Nine Healthiest FoodsThere are many healthy foods on Earth, but if I were to make a list of foods that should be eaten as often as possible (even every day) for their health value, my list would include the following nine foods. What would be on your list?

Kale

Kale is a green leafy vegetable, rich in iron, calcium, chlorofyl, vitamin C and multiple other nutrients. It is also very low in calories.

I try to eat kale about four-five times a week, putting it into smoothies, salads and casseroles.

Beets

Beets are a rich source of folate as well as natural red pigments that may be cancer fighters. Beets are rich in natural sugar, sodium, sulphur, chlorine, iodine, copper and vitamin B1, B2, C and bioflavonoids.  Beet contains a lot of fiber and is excellent for eliminating constipation.

Beet greens work in salads and smoothies, beet roots can be roasted and put into a soup.

Garlic

Garlic is a powerful disease fighter and immune-system supporter that can inhibit the growth of bacteria, including E. coli. Allicin (an active compound found in garlic,) works as a potent anti-inflammatory and has been shown to help lower cholesterol and normalize blood-pressure levels.

Garlic works in many dishes like soups, salads, stews and casseroles. I also like simple roasted garlic with a bit of sea salt and olive oil.

Almonds

Almonds are rich in protein, calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, fiber and other nutrients. It is better to pre-soak your almonds for about 7-12 hours (overnight) in order to neutralize the phytic acid in them, which prevents proper enzyme breakdown and mineral absorption. Almonds contain mostly polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, which help to maintain healthy cholesterol levels.

For the last four years, almost all almonds have to be pasteurized before sale. According to the Almond Board of California (ABC), no heating is used during the pasteurization process, but rather a process referred to by the FDA as “terminal gas sterilization” using propylene oxide (a highly toxic flammable chemical,)  before it became prohibited for safety reasons. It’s an epoxide, which is not GRAS (generally recognized as safe for human ingestion). There are still exemptions for small sellers and it is possible to find truly raw unpasteurized almonds. I like to order mine in bulk from a small vendor in California.

I eat about two handfuls of almonds a day. I also make almond milk and put almonds in smoothies and cookies.

Avocado

Rich in healthy fats, avocado was proven in one study to lower cholesterol by about 22 percent. Avocado provides close to 20 essential healthy nutrients, like potassium (more than twice the amount found in a banana,) Vitamin E, B-vitamins and folic acid.  Avocado enables your body to more efficiently absorb fat-soluble nutrients, such as alpha- and beta-carotene and lutein, in other foods eaten together. One avocado provides more than half the fiber and 40 percent of the folate you need daily, which may reduce your risk of heart disease.

I eat one avocado a day every day and increase that to up to two a day when I am pregnant or nursing.

Blueberries

Packed with unique antioxidants, blueberries neutralize free radical damage to the tissues, preventing degenerative disorders. The pigment found in blueberries improve the integrity of support structures in the skin, joints, and vascular system. Blueberries been shown to enhance the effects of vitamin C, improve capillary integrity, and stabilize the collagen matrix. These pigments work mostly by preventing free radical and inflammatory damage. Blueberries have also been shown to improve memory in animal studies.

I eat blueberries as often as I can and feed my kids about a handful of blueberries almost every day.

Broccoli

One medium stalk of this vegetable contains more than 100 percent of your daily vitamin K requirement and almost 200 percent of your recommended daily dose of vitamin C , which are two essential nutrients to build strong bones and keep cancers away. Unfortunately, this vegetable absorbs chemicals from the soil exceptionally well, so try to eat only organic broccoli.

Free-range eggs

Pastured or free-range eggs are rich in one of the highest quality proteins you can find, as well as multiple other nutrients. A single egg contains nine essential amino acids, necessary for repair and maintenance of body tissues. Egg yolks contain B12 vitamin, which many vegetarians are deficient in. Egg yolks also contain choline, which is beneficial for cardiovascular and nervous system, as well as for the brain. Eggs also contain lutein and zeaxanthin, which are good for your eyes.

Dark Chocolate

Cocoa powder is rich in flavonoids, which are antioxidants shown to reduce “bad” LDL cholesterol and increase “good” HDL levels and also to normalise blood pressure in healthy individuals. There is a catch, though: opt for dairy-free chocolate, as some nutrients in milk prevent the absorption of  these helpful flavonoids.

About Dr. Anastasia

Dr. Anastasia Halldin holds a Ph.D in holistic nutrition, speaks four languages, starred on a yoga TV show, produced and appeared in thirteen yoga DVDs, and is a mother of a kindergartner, twin toddlers, and a newborn. Dr. Anastasia loves doing crafts with her children and sharing her easy healthy recipes and knowledge of health and food with mothers to help them raise healthier families.
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One Response to Nine Healthiest Foods

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