7 Health Benefits of Vanilla You Should Know about ...

Heather

I know I love vanilla flavor, and I bet you do too, but until last year, I didn’t know about all the health benefits of vanilla, and what such a simple, childhood favorite flavor could do for me nutrition-wise. First, let’s talk about exactly what vanilla is. Vanilla comes from one type of over 2,000 varieties of orchids that exist on the planet. It’s thought of as one of the most amazing, unique foods nature has created. And sure, while it makes for an amazing flavor to foods, which is my personal favorite even above chocolate, what most people don’t realize is just how incredible vanilla is for your mind and body. So, let’s take a look at just what health benefits of vanilla can take this everyday ingredient, and upgrade it to a superfood in your own kitchen.

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1

Lower Blood Pressure

Just smelling vanilla can actually lower your blood pressure, but eating it can actually provide one of the biggest health benefits of vanilla of all. Vanilla has been found to lower blood pressure at measurable rates, and for this, is a great food to reduce stress.

2

Sugar Cravings

Vanilla comes from the the beans found within pods of the vanilla orchid plant, making it a fruit in its own right. It’s actually high in natural carbs, but fructose free. It’s also wonderful for reducing sugar cravings. Most people who eat food such as yogurt, oatmeal, or perhaps a green smoothie, with no added sugar, that has vanilla added, will no longer crave sugar. Vanilla has a natural sweet taste and is high in flavor, making it a natural way to reduce sugar cravings. Do be sure to choose raw vanilla beans, plain vanilla powder, or 100% vanilla flavoring without added sugars for the best benefit.

3

B Vitamins

Like cacao beans, vanilla beans are also high in B vitamins naturally. Chromium and Vitamin B6 are two of the highest B vitamin counts found in vanilla. These vitamins are essential for promoting calmness, blood sugar regulation, energy, and overall better metabolism.

4

Anti-aging

Another similarity between cacao and vanilla is their incredible antioxidant count. Vanilla is rich in anti-aging properties, which can help illuminate skin, prevent free radical exposure, and also prevent stress that leads to wrinkles.

5

Digestion

Vanilla contains properties that enhance the mood, and also lower stress. Both of these factors are essential to reducing anxiety that leads to poor digestion. When the body is relaxed, which happens almost instantly when you eat vanilla, digestion occurs much more smoothly. Vanilla powder and the beans are also rich in fiber, which can naturally enhance digestion as well.

6

Serotonin

Vanilla is also a wonderful food to immediately reduce opiates in the brain that lead to serotonin production. Serotonin is the happy hormone your body produces, that releases a host of beneficial hormones to your body. Foods that increase serotonin, like vanilla, are the best natural ways you can create a happier body and mind.

7

Focus

Vanilla is also a powerful food to enhance your focus if you’re interested in more than just mood boosting and metabolism boosting properties. Vanilla is a fantastic focus food since it triggers reactions in the brain that can create more acute mental performance.

As I said, it’s best to use raw vanilla beans, raw vanilla powder with no added ingredients, or organic alcohol-free vanilla extract. Vanilla stevia is also another option. Do you use vanilla?

Source: easteuropeanfood.about.com, nutrition-and-you.com

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I use vanilla only as flavor as found in some recipes like baking bread. Good and it mentioned here the many beneficial effects of vanilla. I will share the knowledge with others.

I bought a big bottle of pure vanilla bean extract from Costco. My favourite tipple (Absolut Vanilia) changed it formula so last evening I had a good dash (3ish tablespoons) with plain vodka & coke. Yes I know alcohol & coke are both very unhealthy but it had been a stressful day.l! After 3, so 9 table spoons of essence I didn’t feel too good. Light feeling on my chest, dizzy, couldn’t stand up etc. I have an autonomic disorder that causes extremely high hypertension on standing.. (diastolic up to 135). Anything above 100 can cause strokes or cardiac arrest. I did several bloodpressure reading and the lowest bloodpressure reading was 97/63. This is almost an impossibility due to my condition. So, either it was a random issue with my condition, the only thing I ate out of the ordinary was the vanilla so it’s possible it reacted with some of my BP meds or pure. High quality vanilla bean extract has yet to be explored effects on BP. Bring the curious type I am randomly going to pick days to consume less of the vanilla and take frequent measurements. My BP monitor syncs with my health spp and provides charts.. I am very curious to see if this vanilla extract has managed to do what three different BP meds (taken three times a day) has failed to do. While hopeful I suspect it was just random and I’m clutching at straws. However many natural extract have amazing properties. Just look at star anise, the expensive drug Tamiflu is basically an extract of Star Anise and colchicine has been used for inflammation for millinium. All of our powerful antibiotics and parasitic (which have potential cancer effects) are from natural moulds and bacteria’s… If I remember I will post back my results. If it is the vanilla I will ask my clinical pharmacology team to put it out as a possible PHD paper for one of their students to see if my worrying but amazing symptoms were due to the high grade, large dose of vanilla I had.

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