The nutrient richness of green beans is partially a reflection of the wealth of antioxidant carotenoid phytonutrients - including lutein, beta-carotene, violaxanthin, and neoxanthin - that they contain. They are also a concentrated source of vitamin K, which is essential for bone mineralization. They are also a particularly helpful food for providing us with the mineral silicon, important for bone health and healthy formation of connective tissue.
Green beans are one of only a few varieties of beans that are typically eaten fresh. Commonly referred to as string beans, green beans are delicious are versatile - great as a side dish or incorporated into a salad.
One concern of green beans is that they are a concentrated source of oxalates, which when accumulated may place the kidneys, of certain individuals, at risk of calcium oxalate kidney stone formation due to supersaturation of urine with calcium oxalate salts.
Nutrients and Health Benefits
Researchers have discovered that flavonoids to play an important role in the prevention of diseases like cancer and heart disease, while offering a wide range of pharmacological benefits, such as antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, neuroprotective, and antidiabetic effects, to name a few (M. Calderon-Montano et al., 2011). Emphasizing the "green" in green beans, another study shows that green and yellow vegetables may lower the risk of heart disease and atherosclerosis (Adams et al., 2006).
Selecting Green Beans
In order to select the most flavorful green beans, look for the ones that are sold loose so you can sort through them and select the best quality beans. The freshest beans feel smooth, have a vibrant green color, are firm, and "snap" when bent. To ensure uniform cooking, aim to select green beans of similar size. Seeking the freshest green beans will increase the likelihood of higher nutritional content. As with all vegetables, it is recommended to select organically grown green beans when possible.
Avoid green beans that have brown spots or areas that are soft, bruised, wrinkled, or have tough skin. Beans that are beginning to turn yellow are no longer fresh.
If you are unable to obtain fresh green beans, many valuable nutrients can still be obtained from green beans that have been frozen or canned. Fresh green beans are ideal.
Storing Green Beans
For the best flavor and nutrition, green beans should be enjoyed soon after they are purchased. Prevent them from becoming limp and yellow. The longer you keep them the more nutrients and flavor you are likely to lose. It is not recommended to store green beans for longer than 7 days. Many factors affect the shelf life of green beans. A colder temperature will help minimize the rate of respiration and thereby help keep green beans fresh for a longer period of time. Place green beans in an airtight storage bag and wrap the bag tightly, squeezing out as much of the air as possible. Do not wash green beans before refrigeration.
If you do not have access to fresh green beans on a year-round basis, and you desire to freeze green beans, it is recommended to first steam them for 2-3 minutes. Remove them from heat and let them cool thoroughly before placing them in freezer bags and storing them in your freezer. Green beans are able to retain many of the valuable nutrients for 3-6 months after freezing.
Preparing Green Beans
Green beans should be properly cleaned and cut to help ensure they will have the best flavor. Rinse well in a colander under running water after cutting off the end that was attached to stem. It is preferred to cut of the end that is attached to the stem. Take a handful of beans and align the ends that were attached by to the stems by tapping them into alignment with the knife and removing them with one cut.
Cooking Green Beans
To maximize the nutritional benefits, green beans should be cooked just long enough to soften its fibers for better digestion and overall greater enjoyment. Researchers have well established that improper cooking, too much heat and long cooking times, can easily damage many nutrients present in green beans. The most nutritious way to cook green beans is a quick-steam at roughly 212 F for only 7 minutes. Use exact cooking times, and avoid using high heat to get water to a rapid boil and full steam. Vegetables, such as green beans, can continue to cook if they are left in the pot after the heat is turned off. Therefore it is suggested to immediately remove green beans from the pot to prevent overcooking.
Adams, M., Golden, D., Chen, H., Register, T. and Gugger, E. (2006). A Diet Rich in Green and Yellow Vegetables Inhibits Atherosclerosis in Mice. The Journal of Nutrition, 136(7), pp.1886-1889. https://doi.org/10.1093/jn/136.7.1886
M. Calderon-Montano, J., Burgos-Moron, E., Perez-Guerrero, C. and Lopez-Lazaro, M. (2011). A Review on the Dietary Flavonoid Kaempferol. Mini-Reviews in Medicinal Chemistry, 11(4), pp.298-344. https://doi.org/10.2174/138955711795305335
Mateljan, G. (2017). Green Beans [online] Whfoods.com. Available at: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=134 [Accessed 29 Jan. 2018].
Mercola.com. (2017). What Are Green Beans Good For? - Mercola.com. [online] Available at: http://foodfacts.mercola.com/green-beans.html [Accessed 29 Jan. 2018].
The principle reasons for failure are: Lack of confidence and too much effort. When you know how your mind functions you gain a measure of confidence. Whenever your subconscious mind accepts an idea it immediately begins to execute it. It uses all its mighty resources to that end and mobilizes all the mental laws of your deeper mind. This law is true for beneficial or harmful ideas. Consequently, if you use it negatively, it brings trouble, failure, and confusion. When you use it constructively, it brings guidance, freedom, and peace of mind.
The right answer is inevitable when your thoughts are positive, constructive, and loving. From this it is perfectly obvious that the only thing that you have to do in order to overcome failure is to get your subconscious to accept your idea or request by feeling its reality now, and the law of your mind (mentalism) will do the rest. Turn over your request with faith and confidence, and your subconscious will take over and answer for you.
