Polyphenols Benefits and the Top Foods That Contain Them
Polyphenols are powerful antioxidants that play important roles in the prevention of degenerative diseases, such as cardiovascular diseases, immune health, and many types of cancers.
Polyphenols are the most abundant antioxidants in the diet.
For perspective, they are 10 times higher in immunity-boosting potency than the intake of vitamin C, 100 times higher than the intakes of vitamin E and carotenoids (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2005).
Main dietary sources are fruits and plant-derived beverages such as fruit juices, raw coconut water, tea, coffee, and red wine, but many vegetables, fortified cereals, cocoa, and dry legumes also contribute to the total polyphenol intake.
With recent exposure (last 12 years) of the amazing effects that these flavonoids (subclass of polyphenols) and other polyphenols found in the plants and vegetable kingdoms, the health food market is packing in the spin on packaged foods with these miracle polyphenols in them. Know that the best way to enjoy such antioxidants and have them bioavailable in the body is to eat and drink them from organic, unrefined and raw sources.
What Polyphenols Can Do for the Body:
✔ Anti-microbial and immune boosting
✔ Improves bone health
✔ Helps with neurodegenerative diseases
✔ Regulates diabetes and helps with diabetes prevention
✔ Prevents cardiovascular diseases and improves heart health
✔ Decreases oxidative stress
Top Foods That Offer Polyphenols
✔ Red cabbage, most all assorted berries, red and purple grapes, broccoli, radishes, green and black tea, sweet potatoes, apples, soybeans, raw coconut water, cocoa, onions, ginkgo biloba.
✔ When drinking beverages, choose fruit juices that do not have added sugar. Pure pomegranate, maqui berry, blueberry, red grape, and unfiltered apple juice or cider are excellent choices. I still water them down because they may be concentrated and have a very high (natural) sugar content. The best is to eat the fruit with the juice raw.
✔ Organic Dark Chocolate (70% higher)
✔ Unfiltered, astringent olive oils
“Eat unrefined fruits and vegetables as well as whole grains and legumes. Refining of foods removes polyphenols, so eat fresh or freshly cooked fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes instead of refined foods and meat products. Polyphenols tend not to be destroyed by moderate cooking or heating, and cooked foods may offer a more bioavailable source of polyphenols. Eat fresh and cooked plant foods.”
Sources: American Heart Society, LiveStrong.com, lef.org, Cambridge.org, UCDavis.edu