Anyone with an interest health and fitness has heard of macronutrients (carbs protein and fats), and micronutrients (the essential vitamins and minerals), but the new buzzword in the fitness world right now is mesonutrients.
‘Meso’ means ‘middle’ or ‘inside’ in Greek, and so is like the forgotten middle child of the nutrition world.
These nutrients are the active compounds and antioxidants found in superfoods. In other words, they are the substances that give superfoods their superpowers.
2018 was the year of superfoods. However, 2019 is the year consumers not only want to know about the nutrition content of the food they’re eating, but about how to ingest more of the active compounds inside those foods to maximise their benefits.
Mesonutrients can be consumed simply by eating superfoods, yet, sensing the growing demand, supplement companies have begun providing mesonutrients in easily obtainable pill form for more powerful and direct effects, hence their recent rise in popularity
However, here are three mesonutrients you can eat right now for optimal health.
Anthocyanins are the pigments that give red, purple, and blue plants their colouring. They are the mesonutrient found in foods like in blackcurrants, blackberries, blueberries, kidney beans, purple sweet potatoes and, of course, acai berries.
Anthocyanins have amazing anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties which make them perfect treatments for conditions such as high blood pressure, colds and urinary tract infections
Turmeric is known for its healing properties. However, curcumin is the active ingredient that provides all the benefits. Research has found that this micronutrient delivers the anti-inflammatory and anti-ageing benefits that the super spice is famed for.
While eating turmeric in a home cooked meal is both tasty and healthy, consuming raw turmeric is the best way to access curcumin through the diet.
However, this can often lead to an upset stomach as it is not that easy for the gut to absorb. In saying this, by combining turmeric with freshly ground black pepper and a healthy fat like coconut oil or milk (aka in a turmeric latte), people can get the best of both worlds – taste and health benefits.
3. Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG)
The best part about this mesonutrient is that you’ve probably been consuming it without realising. Green tea is basically the broccoli of beverages, but it gets its superpower from epigallocatechin gallate or EGCG.
EGCG is one of the plant phenols, or more specifically, a tannin. In addition to improving brain function, preventing cell damage and assisting with fat loss and cardiovascular health, EGCG has powerful cancer-preventing properties.
Matcha powder is a much more potent way to consume tea leaves and offers one of the best ways to get a high dose of EGCG. Unlike green tea made from steeping and straining tea leaves, matcha powder is finely ground and uses the whole leaf.
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