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Mackie Shilstone / East Jefferson General Hospital Fitness & Nutrition Expert

Throughout the month of November, each Monday on Eyewitness News at 5, I'll be giving you my 'Five at 5,' with things to add to your diet for better health, or combating some common health issues. This week, we're talking about five fruits you can add to your water, as an alternative to sugary soft drinks.

With the advent of obesity in our state, city and country, we need to reduce the number of sugary drinks we consume on a daily basis. Based on a 2010 Centers for Disease Control report on our metro area, 32.6% of the population reports having a BMI (body mass index) in the obese category (>30), which is higher than the national average.

One way to reduce our sugary drinks such as soda is to add certain whole sections to water. Here are my top five:

  1. Strawberries a good source of vitamin C, folate, potassium, iodine and manganese. You can buy locally-grown strawberries, which is also a plus.
  2. Oranges - contain thiamine and potassium in addition to vitamin C. Helps boost immune system for children. They are also available locally-grown.
  3. Mango - source of soluble and insoluble fiber, vitamin B6, as well as, vitamin A and C.
  4. Lemon - adds riboflavin, iron, magnesium, calcium, and thiamine. Also the limonene may have an effect on reducing gallstones, according to some studies.
  5. Watermelon - rich in Vitamin C, beta carotene and lycopene, which can help reduce prostate cancer in men.

For more health information, visit mackieshilstone.com.

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