Friday, October 14, 2011

Vitamin C And Its Benefits

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Who knew that one glass of orange juice a day could be very beneficial? With about 97 mg of vitamin C, a glass of orange juice helps make your skin glow and protects from early wrinkles. Fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C offer the same benefits and more as they also contain fiber along with other vitamins and minerals. Here in this article we will be discussing Vitmain C and its benefits and also sources and functions of vitamin c.

Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is essential for the growth, development and repair of all body tissues. It plays a role in many body functions, including the formation of collagen, absorption of iron, protecting the immune system, healing wounds and maintaining cartilage, bones and teeth.

According to a recent study done by researcher Mark Moyad, MD, MPH, of the University of Michigan, vitamin C may offer health benefits in these areas:

Vitamin C for Stress
. Because vitamin C is one of the nutrients sensitive to stress, and is the first nutrient to be depleted in alcoholics, smokers and obese individuals, it makes it an ideal marker for overall health.

Vitamin C for Colds
. There is good evidence that taking vitamin C for colds and flu can reduce the risk of developing further complications, such as pneumonia and lung infections.

Vitamin C for Stroke. Although research has been conflicting, one study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that those with the highest concentrations of vitamin C in their blood were associated with a 42 percent lower stroke risk than those with a lower concentration. The reasons for this are not completely clear.

Vitamin C for Skin Aging. Vitamin C affects cells on the inside and outside of the body. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition examined links between nutrient intakes and skin aging in 4,025 women aged 40 to 74. It found that higher vitamin C intakes were associated with a lower likelihood of a wrinkled appearance, dryness of the skin and a better skin-aging appearance.

According to Dr. Ahmed Dawood, a physician at Al-Salam Hospital in Madinah, Vitamin C also protects against eye diseases, prenatal health problems such as cancer and cardiovascular disease and immune system deficiencies. “You can say it is the shield to living longer,” he said.

Dawood says that unless one can eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, you may need to take a dietary supplement of vitamin C to gain all the benefits. He suggests taking 500 milligrams a day, in addition to eating more fruits and vegetables.

“It’s sad that only 20 percent of Saudi adults get the recommended nine servings of fruits and vegetables a day. I highly recommend people to eat nine servings of fruits and vegetables daily, because you will get a healthy dose of vitamin C. Vitamin C is easily absorbed both in food and in pill form, and it can enhance the absorption of iron when the two are eaten together,” he added.

However, Dawood says there is a downside to taking vitamin supplements. “Some types may irritate the stomach, so I advise taking non-acidic forms. The safe upper limit for vitamin C is 2,000 milligrams a day, and there is a great track record with strong evidence that taking 500 milligrams daily is safe,” he said.

Dawood recommends people who are on diet to include fruits and vegetables that are rich in Vitamin C in every meal to guarantee a healthy diet. “This will increase your metabolism and hence increase your ability to get rid of fat. Furthermore, since dieting usually causes bad mood, which can cause you to go off track, increasing your intake of vitamin C can help you stay on track as it keeps in you a good mood,” he added.

The foods richest in vitamin C are citrus fruits, green peppers, strawberries, tomatoes, broccoli, white potatoes, and sweet potatoes. Other good sources include dark leafy greens, cantaloupe, papaya, mango, watermelon, sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage, red peppers, raspberries, blueberries, winter squash and pineapples.

“The level of vitamin C in the body is related to body mass, which means that the more overweight you are, the lower your levels of vitamin C. People that have normal weight tend to have higher levels,” explained Dawood.

Dawood recommends following these steps to get more vitamin C in your diet:

Add grated fruits and vegetables to your daily recipes.

Keep sliced fruits and vegetables on hand so they are ready for a quick snack.

Eat raw vegetables and dip them in hummus, yogurt or salsa.

Try to include vegetables suck as tomatoes, lettuce or broccoli to your sandwich.

Add fresh or dried strawberries, nuts or berries to your cereal for breakfast

Drink tomato juice as an afternoon snack.

“Do your body a favor and make sure you eat your fruits and vegetables every day so that you get enough vitamin C. You probably won't get sick as often and your body will be healthier and stronger,” said Dawood.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Cure a Headache Naturally

In today's world, life has become very rapid. Mostly people have dependent on instant solutions, remedies or quick fixes not knowing what we have to payback in future. Like Dependence on pills for the simplest ailments make viruses and bacteria more resistant to medications. Ingesting too much medicine also introduces many chemicals and toxins that may cause damage to major organs in our body.

How about finding alternative ways to cure our ills? Headaches are one of the most common complaints people have these days, and surprisingly, one of the ailments you can solve without popping a single pill. So, to cure a headache naturally, try these methods first before swallowing that headache medicine!

Proper Hydration Can Cure a Headache Naturally
Some people think popping a pill for their headache is what helps them with the migraine, when in reality it's the water that washes down the pill. Dehydration has different effects on people, but the most common is headache. Drink a refreshing glass of water or two before trying anything else.

You can also drink something refreshing such as tea or something that really rehydrates you, like Gatorade.

Stress is an obvious trigger for most headaches, especially in high-pressure jobs and long work hours. Do yourself a favor and take a short timeout. Go to a quiet corner, close your eyes and clear your head of all the things that were bothering you. Take deep breaths, imagining all the negative air going out and the positive air going in. Think happy thoughts.

There are a myriad ways for people to achieve relaxation, but aromatherapy or a quick nap will also do for those pressed for time.

Lemons for Heat-Induced Headaches
Use the juice of three to four lemon slices for tea. Use the lemon peels and pound it into a paste using a mortar and apply to your forehead. This can grant you relief.

Cinnamon ~ A very Effective Herb to Cure a Headache Naturally
Like lemon, you can use cinnamon as a relief from headache. Pound cinnamon sticks into a fine powder and mix with water to form a paste. Put the cinnamon paste on your temple and forehead.

Healthy Living
A healthy lifestyle with proper nutrition and exercise, coupled with positive and good thoughts, will go a long way to ensure a headache-free day. Headaches are physical manifestations of your body becoming stressed or overanxious, so having a good outlet for negative energy, such as exercise, does a lot in getting rid of them. Healthy food also ensures our bodies will be in top shape and able to withstand whatever stressful situation is thrown towards their way.

Getting enough sleep is also crucial for a headache-free lifestyle.

Cold Compress
Extreme temperatures can cause headaches. Provide relief from the temperature and pain by applying a cold or hot compress to your neck, temples and forehead. Try to find the most comfortable temperature for you by testing the temperature of the compress on the back of your hand.

There are varied ways to get rid of a headache naturally, all of which do not require chemicals and medications at all. Tea, naps, relaxation and a healthy lifestyle are all important in keeping you headache-free naturally.