV)

9. Abalone — 23% DV per serving

3 ounces: 3.4 mg (23% DV)
100 grams: 4.0 mg (27% DV)

10. Pine Nuts — 18% DV per serving

1 ounce: 2.7 mg (18% DV)
100 grams: 9.3 mg (62% DV)

11. Goose Meat — 16% DV per serving

1 cup: 2.4 mg (16% DV)
100 grams: 1.7 mg (12% DV)

12. Peanuts — 16% DV per serving

1 ounce: 2.4 mg (16% DV)
100 grams: 8.3 mg (56% DV)

13. Atlantic Salmon — 14% DV per serving

Half a fillet: 2.0 mg (14% DV)
100 grams: 1.1 mg (8% DV)

14. Avocado — 14% DV per serving

Half a fruit: 2.1 mg (14% DV)
100 grams: 2.1 mg (14% DV)

15. Rainbow Trout — 13% DV per serving

1 fillet: 2.0 mg (13% DV)
100 grams: 2.8 mg (19% DV)

16. Red Sweet Pepper (raw) — 13% DV per serving

1 medium pepper: 1.9 mg (13% DV)
100 grams: 1.6 mg (11% DV)

17. Brazil Nuts — 11% DV per serving

1 ounce: 1.6 mg (11% DV)
100 grams: 5.7 mg (38% DV)

18. Mango — 10% DV per serving

Half a fruit: 1.5 mg (10% DV)
100 grams: 0.9 mg (6% DV)

19. Turnip Greens (raw) — 10% DV per serving

1 cup: 1.6 mg (10% DV)
100 grams: 2.9 mg (19% DV)

20. Kiwifruit — 7% DV per serving

1 medium fruit: 1.0 mg (7% DV)
100 grams: 1.5 mg (10% DV)

10 Seeds and Nuts High in Vitamin E

Seeds and nuts are among the best sources of vitamin E.

Below are some of the richest sources of alpha-tocopherol. Many of these seeds and nuts are also high in other forms of vitamin E, such as gamma-tocopherol.

1. Sunflower Seeds — 66% DV per serving

1 ounce: 10 mg (66% DV)
100 grams: 35 mg (234% DV)

2. Almonds — 48% DV per serving

1 ounce: 7.3 mg (48% DV)
100 grams: 26 mg (171% DV)

3. Hazelnuts — 28% DV per serving

1 ounce: 4.3 mg (28% DV)
100 grams: 15 mg (100% DV)

4. Pine Nuts — 18% DV per serving

1 ounce: 2.7 mg (18% DV)
100 grams: 9.3 mg (62% DV)

5. Peanuts — 16% DV per serving

1 ounce: 2.4 mg (16% DV)
100 grams: 8.3 mg (56% DV)

6. Brazil Nuts — 11% DV per serving

1 ounce: 1.6 mg (11% DV)
100 grams: 5.7 mg (38% DV)

7. Pistachios — 5% DV per serving

1 ounce: 0.8 mg (5% DV)
100 grams: 2.9 mg (19% DV)

8. Pumpkin Seeds — 4% DV per serving

1 ounce: 0.6 mg (4% DV)
100 grams: 2.2 mg (15% DV)

9. Pecans — 3% DV per serving

1 ounce: 0.4 mg (3% DV)
100 grams: 1.4 mg (9% DV)

10. Cashew Nuts — 2% DV per serving

1 ounce: 0.3 mg (2% DV)
100 grams: 0.9 mg (6% DV)

10 Fruits High in Vitamin E

While fruits are generally not the best sources of vitamin E, many provide good amounts. Fruits are also rich in vitamin C, which cooperates with vitamin E as an antioxidant .

1. Mamey Sapote — 39% DV per serving

Half a fruit: 5.9 mg (39% DV)
100 grams: 2.1 mg (14% DV)

2. Avocado — 14% DV per serving

Half a fruit: 2.1 mg (14% DV)
100 grams: 2.1 mg (14% DV)

3. Mango — 10% DV per serving

Half a fruit: 1.5 mg (10% DV)
100 grams: 0.9 mg (6% DV)

4. Kiwifruit — 7% DV per serving

1 medium fruit: 1.0 mg (7% DV)
100 grams: 1.5 mg (10% DV)

5. Blackberries — 6% DV per serving

Half a cup: 0.8 mg (6% DV)
100 grams: 1.2 mg (8% DV)

6. Black Currants — 4% DV per serving

Half a cup: 0.6 mg (4% DV)
100 grams: 1.0 mg (7% DV)

7. Cranberries (dried) — 4% DV per serving

1 ounce: 0.6 mg (4% DV)
100 grams: 2.1 mg (14% DV)

8. Olives (pickled) — 3% DV per serving

5 pieces: 0.5 mg (3% DV)
100 grams: 3.8 mg (25% DV)

9. Apricots — 2% DV per serving

1 medium fruit: 0.3 mg (2% DV)
100 grams: 0.9 mg (6% DV)

10. Raspberries — 1% DV per serving

10 pieces: 0.2 mg (1% DV)
100 grams: 0.9 mg (6% DV)

10 Vegetables High in Vitamin E

Like fruits, many vegetables are decent sources of vitamin E, but do not provide nearly as much as nuts and seeds.

