As Mens Health Month continues throughout June, lets take a look at some more of the foods that fellas should be consuming more of, so that we can stay happy and healthy. Some are more surprising than others, as I’m sure you will agree:
Coffee hasn’t always been considered healthy. Recently, evidence suggests that drinking coffee in moderation (two to four cups a day) helps reduce your risk of an early death. In tests, those who drank more coffee saw the greatest benefits. Coffee has also been associated with a lower risk of gout, cirrhosis, type 2 diabetes, heart attack, and stroke. The World Health Organisation used to consider it to be a carcinogen, but have now decided that it does not cause cancer at all.
Soybeans and Tofu
Foods made from the soybean, including tofu and edamame, provide high quality protein to your diet. It may also help ward off prostate cancer (one study only found this in men who ate tofu). Because of its unsaturated fats, soybeans are also considered a good way to avoid heart disease.
Bananas are jam-packed with potassium, which is great for your bones, and can prevent painful muscle spasms. And if you’ve been diagnosed with prehypertension or high blood pressure, potassium could be as important as reducing your sodium to get your blood pressure numbers down.
Brazil buts are packed full of selenium, and are the greatest food source of it. Selenium plays an important role in your body’s immune system. If you find yourself getting sick frequently, it may help. In addition to fighting off colds, this chemical is necessary for male fertility, so are an important addition to your diet if you want to become a father.
Orange vegetables such as carrots, sweet potatoes, orange bell peppers, and pumpkins, offer lots of vitamin C, as well as lutein and beta-carotene. These are the nutrients identified in one study as reducing the risk of an enlarged prostate.
The average man should be eating up to 35 grams of fibre a day, according to some estimates. One way to get more into your diet is by eating the whole grains found in nutritious cereals. Avoid the sugary, over-processed breakfast products – rather choose steel-cut oats, muesli, shredded wheat and raisin bran cereals to get the greater benefit.
A personal favourite of mine, eggs are a tasty, low calorie and nutritious way to add protein to your diet. They are also a good source of potassium and lutein, an antioxidant good for skin and vision.
Eggs have about 200mg cholesterol per large egg, which has been suggested can raise cholesterol levels in your blood, but only by about 10%. The more worrisome culprits to clog the arteries are carbs and trans fats. And there are no trans fats in an egg, and only a tiny 0.6g of carbohydrates. Most experts now agree that eating one egg per day is heart-healthy.
Wild or Brown Rice
Brown rice has more protein, fibre, and healthy omega 3 fat than white rice. It also has more B vitamins, calcium, and vitamin K. One study showed that by substituting white rice for brown, you can lower your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Wild rice is also more nutritious than white. It has fewer calories, more fibre, and more protein. It also has much more zinc and phosphorous, minerals critical for well-functioning nerves and muscles.
All berries are good for your health. They’re loaded with antioxidants, which help your arteries relax and may have anti-aging effects as well. But for men especially, blueberries are king.
Blueberries have lots of vitamin K, which helps your blood clot, and plenty of vitamin C, like most berries. But they also may help prevent or improve erectile dysfunction, a condition that as many as half of all men will experience in their lives.