What are Phytonutrients?
Phytonutrients have powerful health-promoting properties including antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Whenever you hear the word “antioxidant” think “anti-aging.” This is because antioxidants neutralize free radicals in the body. Free radicals cause cellular damage which can lead to wrinkles and dry, sagging skin. Free radicals come from alcohol, air pollution, radiation, stress, coffee, and cooked food to name just a few. Inflammation is part of the body’s immune response wherever there is infection or injury. The affected area swells as your immune system sends more blood to deliver those components needed to recover.
Scientists have identified more than 25,000 phytonutrients in plant foods. Many phytonutrients give plants their distinctive colors such as the green, orange, and red in spinach, carrots, and bell peppers.
Here are just a few:
• Chlorophyll – wheatgrass, spirulina, chlorella, barley grass, and in all leafy greens. Good for healthy blood, brain, all bodily tissues, detox, lowers blood pressure, glowing skin.
• Beta-carotene – carrots, yams and green leafy vegetables. Good for healthy eyes, skin, hair, bones, teeth and libido.
• Lycopene – tomatoes, watermelon, pink grapefruits and apricots. Good for boosting the immune system and cancer of the mouth, esophagus, lung, stomach, intestines, prostate, cervical and colon.
• Selenium – Brazil nuts and walnuts. Boosting the immune system especially for people dealing with the flu and colds, AIDS/ HIV, and tuberculosis. Excellent for the thyroid and it is anti-aging!
• Dindolylmethane – broccoli, kale, cabbage, cauliflower, brussels sprouts and collard greens. Strengthens the immune system.
• Allyl Sulfides - garlic, onions, and shallots. Strengthens the immune system, good for allergies, colds, and flu.
• Curcuminoids – Turmeric. This phytonutrient has been shown to have anti-inflammatory, pro-digestive, and anti-infectious activities.