5 local Phuket products and how they can boost your health.
Think globally, act locally, a popular saying goes. Why not apply it to your diet? A number of both delicious and healthy products are made in Phuket, so instead of spending big buck on imported foods, try some of these local delicacies and boost your health at the same time.
Here’s a list of Phuket’s treasures …
It’s in Phuket that many foreigners discover, that Pineapples don’t actually grow on trees. Fields of pineapple fruits cover more than 2,500 rai (400 hectares) of Phuket land and are scattered all over the island, mostly in its central and northern parts. Take a ride down the Thepkasattri road from Heroines Monument towards Sarasin Bridge and you’re bound to pass some road-side pineapple stalls, where you can buy the freshest of fruits.
Pineapples contain a substance called Bromelain, which is said to posses anti-inflammatory properties and speed up digestion. Some research shows that pineapple juice helps reduce swelling, cure burns, ease the effects of hay fever and even slow down the growth of tumors. What is certain is that pineapples contains half the calories count of apples, are a great source of vitamin C and are rich in B-complex group of vitamins and minerals like copper, manganese and potassium.
Good for: immune system boost, strong bones, ageing, digestion, colds.
#2 CASHEW NUTS
In a country where Gai Pad Med Ma Muang better known as Chicken with Cashew Nuts is a widely popular dish, there have to be cashew nuts. And in deed, there are. Thailand is the third largest producer of cashews in Asia with most of the production concentrated in the south. And Phuket has its share too. There is a number of “Cashew Nuts Factories” on the Island, which are easy to spot – there is usually a massive figure of cashew fruit in front of the building. Visit one of these establishments to stock up on healthy cashews and try the exotic cashew juice.
Cashews are way lighter than other nuts, containing much less fats with over 80% of these being the unsaturated fatty acids which help lower harmful LDL-cholesterol while increasing good HDL cholesterol. Cashews are also a great source of minerals such as copper, manganese, magnesium and phosphorus as well as provide 12% of the daily-recommended value of vitamin K.
Good for: heart, blood pressure, skin and hair, cancer and diabetes prevention
What’s the point of living on an island if you don’t enjoy one of its greatest treasures – the seafood? The stalls at Phuket’s fresh markets groan under the weight of prawns, squids, clams, crabs and numerous kinds of fishes. And if you don’t feel like cooking at home, you can chose from dozens of fantastic seafood restaurant scattered around the island, some of them even floating! Seafood is delicious, it’s great for your health…and it looks awesome on Instagram or Facebook.
Omega-3 fatty acids and fish often end up in the same sentence. No wonder – seafood is one of the best sources of this uber-healthy ingredient known to provide protection against hear disease and stroke. Seafood is also a rich source of protein, great if you want to build some muscles. On top of that it provides you with a crucial set of minerals such as phosphorus, magnesium and selenium. Don’t forget to add a few oysters to your diet to score some zinc, great for…great sex.
Good for: heart, brain, diabetes and Alzheimer prevention, performance in bed.
While many consider tea the traditional drink in Asia, for Thais coffee seems to provide the daily boost of energy. Coffee plantations producing high quality beans are present across the country, mostly in the north. Phuket lacks coffee plantations but that doesn’t mean there aren’t local producers of the black, hot stuff. To have a taste of the truly local coffee head for Phuket Town and ask for Hock Hoe Lee coffee where the black magic has been performed for almost 60 years.
The key word with coffee, as with many things in life, is moderation. As long as you don’t become a coffee junkie and simply can’t get through the day without a cup…or five, you’re fine. Coffee will give an energy kick not only to you but also to your metabolism and will help you burn fat. Coffee is rich in antioxidants helping aging prevention. But what’s maybe most important, it makes you happier and reduces stress.
Good for: More energy, better metabolism, improved fat burning, ageing prevention, mood boost
#5 CHILL OUT
Don’t tell me you moved to this tropical island to recreate the rush, hustle and bustle of your former life in some urban center of the west. Chill out, take it slow and enjoy the beach, the fresh air, the crashing sound of weaves. That’s what places like Phuket are for. And if you’re so stuck up in western ways that you have no idea what I’m talking about, take a look at Thai people. Sabai, sabai mai? Phuket provides endless opportunities for relaxation. You can go for a budget option and take a stroll down the beach or pamper yourself with a spa treatment, let of some steam at a Muay Thai training or find balance during a meditation class. Island living has much to offer.
The list of health problems caused by stress is too long to put it down: hear disease, asthma, diabetes, obesity, indigestion, sleep disorders, depression and even premature death have all been linked to increased stress levels. But you can prevent all these in one, simple way – relax.
Good for: Heart, good sleep, mental health, ageing…and happy life.
Now you know you live on a treasure island. And you don’t have to dig deep or look far, they are right here, waiting for you to be discovered.