1. Red Sweet Pepper (raw) — 13% DV per serving

1 medium pepper: 1.9 mg (13% DV)
100 grams: 1.6 mg (11% DV)

2. Turnip Greens (raw) — 10% DV per serving

1 cup: 1.6 mg (10% DV)
100 grams: 2.9 mg (19% DV)

3. Beet Greens (cooked) — 9% DV per serving

Half a cup: 1.3 mg (9% DV)
100 grams: 1.8 mg (12% DV)

4. Butternut Squash (cooked) — 9% DV per serving

Half a cup: 1.3 mg (9% DV)
100 grams: 1.3 mg (9% DV)

5. Broccoli (cooked) — 8% DV per serving

Half a cup: 1.1 mg (8% DV)
100 grams: 1.5 mg (10% DV)

6. Mustard Greens (cooked) — 8% DV per serving

Half a cup: 1.3 mg (8% DV)
100 grams: 1.8 mg (12% DV)

7. Asparagus (cooked) — 6% DV per serving

4 spears: 0.9 mg (6% DV)
100 grams: 1.5 mg (10% DV)

8. Swiss Chard (raw) — 6% DV per serving

1 leaf: 0.9 mg (6% DV)
100 grams: 1.9 mg (13% DV)

9. Collards (raw) — 5% DV per serving

1 cup: 0.8 mg (5% DV)
100 grams: 2.3 mg (15% DV)

10. Spinach (raw) — 4% DV per serving

1 cup: 0.6 mg (4% DV)
100 grams: 2.0 mg (14% DV)

10 Cooking Oils High in Vitamin E

The richest sources of vitamin E are cooking oils, especially wheat germ oil. Just one tablespoon of wheat germ oil may provide around 135% of the DV.

1. Wheat Germ Oil — 135% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 20 mg (135% DV)
100 grams: 149 mg (996% DV)

2. Hazelnut Oil — 43% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 6.4 mg (43% DV)
100 grams: 47 mg (315% DV)

3. Sunflower Oil — 37% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 5.6 mg (37% DV)
100 grams: 41 mg (274% DV)

4. Almond Oil — 36% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 5.3 mg (36% DV)
100 grams: 39 mg (261% DV)

5. Cottonseed Oil — 32% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 4.8 mg (32% DV)
100 grams: 35 mg (235% DV)

6. Safflower Oil — 31% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 4.6 mg (31% DV)
100 grams: 34 mg (227% DV)

7. Rice Bran Oil — 29% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 4.4 mg (29% DV)
100 grams: 32 mg (215% DV)

8. Grapeseed Oil — 26% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 3.9 mg (26% DV)
100 grams: 29 mg (192% DV)

9. Canola Oil — 16% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 2.4 mg (16% DV)
100 grams: 18 mg (116% DV)

10. Palm Oil — 14% DV per serving

1 tablespoon: 2.2 mg (14% DV)
100 grams: 16 mg (106% DV)

How Can You Get Enough Vitamin E?

Vitamin E is found in nearly all foods to some extent. For this reason, most people are not at risk of deficiency.

Yet, disorders that affect the absorption of fat, such as cystic fibrosis or liver disease, may lead to deficiency over time, especially if your diet is low in vitamin E .

Increasing your vitamin E intake is easy, even without supplements. For instance, an excellent strategy would be to add some sunflower seeds or almonds to your diet.

You can also increase the absorption of vitamin E from low-fat foods by eating them with fat. Adding a tablespoon of oil to your salad could make a significant difference.

12 Natural Ways to Balance Your Hormones By Debu Nayak,OdishaCalling.

Hormones have profound effects on your mental, physical and emotional health.These chemical messengers play a major role in controlling your appetite, weight and mood, among other things.

Normally, your endocrine glands produce the precise amount of each hormone needed for various processes in your body.However, hormonal imbalances have become increasingly common with today’s fast-paced modern lifestyle. In addition, certain hormones decline with age, and some people experience a more dramatic decrease than others.

 

Fortunately, a nutritious diet and other healthy lifestyle behaviors may help improve your hormonal health and allow you to feel and perform your best.

This article will show you 12 natural ways to balance your hormones.

1. Eat Enough Protein at Every Meal

Consuming an adequate amount of protein is extremely important.

Dietary protein provides essential amino acids that your body can’t make on its own and must be consumed every day in order to maintain muscle, bone and skin health.

In addition, protein influences the release of hormones that control appetite and food intake.

Research has shown that eating protein decreases levels of the “hunger hormone” ghrelin and stimulates the production of hormones that help you feel full, including PYY and GLP-1.

In one study, men produced 20% more GLP-1 and 14% more PYY after eating a high-protein meal than after eating a meal that contained a normal amount of protein.

What’s more, participants’ hunger ratings decreased by 25% more after the high-protein meal compared to the normal-protein meal .

In another study, women who consumed a diet containing 30% protein experienced an increase in GLP-1 and greater feelings of fullness than when they ate a diet containing 10% protein.

What’s more, they experienced an increase in metabolism and fat burning .

To optimize hormone health, experts recommend consuming a minimum of 20–30 grams of protein per meal .

This is easy to do by including a serving of these high-protein foods at each meal.

