Healthy foods at every meal. Instead of blacklisting all the bad stuff, here’s a list of foods you should include every day.
Eating healthy foods is an important part of life. Many of us strive to eat as healthy as possible every day, but are you really consuming the best nutrients for your body? There are countless “superfoods” on the market. These foods boast so many health benefits that they’re referred to as superfoods because of their many super powers. With so many superfoods available, it’s hard to know which ones offer the most benefits. That’s where we come in. We’ve compiled a list of the foods you should be eating every day.
Finding the most nutritious foods doesn’t require using unknown ingredients or trips to specialty food stores. Everyday foods are functional, meaning they provide health benefits beyond basic nutrition by reducing the risk of certain diseases and health conditions. Functional foods not only taste great, they are the top healthy foods you should eat every day.
Healthy Superfoods to Eat Every Day
Blueberries have more antioxidants—those magical molecules that can help prevent a host of maladies—than 40 other common fruits and vegetables tested.The antioxidant plant pigments that make blueberries blue guard against heart disease, cancer and age-related blindness and memory loss. They’re also tops when it comes to preventing urinary tract infections, thanks to antioxidant epicatechins, which keep bacteria from sticking to bladder walls.
Dark leafy greens such as spinach, kale and chard are loaded with nutrients and fiber. Leafy greens contain calcium, iron and an antioxidant called carotenoids that protect cells against damaging free radicals. One serving equals one cup raw or one-half cup cooked.
Beans are a good plant-based source of iron (up to 13 mg per 3/4 cup), a mineral that transports oxygen from your lungs to the cells in your body. Because your body can’t absorb the form of iron in plant-based foods as well as it can the form found in beef and poultry, pair beans with a vitamin C-rich food, such as sweet potatoes or lemon juice, to boost your iron absorption. Beans also boast fiber: 1/2 cup of cooked navy beans packs a whopping 7 grams of fiber, while the same amount of lentils and kidney beans provide 8 and 6 grams, respectively. Much of this fiber is the soluble kind that benefits blood cholesterol levels.
Yogurt is a great source of bone-building calcium, but its real strength lies in live beneficial bacteria, know as probiotics, that keep down the growth of harmful bacteria in your gut. Eating more yogurt could help with inflammatory bowel disease, ulcers, urinary tract infections and vaginal yeast infections.
A tablespoon of ground flaxseed sprinkled over cereal or yogurt provides an easy 2.3 grams of fiber, often more than what’s in the cereal itself. But flaxseed is most revered for its lingans. These act like estrogen in the body, blocking estrogen receptors on cells and contributing to reduced rates of certain hormone-related cancers, such as breast cancer. Their anti-inflammatory power may also help keep conditions from acne to asthma at bay.
The perfect choice for breakfast, oatmeal is incredibly cheap and really good for you. Just one serving will cost around $0.2, making it one of the most cost-efficient, healthy breakfasts you can choose. To keep the oatmeal healthy, use low-fat or soy milk with the oats, and include sliced bananas or other fruit to add an extra twist. Oatmeal helps reduce the amount of bad cholesterol in the blood and, in turn, can help keep your heart healthy and even reduce the chances of having a heart attack.
These white orbs are near-perfect muscle food. That’s because the biological value—a measure of how much protein from the food can be incorporated into proteins in the body—of an egg is higher than that of nearly any other item in the grocery store. The biological value is largely dictated by the amount of essential amino acids a food possesses, and the humble egg has these in spades.