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10 amazing health benefits of Sacha inchi

. Cholesterol – Sacha inchi lowers LDL and raises HDL cholesterol. Cholesterol levels may not be the biggest marker for cardiovascular problems we once thought them to be, but they are still a concern and can reflect dietary problems and genetic dispositions toward some diseases.

2. Well Being – These seeds contain a good amount of tryptophan, a precursor for serotonin. Serotonin is a feel-good hormone and neurotransmitter that helps us deal with stress and feel calm and happy. The omega 3 also reduces inflammation in the brain, which can cause mood shifts, headaches, and more.

3. Weight Loss – Higher serotonin levels, thanks to the tryptophan, also regulate appetite so we don’t get cravings, overeat, or snack more than we need to.

4. Brain Health – The majority of our brain is composed of fat. We need good, healthy fats to resupply those cells and to continually fight inflammation. Inflammation in the brain can cause depression, fatigue, memory issues, and exaggerated responses to pain.

5. Heart Health – Sacha inchi improves circulation while lowering blood pressure, cholesterol, and inflammation throughout the body. All of this makes for a healthier, happier, less stressed cardiovascular system, from arteries to heart and beyond.

6. Diabetes – Omega 3 helps control glucose levels. Many doctors and researchers argue that omega 3 may actually reduce insulin resistance in those with type 2 diabetes. Omega 3 also lowers triglyceride levels, which are often high in diabetics.

7. Bone Health – Omega 3s help the body absorb calcium. Foods rich in omega 3 improve bone density, staving off some of the deterioration that occurs as we age.

8. Vision – The vitamin E, vitamin A, and omegas in sacha inchi can improve vision and maintain eye health. Like the brain, the eyes rely on a good amount of fat, and are prone to inflammatory damage, especially as we get older.

9. Joint Health – The anti-inflammatory nature of sacha inchi may make it a good supplement to ease joint pain and rheumatoid arthritis. Consider combining sacha inchi oil with ginger for even more benefits.

10. Skin and Hair – Omega 3 fatty acids are vital to healthy hair and skin. They help us regulate oil production, keep skin elastic, lock in hydration, protect against sun damage, and help repair damage when it occurs.

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Quinoa

1. Quinoa isn’t actually a grain at all. We cook and eat quinoa like many other grains, but, botanically speaking, it’s a relative of spinach, beets, and chard. The part we eat is actually the seed, cooked like rice, which is why quinoa is gluten-free. You can even eat the leaves! (Check out how crazy the plant looks!)

2. Quinoa is a complete protein. A 1955 paper dubbed quinoa a superstar long before 21st century publications were touting it for its nutritional powers. The authors of Nutritive Values of Crops, Nutrient Content and Protein Quality of Quinoa and Cañihua, Edible Seed Products of the Andes Mountains wrote:

“While no single food can supply all the essential life-sustaining nutrients, quinoa comes as close as any other in the plant or animal kingdom. That’s because quinoa is what’s called a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine of the essential amino acids, which cannot be made by the body and therefore must come from food.”

3. There are more than 100 types of quinoa. There are roughly 120 known varieties of quinoa, according to the Whole Grains Council. The most commercialized types are white, red, and black quinoa. White quinoa is the most widely available in stores. Red quinoa is more often used in meals like salads since it tends to hold its shape better after cooking. Black quinoa has an “earthier and sweeter” taste. You can also find quinoa flakes and flour.

4. You should probably rinse your quinoa. Those dried seeds are coated with a compound that would taste pretty bitter if you didn’t wash it off first. However, most modern-day packaged quinoa has been rinsed (a.k.a. processed), Cheryl Forberg, R.D., The Biggest Loser nutritionist and author of Cooking With Quinoa For Dummies, writes on her website. Still, she says, it’s probably a good idea to give yours a rinse before enjoying, just to be safe.

5. What’s the deal with that string? The cooking process releases what looks like a curly “tail” coming from the seed. That’s actually the germ of the seed, according to Forberg’s site, which separates slightly when your quinoa is ready.

5 Molasses Benefits

1. Diabetes-Friendly Sweetener

If you have diabetes and a sweet tooth, you have a bit of a conundrum. While blackstrap molasses is derived from sugar and adds as many carbohydrates as other sugars, it may be digested more slowly, which may help stabilize blood sugar.

You can use blackstrap molasses in baking sweet treats. It’s what gives gingerbread cookies their distinctive rich flavor.

2. Bone Booster

Everyone knows that calcium is needed for strong bones, but not everyone knows the importance that magnesium plays in growing them.

Blackstrap molasses contains both calcium and magnesium, so it can help you guard against osteoporosis. About 5 tablespoons of blackstrap molasses contains 50 percent of the recommended daily allowance of calcium, 95 percent of iron, and 38 percent of magnesium.

Adequate levels of magnesium are also crucial in preventing diseases like osteoporosis and asthma along with others that can affect your blood and heart.

