Do you have this sinking feeling that you should be eating healthier? You don’t need to deprive yourself of every good tasting food when eating for health. Food is one of the joys of life. By adding some of the most nutritious foods into your diet, you build up your nutrient reserves. This supports digestion, detoxification, and immunity. If you are only going to make one change in your diet, start consuming these power foods daily.
8 Power Foods to Eat Daily
Cruciferous Vegetables – There are vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts and cabbage. Cruciferous vegetables are beneficial for many reasons. They are a great source of fiber for healthy digestion. They are a source of cancer-preventing indoles. They also contain the indole derived DIM which plays a part in estrogen metabolism. DIM can be supportive of hormone balance and can potentially protect against reproductive cancers. Not to mention that cruciferous vegetables are power foods that are high in vitamins and minerals. Just be careful if you have a thyroid problem as cruciferous vegetables can potentially interfere with treatment.
Berries – These are fruit like blueberries, raspberries, strawberries and acai berries. Not only are these power foods a source of fiber. They are also super sources of antioxidants with acai berries getting their superfood status from their extra high supply. Berries are considered anti-inflammatory and may support memory. Blueberries are high in polyphenols that some studies suggest may even support bone growth. These nutritious foods grow during the summer, but you can enjoy them all year round by purchasing them frozen.
Nuts – When I mention nuts, most people will instantly think peanut (which is actually a legume, not a nut). However, I’m talking about foods like almonds, cashews, brazil nuts, and walnuts. Nuts are a great source of healthy unsaturated fat that can actually lower cholesterol, promote fat loss and help maintain a proper weight. Walnuts can be a source of omega-3 fatty acids. Brazil nuts are a great source of selenium, an often missed nutrient in the traditional diet. Almonds can be a good source of healing vitamin e. Additionally, all nuts provide some protein. A small handful daily is good. Too many and you may experience stomach discomfort.
Seeds – Seeds are small but mighty power foods like pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds and flax seeds. Including them in the diet is as easy as throwing them on a salad, on top of oatmeal or into a smoothie. Seeds are another great source of fiber. Many of them are high in b vitamins for improved brain function, heart function, vision support, and immunity. They can be good for hormone balance, beautiful skin and cell protection as well. So buy a variety of seeds and mix them up. That way you get the widest total body protection from eating them.
Garlic – Garlic is one of the healthiest ways to make food flavorful. It is also a great disease-fighting superfood. Garlic, when cut, forms a compound called allicin that has amazing cardiovascular benefits. Additionally, garlic can be protective against the cold or the flu and may even be helpful in the prevention of cancer.It can help reduce cholesterol and triglycerides as well as protect blood vessels from inflammation and damage. Just remember to take the essential step of cutting garlic to trigger the formation of allicin.
Coconut oil – Many people shy away from coconut oil because it is so high in saturated fat. But it’s important to remember that the type of saturated fat in coconut oil is considered health supportive. Coconut oil is anti-inflammatory, it has a positive impact on insulin and can be healing to the gut. Additionally, it can be advantageous for weight loss. It helps with energy expenditure and allows you to feel fuller for longer. It is one of the best oils for cooking as it is less likely to burn and become toxic. It is a great nutritious food that can be eaten daily.
Fermented Food – These are power foods like kimchi, sauerkraut, pickled beets, pickled cucumber, kefir, and miso. Our ancestors used to regularly preserve their foods through pickling or fermenting. Unfortunately, this is not a common practice today. Fermented foods are high in the good type of bacteria that populates the colon. This good bacteria protects the gut, thereby protecting health. So a deficit of good bacteria creates problems. It allows the bad bacteria in the gut take control and creates illness throughout the body. So eating some fermented foods daily is extremely health protective.
Tea – Drinking tea can be a great alternative to drinking coffee. I love coffee, but coffee can be extremely acidic. Anything acidic leaves the body vulnerable to disease when consumed in excess. Teas are high in polyphenols which have great antioxidant properties. Teas can be protective against cancers and heart disease. They can even lower the risk for Parkinson’s disease according to one study. Tea is a great healing beverage, nutritious food and health protector. Just make sure to drink tea between meals. The tannins in tea can lead to iron deficiency by blocking the absorption of iron when consumed with food.
So there you have it. These are 8 power foods that you should eat every day. So don’t think of healthy eating as a form of deprivation. Adding power foods like this to the diet, even without taking any “bad foods” away, can make a huge difference for your health, your waistline, and even your happiness. How’s that for an easy change that goes a long way?