Summary: Consuming adequate protein triggers the production of hormones that suppress appetite and help you feel full. Aim for a minimum of 20–30 grams of protein per meal.

2. Engage in Regular Exercise

A Pair of Grey Running Shoes

Physical activity can strongly influence hormonal health. A major benefit of exercise is its ability to reduce insulin levels and increase insulin sensitivity.

Insulin is a hormone that has several functions. One is allowing cells to take up sugar and amino acids from the bloodstream, which are then used for energy and maintaining muscle.

However, a little insulin goes a long way. Too much can be downright dangerous.

High insulin levels have been linked to inflammation, heart disease, diabetes and cancer. What’s more, they are connected to insulin resistance, a condition in which your cells don’t respond properly to insulin’s signals .

Many types of physical activity have been found to increase insulin sensitivity and reduce insulin levels, including aerobic exercise, strength training and endurance exercise .

In a 24-week study of obese women, exercise increased participants’ insulin sensitivity and levels of adiponectin, a hormone that has anti-inflammatory effects and helps regulate metabolism .

Being physically active may also help boost levels of muscle-maintaining hormones that decline with age, such as testosterone, IGF-1, DHEA and growth hormone .

For people who are unable to perform vigorous exercise, even regular walking may increase these hormone levels, potentially improving strength and quality of life .

Although a combination of resistance and aerobic training seems to provide the best results, engaging in any type of physical activity on a regular basis is beneficial.

Summary: Performing strength training, aerobics, walking or other forms of physical activity can modify hormone levels in a way that reduces the risk of disease and protects muscle mass during the aging process.

3. Avoid Sugar and Refined Carbs

Sugar and refined carbs have been linked to a number of health problems.

Indeed, avoiding or minimizing these foods may be instrumental in optimizing hormone function and avoiding obesity, diabetes and other diseases.

Studies have consistently shown that fructose can increase insulin levels and promote insulin resistance, especially in overweight and obese people with prediabetes or diabetes .

Importantly, fructose makes up at least half of all types of sugar. This includes natural forms like honey and maple syrup, in addition to high-fructose corn syrup and refined table sugar.

In one study, people with prediabetes experienced similar increases in insulin levels and insulin resistance whether they consumed 1.8 ounces (50 grams) of honey, sugar or high-fructose corn syrup .

In addition, diets high in refined carbs like white bread and pretzels may promote insulin resistance in a large portion of adults and adolescents .

By contrast, following a low- or moderate-carb diet based on whole foods may reduce insulin levels in overweight and obese people with prediabetes and other insulin-resistant conditions like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) .

Summary: Diets high in sugar and refined carbs have been shown to drive insulin resistance. Avoiding these foods and reducing overall carb intake may decrease insulin levels and increase insulin sensitivity.

4. Learn to Manage Stress

Woman Sitting By Ocean and Meditatiing

Stress can wreak havoc on your hormones. Two major hormones affected by stress are cortisol and adrenaline, which is also called epinephrine.

Cortisol is known as “the stress hormone” because it helps your body cope with stress over the long term.

Adrenaline, also known as epinephrine, is the “fight-or-flight” hormone that provides your body with a surge of energy to respond to immediate danger.

However, unlike hundreds of years ago when these hormones were mainly triggered by threats from predators, today they’re usually triggered by people’s busy, often overwhelming lifestyles.

Unfortunately, chronic stress causes cortisol levels to remain elevated, which can lead to excessive calorie intake and obesity, including increased belly fat .

Elevated adrenaline levels can cause high blood pressure, rapid heart rate and anxiety. However, these symptoms are usually fairly short-lived because, unlike cortisol, adrenaline is less likely to become chronically elevated.

Research has shown that you may be able to lower your cortisol levels by engaging in stress-reducing techniques like meditation, yoga, massage and listening to relaxing music .

A 2005 review of studies found that massage therapy not only reduced cortisol levels by an average of 31%, but also increased levels of the mood-boosting hormone serotonin by 28% and dopamine by 31%, on average .

Try to devote at least 10–15 minutes per day to stress-reducing activities, even if you don’t feel you have the time.

Summary: Engaging in stress-reduction behaviors like meditation, yoga, massage and listening to soothing music can help normalize your levels of the stress hormone cortisol.

5. Consume Healthy Fats

A Jar of Coconut Oil and a Teaspoon

Including high-quality natural fats in your diet may help reduce insulin resistance and appetite.

Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) are unique fats that are taken up directly by the liver for immediate use as energy.

They have been shown to reduce insulin resistance in overweight and obese people, as well as in people with diabetes .

MCTs are found in coconut oil, palm oil and pure MCT oil.

Dairy fats and monounsaturated fat in olive oil and nuts also seem to increase insulin sensitivity, based on studies in healthy adults and those with diabetes, prediabetes, fatty liver and elevated triglycerides .

Additionally, studies have shown that consuming healthy fat at meals triggers the release of hormones that help you feel full and satisfied, including GLP-1, PYY and cholecystokinin (CCK) .

On the other hand, trans fats have been found to promote insulin resistance and increase the storage of belly fat .

To optimize hormone health, consume a healthy fat source at each meal.

