Foods for Protecting the Body & Mind: Dr. Neal Barnard
7 Foods That Guard Your Body From Everyday Toxins
A study performed in the Yangtze River Delta region of China, an area with severe air pollution, found that consuming a beverage made from broccoli sprouts may lessen the long-term health risks associated with air pollution. According to the study, broccoli sprouts are especially high in glucoraphanin, a type of antioxidant that can promote excretion of some airborne toxins from the body. The sprout juice is highly concentrated, and study authors say more research is needed to determine if the sprouts are as effective at lower concentrations. For now, it wouldn't hurt to add them to more of your sandwiches and salads or even in green smoothie recipes for a potentially toxin-blocking benefit.
People who have asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease are more vulnerable to air pollution if they're low on vitamin C, according to a UK study. The authors recommend eating lots of fruits and veggies that are rich in vitamin C, like kale, to help bulk up your defenses.
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Move over, fish oil supplements. A study comparing the effectiveness of fish oil and olive oil capsules at guarding against air pollutants found that olive oil was the clear winner. Breathing polluted air is hard on the body, and it can trigger high blood pressure, which can potentially lead to heart attack and stroke. After taking olive oil supplements, participants had an easier time breathing, thanks to improved blood vessel function and more tPA in the blood, a compound that dissolves blood clots.
Research shows that green tea can offer relief from airborne allergens like pet dander, pollen, and certain toxic chemicals. Scientists think that green tea's main antioxidant, EGCG, may block histamines and immunoglobulin E, the compounds responsible for triggering reactions.
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