Bioactive substances for better fitness
The more colorful the food on the plate, the better for our well-being. Provided, they are natural products. Bioactive substances shine in the colors red, yellow, blue, and violet. Although they are not essential for life, they strengthen our body and boost our fitness.
Bioactive substances best in combination
The exact number is not known, but it is estimated that there are about 100 000 bioactive substances. Only about 5 percent have been chemically analyzed so far. Besides, they have no nutrient character. Instead, they are flavorings and fragrances, as well as natural colorings and enzymes. Plants need and use bioactive substances for reproduction or to protect themselves from enemies. For tactical reasons, they, therefore, often sit in their shells.
They have multiple effects
The effects of the individual bioactive substances are incredibly diverse. Nearly all of them protect against cancer. Some can regulate blood sugar and lower cholesterol levels. Others promote digestion or strengthen the immune system. Anyone who eats a reasonably balanced diet takes about 1.5 grams. With an excellent vegetarian diet, it is even more.
The rainbow on the plate
The more colorful it looks on your plate, the healthier it is for you. This does not mean colorful sweets or golden-brown chips. We are talking about plant-based foods in a wide variety of colors. Here is an overview:
There are intensive training methods which causes little pain and other training methods that cause muscle soreness relatively quickly. Let’s take a closer look at this:
- Red – Tomatoes in all variations, including ketchup and tomato sauce and strawberries, red peppers, red lentils, and apples.
- Purple – Dark grapes, plums, cherries, blueberries, blackberries, beetroot and red onions.
- Orange – Carrots, mangoes, apricots, pumpkin.
- Yellow – Oranges, grapefruit, limes, papayas, nectarines, peach, pineapple, pears, banana, corn.
- Green – spinach, beans, green peppers, cucumbers, kiwis, avocados.
- White – onion, garlic, asparagus, artichoke, mushrooms, courgette, leek.
Bioactive substances in an overview
- Carotenoids: Found mainly in yellow, orange, red, and also green plant foods. They prevent harmful oxidation and strengthen the immune system.
- Phytosterols: The best sources are fat-rich plant components such as sesame, sunflower, pumpkin seeds, and refined oils. They have been shown to lower cholesterol levels.
- Saponins: A great source are legumes. They suppress viruses, bacteria and fungi. In this way they strengthen the immune system. They also have a positive effect on cholesterol.
- Glucosinolates: Found mainly in cress, kohlrabi, red cabbage, broccoli, radish, and mustard. They can prevent infections and strengthen the weakened immune system after intensive training.
- Polyphenols: They are found in grapes, blackberries, heather berries, blackcurrants, walnuts, lettuce, potatoes, cabbage, apples, soybeans, linseed, wholemeal, and wheat bran. They prevent harmful oxidation and strengthen the immune system. They also inhibit inflammation in previously trained muscles, and they have a positive effect on blood pressure and blood sugar levels.
- Sulfides: The best sources are onions, shallots, leeks, chives, and garlic. Sulfides prevent harmful oxidation, and they strengthen the immune system. They fight viruses, bacteria, and fungi, prevent blood clots, inhibit inflammation, regulate blood pressure, and aid digestion.