Phytonutrients are an amazing discovery; found in plants they have the ability to work with our body to improve its defense against disease and illness. Although only nine hundred if these phytonutrients have been discovered so far it is the scientist opinion that many more will be found and will change tomorrows health care needs; more are being discovered all the time and the whole area of nutrition, antioxidant foods and preventative health care is opening up.
Recent studies have indicated the phytonutrients found in fruit provide a whole host of natural health benefits; cherries for instance are able to reduce the pain in joints and blueberries have anti-aging properties.
The humble blueberry (famous for homemade pies) has very low sugar content while having many antioxidants that are good for our health. For many people eating fruit does not come easily but drinking the juice is much more pleasant and an efficient way to get the goodness from the fruit into our systems; many benefits have been found including an improvement in our circulatory system and an increase in our own ability to ward of illness.
Not content with helping to prevent illness, these antioxidants also help fight disease and infection. The old saying about an apple-a-day couldn't be truer with evidence that they can help prevent the chance of heart conditions occurring.
Now citrus fruits too are showing that they have a use with a number of beneficial phytochemicals contained in them. Tart cherries can also provide anti-inflammatory benefits to people who suffer with conditions that cause pain in and around the joints. Of course these fruits contain large amounts of vitamins B, C and E plus other which are already known to have beneficial effects on our health.
Another group of antioxidant foods called Phytoalexins (resveratrol) found in many berries can prevent infection and have anti-viral properties.Many people with other aging conditions prevalent around the world, for instance: heart attacks, stroke and Alzheimer's can all benefit when these compounds are used. The humble tomato has also been under scrutiny with benefits it has guarding against certain cancers and heart problems.
Although quite large quantities are needed so using tomato juice, puree or sauce which are all concentrates has been found to be the best way to increase the level of the antioxidants in our antioxidant foods. More recently the refreshing watermelon has been discovered to contain some of the most beneficial phytonutrients yet seen. We are told to eat more fruit and now there is a very good scientific reason to do this.