3. Good for the Blood

People with anemia — a condition where your body doesn’t have enough red blood cells — often feel tired and weak. One type of anemia is caused by a lack of iron in the diet.

Blackstrap molasses is a good source of iron. About 5 tablespoons of blackstrap molasses contains 95 percent of your daily allowance of iron.

Besides adding it into recipes, you can add it to hot water and drink warm or cold as a dietary supplement.

4. Packed with Potassium

Bananas may be king when it comes to potassium, but blackstrap molasses is also packed with the stuff. Try mixing blackstrap molasses in with baked beans, or even use it as a basting glaze on chicken, turkey, or other meats. A spoonful straight can also give you a quick boost.

5. Hair De-Frizzer

Along with providing your body with important minerals, blackstrap molasses has been used to remove the frizziness in bleached, permed, or colored hair.

While pouring the sticky syrup directly into your hair is a pretty bad idea, it can be mixed with warm water and applied to the hair for 15 minutes. It can also be combined with other hair-healthy ingredients like your daily shampoo or coconut milk.

5 Black-Eyed Pea Benefits

Inflammation is at the root of most diseases, but a healthy diet including one to two servings of black-eyed peas per day can help fight chronic inflammation and prevent so many serious health problems. This anti-inflammatory effects is what provides so many of the following black-eyed pea benefits.

1. Improve Digestion

One of the biggest black-eyed pea benefits is the high levels of dietary fiber, which helps to promote regular bowel movements and improve the health of the entire body, especially the digestive system. The large amount of fiber contained within black-eyed peas absorbs water in the digestive tract, swells up and carries waste products out of the body. Thanks to being a high-fiber food, black-eyed pea consumption can help prevent constipation, which is always a good thing.

In addition, black-eyed peas and other beans are often associated with excessive flatulence, but research debunks this commonly believed myth. Research conducted by Arizona State University’s School of Nutrition and Health Promotion and the University of Colorado Springs’ Department of Health Sciences examined the perceptions of excessive gas from bean consumptions among adults in three separate feeding studies. Participants consumed a half cup of beans daily for either eight weeks or 12 weeks.

The findings, published in Nutrition Journal, were surprising. Only 19 percent of participants who consumed black-eyed peas saw an increase in flatulence, while less than half reported increased gas from eating pinto or baked beans. In addition, only 3 percent to 11 percent reported increased flatulence across all the studies. Ultimately, researchers concluded: “People’s concerns about excessive flatulence from eating beans may be exaggerated.”

2. Prevent Anemia

Getting adequate iron in your diet prevents anemia, which can cause fatigue and weakness. Anemia occurs when your blood has a lower than normal number of red blood cells or if your red blood cells don’t have enough hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is an iron-rich protein that gives your blood its red color and helps those cells bring oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body.

Aside from being high in iron, black-eyed pea benefits also include being high in folate, a B vitamin needed to make normal red blood cells. This is important to note since low levels of folate can cause anemia.

3. Lower Blood Pressure

Black-eyed peas are rich in potassium, a mineral that helps keep your blood pressure levels at healthy numbers and lowers your risk of heart disease. Some studies have linked low potassium in the diet with high blood pressure. It’s also been shown that heart attack patients who have moderate potassium levels (between 3.5 and 4.5 mEq/L) have a lower risk of death. One cup of black-eyed peas offers you just about 20 percent of your daily potassium needs.

In addition to lowering blood pressure, black-eyed pea benefits also include staving off coronary heart disease, truly making this bean a heart-healthy food.

4. Increase Folate Intake

Black-eyed peas are especially high in folate, which is a water soluble B vitamin that plays a slightly different role from the other B vitamins because it doesn’t participate in energy metabolism. Folate’s main function is to help the body make new cells, specifically by playing a role in copying and synthesizing DNA. It also helps the body utilize vitamin B12 and amino acids.

A folate deficiency can cause anemia, poor immune function and poor digestion. For pregnant women, a deficiency in folate can lead to neural tube defects, such as spina bifida. People most at risk of a folate deficiency include pregnant and breast-feeding women, people with liver disease, alcoholics, those on kidney dialysis, and people on medications for diabetes, diuretics and methotrexate.

Just one cup of black-eyed peas can supply over half of your daily folate needs, which means that two cups could completely supply your requirements for the day.

5. Boosts Skin and Eye Health

Black-eyed peas are surprisingly high in vitamin A. They have over a quarter of your daily vitamin A needs in one cup. Not only does vitamin A help form and maintain healthy skin and mucus membranes, but it produces the pigments in the retina of the eye.

Don’t limit yourself to carrots when it comes to improving your eyesight because the vitamin A in black-eyed peas can promote good vision, especially in low light. So keep eating your orange fruits and vegetables to improve your skin and eye health, but now you can add black-eyed peas to the mix — because black-eyed pea benefits include protecting your vision and your skin.