Summary: Including healthy natural fats in your diet and avoiding unhealthy trans fats can help reduce insulin resistance and stimulate the production of hormones that help control appetite.

6. Avoid Overeating and Undereating

Plate With a Small Broccoli Floret

Eating too much or too little may result in hormonal shifts that lead to weight problems.

Overeating is shown to increase insulin levels and reduce insulin sensitivity, especially in overweight and obese people who are insulin resistant .

In one study, insulin-resistant obese adults who ate a 1,300-calorie meal experienced nearly twice the increase in insulin as lean people and “metabolically healthy” obese people who consumed an identical meal .

On the other hand, cutting your calorie intake too much can increase levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which is known to promote weight gain when it’s elevated.

One study found that restricting food intake to less than 1,200 calories per day led to increased cortisol levels .

Interestingly, a study from 1996 even suggests that very low-calorie diets could potentially trigger insulin resistance in some people, an effect you might expect to see in people with diabetes .

Eating within your own personal calorie range can help you maintain hormonal balance and a healthy weight.

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Summary: Consuming too many or too few calories can lead to hormonal imbalances. Aim to eat at least 1,200 calories per day for optimal health.

7. Drink Green Tea

Green tea is one of the healthiest beverages around.

In addition to metabolism-boosting caffeine, it contains an antioxidant known as epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which has been credited with several health benefits.

Research suggests that consuming green tea may increase insulin sensitivity and lower insulin levels in both healthy people and those with insulin-resistant conditions like obesity and diabetes .

In one detailed analysis of 17 studies, the highest-quality studies linked green tea to significantly lower fasting insulin levels .

A few controlled studies found that green tea didn’t seem to reduce insulin resistance or insulin levels when compared to a placebo. However, these results may have been due to individual responses .

Since green tea has other health benefits and most studies suggest that it may provide some improvement in insulin response, you may want to consider drinking one to three cups per day.

Summary: Green tea has been linked to increased insulin sensitivity and lower insulin levels for people who are overweight, obese or have diabetes.

8. Eat Fatty Fish Often

Salmon Steak White Background

Fatty fish is by far the best source of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, which have impressive anti-inflammatory properties.

Research suggests they may also have beneficial effects on hormonal health, including reducing levels of the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline.

A small study observed the effect of consuming omega-3 fats on men’s performance on a mental stress test.

The study found that after men consumed a diet rich in omega-3 fats for three weeks, they experienced significantly smaller increases in cortisol and epinephrine during the test than when they followed their regular diet .

In addition, some studies have found that increasing your intake of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids may reduce insulin resistance related to obesity, polycystic ovary syndrome and gestational diabetes .

Gestational diabetes occurs during pregnancy in women who did not have diabetes prior to becoming pregnant. Like type 2 diabetes, it is characterized by insulin resistance and elevated blood sugar levels.

In one study, women with gestational diabetes took 1,000 mg of omega-3 fatty acids daily for six weeks.

The omega-3 group experienced significant reductions in insulin levels, insulin resistance and the inflammatory marker C-reactive protein (CRP) compared to women who received a placebo .

For optimal health, include two or more servings per week of fatty fish like salmon, sardines, herring and mackerel.

Summary: Long-chain omega-3 fatty acids may help lower cortisol and epinephrine, increase insulin sensitivity and decrease insulin levels in obese and insulin-resistant individuals.

9. Get Consistent, High-Quality Sleep

Couple Sleeping

No matter how nutritious your diet is and how much exercise you get, your health will suffer if you don’t get enough restorative sleep.

Poor sleep has been linked to imbalances of many hormones, including insulin, cortisol, leptin, ghrelin and growth hormone .

In one study of men whose sleep was restricted to five hours per night for one week, insulin sensitivity decreased by 20%, on average .

Another study looked at the effects of sleep restriction on healthy young men.

When their sleep was restricted for two days, their leptin declined by 18%, their ghrelin increased by 28% and their hunger increased by 24%. In addition, the men craved high-calorie, high-carb foods .

Moreover, it’s not only the quantity of sleep you get that matters. Quality of sleep is also important.

Your brain needs uninterrupted sleep that allows it to go through all five stages of each sleep cycle. This is especially important for the release of growth hormone, which occurs mainly at night during deep sleep .

To maintain optimal hormonal balance, aim for at least seven hours of high-quality sleep per night.

Summary: Inadequate or poor-quality sleep has been shown to decrease fullness hormones, increase hunger and stress hormones, reduce growth hormone and increase insulin resistance.

10. Stay Away From Sugary Beverages

No Drinks Icon

Sugar in any form is unhealthy. However, liquid sugars appear to be the worst by far.

Studies suggest large amounts of sugar-sweetened beverages may contribute to insulin resistance, especially in overweight and obese adults and children .

In one study, when overweight people consumed 25% of their calories in the form of high-fructose beverages, they experienced higher blood insulin levels, a reduction in insulin sensitivity and increased belly fat storage .

Additionally, research has shown that drinking sugary beverages leads to excessive calorie intake because it doesn’t trigger the same fullness signals that eating solid foods does .

Avoiding sugar-sweetened beverages may be one of the best things you can do to improve your hormone balance.

Summary: High intake of sugary beverages has consistently been linked to higher insulin levels and insulin resistance in overweight and obese adults and children.

