Winter bring along a number of changes in your lifestyle. From revamping your wardrobe to altering your diet, this season affects a multitude of components in your everyday life. Most people resort to warm beverages such as coffee and chamomile tea when the weather gets unbearably cold.
These are not the only items you can enjoy in winter. Luckily, there are many other healthy and tasty diet options that you can turn to for both warmth and nutrition, which will not only keep you snug but will also make sure to maintain your overall health.
Here is a compilation of 6 such foods that you can enjoy during winters to boost* your health:
According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the free radicals in your body quickly oxidize LDL cholesterol which is bad for your system and deteriorates your health. However, having just one cup of pomegranate juice everyday keeps these radicals from oxidizing.
Oxidized LDL leads to a build up to form in the arteries. This build up prevents blood flow from reaching your heart successfully and, in extreme cases, can even lead to a heart attack. Drinking pomegranate juice helps to improve* the blood flow to the heart and prevents myocardial ischemia, a condition where the vessels leading to the heart are blocked and, consequently, the blood flow is constrained.
There are a number of fruits that contain citrus. These include limes, grapefruits, oranges and lemons. They are recommended all year long but are the juiciest in winter time and taste twice as good. They’re a great source of Vitamin C; in fact, one single orange is enough to give you your entire day’s vitamin dose.
According to Karen Ansel (Eating Well Magazine, January/February 2012), citrus fruits contain large amounts of flavonoids. The flavonoid present in the highest quantity in citrus is hesperidin which boosts* the good cholesterol of your body, namely HDL, and lowers the bad LDL that is triglyceride. It does all of this and ensures that your body stays warm during the winter weather thus being the perfect winter food.
Potatoes are highly underrated if you look at them in terms of the variety of nutrition they provide. They are often thrown off in the same category as white rice or white bread and do not receive the due attention that they deserve. This is because they are dismissed for containing white starch. However, they are rich in a number of beneficial nutrients that other starches are deficient in.
In fact, potatoes are rich in two very important immunity boosters – namely vitamin C and B6. Every potato delivers 25% of the former and 29% of the latter. Potatoes are also a rich source of folate which is important for women who are pregnant. Along with all of these benefits, potatoes keep you warm and help maintain an optimum body temperature as well.
4. Dark Leafy Greens
There are a number of leafy green vegetables that you can turn to for both warmth and nutrition. These include kale, chard and collards. Like citrus fruits, they too are the freshest and taste best in winters. In fact, the frost makes them taste a lot better than they normally are. Kale, for instance, is a bitter vegetable but the frost tends to take its bitterness away rendering it a lot better to eat.
These green vegetables are incredibly rich sources of multiple vitamins which include vitamin A, C and K. Along with providing your body with the necessary vitamins, they are amazing sources of folate as well. Greens with an abundant quantity of folate include collards, escarole and mustard greens. And as mentioned earlier, folate is an excellent nutrient and great for women in their child bearing age. Along with providing the necessary nutrients and being an excellent source of folate, greens are also great at providing the warmth that you need for the cold winters.
5. Winter Squash
Winter squash is the ultimate go-to winter food for the harsh, cold season. There are a number of options to choose from and each is not only warmth inducing but also extremely healthy for your body. The options include butternut, acorn, spaghetti squash and delicata. All of these are equally beneficial for your body and are great winter choices to choose from.
They’re rich in vitamin A and C which are present in high quantities in all the foods mentioned above; 214% and 33% respectively. They are also rich sources of B6 and K, and potassium and folate. Hence, winter squash is certainly one of the best foods to have in the season as it provides you warmth like no other food.
6. Spicy Tuna Roll
Sushi and tuna are two of those comfort foods that you can enjoy without worrying about putting on weight. Yes, you heard that right – comfort fancy food of your liking which is also non-fattening. Doesn’t it seem to be a dream come true! You can choose between rolls that are lined with tuna or salmon. It is entirely up to you and both are non-fattening.
Both of them are also excellent sources of vitamin D, which can be naturally obtained from sunlight but during winters, it’s hardly there. This is why, we need to turn to other vitamin D substitutes as it’s crucial for strengthening your bones, and also helps in growth and alleviates the risk of heart diseases.
The winters can be a tough, harsh time and it is very essential to take care of yourselves during this season. The first instinct is to turn towards comfort food containing fatty acids. While they provide warmth, they contain high levels of copper too which could be a potential cause of dementia. Dementia, in turn, could lead to a reduced* ability of a number of tasks such as problem solving. However, the food items mentioned above won’t only keep you warm but will improve* your overall health. So, gear up for winters and eat away!
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