As we enjoy the weekend and head into summer, I thought I would give you some healthy tips to make life a little sweeter.
1. Chocolate is good for you (can I hear an Amen!).
According to the Cleveland Clinic and other reputable sources, cocoa, in it’s pure form, contains high levels of flavonoids, a compound that is a known antioxidant. It is believed that Antioxidants aid the body’s cells in resisting free radical damage that occurs from environmental sources and simply breathing.
“Flavanols are the main type of flavonoid found in cocoa and chocolate. In addition to having antioxidant qualities, research indicates that flavanols have other positive influences on vascular health, such as lowering blood pressure and improving blood flow to the brain and heart, making blood platelets less sticky and able to clot, and lowering cholesterol.”
Be aware, however, not all chocolate has the same benefits. The less processed cocoa has higher levels of flavonoids. Your best option is darker chocolate with minimal added fats and sugars.
2. Coffee is good for you (duh!).
According to the Mayo Clinic, recent studies have shown that the health benefits of coffee often outweigh the risks. “These benefits include protecting against Parkinson’s disease, type 2 diabetes and liver cancer. And it has a high content of antioxidants.”
Drinking it with a friend and a piece of chocolate is even better!
3. Butter is good for you (Paula Deen was right!)
According to several reliable sources, pure, delicious butter contains many healthy properties including the following
vitamin A – necessary for healthy thyroid and adrenal glands
lecithin – a substance needed for the assimilation and metabolism of cholesterol
silenium and vitamin E- which protect the cardiovascular system
vitamin D – essential to the proper absorption of calcium and necessary for proper bone growth and preventing tooth decay
4. Sunshine is good for you.
For years, doctors did not know why, but patients suffering from TB and other diseases healed faster when placed in a sunny location. According the the magazine Scientific American, sunshine contains levels of Vitamin D necessary for bone formation and “powerfully influencing immune system responses and cell defenses.”
5. Laughter is good for you.
This is the best one of all because, unlike coffee, butter, chocolate and sunshine, this one need not be taken in moderation!
Proverbs 17:22A cheerful heart is good medicine,
but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength.
~ stimulate your organs and increase endorphins released by your brain.
~ activate and relieve your stress response, leaving you with a good, relaxed feeling
~ soothe tension and stomachaches, easing digestion and reducing some symptoms of stress
~ improve your immune system, releasing neuropeptides to help fight stress and illness
~ relieve pain by releasing the body’s own natural painkillers
~ increase personal satisfaction
Don’t you feel better already?
So, this summer take the time to relax in the sun, laugh with a friend, sip a cup of coffee, savor a piece of chocolate or smear some butter on that corn on the cob – doctors orders!