11. Consume a High-Fiber Diet

Fiber, especially the soluble type, is an important component of a healthy diet.

Studies have found that it increases insulin sensitivity and stimulates the production of hormones that make you feel full and satisfied .

Although soluble fiber tends to produce the strongest effects on appetite and eating, insoluble fiber may also play a role.

One study in overweight and obese people found that consuming a type of soluble fiber called oligofructose increased PYY levels, and consuming the insoluble fiber cellulose tended to increase GLP-1 levels.

Both types of fiber caused a reduction in appetite .

To protect against insulin resistance and overeating, make sure you eat fiber-rich foods on a daily basis.

Summary: High fiber intake has been linked to improvements in insulin sensitivity and the hormones that control hunger, fullness and food intake.

12. Eat Eggs Anytime

Soft Boiled Egg

Eggs are one of the most nutritious foods on the planet.

They’ve been shown to beneficially affect hormones that regulate food intake, including lowering levels of insulin and ghrelin, and increasing PYY .

In one study, men had lower ghrelin and insulin levels after eating eggs at breakfast than after eating a bagel for breakfast .

What’s more, they felt fuller and ate fewer calories over the next 24 hours after eating the eggs .

Importantly, these positive effects on hormones seem to occur when people eat both the egg yolk and egg white.

For instance, another study found that eating whole eggs as part of a low-carb diet increased insulin sensitivity and improved several heart health markers more than a low-carb diet that included only egg whites (91).

Most studies have looked at the effects of eating eggs at breakfast because that is when people typically consume them. However, these nutrition powerhouses can be eaten at any meal, and hard-boiled eggs make a great portable snack.

Summary: Eggs are extremely nutritious and may help reduce insulin resistance, suppress your appetite and make you feel full.

The Bottom Line

Your hormones are involved in every aspect of your health. You need them in very specific amounts for your body to function optimally.

Hormonal imbalances may increase your risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and other health problems.

Despite the fact that aging and other factors are beyond your control, there are many steps you can take to help your hormones function optimally.

Consuming nutritious foods, exercising on a regular basis and engaging in other healthy behaviors can go a long way toward improving your hormonal health.

How this government employee went on to build a Rs 556cr company

Having started in UP with an outsourced manufacturing unit, Manpasand Beverages is today listed on the Indian stock exchange and has logged revenues of Rs 556 crore.

 As was typical of the middle-class Indian families in the 90s, Varanasi resident Dhirendra Singh was a government employee. While working in Vadodara, however, he was bitten by the entrepreneurial bug. Convinced there would always be demand for businesses related to food and beverages, he ventured into that space.

So in 1997, breaking family tradition and with no mentor or capital reserves, he started Manpasand Beverages. With an initial capital made up of personal savings and financial help from family and friends, Dhirendra started with a mango-based fruit juice—Mango Sip. Given the fruit’s immense popularity, it was the obvious choice.

Dhirender Singh.

Initial days

Mango pulp was easily available and Dhirendra thought packaging and selling it would not be difficult. In the initial days, they focused on staying local and targeted the markets in and around Varanasi only.

Coming up with a formula for the drink was one of the first things to be done, and Dhirendra soon learned he’d have to cough up Rs 10-20 lakh for it. Abhishek, Dhirendra’s son, who joined Manpasand Beverages in 2013 after his engineering and is now director of the company, says,

“We didn’t have that kind of money. So my father asked an acquaintance—a food scientist—to share a recipe needed for the mass production of mango drinks. He tried the recipe and sent it for tasting to friends and relatives. He received positive feedback and decided to go with it.”

Starting with an old plant in Mumbai

To start off, they leased a part of an old plant from Mahananda Dairy in Mumbai, where Mango Sip was made and packed in 200 ml Tetra Paks. To avoid competition with bigger brands and to make inroads, they decided to sell their product in UP first.

“Also, there was an interesting fact that my father observed—products with the ‘Made in Gujarat’ label were very highly regarded in UP. So, our company was registered in Gujarat. After succeeding in UP, Mango Sip saw a steady expansion of distribution across India—we are currently present in over 20 states. We continued to outsource and build up capital,” adds Abhishek.

Targeting small towns worked, and within a few months the product took off. Abhishek says it was a bit easier at the start because bigger players like Frooti and Jumpin had largely ignored Tier-II and III cities.

Having crossed the market entry stage, Abhishek realised that they needed to expand their networks, for which it was imperative to build a strong team of distributors.

Abhishek Singh.

Building networks

He focused on that and strengthened the existing set of networks. So, during his initial years at Manpasand, instead of bringing in management professionals, Abhishek built a strong network of more than 2,00,000 retailers, over 2,000 distributors, and over 200 super stock lists covering 24 states.

Realising that they had to compete with the bigger guys, Abhishek says Manpasand provided their products at a lower price point and in a wider range of packs (PET and Tetra Pak).

“On a daily basis, we host 10 of our distributors with their families at our main plant, and this has definitely paid off in terms of winning their trust and business,” says Abhishek.

