With media and fad diets constantly advising us on what to eat, it’s difficult to sort out the best foods for your health. The experts at the Texas A&M Health Science Center have released a list of the 10 foods with health benefits will can improve your healthy lifestyle.
Go nuts with this healthy snack. Adding a handful of this antioxidant to your daily diet can reduce your risk of heart disease, diabetes and even cancer. A study in the Nutrition Research Journal suggests that diet quality improves when eating nuts on a consistent basis.
While eating an apple a day doesn’t keep the doctor away 100% of the time, apples are a good source of dietary fiber for your diet. One study found that compounds from apples can help slow aging and extends the length of your life. Additionally, eating the white fruit more often can protect against stroke.
This creamy, green fruit launched into popularity over the past few years and for good reason. Avocados are a great source of fat that lower cholesterol and reduce heart disease if substituted in place of other dietary fats.
Beans are truly the magical fruit. Beans are a dietary staple around the world. Beans contain protein, fiber and many vitamins and minerals that help reduce the risk of chronic diseases, such as heart disease and diabetes. Eat half a cup of beans per day to get the benefits of their nutrients.
Blueberries are abundant in anthocyanins, which give the fruit its blue pigment. Blueberries are filled with antioxidants. Studies show that they help reduce inflammation. Additionally, it’s been suggested that increasing intake of blueberries can help with and short-term memory in children and elderly.
Add another scoopful of broccoli to your dinner plate tonight. This powerhouse vegetable contains many health benefits; it’s high in vitamin C and folic acid, as well as a good source of fiber and potassium. One compound in the green giant called sulforaphane can fight and treat cancers, and reduce inflammation in chronic diseases like heart disease. In order to get the most out of your broccoli, avoid freezing or boiling it – fresh broccoli should be eaten raw or lightly steamed.
Like blueberries, cranberries have a wealth of health benefits. While active ingredients in cranberries are well known for treating urinary tract infections, these same ingredients can prevent bacteria from sticking to your teeth. Additionally, cranberries can also reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, inflammatory bowel disease, and various types of cancer.
Spinach, kale and cabbage, often referred to as leafy greens, can pack a punch of health benefits if added to your diet. Filled with vitamins C, K and E, folate, carotenoids and fiber, studies show that leafy greens may help prevent cancer. For adults, the USDA recommends eating three to four cups of leafy greens weekly. Greens are low in calories and high in nutrients, so you’d be hard-pressed to eat too many.
Oily fish is a great source of protein, low in fat and abundant in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids decrease the risk of heart disease and rheumatoid arthritis, lower blood pressure and provide anti-inflammatory benefits. The American Heart Association recommends eating 3.5 ounces of oily fish twice a week.
While you might find this creamy orange vegetable on your dessert table at Thanksgiving, sweet potatoes have high nutritional value. Nutrients in the spud provide anti-cancer, anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory benefits. Potatoes are excellent sources of potassium and vitamin C, and the carotenoids in sweet potatoes and yams are great for your eyes.
If you’d like some personal help with nutrition and healthier lifestyle habits, contact Basics and Beyond fitness & nutrition to schedule a time to talk about what kind of help would work best for you. We work with clients in-person and online!