Help Your Skin Glow With More Vegetables

join our csa

Low in calories, high in fiber, and with almost all the vitamins and minerals your body needs, vegetables are a nutritional cornerstone. While many think vegetables equate to a few leaves of lettuce and some tomatoes, there’s a wide variety of veggies available, and you can use them in a number of different ways…

If you are in the majority who’s skimping on veggies, you’re really missing out on major health benefits, including the following:2

Healthy glowing skin Courtesy of their higher water and phytochemical content, vegetables help produce that healthy “glow.”

As noted in the featured article, a “study3 from St. Andrews University concluded that people who ate three additional daily portions of produce for six weeks were ranked as better looking than those with lower intakes.”

The cause for this improvement? The carotenoids pigments that give vegetables their red and orange colors also improve the color of your skin, rendering it more rosy and glowing.

Many vegetables are also known for their anti-aging benefits, helping firm your skin and combat wrinkles.

Weight management Low in net carbs (total carbs minus fiber) and high in fiber, eating plenty of vegetables can help you lose and manage your weight in more ways than one.

Simply cutting net carbs and increasing your fiber intake may actually help you achieve results rivaling more complicated diets.

Previous research has demonstrated that fiber has appetite-suppressant qualities that helps you feel more satiated, thereby preventing unhealthy snacking.

Fiber also helps improve metabolic markers such as blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and blood sugar; helps protect your heart and cardiovascular health, and appears to reduce mortality from all causes.

Improves gut health and keeps you “regular” Constipation is one of the most common bowel problems, impacting nearly 1 in 5 Americans at any given time.

It’s uncomfortable, and can cause bloating and painful cramps.

The fiber and water in vegetables can help prevent this scenario, and promotes optimal gut health in general by nourishing beneficial gut bacteria.

Athletic performance and recovery Nutrition is imperative for athletic performance. Specific veggies shown to boost endurance and speed up recovery include beetroot juice, tomato juice, and watercress.

As reported in the featured article, one study “found that drinking 16 ounces of organic beetroot juice daily for six days helped men cycle up to 16 percent longer than they did with a placebo beverage.4

Meanwhile 100 percent tomato juice has been found to reduce exercise-induced stress on the body by as much as 84 percent.”5

Improves energy, mood, and psychological well-being Vegetables help boost energy levels, especially if you cut out net carbs and processed foods at the same time.

Juicing tends to be particularly potent and quick-acting in this regard.

Recent research shows higher vegetable intake can also help you feel calmer and improves your mental well-being.6

Eating fruits and vegetables was also related to greater self-reported curiosity and creativity — traits associated with happiness.7

Reduces risk for chronic disease Vegetables help reduce your risk for many chronic diseases, includingdiabetes, heart disease, stroke and certain cancers.

In one recent study, eating just over one extra serving of leafy greens a day reduced the risk of type 2 diabetes by 14 percent.8

Part of this benefit is due to the fiber content.

The fiber in vegetables is broken down into health-promoting short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) by your gut bacteria, and SCFAs have been shown to lessen your risk of inflammatory diseases.9

Boosts healthy immune function Researchers have discovered10 that a gene called T-bet — which is essential for producing critical immune cells in your gut — is activated by leafy green vegetables.

These immune cells, called Innate lymphoid cells (ILCs), reside in the lining of your digestive tract, and ILCs are thought to be essential for:11

  • Maintaining balance between tolerance, immunity and inflammation in your body
  • Producing interleukin-22 (IL-22), a hormone that can protect your body from pathogenic bacteria
  • Maintaining healthy intestinal balance by promoting growth of beneficial bacteria and healing small wounds and abrasions in the gut
  • Helping resolve cancerous lesions and prevent the development of bowel cancers
  • Preventing food allergies, inflammatory diseases, and obesity

Mercola.com May 2, 2016