Garbage Can Health Boosters

Are you throwing away the healthiest parts of your foods?

Garbage Can Health Boosters

Everyone knows that eating fruits and vegetables can keep you healthy. But what about the parts you discard? Sometimes, the parts of foods that you don’t eat have the most health benefits. Here are three health-boosting surprises that will make you think twice before tossing rinds or skins. And, most importantly, we tell you how to incorporate these normally inedible substances into your daily diet.

Watermelon Rinds for Heart Health

Juicy watermelon rinds offer a high dose of cirulline amino acid – which helps dilate blood vessels, improving blood circulation. The easiest way to take advantage of watermelon rind health benefits is to blend a whole piece of watermelon with lime. If you’re in the mood for something with a little kick, add some gin or vodka to make it a heart-healthy cocktail.


Celery Tops for Diabetes Prevention

Celery is a good source of magnesium, but the leaves actually have more magnesium than the stalks. A higher magnesium intake has been shown to reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes by up to 23%. To use celery tops, try finally chopping them up with parsley and stir it into a salsa.

Onion Skins for Stroke Prevention

While onions are a good source for antioxidants, the skin actually has more antioxidants than the onion itself. It’s also rich in quercetin – a flavonol that can reduce blood pressure and prevent arterial plaque that can cause stroke. Simmer onion skins in soups for additional flavor, and discard them before serving.

Q: I end up overeating because it makes me feel better and I never really get full. I'd like to lose weight but this makes it hard. Any suggestions?

A: Being persistently hungry can cause big trouble. So can overeating for comfort/pleasure. These two behaviors, say researchers from Baylor University's Children's Nutrition Research Center, are controlled deep within your brain by serotonin-producing neurons, but operate separately from each other — one in the hypothalamus, the other in the midbrain. They both can, however, end up fueling poor nutritional choices and obesity.

Eating for Hunger

When hunger is your motive for eating, the question is: "Does your body know when you've had enough?" Well, if you are overweight, obese or have diabetes you may develop leptin resistance and your "I am full" hormone, leptin, can't do its job. The hormone's signal to your hypothalamus is dampened, and you keep eating.

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