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5 Tropical Fruits That Can Change Your Life

5 Tropical Fruits That Can Change Your Life

    In many parts of the country, snow and ice still have a deathgrip on the local climate. In my neck of the woods, we still have massive piles of ice and snow on every street corner and at the end of every driveway. So it’s only natural that many of us are looking for a way to bust through the winter blues.

    One thing that often works is to enjoy more tropical fruits, such as mangoes, bananas, coconuts, or papayas. These fruits are usually available all winter long, and are like an early preview of summer’s warmth. But beyond these warm feelings, many tropical fruits have far more powerful abilities.

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    Did you know that one tropical fruit can be used as a substitute for IV fluid in an emergency? Or that another tropical treat has been shown in studies to kill cancer cells? Aside from their health benefits, there are plenty of other reasons to love the following tropical fruits…and some of these benefits will definitely surprise you.

    1. Coconuts

    You might think of coconut as the sweet topping on German chocolate cake, but this fruit has plenty of health benefits as well. Coconut water has a ton of health benefits. It’s a sterile source of clean water, useful for survival hydration. On top of this, coconut water has the same level of electrolytic balance human blood. In the Pacific Theatre during World War II, coconut water was frequently used in the field as an emergency plasma transfusion for wounded combatants.

    Coconut water makes a better sports drink than commercial products, as it is lower in salts and sugars and higher in potassium. And, of course, the flesh and oil of the coconut is also edible and good for you!

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    2. Mangosteen

    The mangosteen is a small fruit with white flesh, popular throughout Asia. One group of scientists has proposed that alpha-mangostin, an antioxidant found only in mangosteen, can cause cell death in leukemia cells, effectively treating the disease. While more research needs to be done, mangosteen is also said to have powerful anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antifungal, and antiseptic properties.

    3. Avocado

    You might think of it as a vegetable, but this is actually a fruit. And not just any fruit, but a fruit that has been shown to lower cholesterol. They are also rich in folic acid, which can prevent some kinds of common birth defects. Even more interesting is that avocados are the ultimate life hack fruit: when you eat an avocado with other vegetables, you absorb more nutrients from the meal than you would have from eating the vegetables alone. Top your salad with a few slices of avocado, and you’ll be increasing your intake of vitamins and minerals from the meal.

    4. Mango

    A single mango will contain half of your recommended daily allowance of both Vitamin A and Vitamin C, as well as some B-Vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, polyphenols, beta-carotene, and…well, maybe it would have been quicker for me to list the few nutrients that this little fruit DOESN’T contain…

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    I picked up an interesting tip about quickly ripening mangoes from the book “Urawaza”, which I reviewed here recently. If you pick up a mango at the supermarket that is still hard, soak it in simmering water for just 10 minutes to speed up the ripening process. The sooner you can eat one, the sooner you can start to enjoy its beneficial qualities.

    5. Longan

    Longan berries, native to China, have long been said by Asian herbalists to have relaxing properties, making them the perfect snack to enjoy to lower your stress levels. It is also said to have anti-cancer, antioxidant, and liver-protective properties. The longan contains high levels of iron, potassium, and large amounts of vitamins A and C. Finding them in a form other than fresh at your local market may be tough, but dried and canned longan are also available.

    Conclusion

    In general, eating more fruits is good for your health. Overall, tropical fruits have been known to reduce your risk of cancer and heart disease. On top of these benefits, a diet rich in tropical fruits ensures that you will have improved digestion and GI function. Best of all, these fruits can neutralize free radicals, protecting you from asthma, joint pain, and the above-mentioned heart and cancer risks.

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    You are what you eat. If you want to be smart, eat smart, and reach for these tropical fruits the next time you are craving a snack.

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    Tucker Cummings

    Writer and social media professional sharing productivity tips on Lifehack.

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    Last Updated on July 8, 2020

    18 Benefits of Journaling That Will Change Your Life

    18 Benefits of Journaling That Will Change Your Life

    The act of writing in a journal often seems daunting or unnecessary to many people. Even authors who work on novels might shun the idea of daily diaries. What purpose does jotting down words on a regular basis do if not contributing to the next novel, play or song? I know from experience many benefits of journaling that I wish to share.

    1. Understand Yourself Better

    Though many people and even writers avoid keeping journals, I vow to do it more often. Not only do I desire to take up daily journaling but also I plan to do it with pen to paper.

    Some of the benefits I’ve found from my more active days include finding myself in the sense of understanding what matters to me and what I want out of life. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to find a spouse who is my best friend and advocate in raising children. I attribute this and much more to what I learned about myself in keeping journals for years.

    2. Keep Track of Small Changes

    I’ll admit that I never got very far with my guitar lessons, but in writing in a journal, I have seen the ability to track small changes like those that come when you practice anything.

    Those learning a musical instrument often fail to see the small improvements that come with regular practice. Writing won’t help you switch chords any faster, but it will help you to develop a better sense for language and grammar just by doing it.

