Mangosteens are tropical fruits with a hard purple-brown shell and soft white inner flesh. Though not particularly known for containing high levels of vitamins or minerals as compared to other fruits, mangosteens are nonetheless prized – for their other health benefits. Mangosteens contain over 40 different xanthones – polyphenols with antibiotic, antiviral, anti-tumoral, anti-inflammatory and…

Raspberries are fantastic fruits because they are full of vitamin C and anti-cancer compounds. Raspberries contain ellagic acid, which is a powerful cancer-fighting phytonutrient. The berries, which may come in colors other than pink, like yellow, also contain anthocyanins – plant pigments that can protect you against cancer, heart diseases and many degenerative diseases. That…

Fennel is a very popular herb among healers of different cultures. It is rich in nutrients like vitamin C, potassium, folate, magnesium, manganese, iron, calcium and molybdenum. Eating fennel or drinking fennel tea can help if you have an upset stomach. Gripe water which is used to calm colicky infants often contains fennel. Breastfeeding mothers…

As one of the richest natural food sources of potassium, bananas can help protect you against heart diseases as well as stroke. Besides potassium, bananas are also great sources of vitamin B6 and C, riboflavin, magnesium, biotin, silicon, and phosphorus. Bananas also contain trace amounts of minerals such as copper, chromium, iron, fluoride, manganese, selenium…

The Amaranth grain is a highly nutritious grain. The ancient Greeks believed that this seed bestowed the gift of immortality, and hence named it “amarantos”, which meant “unfading”. World health workers found that in areas of Africa and Latin America where the plant grows, there is little incidence of malnutrition. Amazingly, even though this plant…

Bitter foods are sometimes good for health and battling illnesses. An example is the bitter melon. This melon has a long history of being used for medicinal purposes in India, South America, Japan, China and Philippines. Amazonian healers and Ayurvedic physicians have been using this gourd-like vegetable for dealing with diabetes for thousands of years.…

Often used for making red bean paste, the dark-red colored adzuki beans are not just nutty and sweet in taste. They are also highly nutritious. These beans are rich in proteins, vitamins and minerals. They also contain large quantities of dietary fiber, folic acid, B vitamins, as well as trace minerals such as copper, manganese…

Wakame is a brown sea vegetable that is rich in nutrients. This seaweed is rich in calcium, iron and natural sodium. It also contains a bit of vitamin C. More importantly, wakame contains fucoxanthin. This compound, a carotenoid, has been shown to help animals lose 10% of their body weight. It seems that fucoxanthin helps…

Turnip, a member of the cruciferous family, has the wonderful health properties of cancer-preventing cruciferous vegetables. Sometimes eaten as a starchy vegetable, turnip root contains only a-third the calories of a baked potato, and so much more dietary fiber, which is important for healthy bowel movements and blood sugar control. In addition, turnip roots are…

Grapefruits are citrus fruits that can be very beneficial to you if you are suffering from inflammatory problems. Patients suffering from conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and other inflammation-related problems have reported a decrease in symptoms after consuming grapefruits daily. Scientists suspect that the link lies in plant compounds found in grapefruits that block…

More from Beliefnet and our partners