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11. Walnuts

11. Walnuts
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The most widespread tree nut in the world, walnuts contain the polyunsaturated fatty acid called alpha-linolenic acid, which has been shown to lower inflammation.

The L-arginine, omega-3s, fibre, vitamin E and other phytochemicals found in walnuts and other tree nuts make them potent: scientists have found them to have antioxidant, anticancer, antiviral and anti-high cholesterol actions.

These powers can help stop and reverse the progression of chronic conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.

Snack on walnuts in their shells; the time it takes to crack them open can help you slow down, so your body has more time to register the food and you feel full with fewer kilojoules.

Nuts are one of a few foods that fight the hunger cravings and make you feel fuller for longer.

12. Quinoa

12. Quinoa
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Quinoa tastes like a grain, but it’s more closely related to spinach than it is to rice.

Contrary to most grains, quinoa is a dense source of ‘complete’ protein (14 grams per half cup!), boasting all nine essential amino acids.

One is lysine, which helps the body absorb all that fat-burning calcium and also helps produce carnitine, a nutrient responsible for converting fatty acids into energy and helping to lower cholesterol.

One of the most fibre-rich grain-like foods, quinoa contains 2.6 grams per half cup, and fibre helps to balance blood sugar levels and keep you fuller, longer.

AS a complex carbohydrate, quinoa is also low of the Glycaemic Index, meaning it provides a more sustain rise in blood glucose levels.

13. Cinnamon

13. Cinnamon
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Several studies show that this delicious spice can help reduce blood sugar.

One, published in the journal Diabetes Care, noted how people with type 2 diabetes who’d taken one or more grams of cinnamon daily had dropped their fasting blood sugar by a whopping 30 per cent, compared to people who took no cinnamon.

They also reduced their triglycerides, LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol by upwards of 25 per cent.

Here’s why: cinnamon is rich in chromium, a mineral that enhances the effects of insulin.

It’s also loaded with polyphenols, antioxidants that gather up all the free radicals in your blood to protect you from cancer and also lower systemic inflammation, further guarding you from diabetes and heart disease.

14. Collard greens

14. Collard greens
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Dark green leafy vegetables like collard greens are excellent sources of vitamin C, which helps lower cortisol in the body and consequently reduces inflammation as well.

Collard greens (and other cruciferous vegies like kale and Brussels sprouts) are also a good source of alpha-lipoic acid (ALA), a micronutrient that helps the body deal with stress.

When scientists at the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University gave ageing rats ALA, they found that the animals’ bodies created their own antioxidants, making them better able to resist toxins in the environment, and to reduce inflammation.

Good news for diabetes: ALA also helps reduces blood sugar and can help to strengthen the nerves damaged by diabetic neuropathy.

Just be careful not to overcook it, which creates a strong sulfur smell. Just five minutes of steaming and you’re done.

15. Turmeric

15. Turmeric
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Turmeric may have been protecting the health of an entire Indian subcontinent for about 5,000 years.

A traditional Indian diet features white rice and flour breads, which as rapidly digested carbs would ordinarily raise blood sugar dramatically.

But the presence of turmeric – the yellow spice that lends its colour to many curry dishes – helps to manage the potent impact on blood sugar.

Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, is the compound believed to regulate fat metabolism in the body.

Curcumin acts directly on fat cells, pancreatic cells, kidney cells and muscle cells, dampening inflammation and blocking the nefarious activities of cancer-causing tumour necrosis factor and interleukin-6.

Experts believe the combined action of all of these factors together gives curcumin the power to reverse insulin resistance, high blood sugar and high cholesterol, and other symptoms linked to obesity.

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