A recurring theme you’ll see in our list of Superfoods is that they’ll usually provide support to a major organ needed to live. There are foods you can eat that benefit the heart, brain, liver, and other vital organs. Another benefit that is commonly shared is the presence of antioxidants used to battle free radicals and help keep us free from disease and fight the aging process.
In order to reap the benefits you don’t have to change your diet around so that you’re only eating these foods, but the more of them you can incorporate into your diet, the better. And some might be worth adding to your daily intake of food.
Even though almonds are high in fat, they are a way for you to reduce the risk of getting heart disease. They effectively lower your LDL Cholesterol, often referred to as the “bad” cholesterol. Almonds have been credited with helping you feel full when they’re added to a meal, helping to gain muscle when combined with weight lifting, and helping to stave off hunger as a snack between meals. Consider using almond butter that contains only almonds if you aren’t a fan of chomping up whole nuts.
Turns out there’s a lot of truth in the apple a day adage. Aside from the obvious benefits of containing fiber and helping regular digestive bacteria, apples contain polyphenols that offer an assortment of benefits. The most impressive of which is they’re able to help regulate your blood sugar levels, which can be of great use in weight loss, and help you stay focused throughout the day. To get the full benefit, consider spending a bit more for organic rather than conventional. It’s not that there’s more vitamins in an organic apple, but you’re leaving out a lot of the toxins and pesticides that get sprayed onto ordinary apples.
These are another heart-healthy fruit option, and can help out your eyes due to the high beta-carotene usually attributed to carrots. They also contain fiber and antioxidants in the form of Vitamin A. The other great quality is that they taste good, with a tart and sweet flavor that makes them a welcome addition to the range of fruits that you eat.
The major takeaway on asparagus is that it hits on two levels: it provides antioxidants, and also works as an anti-inflammatory, so you’re fighting free radicals and making it easier for your body to maintain it’s natural state of being.
Avocados do contain a decent amount of fat, but it’s the good kind of fat, and these can actually help your heart, rather than weigh it down. Guys: these can help with the prevention of prostate cancer. Other top benefits are that it can help prevent other cancers, keep your cholesterol at healthy levels, and help prevent strokes. Useful if you have a family history of stroke.
Most of us know that bananas contain a good amount of potassium, but it’s also a good source of fiber. When combined, these two features make bananas one of those foods you should try to consume on a daily basis. Why is potassium so important? It helps to regulate your blood pressure, and this does a great service to your overall heart health, and well-being.
Basil is an herb that has a lot going for it. The flavonoids it contains may help ward off invading cancer cells. This alone would be a good idea to pick up some fresh basil the next time you’re out. There are a lot of recipes that call for basil, but the one that packs the most basily punch is pesto. With the other ingredients of pesto also being good for you, namely garlic, pine nuts, and extra virgin olive oil, this is a tasty sauce that can break up the marinara routine.
Beans (several kinds)
Beans are getting more and more attention as a good carbohydrate to balance out protein dishes. This is because they don’t spike your blood sugar levels like some complex carbs do, and they contain a good amount of fiber. There are plenty of varieties to chose from, such as Kidney beans, Lima beans, Navy beans, Pinto Beans, and the one that’s most commonly found: Black beans.
The betalains in beets aren’t found in many foods that make it to the dinner table, and unless you want to eat prickly pears this makes a better option. They’re a staple in menu items like Greek salads and can be cooked up as a side item by following one of the many recipes found online. If you don’t like the taste of beets there are several ways to cook them up so you’re not just eating a mouthful of straight beets.
Whether you go with green, red, or yellow bell peppers, you’re going to get good nutritional value, not just in the form of phytonutrients, but also from Vitamin C, which bell peppers are a surprising source. They’ve also got antioxidants in them that can help you avoid diabetes, and can help you prevent a buildup of cholesterol which can lead to a host of other problems.
Many types of berries can offer you plenty of antioxidant support, as well as add a burst of flavor to a dish, a meal, or all by themselves. Blueberries have been shown to help the belly fat fight and help you avoid cardiovascular diseases. Cranberries can help with yeast infections, tooth health,and certain types of cancers. Goji Berries rank extra high in antioxidants. And raspberries contain a good amount of potassium which can help with blood pressure levels.
Aside from feeling like a giant by eating these tiny trees, broccoli packs a lot into a regular serving. It’s got fiber to help with regularity and keeping blood sugar levels optimal, it helps the heart and eyes with lutein, and can help prevent cancer. It’s also been shown to help with sun damage, and is good for bones and can help with the nervous system.
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