Every day, more and more people choose to make healthier options for longevity. Eating healthier foods makes up a large portion of those options. There is no one miracle food that’s going to make you skinny or live forever, but there are lots of foods that can help us take a step in the direction that we would like to be going. Check out these 10 health foods, and consider adding them to your diet.
1. Flax Seeds
Brimming with omega-3 fatty acids, flax seeds are a health food that have been on the rise and should continue to be. Studies have shown they can reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer, and they’re easy to add to your diet. Throw them in your waffle or pancake batter, mix them into your yogurt or oatmeal, or bake them into a fresh loaf of bread There are numerous ways to work flax into your diet, so make the change and start eating this health food!
Rich and full of antioxidants, this health food is wonderful to eat on its own. Dates may not look appetizing, but they are incredibly sweet. Full of fiber, they are one health food that may help keep you fuller longer if you are looking for a hunger curbing snack. They are also known to promote pregnancy health, so if you are pregnant or know somebody who is pregnant, dates may be a health food to consider trying. Eat them on their own, or try chopping them up and adding them to homemade trail mix.
Turmeric is a bit of a tricky health food. It contains a compound known as curcumin that fights a wide range of maladies, like Alzheimer’s, joint inflammation, cancer, and heart disease. However, you can eat, eat, and eat turmeric, and see little to no results. That’s because turmeric is fat-soluble. To see the best results with this health food, try combining it with a portion of fatty food. Golden milk and golden lattes are on the rise–their main ingredient being turmeric, where they get their golden hue. Try making these drinks with whole milk, so the turmeric can bind with the milk fats for maximum absorption.
The beet is a health food that doesn’t get enough of the love that it deserves. Slightly sweet with a predominantly earthy flavor, beets have a distinct flavor that can be hard for some to palate. However, when cooked prepared properly, their flavor and health benefits can truly shine. Dense in nutrients and nitrates, beets can significantly reduce blood pressure levels in a matter of hours.
If you’re not a fan of beets, or just think you won’t like them, please give them another try. Try sliced, candied beets on your next burger (it’s totally delicious). Or, roast them and serve them in goat cheese, arugula, and balsamic salad. If the taste still bothers you, you can always juice them and mask the taste of the juice with juices from other fruits and vegetables.
5. Green Tea
Green tea is a well known and loved health food option. Green tea leaves contain bioflavonoids known as catechins. These are powerful antioxidants that promote health in numerous ways. One of those ways is combating free radicals, which wreak cellular damage throughout your body. Drinking green tea is the easiest way to gain health food benefits, but you can obtain these benefits through other methods of consumption as well. Matcha powder is highly concentrated green tea powder that you can use to make tea or even use it in cooking. Try mixing your matcha into your next batch of sugar cookies, or a loaf of bread!
This popular health food is known for its omega 3 fatty acids and significant levels of selenium. Both are essential for cognitive function, healthy hair, and thyroid regulation. Salmon is also high in protein, which may help you stay full. The list of ways you can prepare and eat salmon are endless. However, most foods retain the highest levels of nutrients before they’ve been cooked. If you’re a fan of sushi, make your next roll a fresh salmon roll!
Lentils are another nutrient-dense health food that deserve to be mentioned. They are wonderful to eat if you’re on a diet, and there’s substantial evidence that they improve heart health. Not only are they affordable, but they are a wonderful alternative to meat in your weekly diet. If you aren’t already eating a mainly plant-based diet, consider swapping out your usual protein with lentils a few times a week. Try making lentil soup, lentil chili, or lentil burgers.
Probiotic foods are on the rise, now that more and more people are learning about the importance of maintaining balanced bacterial flora in the stomach. Not only is kimchi a wonderful example of probiotic health food, but it is a good example of healthy spicy foods. Kimchi can help improve immunity, lower cholesterol levels, promote digestive wellness, and promote weight loss. Try eating this spicy, fermented dish on its own, or enjoy it in Korean kimchi pancakes.
This fiber-packed health food is great to eat if you’re looking to lose weight, control your blood sugar levels, lower your cholesterol, or all of the above. Some may believe oatmeal to be bland, but it’s only as bland as you make it! Try an updated oatmeal recipe like overnight oats. Mix your oatmeal with greek yogurt and a bit of milk, and throw in your favorite toppings for an effortless on-the-go meal. Try carob chips, flaked coconut, and a dollop of peanut butter for a filling, healthy, and sweet breakfast!
This one should be a no brainer, but it is so easy to forget the most important of them all–water! Our bodies are made of the stuff, and we still somehow manage to forget to drink it time and time again. Without water, our bodies cannot properly function. Do yourself a favor, and invest in a water bottle. It doesn’t have to be cute, and it doesn’t have to be expensive. Just make sure that you fill it up and take it wherever you go, so you can always stay hydrated!