Summer and healthy eating go together.
Are you sure about that?
It seems like many summer foods end up adding extra calories to our diet, some of them empty. If you’re not sure, go to a summer fair or festival and look at the corn dogs, funnel cakes, and sugary drinks available for your enjoyment.
If you love the higher calorie foods of summer, go ahead and enjoy them but include lots of healthy snacks too!
We have a favorite—raisins.
Check out some of the benefits of raisins. They’re sweet, portable, inexpensive, and good for you. If you’ve not thought of including them in your diet, let us inspire you!
1. A Raisin a Day Keeps the Doctor Away
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015-2020 suggests eating 2 cups of fresh fruits each day. Fruits provide an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. If you eat dried fruit such as raisins, ½ cup equals 1 cup of fresh fruit.
A daily dose of raisins may reduce your risk for developing certain diseases.
People who regularly eat raisins may enjoy the following health benefits:
- Lower Blood Pressure
- Lower Cholesterol
- Lower Blood Glucose Levels
Raisins may also help you feel full. When you feel full, you’re less likely to overeat. The obvious benefit of feeling full is less risk of obesity.
The lower blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood glucose can decrease your risk of heart disease and diabetes. And you thought it was apples!
2. Get Excited About Fiber
Raisins aren’t only cute, they’re packed full of fiber. Fiber may not seem like something to get excited about, but your digestive system loves it!
The natural fiber found in fruits (and vegetables) is the best gift you can give your digestive tract. Fiber bulks up your stool. If you’re tired of dealing with constipation, or want to avoid it altogether, bulkier stools are the way to go.
Fiber also helps sweep out harmful toxins from your digestive tract. If you eat more raisins along with other fruits and vegetables, you may avoid bacterial growth in your digestive system. You may also experience less bloating.
Adult women need about 25 grams of fiber each day (men need 34). If you eat ½ cup of raisins you get 3.3 grams of fiber. That’s approximately 10-24 percent of your daily requirement.
Take care of your fiber in the morning and you’ll have plenty of healthy energy to start the day.
3. A Rainbow of Flavors
Raisins come in one flavor—dried grape. Would it surprise you to find out raisins come in different flavors?
Imagine taking a golden raisin and adding a splash of orange, pineapple, or watermelon. Sounds like a healthy version of the popular dried fruit snacks, doesn’t it?
If you’ve never eaten a golden raisin, you’re missing out!
Golden raisins, dried by dehydration in machines, are plumper than black raisins. Air-dried black raisins have a chewier texture. Both raisins taste delicious and have similar nutritional content.
Shop now and tempt your taste buds with a fruity golden raisin treat!
4. Spend Less Time at the Dentist
When you eat raisins, you’re not only eating a dried fruit that tastes delicious, you’re promoting good dental health.
Full of phytochemicals, these tiny treats could keep you out of the dentist’s chair. Of course, you’ll still need your 6-month check-ups, but you may not need as many fillings and gum treatments.
Phytochemicals in raisins include:
- Oleanolic Acid
- Linoleic Acid
- Linolenic Acid
Such fancy names but what do they do? These phytochemicals battle bacteria in your mouth that cause cavities.
Choose raisins instead of other sugary snacks and keep your healthy smile!
5. Raisins and the Love Train
Sometimes your love life needs a little help. Consider trying raisins instead of Dr. Love’s latest podcast.
Raisins contain L-arginine, an amino acid thought to help with low libido.
Everyone experiences a few low moments in their romantic life. Why not indulge in a treat known as an aphrodisiac in many cultures? On their wedding night, newlyweds in India drink a glass of milk boiled with raisins and saffron.
Not only for the newly married, gentlemen who struggle with erectile dysfunction may find eating a handful of this dried fruit helps get their sex life back on track.
6. Age Gracefully with Raisins
All women eventually deal with one of the most talked-about life events associated with aging—menopause. While raisins aren’t known to alleviate hot flashes, they can help prevent bone loss or osteoporosis. Post-menopausal women often suffer from osteoporosis.
Calcium may help prevent bone loss and raisins provide around 45 milligrams in a ½ cup serving. Raisins also contain a significant amount of boron. Boron is a trace element that partners with vitamin D and calcium. Together they help with bone and joint health.
7. Natural Skin and Hair Treatment
Who doesn’t need a little help with skin and hair? Both take a beating from the environment, cosmetics, and age.
People who consume foods containing vitamin C and antioxidants tend to enjoy radiant and youthful skin. The humble raisin contains both. Raisins also have germicidal properties and can help if you struggle with acne or psoriasis.
When you see someone with beautiful shiny, thick hair, ask them what they eat. You might find out they include a raisin or two in their diet. Because of their vitamin C content, they help promote healthy hair.
If you battle scalp conditions like dandruff or scalp irritation put raisins on your grocery list. The anti-inflammatory properties of this snack help prevent both.
8. Lullaby and Goodnight
One in every 3 adults experiences occasional insomnia. For 1 in 10, it’s a chronic problem. If you count sheep all night and still can’t fall asleep, try snacking.
Specifically, eat fruits high in melatonin (bananas, pineapple, oranges). What about raisins? While raisins may not help you fall asleep, they’re rich in antioxidants, which may help counteract the effects of oxidative stress.
Sleep disorders like insomnia cause oxidative stress. Oxidative stress causes an inflammatory reaction in the body. The antioxidant-rich raisin helps keep inflammation in check.
If you don’t eat snacks right before bedtime, try adding raisins to a pasta dish at dinner. Pasta, high in carbohydrates, may also help you slumber.
Have You Had a Healthy Snack Today?
After seeing what eating raisins can do for you, you added a box to your shopping list this week, didn’t you?
From relieving constipation and bloating, to healthier skin and hair, along with many other benefits, a raisin a day just makes sense.
If you’ve enjoyed this post and want more articles on beauty, health, parenting, and food, please visit our online archives. Thanks for reading and happy snacking!
Related health Foods:
4 Ways to Encourage Kids to Be Healthy
Healthy Breakfast Recipes for Those in a Hurry
3 Quick Tips To Help You Reduce Food Waste
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