Food and Drink

16684Everyone knows that Italian food is delicious, but did you know that it is one of the healthiest traditional cuisines in the world?

Italian dishes have been applauded for the ability to help with some chronic diseases, provide some anti-ageing benefits and are the source of various healthy nutrients.

Traditional Italian cuisine is a a concoction of olive oil, plant foods, red meat, moderate amounts of wine, eggs, wild vegetables/ herbs and many other beneficial foods.

Here are just some the health benefits of traditional Italian food:

Anti-oxidants

The Italian diet has been approved to help speed up metabolism and detoxify the body, removing the body toxins. The Italian diet consists of very powerful anti-oxidants including lycopene, Vitamins A, C and E, selenium, beta-carotene and lutein.

They are also abundant in vegetables, fruits, nuts and whole grains. Eating such foods help purge your body from free radicals, hence leading to a healthy life. Free radicals are basically unstable molecules that damage body cells, and the antioxidant properties of some Italian foods therefore have the power to reduce cancer risk.

Weight Management

People have become weight conscious than ever – weight is directly related to some of the most prevalent diseases of the century like obesity and heart disease.

The traditional Italian foods with low calorie content include spinach, tomatoes, leafy greens, garlic, onions and citrus fruits, alongside the traditional lean meat and oily fish included in many traditional dishes.

Fiber Benefits

Dietary fiber is abundant in the traditional Italian foods; fiber is very beneficial for your health. Fiber helps us to prevent constipation; helps maintain stable blood sugar levels in the body and reduce blood cholesterol levels. Some of the traditional Italian cuisine rich in fiber include vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, and grains.

Heart Health

The number one Italian staple foods are seafood and olive oil; both sources of healthy fats. For example, tuna, sardines and salmon are sources of unsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids. Both omega-3 and unsaturated fats are essential for healing heart problems.

Omega-3 is related to prevention of coronary heart problems, reduction of high blood pressure and decreases the levels of triglycerides. Additionally, red wine can be good for your health (in small doses!).

Traditional Italian foods are largely healthy choices, and form an important part of a balanced diet.

 

Whisky has long been associated with wellbeing, and while working your way through a few drams every day probably isn’t the best thing for you, the occasional whisky can actually have a positive impact on your health.

 

The cure for the common cold!

Used historically as part of the famous ‘hot toddy’, whisky can be used to fight some of the factors found in the common cold.  Adding whisky helps to dilate the blood vessels, which can help mucus and white blood cells fight infection and ward off those nasty cold germs.

As anyone who’s had a bad cold will tell you, sleeping well when you’re stuffed up is pretty difficult. Similarly, anyone who regularly has a few whiskies will tell you that getting a good sleep is especially easy when you’re under the influence. The alcohol in whisky works as a sedative, helping you to get some decent sleep when you’re feeling under the weather.

 

Watching your weight

While it’s obviously not an essential part of losing weight (think diet and exercise), if you’re having a drink while you’re on a diet you can’t do much better than whisky. It’s around 80 calories per serving, low in fat and has almost no carbs, making it the perfect choice no matter what your preferred method of weight loss.

As for what whisky to drink, we’re big fans of the small batch reserve whisky from Bowmore and, on the occasion we have some extra cash available, the 50 year old whisky from Auchentoshan is pretty special.

Cheers, and here’s to your health!