Marry Fruit and Veg for Better Health

      February 28, 2007 09:53

      Is compatibility between fruit and vegetables as important as between people? Fukiko Koiso, a Japanese consultant for beverage companies, says it is. "Juice made with well-matched vegetables and fruit is more healthful," she told the Chosun Ilbo.

      According to Koiso, mixing the right vegetables with the right fruit creates synergies between nutrients, increasing their nutritious value and taste. Thus cabbage works well with grapefruit. Cabbage contains isothiocyanate, a substance proved to be more effective in preventing cancer than some anti-caner medicines; blended with vitamin C-rich grapefruit, the anti-oxidant effect is enhanced. Bell peppers and strawberries, both rich in vitamin C, make a healthful juice highly effective in preventing a cold and improving skin. Corn and bananas are good for breakfast because they convert into energy fast.

      But unlike people, no vegetables and fruits go together badly. "There are no vegetables and fruits that are absolutely incompatible. Some vegetables or fruits that are hard to eat raw because they are bitter or sour are not very good to make juice," Koiso says. "Such vegetables and fruits can be blended with milk or yogurt instead, which make a good smoothie. And honey will sweeten sour fruit such as grapefruit and lemon." Fruit or vegetable juice should be consumed right after making it; otherwise the vitamin C rapidly oxidizes in contact with light, moisture, heat and air. Adding lemon juice or vinegar helps reduce or delay the loss of nutritious value.

      ◆ Cabbage + Grapefruit: Antioxidants

      Spring cabbages is especially good for juice and works well with sour fruit such as oranges, apples and grapes.

      ◆ Bell Peppers + Strawberries: Good Source of Vitamin C

      Bell peppers are good for juice because they are sweet. Although all peppers are rich in vitamin C, red and yellow bell peppers have twice as much vitamin C as green ones. Also rich in carotene, they are effective in preventing colds and improving skin. Eight strawberries provide half the amount of vitamin C required per day. Freezing them makes it easy to keep them and reduces the loss of nutrients.

      ◆ Corn + Bananas + Soy Milk: Good Breakfast

      Sweetcorn is usually used for soup, but it is also good for juice. It makes a good breakfast because it is high in sweetness and converts into a source of energy fast while the vitamin C increases the metabolism. Bananas are also good in the morning because it converts into energy fast. Added soy milk increases protein.

      ◆ Spinach + Bananas + Soy Milk: Good for Dropsy

      Edema is a condition where organs or tissue swell due to excessive water, which gets worse when there is too much sodium in the body. The potassium in spinach and bananas helps excrete excess sodium. In addition, soft, sweet bananas work well with most vegetables and fruit and their fiber helps relieve constipation.

      ◆ Tomatoes + Figs: Good for a Hangover

      The citric acid in tomatoes is effective in relieving hangover by stimulating gastric activities, while the ficin in figs helps digest protein in the stomach.

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