Can Spinach Keep You Slim?
A compound in the leaves of spinach can fool our body into feeling full. It slows down the digestion of fat, fooling our half empty stomach into believing we have eaten enough. Added to fatty foods, such as burger biscuits and pies, it could stop dieters from experiencing hunger pangs and could combat obesity,
Scientists from Lund University in Sweden focused on the properties of chloroplasts, the part of the plant cell used in photosynthesis. Experiments on rats showed that Thylakoids one of the ingredients of chloroplast, can slow down the digestion of fats and so dampen the appetite. The rats given the food supplemented with the thylakoids, gained less weight, had lower levels of blood sugar and fat and were in generally better health.
Dieters would however, gain little from stocking up on spinach in the meantime as they would need to consume 1lb of spinach a day to get enough thylakoids. When it is isolated, you will only need few grams in supplement form. There are even talk of it being added to the production of fat rich products like pies and cookies, though this would give the false illusion that products with this additive are now safe or healthier, it is I suppose a step in the right direction for those who will eat these products anyway.
Researcher Rikard Kohnke says scientists hope to start tests on humans soon, as they are still unsure exactly how the compound works. It is thought that it might coat the fat as in lies in our intestine, stopping the enzyme that breaks it down from working as fast as usual, this leaves us feeling fuller for longer and stops us from over eating.
This is similar to the action of essential fatty acids which are also useful for dieters as it also slows down the digestion of fats, leaving us feeling fuller for longer.
Spinach, which is rich in iron, calcium and vitamin C when fresh, can also boost brain power, keeping the mind alert into old age. It is also packed with anti oxidants which nutritionist say can block the damaging effects of free radicals toxins produced by the body, which in excess, can damage cells and lead to heath disease, cancer and strokes. Studies suggest that the lifelong accumulation of excess free radicals in the brain is linked to mental decline in old age and in also a probable factor in Alzheimers and Parkinsons disease.
Take care and stay healthy
About the author:
Julian Hall of Davidel - The Natural Health Care Company - providers of herbal medicine, herbalife and other natural health products
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