By Susan Ambrosino
THE Holy Bible pointedly refers to dozens of healthful foods that you might want to consider adding to your diet as part of an overall wellness plan.
And here you’ll find 10 of them as referenced in “Hertel’s New Standard Bible” – an 82-year-old “classic” that was published in 1924 and has been passed down through my family for generations. Hertel’s New Standard contains a comprehensive dictionary that, as the editors themselves put it, “answers all questions pertaining to persons, places and things of the Scripture.”
The dictionary is a rich source of information on foods of the Bible, many of which are recommended by modern nutritionists as good choices for those of us who are concerned with our health.
Don’t forget: If you are seriously ill or think you might be, always consult a doctor before you try to diagnose or treat yourself.
1. Almonds. Almonds are a storehouse of nutrients, including magnesium, arginine and dietary fiber. True believers insist that just three raw almonds a day will keep sickness at bay.
2. Apples. An apple a day, as the saying goes, keeps the doctor away – and it’s easy to see how they got that reputation. Apples are chock full of vitamins – vitamin C especially.
And apple “pectin” – the pulpy part of the fruit next to the peeling – is reputed to help flush environmental toxins from the body, lower cholesterol, help regulate blood sugar levels, and reduce the risk of heart disease.
3. Barley. Believed to be mankind’s oldest cultivated crop, barley is a rich source of calcium and iron and contains essential amino acids, bioflavonoids and enzymes.
4. Beans. Beans are a good source of low-fat protein and more vitamins and minerals than you can shake a stick at. If you are dieting, beans can help. Studies suggest that beans function as appetite suppressants, taking the edge off hunger pangs for four hours or more after you eat them.
5. Coriander. This spice is sometimes referred to as “the healer from heaven.” New studies show that coriander can help reduce the inflammation associated with arthritic joints and it has long been used as an aid to digestion.
6. Figs. Figs have been used in the folk-treatment of constipation, scurvy, hemorrhoids, liver problems, cancers, boils, and also to increase energy, stamina and endurance.
7. Garlic. Garlic is widely used to fight infection, thin blood, reduce blood pressure, guard against heart disease and stimulate the immune system.
8. Honey. Honey kills bacteria, is a disinfectant, and is reputed to relieve symptoms of asthma. It’s an energy booster and – like morphine – it seems to reduce the perception of severe pain, an intriguing study has shown..
9. Olive Oil. Olive oil helps to prevent heart disease and high blood pressure, leading one researcher to call it: “Humanity’s best health oil.” It also is a rich source of vitamin E, an antioxidant that is reputed to protect against cancers, arthritis and diabetes. The oil is excellent for skin. It’s a mainstay of the heart-healthful “Mediterranean Diet.”
10. Onion. The onion can lower elevated cholesterol levels, lower high blood pressure and even ease the sugar “spiking” that plagues diabetics when eaten in moderation.
Susan Ambrosino has written three books on healing herbs and foods, including The Astonishing Healing Power of Herbs (American Media) and 99 Folk Remedies (4-Page Media Inc.), from which this article was excerpted with permission.