Getting the right mix of foods in our diet is important; doing so will ensure that our bodies get the essential nutrients they need, which is crucial to leading a healthy lifestyle.
But what foods are the best in delivering high nutritional value? In general, the healthiest and most nutrient-rich foods in the world are organic foodstuffs – this is hardly surprising, as they are the most natural form of food, unaltered, and eaten the way nature intended. These foods also tend to be great tasting, widely available and are usually low cost.
If you are looking for natural, delicious and nutritious foods, try incorporating the following foods into your diet:
Sticky, sweet and delicious, dates are a perfect alternative to sugary snacks, and are brimming with vitamins, nutrients and minerals, and can help to relieve constipation, prevent intestinal disorders, facilitate weight gain, boost energy levels and promote good heart health.
Broccoli is packed full of vitamins. In fact, just one medium stalk of broccoli a day will give you 100% of your vitamin K requirement, as well as always 200% of your vitamin C needs. With these 2 essential bone-building vitamins, you’ll stay strong and healthy.
We all need a sweet fix now and again, but forgoing milk chocolate for dark chocolate is a healthier alternative. Just one quarter of an ounce of dark chocolate every day is enough to reduce blood pressure, even if you’re already relatively healthy.
There are a number of different types of potatoes, the healthiest of which include red potatoes and sweet potatoes. One red potato contains 66mcg of this cell-building folate, a B-vitamin required to make DNA and other genetic material, whilst one sweet potato contains almost 8 times the amount of vitamin A we need daily, which can help to boost the immune system and even protect against cancer.
A 3 ounce serving of salmon will help to provide your body with almost 50% of your body’s daily niacin requirement, which is thought to help improve memory loss and protect against Alzheimer’s. It is also a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are effective in reducing the risk of depression, heart disease, and even cancer.
These little nuts may be small, but they contain an impressive amount of omega-3, more than any other variety of nut in fact. Omega-3 fatty acids can be beneficial in enhancing your mood, protecting your skin and also have anti-cancer properties.
Avocados are an extremely popular and versatile health food. They are rich in healthy and satisfying fats and even have been found to decrease cholesterol levels by 22%, reducing our risk of heart disease and stroke. What’s more, just one a day will provide your body with more than half the fibre and 40% of the folate your body needs, which has much the same effect.
We often used garlic in our cooking without considering how good it actually is for us. Garlic is actually effective at fighting diseases, inhibiting the growth of bacteria such as E coli. In addition, garlic also contains a compound called Allucin, which is a powerful anti-inflammatory and can also help to reduce cholesterol and blood pressure levels.
There’s a reason Popeye loves the stuff – the leafy green vegetable contains 2 immune-boosting antioxidants – lutein and zeaxanthin – which help to promote good eye health. Moreover, although a number of fruits and vegetables can claim to have anti-cancer properties, spinach is one of the most effective of them all.
Just a one serving of beans, peas or lentils four times a week (an easy addition to a healthy lunch or dinner) can help to lower your risk of heart disease by as much as 22%. They are also thought to be reduce the risk of breast cancer. Opt for darker coloured beans as these are also rich in antioxidants.
In general, making sure you get enough Dates, fish, nuts, leafy green vegetables and fruit will help you on your way to a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle.