It would be incomplete to write about living a simpler life, without also addressing some important health matters.
I strongly believe that preventive maintenance is the best solution to living a healthy, natural life. Waiting for something to go wrong before starting to take care of your self is unwise and in some cases may be too late. Nature gave us lots of options for maintaining good health if we just apply them. Folic acid is among them.
What’s special about folic acid, and why is it so important to consume? The New York Times called folic acid (also known as vitamin B9), among the most “luscious micro-nutrients” found in food. Numerous studies support findings that lack of folic acid in diet can lead to depression and other mental disorders.
Your body needs folic acid to perform many essential functions. Like creating red blood cells, DNA repair and preventing many different diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, anemia and cancers. Foods with folic acid are highly recommended for women during pregnancy for healthy fetal development. Fortunately, folic acid is plentiful in many different foods.
You may or may not like some of the foods listed below. Over time, refined sugary foods and preservatives in our diet, overwhelm the palette to a point where healthy foods don’t seem to taste right. But it’s important to experiment and learn to enjoy them once again.
Actually, there are so many of these foods, that it’s hard not to eat at least some of them. There are easily over 100 different foods high in folic acid. Most of these foods fall into one of the following categories.
Dark Leafy Vegetables
It’s no surprise that most bountiful foods on earth are also extremely nutrient rich. These vegetables are loaded with vitamins and antioxidants. Usually, the darker the leaves, the higher the concentration of folic acid. Light cooking is recommended to break down the vegetable to releace more nutrients.
A partial list of the more famous green vegetables: Spinach, Collard Greens, Turnip Greens, Mustard Greens, Asparagus, Broccoli and Beats. It’s important, not to overcook them since folic acid is water soluble and sensitive to the heat.
Beans and Legumes
Beans and legumes contain high amounts of essential vitamins, as well as calcium, potassium, protein and of course folic acid. One cup of beans can give you an average of 180 micrograms of folic acid which is almost half of the daily value.
Steaming or boiling the beans is the preferred cooking method to maintain the nutrition. A short list of beans: Lentils, Pinto Beans, Garbanzo Beans, Black Beans, Navy Beans, Kidney Beans, Lima Beans, Greens Beans and Peas.
Seeds and Nuts
Sunflower, Flax, Pumpkin, Sesame, etc. are all great sources of folic acid as well as nuts such as Peanuts, Almonds and Walnuts. Seeds and nuts can be eaten raw, lightly roasted, sprinkled over other foods or just by themselves.
Lots of fruit contains folic acid, with citrus fruit containing the highest amounts with Oranges on the top of the list. Natural citrus juices may contain even more folic acid. Other fruit with folic acid are: Papaya, Grapefruit, Strawberries and Raspberries.
Liver (yes, liver is a food high in folic acid)
Although not a food group on its own, for those of you who eat meat, liver is extremely high in nutrients, especially in folate (natural form of folic acid). Just as little as 100 grams of beef liver, gives you up to 70% of daily value of folate.
Even though there are folic acid supplements, getting it from living food is preferable in order to maintain a good health. Humans have consumed these foods for millennium before we ever knew they were good for us. How convenient!
Live well. Vlad