Eating healthy 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 10 foods you should be eating every day. If you don’t consume anything else on a regular basis, do your best to incorporate these foods into your diet…
Flaxseeds are an easy way to add a big dose of fiber into your diet. They can be purchased in the bulk food area of any grocery store and can be sprinkled over salads, fish or any type of meal or snack. To give you an idea of just how healthy flaxseeds are, a single tablespoon of ground flaxseed sprinkled over cereal, yogurt or salad provides an easy 2.3 grams of fiber.
According to numerous medical studies, in addition to fiber, flaxseeds (or linseeds) are a rich source of micronutrients–including essential fatty acid (alpha-linolenic acid), vitamin B1, manganese, and vitamin B1, meaning they are a rich source of heart-healthy omega 3 fats and antioxidants that can reduce the risk of several health conditions, like heart disease, cancer, and type II diabetes.
Beans, beans the magical fruit, the more you eat, the more you…get a good source of soluble fiber! The soluble fiber found in beans soaks up cholesterol, allowing your body to dispose of it before it sticks to your artery walls. They’re also proven to be one of the best sources of antioxidants.
Beans can be incorporated into your diet in many ways. You can whip up a nice batch of chili with tons of kidney beans, you can serve them fresh or you can work them into a salad. I even sneak beans into my meals, in sneaky places like casseroles and pasta sauces because many types of beans soak up and taste like whatever spices you use in main dishes.
If you’re going to eat any fruit, make it blueberries. Blueberries are a better source of antioxidants than 40 other common fruits (such as strawberries and raspberries). While all berries are healthy (and great sources of antioxidants) you’ll get the most bang for your buck with this delicious fruit. Consider sprinkling them over greek yogurt or using them in a fruit salad.
In fact, blueberries are the mini blue fruit that benefits your insides as well as your outsides. According to research from Rutgers University, eating blues regularly can prevent urinary tract infections (they actually prevent bacteria from attaching to bladder walls and multiplying), and they work to soften dry skin due to their super high antioxidant compounds within.
A single serving of yogurt will give you a significant amount calcium for the day. In addition to calcium, most yogurts are a great source of probiotics. Probiotics help protect your stomach against harmful bacterias that could lead to infection or illness. Starting your day off with a cup of yogurt (and blueberries on top) will work wonders for your overall health.
Research published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that a diet that’s encompassed by regular servings of yogurt, can prevent all types of medical conditions, such as asthma, infections, several gastrointestinal conditions, and cancer, due to the beneficial lactic acid bacteria within.
If you’re going to kick your day off with a cup of yogurt, consider adding a spoonful (or two) of oats. Oats have been proven to lower cholesterol and blood pressure, making them a great choice for adults looking to reduce these levels. 1 ½ cups (375 mL) of cooked oatmeal or thee packets of instant oatmeal provide enough beta-glucan to lower blood cholesterol by about five percent and heart attack risk by about 10 percent.
In fact, research reviewed by scientists at the University of Manitoba, in Canada, found that foods high in beta-glucan, like oats, decreased risk factors (including high blood cholesterol) for heart diesease. The studies were conducted over a 2 week period, with participants consuming various sources of beta-glucan, like oat bran, rolled oats, and oatmeal in a series of breakfast cereals, bread, muffins, powders, and muesli.