Cherry Active – what the research says

There is a flurry of excitement around Montmorency cherries at the moment, with lots of research looking into their benefits to health and recovery after sport. I’ve written a little about free radicals and antioxidants before and it is mostly this area that cherry juice works wonders. Montmorency cherries are one of the richest sources […]

All things carrot(ene)

Carrots are one of the most nutritious root vegetables. And there’s a bit of truth behind that they’ll make you see in the dark; they are very good for your eyes. Carrots are a really rich source of carotene, which is an antioxidant and precursor to a form of vitamin A. Vitamin A is involved […]

Butternut squash

A great vegetable to know what to do with. The orange flesh is bursting with a carotene called beta-cryptoxanthin, which is linked to protection against lung cancer. Butternuts are also full of vitamins C and E, calcium, iron and magnesium, and, of course, full of fibre to keep the gut healthy. The same as with […]

iQ ‘superfood’ chocolate

I recently tried a bar of the Scottish-made iQ chocolate. This “clever little chocolate bar”, as the creators call it, has a lot of research behind it from the likes of Robert Gordon University and the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health. Raw cacao has long been known to contain high amounts of antioxidants, but […]

What is a free radical anyway?

It is always hard to come up with a definition of these things without either being too sciency and hard to understand, or dumbing it down too much and sounding like you are talking to children. The latest health article in The Guardian I think explains it perfectly, so I will say no more… “Free […]

Vitamin E

Chemical name: tocopherol RDA: 10mg Top sources: wheatgerm oil, sunflower seeds, hazelnuts, almonds, pine nuts, sweet potato, avocado and spinach Absorption: helped by vitamin C and selenium Cautions: can affect blood clotting with high doses Role in sport: potential protective role against the damaging effects of free radicals induced by prolonged or eccentric exercise, but […]

Sweet potato and squash soup

This is a cracking little winter warmer for all you soup lovers out there. It is high in antioxidants and fibre with a little spice to warm your cockles. Ingredients: 1 onion, diced 2 cloves of garlic, crushed whole 300g sweet potato, peeled and diced 300g butternut squash, peeled and diced 1 stock cube 2 […]

Cantaloupe melon

This is by far my favourite kind of melon. It reminds me of summers in the south of France where we ate them endlessly with saucisson. The orange colour of cantaloupe means that it is full of betacarotene, holding some of the highest levels of this antioxidant of all the fruits and veg. Melons are […]

Spinach falafels

These green machines pack a health punch. Chock-a-block with spinach, chickpeas and spices and perfect crammed into homemade flatbreads with some mango chutney and rocket. Spinach is full of antioxidants like flavonoids, carotenes and vitamin E. It is also rich in vitamin K, that vitamin we hear little about but is great for bone strength. […]

Beetroot juice and exercise

My final essay for my Sports Nutrition post-grad was on beetroot and sport performance, which turned out to be such an interesting topic. Everything in this field is relatively new and more and more research is being carried out all the time. Beetroot has long been a remedy for high blood pressure, with the elderly […]