Twenty-five Foods to Eat for a Healthy Diet

Sharalyn Hartwell's picture

In most instances we know what foods to eat as part of a healthy diet. We know we should eat grilled chicken instead of fried chicken and steamed broccoli instead of pastries. But, there are 25 superfoods that can be easily incorporated into a healthy diet.

The health benefits of all these foods are “through the roof,” according to an article featured on the Oprah Web site.

    Avocados. High in the right kind of fat, monounsaturated oleic acid, avocados also block the absorption of bad fats, cholesterol.

      Beets. A good source of folate, which guards against birth defects, colon cancer and osteoporosis, beets are high in fiber and beta-carotene.

        Horseradish. A good source of calcium, potassium and vitamin C, horseradish also maintains collagen.

          Sweet Potatoes. Heart and eye health are promoted by the phytonutrients in sweet potatoes. They also boost immunity.

            Cruciferous Vegetables. Cabbages, cauliflower, broccoli rabe are all cruciferous vegetables. They all contain a lot of disease fighting enzymes.

              Blueberries. Whether fresh or frozen, blueberries contain high amounts of antioxidants.

                Dark, Leafy Greens. Spinach, kale and Swiss chard are dark, leafy greens which are an excellent source of iron, vitamin A and lutein. Dark, leafy greens also contain omega-3s.

                  Alliums. Leeks, onions and garlic are alliums which can help lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

                    Whole Grains. Not only do whole grains taste great, they are high in magnesium, B vitamins, fiber and manganese. Whole grains may also help you avoid overeating because they make you feel full.

                      Spelt. Like whole wheat, spelt is sweeter, nuttier and higher in protein than processed alternatives.

                        Turmeric. Used in holistic medicine as a digestive aide and wound healer, turmeric can also be an anti-inflammatory.

                          Oregano. Just a half teaspoon of dried oregano has all the antioxidant benefits of a spinach salad.

                            Cinnamon. Containing one of the highest levels of antioxidants of all spices, cinnamon can also have positive effects on blood glucose levels.

                              Ginger, Cayenne, Black Pepper. Boosting metabolism is just one advantage to eating ginger, cayenne and black pepper. They are also said to have aphrodisiac effects.

                                Miso. This fermented soybean paste is a great source of low-calorie protein as well as zinc and B12.

                                  Yogurt. In addition to calcium and protein, yogurt is also an excellent way to ingest the good bacteria your digestive system needs.

                                    Sardines. Low in mercury and high in vitamin D, sardines are also high in calcium.

                                      Canned Salmon. From a nutrition stand-point, wild-caught Alaskan canned salmon is just as good as fresh and costs much less. It is a great source of omega-3s.

                                        Sesame Seeds. Containing plant compounds that are said to help lower cholesterol, sesame seeds are also a source of calcium, zinc and copper.

                                          Walnuts. Of all nuts, walnuts contain the most omega-3 fatty acids and are a great source of antioxidants.

                                            Green Tea. Containing the most protective antioxidants of all teas, green tea also contains a metabolism-boosting compound.

                                              Dark Chocolate. High antioxidant and flavonoids make dark chocolate a good-for-you indulgence.

                                                Flaxseed. Ground flaxseed is an easy way to get a lot of omega-3s. Try sprinkling ground flaxseed on oatmeal or baked dishes.

                                                  Figs. An excellent source of dietary fiber, figs are also a good source of calcium and potassium.

                                                    Seaweed. Hijiki, wakame, kelp and nori are seaweeds rich in omega-3s and magnesium.

                                                    Incorporating these foods in your current meal plans will help create a balanced, healthy diet. The health benefits of each of these 25 superfoods are excellent.

                                                    Written by Sharalyn Hartwell
                                                    Source: Oprah.com

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