Bitter foods may not be on your list when you think of the foods that are your absolute favorite.
But, did you know, bitter foods are the counterpart to sweet and are loaded with tons of health benefits?
Bitter receptors can be found throughout your body beginning in your mouth all the way down through your GI tract.
With the first bitter bite, bitter receptors are activated. These signals prepare the gut with the appropriate enzymes to break down food.
Eating bitter foods is a great way to improve digestion.
Many of these receptors go unused nowadays because of the amount to “sweetness” we add to our everyday meals.
These receptors play an essential role in healthy digestion, appetite control, and blood sugar balance.
When we taste bitter foods they send signals to the organs that contain other bitter receptors to help your body prepare for action!
The taste receptors in the gallbladder are notified to release the appropriate amount of bile that is essential for digestion, fat metabolism, toxin removal, transit time and elimination.
These signals also notify the pancreas, stomach and intestines to begin their appropriate functions for the breakdown and absorption of these foods.
With all of these functions working together they can effectively keep blood sugar levels stable, improving hormone balance.
Bitter foods are essential for women with PCOS because of their direct connection to improved digestion, insulin and blood sugar regulation.
Bitter foods may not rank as the most popular or flavorful ingredients in a blind taste test, but they are certainly some of the most nutritious.
Here’s the Top 20 List of bitter foods:
- apple cider vinegar
- bitter melon
- broccoli rabe
- Brussels sprouts
- dandelion greens
- dark chocolate (72% cacao or higher)
- sesame seeds
Here are a few tips to add more bitter foods into your diet:
- Eat more plants! This one seems so simple but many of us do not eat enough veggies. Remember to fill half of your plate with a beautiful vegetables.
- Try fresh lemon juice for the win! Try warm water with the juice of half a lemon upon rising.
- Chocolate! You read that right. Dark chocolate, 72% cacao or higher, can actually offer some amazing health benefits. Besides being the “sweeter” bitter option, dark chocolate is loaded with fiber, minerals and antioxidants!
Bitter is better when it comes to relieving symptoms of PCOS. How will you incorporate the bitter taste into your diet?