Growing their presence

In 2005, they set up their first manufacturing plant in Vadodara and in 2007 set up an additional line to produce Tetra Pak fruit drinks. For Mango Sip, the team sources Totapuri mangoes, as they are 20 percent cheaper than other varieties and these mangoes form the base of all mango drinks that is grown in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

“Similarly, we source fruit pulps from reputed providers for Fruits Up. The pulps typically have a shelf life of two years prior to use,” adds Abhishek.

The entire production process is now completed in-house in their five operational plants. The plants have both PET and Tetra Pak lines. Both Fruits Up and Mango Sip are manufactured in these plants in various sizes such as 100 ml, 200 ml, 500 ml, etc.

Manpasand now has five manufacturing facilities located in various parts of India. There are two units in Vadodara—the second of which commenced production in April 2015— one in Varanasi, and one each in Dehradun and Ambala, set to start production soon.

The company has also announced the setting up of four new plants by 2018. Of the planned four, one facility will be in Andhra Pradesh.

The market and future plans

According to a report by Technopak, within the beverages market, the fruit-based beverages category has seen a CAGR of close to 30 percent in a decade. Currently valued at $200 million, it is set to see a CAGR of 15 percent in the next three years.

The report also notes Dabur to be the market leader with close to 55 percent share of the total packaged juices market, followed by PepsiCo with close to 30 percent of the market share.

In 2011, SAIF Partners picked a 25 percent stake in Manpasand. The team went for an IPO in 2015 and raised capital by allotting 1,000 equity shares and 8,99,000 CCPS to SPIL.

In FY 2016, Manpasand closed net sales of Rs 556 crore. “Today, Mango Sip has a 10 percent market share in the mango drink segment and is the fourth-most preferred mango drink brand in India. In the coming days, we are hopeful that it will increase to 22 percent,” says Abhishek.

Abhishek adds that since their listing in the Indian Stock Exchange in 2015, they have adopted an aggressive expansion strategy where the main focus is penetration in the urban market. He says,

“We have been forming key alliances with various domestic and global companies to further this ambition. The company has tied up with leading food and restaurant chains including Havmor, Barista, Baskin Robbins, METRO Cash & Carry along with 2,000 modern retail-format stores and is in advanced talks for tie-ups with many multinational food chains and retailers. While we continue to increase our significant presence in rural and semi-rural markets, we have also started aggressively tapping into the urban markets where our presence was minimal until recently. With the setting up of new plants, we are looking a doubling our current production capacity.”

The 14 Healthiest Vegetables on Earth

Vegetables are well-known for being good for your health. Most vegetables are low in calories but high in vitamins, minerals and fiber.

However, some vegetables stand out from the rest with additional proven health benefits, such as the ability to fight inflammation or reduce the risk of disease.

This article takes a look at 14 of the healthiest vegetables and why you should include them in your diet.

1. Spinach

Woman Holding a Bunch of Spinach Leaves

This leafy green tops the chart as one of the healthiest vegetables, thanks to its impressive nutrient profile.

One cup (30 grams) of raw spinach provides 56% of your daily vitamin A needs plus your entire daily vitamin K requirement — all for just 7 calories .

Spinach also boasts a great deal of antioxidants, which can help reduce the risk of chronic disease.

One study found that dark green leafy vegetables like spinach are high in beta-carotene and lutein, two types of antioxidants that have been associated with a decreased risk of cancer .

In addition, a 2015 study found that spinach consumption may be beneficial for heart health, as it may lower blood pressure .

Summary: Spinach is rich in antioxidants that may reduce the risk of chronic disease, as it may reduce risk factors such as high blood pressure.

2. Carrots

Three Carrots

Carrots are packed with vitamin A, providing 428% of the daily recommended value in just one cup (128 grams) .

They contain beta-carotene, an antioxidant that gives carrots their vibrant orange color and could help in cancer prevention .

In fact, one study revealed that for each serving of carrots per week, participants’ risk of prostate cancer decreased by 5% .

Another study showed that eating carrots may reduce the risk of lung cancer in smokers as well. Compared to those who ate carrots at least once a week, smokers who did not eat carrots had a three times greater risk of developing lung cancer .

Carrots are also high in vitamin C, vitamin K and potassium .

Summary: Carrots are especially high in beta-carotene, which can turn into vitamin A in the body. Their high antioxidant content may help reduce the risk of lung and prostate cancer.

3. Broccoli

Piece of Broccoli

Broccoli belongs to the cruciferous family of vegetables.

It is rich in a sulfur-containing plant compound known as glucosinolate, as well as sulforaphane, a by-product of glucosinolate .

Sulforaphane is significant in that it has been shown to have a protective effect against cancer.

In one animal study, sulforaphane was able to reduce the size and number of breast cancer cells while also blocking tumor growth in mice .

Eating broccoli may help prevent other types of chronic disease, too.

A 2010 animal study found that consuming broccoli sprouts could protect the heart from disease-causing oxidative stress by lowering levels up to 116% .

In addition to its ability to prevent disease, broccoli is also loaded with nutrients.

A cup (91 grams) of raw broccoli provides 116% of your daily vitamin K needs, 135% of the daily vitamin C requirement and a good amount of folate, manganese and potassium .

Summary: Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable that contains sulforaphane, a compound that may prevent cancer growth. Eating broccoli may also help reduce the risk of chronic disease by protecting against oxidative stress.