You will always fail to get results by trying to use mental coercion - your subconscious mind does not respond to coercion, it responds to your conscious mind acceptance.
Your failure to get results ma also arise from such statements as, "Things are getting worse", "I will never get an answer", "I see no way out", "It is hopeless", "I don't know what to do", "I'm all mixed up." When you use such limiting statements and beliefs, you get no response or cooperation from your subconscious mind. Like a solider marking time, you neither go forward or backward; in other words, you don't get anywhere.
If you get into a taxi and give a half dozen different directions to the driver in five minutes, he would become hopelessly confused and probably would refuse to take you anywhere. It is the same when working with your subconscious mind. There must be a clear cut idea in your mind. You must arrive at the definite decision that there is a way out, a solution to any vexing problem. Only the infinite intelligence within your subconscious mind knows the answer. When you come to that clear cut conclusion in your conscious mind, your mind is then made up, and according to your belief is it done unto you.
Do what the 99% are not doing. It's up to you. This is the mindset of high achievers.
The ancient Egyptians believed garlic was not only bestowed with sacred qualities but enhanced endurance and strength. Throughout the millennia, garlic has been used for both culinary and medicinal purposes. Its unique taste and aroma is like no other.
Garlic is considered a superfood because in addition to it being a rich source of many vitamins and minerals, it also contains unique sulfur compounds that contribute to its health benefits. These include thiosulfinates (such as allicin), sulfoxides (such as alliin), and dithiins (such as ajoene), phytonutrients that have antioxidant, heart-healthy, and anti-microbial properties.
Nutrients and Health Benefits
Researchers administered raw extracts of garlic to rodents and observed significantly reduced levels in cholesterol, triglycerides, and glucose. Raw garlic has a profound affect on these levels, compared to boiled garlic. These results suggest that garlic may play an important role in preventing atherosclerosis (Thomson, Al-Qattan, Bordia, & Ali, 2006).
Selected the most flavorful garlic by looking for bulbs that are plump. Gently squeeze the bulb between your fingers; fresh garlic will feel firm with no trace of dampness. Selecting large cloves helps to make peeling easier. As with all vegetables, it is recommended to select organically grown garlic when possible.
Avoid garlic that is soft, shriveled, and moldy or has begun to sprout. These may be indications of decay that will cause excess waste and inferior flavor and texture.
Although garlic in flake, powder, or paste form may be more conventient, you will find that it has less flavor (it also has lost some of its health-promoting nutrients).
For the best flavor and nutrition, garlic should be enjoyed soon after it is purchased. The best way to store garlic is in an uncovered or loosely covered container in a cool dark place away from heat and bright light. This will help minimize its respiration rate and help keep garlic fresh for a longer period of time. Do not refrigerate garlic since moisture in the refrigerator will cause garlic to spoil. Refrigerating garlic causes it to soften and sprout, producing a bitter taste. Be sure to inspect the bulb frequently and remove any cloves that appear to be dried out or moldy. Once you break the head of the garlic and use some of the cloves, its shelf life becomes greatly reduced, and it will last only up to two weeks.
The first step to using garlic is to separate the individual cloves. An easy way to do this is place the bulb on a cutting board and gently, but firmly, apply pressure with the palm of your hand at an angle. This is cause the layers of skin that hold the bulb together to separate.
Do throw away sprouted garlic. If you don't want to use the sprouts, you can cut them off and just use the clove.
If you see spots on the surface of the cloves, it is best to cut them off as they will have a bitter flavor. If you don't mind the bitterness, go ahead and use them as they are.
Garlic is an important seasoning that adds aroma to your food and extra flavor and nutrition to your meal. Garlic is most pungent when eaten raw and milder when quickly cooked. For those individuals who cannot tolerate raw garlic, it is recommended to added chopped garlic to your vegetables while they are cooking. To help preserve flavor and nutrition, add garlic towards the end of the cooking process.
Both flavor and nutrition can diminish as garlic cooks. Too much heat for too long will reduce the activity of the health-promoting sulfur compounds that have formed when you let the garlic sit for up to 5-10 minutes before cooking (Mukherjee et al., 2009).
Bianchini, F. and Vainio, H. (2001). Allium Vegetables and Organosulfur Compounds: Do They Help Prevent Cancer?. Environmental Health Perspectives, 109(9), pp.893-902. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11673117
Goncagul, G. and Ayaz, E. (2010). Antimicrobial Effect of Garlic (Allium sativum). Recent Patents on Anti-Infective Drug Discovery, 5(1), pp.91-93. https://doi.org/10.2174/157489110790112536
Mateljan, G. (2017). Garlic. [online] Whfoods.com. Available at: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=60 [Accessed 2 Dec. 2018].
Mercola.com. (2017). What Is Garlic Good For? - Mercola.com. [online] Available at: http://foodfacts.mercola.com/garlic.html [Accessed 2 Dec. 2018].
Mukherjee, S., Lekli, I., Goswami, S. and Das, D. (2009). Freshly Crushed Garlic is a Superior Cardioprotective Agent than Processed Garlic. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 57(15), pp.7137-7144. https://doi.org/10.1021/jf901301w
Thomson, M., Al-Qattan, K. K., Bordia, T., & Ali, M. (2006). Including garlic in the diet may help lower blood glucose, cholesterol, and triglycerides. The Journal of Nutrition, 136(3), 800–802. Retrieved from http://jn.nutrition.org/content/136/3/800S.full
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