You may have heard the term "Super food" being tossed around in some health blogs. But what exactly is a Super food? Super foods are whole foods that are not processed, so they retain more of their balanced combination of nutrients that nature gave them. These nutrients include a mix of the essentials- fiber, protein, vitamins, minerals, and other familiar nutrients that our bodies require to function properly and maintain good health. Super foods also include various natural plant substances called phytonutrients that play an important role in reducing health ailments such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and cancer. The best way to capture all of these benefits is to eat a variety of whole foods. This series will help you choose which super foods you should be including in your diet. Lets get to it...
Today's Super food is Bell Peppers AKA Sweet Peppers. You can find Bell Peppers in a variety of colors such as red, yellow, orange, and green. Flavors range from herbal tasting green peppers to red peppers that are amazingly sweet. Bell peppers, red especially, provide more vitamin C than citrus fruits. They are also loaded with Vitamin A. Both of these vitamins act as antioxidants, supporting our immune system and helping protect us from cell damage, inflammation, cancer and diseases related to aging. Bell peppers also supply lutein, which has been linked to reduced risk of the sight stealing disease macular degeneration. The deep colors sported by bell peppers signal their rich reserves of plant pigments that help fight cancer. Peppers even provide a healthy dose of fiber.
Green peppers are simply red peppers that haven't completely ripened. Once ripe, they are perishable and carry a premium price. Look for a glossy sheen and no shriveling, cracks, or soft spots. Bell peppers should feel heavy for their size, indicating fully developed walls. Store in plastic bags in your refrigerator's crisper drawer. Green peppers stay firm for a week, others go soft in three or four days.
Bell peppers make a great addition to salads or can be eaten raw on their own with a little hummus to dip as a snack. Core bell peppers and steam them to make beautiful containers for stuffing of all kinds. Bell peppers are also great on the grill. Grill large pieces until the outer skin in blackened and then rub it off when they cool. Plenty of ways to enjoy bell peppers. Thanks for reading and I will see you again soon.