4. Garlic

Whole Garlic Cloves

Garlic has a long history of use as a medicinal plant, with roots tracing all the way back to ancient China and Egypt .

The main component of garlic is allicin, a plant compound that is largely responsible for garlic’s variety of health benefits .

Several studies have shown that garlic can regulate blood sugar as well as promote heart health.

In one animal study, diabetic rats were given either garlic oil or diallyl trisulfide, a component of garlic. Both garlic compounds caused a decrease in blood sugar and improved insulin sensitivity .

Another study fed garlic to participants both with and without heart disease. Results showed that garlic was able to decrease total blood cholesterol, triglycerides and LDL cholesterol while increasing HDL cholesterol in both groups .

Garlic may be useful in the prevention of cancer as well. One test-tube study demonstrated that allicin induced cell death in human liver cancer cells .

However, further research is needed to better understand the potential anti-cancer effects of garlic.

Summary: Studies show that garlic may help lower blood triglyceride levels. Some studies have also found that it could decrease blood sugar levels and may have an anti-cancer effect, although more research is needed.

5. Brussels Sprouts

Pile of Brussel Sprouts

Like broccoli, Brussels sprouts are a member of the cruciferous family of vegetables and contain the same health-promoting plant compounds.

Brussels sprouts also contain kaempferol, an antioxidant that may be particularly effective in preventing damage to cells .

One animal study found that kaempferol protected against free radicals, which cause oxidative damage to cells and can contribute to chronic disease .

Brussels sprout consumption can help enhance detoxification as well.

One study showed that eating Brussels sprouts led to a 15–30% increase in some of the specific enzymes that control detoxification, which could decrease the risk of colorectal cancer .

Additionally, Brussels sprouts are very nutrient-dense. Each serving provides a good amount of many vitamins and minerals, including vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, folate, manganese and potassium .

Summary: Brussels sprouts contain an antioxidant called kaempferol, which may protect against oxidative damage to cells and prevent chronic disease. They may also help enhance detoxification in the body.

6. Kale

Bunch of Kale

Like other leafy greens, kale is well-known for its health-promoting qualities, including its nutrient density and antioxidant content.

A cup (67 grams) of raw kale contains plenty of B vitamins, potassium, calcium and copper.

It also fulfills your entire daily requirement for vitamins A, C and K .

Due to its high amount of antioxidants, kale may also be beneficial in promoting heart health.

In a 2008 study, 32 men with high cholesterol drank 150 ml of kale juice daily for 12 weeks. By the end of the study, HDL cholesterol increased by 27%, LDL cholesterol decreased by 10% and antioxidant activity was increased .

Another study showed that drinking kale juice can decrease blood pressure and may be beneficial in reducing both blood cholesterol and blood sugar .

Summary: Kale is high in vitamins A, C and K as well as antioxidants. Studies show that drinking kale juice could reduce blood pressure and LDL cholesterol while increasing HDL cholesterol.

7. Green Peas

Green Peas and Pods in a Brown Bowl

Peas are considered a starchy vegetable. This means they have a higher amount of carbs and calories than non-starchy vegetables and may impact blood sugar levels when eaten in large amounts.

Nevertheless, green peas are incredibly nutritious.

One cup (160 grams) of cooked green peas contains 9 grams of fiber, 9 grams of protein and vitamins A, C and K, riboflavin, thiamin, niacin and folate.

Because they are high in fiber, peas support digestive health by enhancing the beneficial bacteria in your gut and promoting regular bowel movements .

Moreover, peas are rich in saponins, a type of plant compound known for its anti-cancer effects .

Research shows that saponins may help fight cancer by reducing tumor growth and inducing cell death in cancer cells .

Summary: Green peas contain a good amount of fiber, which helps support digestive health. They also contain plant compounds called saponins, which may have anti-cancer effects.

8. Swiss Chard

Swiss Chard Leaves

Swiss chard is low in calories but high in many essential vitamins and minerals.

One cup (36 grams) contains just 7 calories yet 1 gram of fiber, 1 gram of protein and lots of vitamins A, C and K, manganese and magnesium .

Swiss chard is especially known for its unique ability to prevent damage caused by diabetes mellitus.

In one animal study, chard extract was found to reverse the effects of diabetes by decreasing blood sugar levels and preventing cell damage from disease-causing free radicals .

Other animal studies have shown that the antioxidant content of chard extract can protect the liver and kidneys from the negative effects of diabetes .

Summary: Some animal studies show that Swiss chard could protect against the negative effects of diabetes and may decrease blood sugar levels.

9. Ginger

Fresh and Sliced Ginger

Ginger root is used as a main ingredient in everything from vegetable dishes to desserts.

Historically, ginger has also been used as a natural remedy for motion sickness .

Several studies have confirmed the beneficial effects of ginger on nausea. In a review comprised of 12 studies and nearly 1,300 pregnant women, ginger significantly reduced nausea compared to a placebo .

Ginger also contains potent anti-inflammatory properties, which can be helpful in treating inflammation-related disorders like arthritis, lupus or gout .

In one study, participants with osteoarthritis who were treated with a concentrated ginger extract experienced reduced knee pain and relief from other symptoms .

Further research suggests that ginger could aid in the treatment of diabetes as well.

