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8 Amazing Benefits of Grapes (+5 Refreshing Recipes)

8 Amazing Benefits of Grapes (+5 Refreshing Recipes)

A healthy and well-balanced diet is key to living life to the fullest. Amidst our busy lives; however, none of us really take the time to think about what we use to fuel our bodies. Are we eating the right kinds of food to get us through the day? Are we filling ourselves with the proper nutrients? For the majority of us, we probably aren’t. Fortunately, we can solve this problem one baby step at a time, starting with a step as simple as eating a few grapes a day.

Grapes, you ask? Is that it?

Well, no, it will not solve all of your diet problem. However, striving towards a healthy lifestyle begins with healthy eating. It is not so commonly known that in terms of nutritional value, grapes are some of the most delicious, nutritious, and versatile fruits you can come across.

For those who have not already been enlightened with the extensive health benefits of grapes, here are a few reasons you may want to throw a few in your shopping basket during your next grocery shop.

1.) Aids the treatment of acne

An antioxidant derived from grapes known as resveratrol can prevent the growth of acne-causing bacteria. According to experts, the antioxidant in grapes, combined with prescribed treatments for acne such as benzyl peroxide, can provide effective treatment against acne.

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2.) Promotes a healthy digestive system

The abundant presence of fiber and nutrients in grapes allow them to promote a healthy digestive system, assisting in the prevention of constipation and indigestion. A healthy intake of fiber promotes healthy bowel movement. For those lacking in daily fiber intake, grapes are a delicious and low GI way to fill those fiber needs.

3.) Grape seed extract

Grape seed extract (an industrial derivative of grape seeds) is abundant in therapeutic properties, such as the treatment of high cholesterol and the prevention of cancer. The inclusion of grape seed extract, as well as calcium, can improve bone strength and assist in the treatment of bone weakness from low calcium levels.

4.) Assists with management of asthma

A healthy and nutrient-filled diet has been proven to assist with the management of asthma. Studies show that children with a high consumption of fruits (such as grapes) are less likely to have asthma-like symptoms. A component in grape seed extract contains anti-inflammatory properties. Additionally, studies have also shown that grape seed extract improves lung function and increases lung capacity.

5.) Assists with management of diabetes

An extract derived from the skin of grapes (grape skin extract) can be developed and used to aid the management of diabetes. Studies also show that the low GI nature of grapes and grape products can provide health benefits for individuals suffering type-2 diabetes. Due to their high nutritional content and low calorie count, professionals recommend red and black grapes for diabetics.

6.) Lowers the risk of heart disease

Studies suggest that the consumption of grapes or other polyphenols (abundant micronutrients) is associated with a lower risk of heart disease. Grapes contain an extensive variety of polyphenol compounds (such as resveratrol). Daily intake of these nutrients assists with cardiovascular health.

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7.) Cancer prevention and longevity

Grapes contain powerful natural chemicals which provide a variety of everyday health benefits, and are even known to assist in the slowing or prevention of cancer. According to studies, these chemicals have the potential to stop the spread of cancer cells. It is also believed that several grape phytonutrients play a role in an individual’s longevity.

8.) Helps protect eyesight

Not only do grapes aid in the prevention of cancer and treatment of diabetes, they are also beneficial for healthy eyesight. Research suggests that regular grape consumption protects retinal structure and function, as well as preventing retinal deterioration.

Now, For Some Delicious Recipes

Grapes are nutritious, delicious, and so easy to incorporate into your diet. Traditionally eaten on their own, in a juice, fruit salad, or wine, it might come as a surprise that there are several other ways to incorporate nutrient-rich grapes into your everyday life.

1.) Mixed Greens with Grapes & Feta

Mixed Greens with Grapes & Feta
    Photo: patchofearth.com

    Salads are perfect for a classy first course or a healthier dinner choice. Add a few grapes in there for a delicious and nutritious alternative.

    Check out the recipe here.

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    2.) Seared Steak with Pan-Roasted Grape & Port Sauce

    Seared Steak with Pan-Roasted Grape & Port Sauce
      Photo: foodnetwork.com

      Impress your loved ones with a unique take on a steak roast dinner. Quick and enhanced with port wine and grape flavors, this is a sure-fire way to win over hearts at your weeknight dinner.

      Check out the recipe here.

      3.) Grape-Rosemary Focaccia

      grape foc close3
        Photo: mostlyfoodstuffs.blogspot.com

        Incorporating the perfectly balanced taste of sweet and savory grapes, this focaccia is the perfect snack or appetizer, perfect for any day of the week.

        Check out the recipe here.

        4.) Lighter Broccoli, Grape, and Pasta Salad

        101_0117
          Photo: bakingwithblondie.blogspot.com

          Pasta salads filled with color and flavor variety provide the perfect means to spice up your food life. While they can often be filling, replacing heavy ingredients with lighter, low GI ingredients like grapes provides the perfect healthy alternative.

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          Check out the recipe here.

          5.) Grilled Antipasto Skewers

          Antipasto_From_Tall_Guy
            Photo: www.tallguyandagrill.com

            Skewers are everyone’s party favorite. They’re easy to make, easy to handle, and absolutely delicious. Make it your personal favorite by mixing in a few grapes.

            Check out the recipe here.

            Featured photo credit: wikimedia.org via upload.wikimedia.org

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            Elizabeth Andal

            Elizabeth is a passionate writer who shares about lifestyle tips and lessons learned in life on Lifehack.

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            Last Updated on July 10, 2020

            How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

            How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

            We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

            We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

            So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

            Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

            What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

            Boundaries are limits

            —they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

            Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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            Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

            Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

            Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

            How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

            Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

            1. Self-Awareness Comes First

            Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

            You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

            To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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            You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

            • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
            • When do you feel disrespected?
            • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
            • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
            • When do you want to be alone?
            • How much space do you need?

            You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

            2. Clear Communication Is Essential

            Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

            Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

            3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

            Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

            That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

            Sample language:

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            • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
            • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
            • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
            • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
            • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
            • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
            • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

            Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

            4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

            Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

            Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

            Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

            We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

            It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

            It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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            Final Thoughts

            Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

            Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

            Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

            The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

            Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

            Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

            They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

            Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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