    3. Become Aware of What Matters

    As you continue to write in a journal, following a stream-of-consciousness feel, you can look back on the topics that you chose to write about. Those issues and emotions that poured out of you will provide insight on to what matters most to you.

    You may not even realize that you’re job is depressing you or that you want to spend more time with your kids until you look over your thoughts that you weren’t really thinking about.

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    4. Boost Creativity

    The idea that the brain and its neural activity across hemispheres encourages learning also shows up in increased creativity. Just like with learning an instrument, your increased activity will inspire your thoughts to connect and reconnect in different ways.

    When I wrote in a journal, I often wrote poetry as well as just my thoughts as they came out. I started to hear poems more in my mind; so much so that I took to scrawling lines on napkins and finding metaphors in mundane activities.

    You really are what you do, so writing helps grow more than being a writer. Writing boosts the way you communicate and structure language, which really is a creative process.

    5. Represents Your Emotions in a Safe Environment

    A journal is as private as it gets. You can lock it in a safe or tuck it under a pillow and no one will accidentally share it on social media or have an opportunity to “leave a comment.”

    Write about your sorrow as much as your happiness and frustration and know that you don’t have to keep your emotions inside your body. You can put them on paper.

    6. Process Life Experiences

    When you take the time to look back over what you’ve written, be it a week or a year later, you will have the distance you need to more objectively interpret your raw feelings.

    Everything from losing a job to losing a loved one can emerge in a new light for a fresh perspective. Figuring out how the benefits of journaling affect your perspective on life will create connection and increase creativity.

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    7. Stress Relief

    In combining the exercise inherent in fine motor coordination that comes from the act of writing with the emotional release of self expression, those who maintain a journal relieve stress.

    Try it out. Go home and write about your day. Write about the traffic. Write about the coffee order the barista got wrong but you didn’t have time to change. See how you can physically purge some of that pent-up stress by putting it on paper.

    8. Provide Direction

    Though journaling is often conducted as an activity without much direction, it often provides direction.

    One of the biggest benefits of journaling is that your chaotic thoughts merge to show a direction in which to head. Asking the right questions is the only way to achieve the best solutions, so look to your journal to find your way toward your next goal.

    9. Solve Problems

    Just as in practicing math problems, we all get better at finding hidden solutions through the act of processing.

    Think of your next goal as X and solve your life problems by reading your journals as word problems. The benefit of journaling here is that you write, explore and process to recognize and then solve problems.

    When life is too in-your-face, you have to step back to see reality. Living in the moment allows us to write in the moment and use that expression to solve problems.

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    10. Find Relief From Fighting

    Solving your problems only comes after time to process, recognize and strategize. Just as in the benefit of journaling where relief comes from the act of writing, relief from fighting comes when you decide to “sit this one out” and communicate one-way.

    Fighting is only productive when the fighters care to communicate and find common ground. When the emotions are as high as the stress levels, writing will function as the best time out.

    11. Find Meaning in Life

    Journaling will show you why you are living, whether you are wallowing in things you wish to change or striving to make the changes. Your life will begin to take on new meaning and your own words will reveal the actions that got you where you are so that you can assess and pave a new path for your future.

    12. Allow Yourself to Focus

    Taking even a small amount of time out of every day will provide you with not only peace of mind but also increased focus. Taking a break to meditate in writing and journaling will sharpen your mental faculties.

    13. Sharpen Your Spirituality

    When we write, we allow all the energy and experiences to flow through us, which often provides further insight into our own spirituality. Even if your parents didn’t raise you to follow a specific religion, your thoughts will start to show you what you believe about the universe and your place in it.

    14. Let the Past Go

    I’ve mentioned a few examples where going back over your writing offers advice and direction, but the simply truth is that writing down our feelings can be the best way to let them go. We can choose to literally throw these pages away when they’re filled with negativity and hate.

    15. Allow Freedom

    Journaling is the perfect way to not only express yourself but to also experience the freedom of being who you are. Your books can stay private or you can publish them. Your freedom stems from your sense of self and your perception of your thoughts.

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    16. Enhance Your Career

    Again, the private act of pen-to-paper processing provides the benefits of journaling mentioned above, but you can also enhance your career when you take similar ideas and categorize, edit and publish them in an online blog.

    Your thoughts will often be personal and express emotions, but another benefit of journaling is uncovering fresh ideas about your work.

    17. Literally Explore Your Dreams

    All the benefits I’ve mentioned explore ideas, thoughts and emotions, which is also what our dreams and nightmares do. Through writing down your dreams from the previous night, you can enhance your creativity as well as connect some of the metaphorical dots from the rest of your journal.

    18. Catalog Your Life for Others

    No one wants to think about dying, but we all die. Leaving a journal will act as a way to reconnect with family and friends left behind. The ideas you wish to keep personal while you process the life you’re living will serve to rekindle and inspire those who loved you through the process.

    We consider our partners our life witnesses, but writing provides a tangible mark on the world.

    Now that you’ve learned all the benefits of journaling, it’s time to start writing a journal:

    Featured photo credit: Kelly Sikkema via unsplash.com

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