Imagine there was a food—not a prescription medication—powerful enough to help you maintain a healthy weight, fight heart disease and reduce your cholesterol. What if this food also served as a powerful antioxidant, could help boost your mood and came with no side effects and no outrageous price tag? You would surely jump on board right?
Well, luckily for you, there are foods that boast these same powers. They are called superfoods and they are available in abundant supply right at your local grocery store.
Superfoods have amazing health properties and are naturally high in essential vitamins, minerals and nutrients. These foods should be eaten as much as possible as part of a healthy diet to keep you feeling and looking good.
There is some disagreement in the health industry as to what actually qualifies as a superfood. Some people swear by the health benefits of a certain type of food while others remain skeptical of the benefits. But the health benefits of the following 7 superfoods are powerful and undisputed.
These 7 foods are among the healthiest in the world and should be consumed as much as possible. Simply eating these foods on a regular basis can make a noticeable difference in your health and appearance, and ultimately change your life for the better.
Even though berries are small, they carry with them an incredible amount of nutritional goodness. Berries are not only tasty and sweet, they are loaded with antioxidants, fiber and phytonutrients. They are also low in calories and can help keep hunger at bay if eaten in small quantities throughout the day. Even though raspberries, blackberries and strawberries have many health benefits, blueberries are the true superstar of the berry family. Blueberries are known loaded with anthocyanin, which has been shown to reverse the aging process by improving brain function and vision. They can also help reduce your risk for a number of diseases including Alzheimer’s, diabetes, Parkinson’s and even heart disease.
If you don’t like to eat berries plain, try adding them to cereal, a salad or Greek yogurt. You can even freeze them or dry them to change things up a bit.
Eating fish of any variety is always a smart decision, but salmon is the best choice if you want the most health benefits possible. Salmon has a great deal of omega-3 fatty acid content, which has been proven to protect heart health. Salmon is also low in saturated fat and calories and is a good source of iron and protein. And experts say not to worry about the mercury content in salmon as long as you eat it no more than twice a week.
Salmon is best grilled or baked and try to forgo butter or heavy sauces during the cooking process to keep calories in check. Instead, top it with a touch of olive oil and some fresh herbs.
Even though garlic has long been associated with vampires and bad breath, there is much more to this plant than meets the eye. Studies have proven that garlic lowers cholesterol and can even help prevent clogged arteries. Garlic is also a possible cancer-preventative food and acts as an antibacterial and as an antioxidant. But if the thought of eating a whole garlic glove is not very appealing to you, eat it in small quantities by sprinkling it on lean meat or veggies. And if you can’t stand the taste that garlic leaves in your mouth after you eat it, chew on some parsley or have some mints handy.
Some people avoid eating nuts because they are high in fat and calories. But the fact that nuts are so high in protein and heart-healthy monounsaturated fats means that the advantages of eating them far outweigh the disadvantages. And although eating nuts of any kind is a healthy decision, almonds are particularly beneficial. Almonds are loaded with fiber and have been shown to lower cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease. And if you use portion control when eating them, studies show that eating almonds can actually aid in weight loss. Because almonds have a lot of fiber and protein, you will become fuller quicker, and are therefore less likely to overeat.
Even though eggs are high in cholesterol, they are also very nutritious and full of quality protein. Eggs contain 12 essential vitamins and minerals, are loaded with amino acids and have been shown to help individuals lose weight if eaten at breakfast. This is because people who eat eggs at breakfast often eat fewer calories throughout the day because the high protein content of eggs leaves them feeling fuller longer. Eggs can also be cooked numerous ways to prevent boredom and are very inexpensive. And if you are keeping your portions in check and getting regular physicals, there is no need to worry about the cholesterol in eggs, unless your doctor advises you otherwise of course.
#6 Dark Chocolate
When it comes to chocolate, darker is definitely better. While eating milk chocolate is little more than an unhealthy indulgence, eating dark chocolate actually comes with many health benefits. Dark chocolate that contains 60% or more cacao is full of disease-fighting antioxidants and flavonols. It has also been shown to lower unhealthy LDL cholesterol and can help prevent clogged arteries caused by plaque buildup. But just because dark chocolate has many health benefits does not give you license to pig out. Dark chocolate still has quite a few calories so unless you want to start packing on the pounds, moderation is key here.
Yogurt is high in calcium and contains many healthful nutrients including protein, Vitamin D and potassium. Many types of yogurt are also enriched with healthy probiotics, which is good for your stomach and can help regulate your digestive system. Yogurt may also help prevent osteoporosis and can even help reduce the risk of high blood pressure. And luckily, yogurt not only tastes good, but it is also very versatile and there are a million ways to eat it. Put yogurt in a smoothie, sprinkle granola on top, add fresh fruit to plain yogurt or try it Greek style.
So, if you want to be healthier, forget popping pill after pill. Simply go to your local supermarket and stock up on yogurt, berries, eggs and nuts.