Sow the seeds of good health – Times of India – Telegraph

Here are a few eating habits that most doctors swear by. You too can start with them right away for a healthy life.

TIME FOR SOME TEA

Three recent studies confirm that drinking green tea can help lower your cholesterol level and reduce your risk of developing cancer. In a 12-week trial of 240 men and women, researchers at Vanderbilt University found that drinking the equivalent of 7 cups of green tea a day can help lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels by 16 percent. Seven cups a day is a lot of tea, but even 1 or 2 cups a day could have a beneficial impact. Meanwhile, researchers at the University of Rochester recently determined that green tea extract can help prevent the growth of cancer cells, and Medical College of Ohio researchers found that a compound called EGCG in green tea may help slow or stop the progression of bladder cancer.

GO FOR THE GRAPEFRUIT

If you want to make one simple dietary change for better health, the best thing you can do is eat a single white or ruby grapefruit every day. Grapefruit is gaining ground as a power food. New research shows that it can fight heart disease and cancer, trigger your body to lose weight,and even help you get a better night's sleep.

DON'T LET YOUR TANK HIT EMPTY

A study in the British Medical Journal found that people who eat six or more small meals a day have 5 per cent lower cholesterol levels than those who eat one or two large meals.

REFRAIN FROM FRIES

In a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the exercise and nutritional habits of 80,000 women were recorded for 14 years. The re searchers found that the most important correlate of heart disease was the women's dietary intake of foods containing trans fatty acids,mutated forms of fat that lower HDL (good) and increase LDL (bad) cholesterol.Some of the worst offenders are french fries.

SOW YOUR OATS

In a University of Connecticut study, men with high cholesterol who ate oat bran cookies daily for 8 weeks dropped their levels of LDL cholesterol by more than 20 percent. So eat more oat bran fibre, such as oatmeal.A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reports that two servings of whole-grain cereal a day can reduce a man's risk of dying of heart disease by nearly 20 percent.

RISE AND DINE

In a study of 3,900 people, Harvard researchers found that men who ate breakfast every day were 44 percent less likely to be overweight and 41 percent less likely to develop insulin resistance, both risk factors for heart disease.

FORTIFY WITH FOLIC ACID

A study published in the British Medical Journal found that people who consume the recommended amount of folic acid each day have a 16 percent lower risk of heart disease than those whose diets are lacking in this B vitamin. Good sources of folic acid include asparagus, broccoli, and fortified cereal.

ORDER A CHEF'S SALAD

Leafy greens and egg yolks are both good sources of lutein, a phytochemical that carries heart disease fighting antioxidants to your cells and tissues.