A 2015 study looked at the effects of ginger supplements on diabetes. After 12 weeks, ginger was found to be effective in decreasing blood sugar levels .

Summary: Studies show that ginger could reduce nausea and alleviate inflammation. Ginger supplements may also help decrease blood sugar.

10. Asparagus

Fresh Asparagus

This spring vegetable is rich in several vitamins and minerals, making it an excellent addition to any diet.

Just half a cup (90 grams) of asparagus provides one-third of your daily folate needs.

This amount also provides plenty of selenium, vitamin K, thiamin and riboflavin .

Getting enough folate from sources like asparagus can offer protection from disease and can prevent neural tube birth defects during pregnancy .

Some test-tube studies also show that asparagus may benefit the liver by supporting its metabolic function and protecting it against toxicity .

Summary: Asparagus is especially high in folate, which may help prevent neural tube birth defects. Test-tube studies have also found that asparagus can support liver function and reduce the risk of toxicity.

11. Red Cabbage

Half a Red Cabbage

This vegetable belongs to the cruciferous family of vegetables and, much like its relatives, is brimming with antioxidants and health-promoting properties.

One cup (89 grams) of raw red cabbage contains 2 grams of fiber as well as 85% of the daily vitamin C requirement .

Red cabbage is also rich in anthocyanins, a type of plant compound that contributes to its distinct color as well as a whole host of health benefits.

In a 2012 animal study, rats were fed a diet designed to increase cholesterol levels and increase plaque buildup in the arteries. The rats were then given red cabbage extract.

The study found that red cabbage extract was able to prevent increases in blood cholesterol levels and protect against damage to the heart and liver .

These results were supported by another animal study in 2014 that showed that red cabbage could reduce inflammation and prevent liver damage in rats fed a high-cholesterol diet .

Summary: Red cabbage contains a good amount of fiber, vitamin C and anthocyanins. Certain studies show that red cabbage may decrease blood cholesterol levels, reduce inflammation and prevent heart and liver damage.

12. Sweet Potatoes

Woman Cutting a Sweet Potato on a Chopping Board

Classified as a root vegetable, sweet potatoes stand out for their vibrant orange color, sweet taste and impressive health benefits.

One medium sweet potato contains 4 grams of fiber, 2 grams of protein and a good amount of vitamin C, vitamin B6, potassium and manganese .

It’s also high in a form of vitamin A called beta-carotene. In fact, one sweet potato fulfills 438% of your daily vitamin A needs .

Beta-carotene consumption has been linked to a significant decrease in the risk of certain types of cancer, including lung and breast cancer .

Specific types of sweet potatoes may also contain additional benefits. For example, Caiapo is a type of white sweet potato that may have an anti-diabetic effect.

In one study, people with diabetes were given 4 grams of Caiapo daily over 12 weeks, leading to a reduction in both blood sugar and blood cholesterol levels .

Summary: Sweet potatoes are high in beta-carotene, which may decrease the risk of some types of cancer. White sweet potatoes could also help reduce blood cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

13. Collard Greens

Collard Greens

Collard greens are a very nutrient-rich vegetable.

One cup (190 grams) of cooked collard greens contains 5 grams of fiber, 4 grams of protein and 27% of your daily calcium needs .

In fact, collard greens are one of the best plant sources of calcium available, along with other leafy greens, broccoli and soybeans.

Adequate calcium intake from plant sources can promote bone health and has been shown to decrease the risk of osteoporosis .

Collard greens are also high in antioxidants and could even reduce your risk of developing certain diseases.

One study found that eating more than one serving of collard greens per week was associated with a 57% decreased risk of glaucoma, an eye condition that can lead to blindness .

Another study showed that a high intake of vegetables in the Brassica family, which includes collard greens, may decrease the risk of prostate cancer .

Summary: Collard greens are high in calcium, which could reduce the risk of osteoporosis. The regular intake of collard greens has also been associated with a reduced risk of glaucoma and prostate cancer.

14. Kohlrabi

Purple Kohlrabi

Also known as the turnip cabbage or German turnip, kohlrabi is a vegetable related to the cabbage that can be eaten raw or cooked.

Raw kohlrabi is high in fiber, providing 5 grams in each cup (135 grams). It’s also full of vitamin C, providing 140% of the daily value per cup .

Studies have shown that the antioxidant content of kohlrabi makes it a powerful tool against inflammation and diabetes .

In one animal study, kohlrabi extract was able to decrease blood sugar levels by 64% within just seven days of treatment .

Though there are different types of kohlrabi available, studies show that red kohlrabi has nearly twice the amount of phenolic antioxidants and displays stronger anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory effects .

Summary: Kohlrabi is rich in both fiber and vitamin C. Animal studies show that kohlrabi could potentially cause a reduction in blood sugar.

The Bottom Line

From providing essential vitamins and minerals to fighting disease, it’s clear that including vegetables in your diet is crucial for good health.

While the vegetables listed here have been extensively studied for their health benefits, there are plenty more vegetables that are also excellent for your health.

Ensure that you’re getting a good mix of vegetables in your diet to take advantage of their many diverse health benefits and get the most nutritional bang for your buck.

Debu Nayak

  1. Bhubaneswar.