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Alaskan King Crab
High in protein and low in fat, king crab is spiked with zinc, a whopping 7 milligrams per 3.5-ounce serving. Zinc is an antioxidant, but more important, it helps support healthy bone mass and immune function.
Several studies have linked adequate zinc intake to increased immunity and decreased incidences of respiratory infection.
Also known as prunes, they are rich in copper and boron, both of which can help prevent osteoporosis. They also contain a fiber called inulin, which, when broken down by your intestinal bacteria, makes for a more acidic environment in your digestive tract. That, in turn, facilitates calcium absorption. Enjoy four or five a day to strengthen your bones and boost your energy.
This vegetable is rich in bone-building calcium, as well as vitamins A and C, folic acid, iron, beta-carotene, and potassium. Potassium keeps your muscles and nerves in check while lowering your blood pressure, and research suggests that beta-carotene can reduce the risk of both lung and bladder cancers, as well as macular degeneration. Try to eat a cup a day.
Shellfish, in general, is an excellent source of zinc, calcium, copper, iodine, iron, potassium, and selenium. But oysters stands apart for its ability to elevate your testosterone levels and protect against prostate cancer.
Athletes and performers are familiar with the calming effect of bananas, a result of the fruit’s high concentration of tryptophan, a building block of serotonin. But their real benefit comes from potassium, an electrolyte that helps prevent the loss of calcium from your body.
Bananas also bolster your nervous system, boost immune function, and help your body metabolize protein. One banana packs a day’s worth of potassium, and its carbohydrate content speeds recovery after strenuous exercise.
Like bananas, this fruit is high in bone-protecting potassium. They’re also rich in vitamin C and lutein, a carotenoid that can help reduce the risk of heart disease. Try to eat at least one or two a week after exercising. Freeze them for a refreshing energy kick, but don’t peel the skin: It’s edible and packed with nutrients.
One cup of broccoli contains a hearty dose of calcium, as well as manganese, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, and iron. And that’s in addition to its high concentration of vitamins, including A, C, and K and the phytonutrient sulforaphane, which studies suggest has powerful anticancer properties.
Try cauliflower, kale, brussels sprouts, or cabbage for variation, as all possess many of the same nutritional qualities. Broccoli may also help reduce excess estrogen levels in your body, thanks to its indole 3-carbinol content.
A renowned muscle builder, spinach is also rich in vitamin K, which has been shown to bolster bone-mineral density (thus protecting against osteoporosis) and reduce fracture rates. Spinach is also high in calcium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, and even selenium, which may help protect your liver and ward off Alzheimer’s.
One more reason to add it to your diet: A study suggests that the carotenoid neoxanthin in spinach can kill prostate cancer cells, while the beta-carotene fights colon cancer. Try to eat one cup of cooked spinach, or two cups raw, four times a week.
These cousins of garlic and onions are packed with bone-bolstering thiamine, riboflavin, calcium, and potassium. Leeks are also rich in folic acid, a B vitamin that studies have shown to lower levels of the artery-damaging amino acid homocystein in your blood.
Leeks can support sexual functioning and reduce the risk of prostate cancer. Chop the green part of a medium leek into thin ribbons and add it to soups, sautés, and salads as often as possible.
This fiber-rich plant contains more bone-building magnesium and potassium than any other vegetable. Its leaves are also rich in flavonoids and polyphenols, antioxidants that can cut the risk of stroke and vitamin C, which helps maintain your immune system. Eat them as often as you can. Ripe ones feel heavy for their size and squeak when squeezed.
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