Need a holiday pick-me-up? Did you over-indulge and are now wondering how to get back on track? Well, there’s nothing like a return to the basics, with a little spice.
Experts recommend (no surprise) more fruits and vegetables. Not only will it help you keep that New Year’s resolution to eat better, but it can help during cold and flu season. Think about upping your antioxidant intake as a natural way to boost your body’s defenses.
Here are two specific food items to consider adding to your diet:
1. Cherries. The red color of cherries is a cue to their antioxidant and health benefits, and because cherries are available year-round as dried, frozen and juice, it’s easy to incorporate cherries into the daily diet. Cherries include both quercetin and anthocyanins. Quercetin is a natural anti-histamine and anti-inflammatory compound; anthocyanins have been linked to easing arthritis pain and reducing some of the risk factors for heart disease.
2. Cinnamon. Spices and herbs are a great way to boost your intake of antioxidants, with levels comparable to many of today’s popular, immunity-boosting ‘super foods.’ One teaspoon of cinnamon reportedly delivers more antioxidant power than 2/3 cup of cranberries or a whole cup of almonds. McCormick has identified seven super spices that may hold the greatest antioxidant potential and are easy to incorporate throughout the day: cinnamon, ginger, oregano, red peppers (including cayenne, crushed red pepper and paprika), rosemary, thyme and yellow curry powder.
Get them both in this recipe for Banana, Cherry and Rosted Cinnamon Bread Pudding–and use up some of that leftover holiday bread in the process!