The great quercetin caper
Phytonutrients – also known as phytochemicals – are non-vitamin, non-mineral components of foods with significant health benefits. Scientists have discovered thousands. Some of the most notable to date include anthocyanins, flavonoids, quercetin, resveratrol and ellagiac acid. “Phyto” refers to the Greek word for plant, with this extraordinary range of nutrients explaining why a high consumption and a wide variety in the range of vegetables and fruits you eat is so beneficial.
No wonder eating smart is not just one thing, but for today’s post I thought it might be interesting to write a little more about one of the phytonutrients that is drawing the attention of the scientific community because of its potentially extraordinary properties:
A flavonoid found in fruits and vegetables, a major reason it’s attracting so much interest in the scientific community is due to its potential anti-aging and immune system boosting properties. Yet it has also been studied for a wide range of other health benefits, having been found to be cancer chemo-preventive, while it could also reduce allergic reactions and protect against cardiovascular disease. However, findings, whilst at times encouraging, have so far been inconsistent.
Nevertheless, it is a fine example of the potential benefits science continues to discover from the consumption of a wide variety of real food – something our ancestors understood very well. Good foods to boost your levels of quercetin include:
- green and black tea
- red wine
Capers: the quercetin kings
Extraordinary as it might seem, this tiny berry beats all other foods for levels of quercetin. Who can say, but perhaps this even helps explain the beautiful and youthful skin of the Italians??
Note: If you are considering a quercetin supplement, always consult with your doctor first to see if it is suitable for you.
Consuming a wide variety of brightly coloured fruits and vegetables will help boost your levels of anthocyanin, carotenoids and other pigments that are high in antioxidants. Also, most nutrients work better in groups, rather than as a single compound, once again emphasising the preference of absorbing your nutrients from a large variety of real foods.
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