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Phytonutrients

Overview

Isoflavones, flavonoids, phytonutrients – it may seem that you need a whole new language to understand the basics of nutrition these days. Phytonutrients are a class of nutrients that are found in high concentration in fresh fruits, vegetables and grains – particularly in their skins. For years, nutritionists have recommended eating our vegetables with the peels and skins on – and the latest research into phytonutrients explains a great deal about why that advice is excellent advice for anyone concerned with nutrition.

 

According to an article published by the Agricultural Research Service of the USDA,

“…cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer's disease may plague the middle-aged and elderly because of our limited knowledge of phytonutrients. Research in this arena, now less than two decades old, may relegate some of today's ills to the history books—joining scurvy and pellagra.”

-http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/AR/archive/dec99/stage1299.htm

 

What PHYTONUTRIENTS  Do:

There have been literally thousands of phytonutrients isolated, and each of them has specific nutritional properties and health benefits. Phytonutrients are, in most cases, the actual pigments that give a fruit or vegetable its color. They may be flavonoids, isoflavones, aromatics, carotenoids – nearly all are antioxidants, and most contribute to our health through complementing a good diet.

 

Carotenoids

This group of phytonutrients are the pigments found in bright yellow, orange and red plants, and include the more familiar names beta carotene, lutein and lycopene. All have antioxidant properties, and most have been show to protect specific types of tissue or cells from damage from free radicals.

 

Limonoids

A sub-group of terpenes, the same group that contains carotenoids, limonoids occur most often in citrus fruit peels, and seem to be specific to protecting lung tissue.

 

Phytosterols

Found in abundance in the seeds of green and yellow vegetables such as squash or pumpkin, phytosterols block the uptake of cholesterol in the intestines, helping to keep cholesterol at lower levels.

 

Phenols

Phenols are the pigments that give blueberries, grapes, bilberries and other ‘blue’ and violet fruits their color. They’ve been studied for decades for their disease preventative properties.

 

 

Flavonoids

There are well over 1500 flavonoids found in a wide variety of plants and herbs. Because there are so many, from so many different sources, it’s impossible to list all of the bodily functions that they may affect. Their biologic activity includes action against allergies, inflammation, free radicals, hepatotoxins, platelet aggregation, microbes, ulcers, viruses and tumors.

 

Isoflavones

Isoflavones are a phytonutrient subclass found in beans and legumes. They deserve special mention because they appear to the block tumor growth.

 

Health Benefits of PHYTONUTRIENTS:

The health benefits of some phytonutrients have been known for centuries – though an ancient Chinese physician would have blinked at the word. Over the centuries, many of the ‘folk remedies’ that were recommended by herbalists and early physicians have proven, upon research, to be so effective that the pharmaceutical industry sought to synthesize the ‘active ingredients’.

 

It is those active ingredients that the term ‘phytonutrients’ refers. Phytonutrients are the reason that carrots really ARE good for your eyesight (the carotenoids have proven beneficial in preventing and reversing the leading causes of age related blindness), eating your veggies really can help you grow strong bones (calcium is absorbed more readily thanks to the action of phytonutrients found in vegetables and fruits) and orange juice is good for your cold (limonoids help heal and protect lung tissue).

 

More and more, research points to the fact that nearly all of your ‘modern’ age-related diseases are linked to diet. Study after study confirms the things that our grandmothers knew without a high school diploma, let alone a degree. Good food is good for you. Eat your veggies fresh. Don’t eat too much of one thing – spread it around.

 

Possible Side Effects of PHYTONUTRIENTS

There are few reported side effects for most phytonutrients. They are not ‘drugs’, and are non-toxic. Some may have mild side effects related to overuse, and some may trigger allergies in particular people, but overall, the use of concentrated phytonutrients as a supplement is safe.

 

Summary

In an ideal world, we’d all get all the phytonutrients that we need from our daily diet. Unfortunately, our world today doesn’t give us the luxury of obtaining the levels of most phytonutrients that our bodies were meant to use. High stress, fast-paced lifestyle and modern farming methods make it difficult to take in all the nutrients that we need to maintain our bodies in optimum physical condition.

 

For that reason, many nutritionists feel that taking a supplement that contains a full complement of the phytonutrients your body needs can help ward off the effects of aging and the harm done by free radicals in your system. We highly recommend Xtend-Life's Bone-Protec as an ideal supplement for your regular diet. Besides containing a full complement of both red and green phytonutrients extracted from fresh vegetables, fruits and herbs, it also contains high quality coral calcium – and a number of added ingredients designed to work with and facilitate your body’s absorption of those important nutrients.

 

A healthy diet is the single most important thing you can do for your body and yourself, but to help out in the gaps where our modern diets fall short, add a daily supplement like Bone-Protec from Xtend-Life.

 

 

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