Healthiest Things to Eat
Written by: Catalogs.com Editorial Staff
May 17, 2013
Filed Under Food
Contributed by Info Guru Danielle Merritt
With the year still ripe, it is safe to say that many people are trying to practice the New Year’s resolution of eating healthier and getting into shape.
Eating healthy food will not only kick start your weight loss, but it will also allow you to feel better on the inside – you’ll feel a lot more energetic and a lot less groggy.
Naturally, the healthiest foods to eat tend to be the foods we avoid the most, but don’t give up on this resolution just yet. Here are the healthiest things to eat and some delicious, fresh, and exciting ways to incorporate them into everyday meals!
A great source of magnesium, almonds are a great snack to munch on every day. Among many things, magnesium helps support healthy nerve function. Even better, the protein in them will stave off hunger, and you really don’t need to eat a ton of them at a time for them to work their magic. Don’t let the high fat content scare you – almonds are made up of healthy, monounsaturated fats that are actually good for your heart. Grab a handful and eat them alone, or add them to a salad for a nice, healthy crunch.
Everyone knows bananas are high in potassium, but no one really realizes how crucial potassium is to health. Perhaps the most important health benefit potassium has is blood pressure regulation; exceptionally high blood pressure can result in a heart attack. Add a potassium punch to cereal by chopping up some bananas on it, or make a banana and Nutella sandwich on whole wheat bread. Just make sure your sandwich is made up of mostly bananas and a slight amount of Nutella!
There’s a reason vitamin aisles in the supermarket are loaded with Omega-3 fish oil, but an even better way to get the oil is to eat the fish itself. Memory aid and cardiovascular support are just a few of the many health benefits Omega-3s have to offer. The keys to getting the optimal health benefits from fish are to eat the right kinds of fish and eat them the right way. Opt for fish with minimal amounts of mercury, such as tilapia or salmon. Also, don’t go eating a basket of deep fried, beer battered fish at a pub. Instead, grill the fish, bake it, or cook it in a skillet with a slight amount of oil.
Cranberries not only contain high amounts of antioxidants – they also contain tannins that help decrease bacteria in the urinary tract, and on top of that, they’re great for your kidneys.
Cranberries come in so many delicious varieties that there’s no excuse not to include them in your diet. Add some dried cranberries to your cereal or salad, drink cranberry juice, make sure to include cranberry sauce in your Thanksgiving festivities, or just eat a handful alone in their original form. Whatever way you eat them, make sure they have an active role in your diet.
On top of adding a delicious touch to Southwestern fare, avocados have a wide range of health benefits. The healthy fats in this fruit are said to support breast health along with healthy hair and skin. Although avocados are delicious on their own, they can spruce up a variety of meals. Dice them up and put them in a salad or wrap. One cannot think about avocados without thinking of guacamole, but think twice before you go on guacamole overload. This savory dip is often loaded with an unnecessary amount of oil and salt, so if anything, make your own healthy version at home.
There can’t be a healthy food list without something loaded with vitamin C, and what better way to get it than with delicious oranges! Vitamin C has many health benefits, but the most prominent one is immune system support. No, it won’t cure the flu, but it may prevent you from getting one or dull the effects of it. Oranges are often consumed in orange juice or in salad, but little do people know that they are perfect in marinades. The next time you grill chicken, add some orange juice to the marinade.
It’s the food that kids are notorious for avoiding at the dinner table, but it isn’t going away! Popeye wasn’t lying when he said spinach was good for your muscles; the carotenoids found in it can help prevent Lou Gehrig’s disease. Spinach is really delicious in salads, but if you’re not a fan eating raw spinach there are plenty of other ways to incorporate it into your diet. Add it to an egg white quiche. If you want to mask the flavor completely, blend it with fruit and make a smoothie. The fruit flavor will completely overpower the spinach flavor.
These nutritious, low calorie veggies are high in vitamin A, which supports vision. Carrots also help with digestive health, as they are high in dietary fiber. Just be sure not to eat an overwhelming amount of carrots. Because they contain carotene, eating too many carrots can cause carotenosis, which turns skin orange. Carrots are wonderful shaved over a salad. If the flavor of raw carrots isn’t your thing, they mesh very well in stews, soups, and savory pies. If you want to maximize the health benefits carrots have to offer, don’t cook them until they’re completely soft – the longer you cook them, the less nutritional value they will have.
This antioxidant rich fruit is perfect for people that want to look young! Especially high in the antioxidant lycopene, this fruit is known to help fight free radicals that cause skin to age. Tomatoes are also known to help protect against several types of cancers, such as prostate and lung. Tomatoes are a perfect accessory to any meal. How many meals can you name that don’t include tomatoes? Sandwiches, soups, shish kebabs, and pastas are all foods that welcome tomatoes into the mix, so find a tomato filled meal that speaks to you!
1. Dark Chocolate
It’s pretty hard to believe that chocolate would be on a healthy food list, but believe it! For one, you’ll be in a better mood knowing that you can splurge a bit on your diet by eating this sweet treat. Also, dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants and can help regulate blood pressure. The best way to eat dark chocolate is alone, without the accompaniment of a bunch of unhealthy foods, such as ice cream and cake. Instead, have it with fruits, such as strawberries, oranges, and bananas.
The key to eating healthy isn’t eating all of one food on this list. Instead, opt for a balanced diet with all of these foods combined. Add a few minor indulgences here and there, and you’ve got yourself one promising New Year’s resolution!