Posted on Aug 30, 2018, 8 p.m.
There is not a single food that can offer all complete nutrition, health benefits, and energy needed to nourish the body and mind. US Dietary guidelines recommend healthy eating patterns by combining healthy choices from across all food groups paying attention to calorie limits with an active lifestyle.
Healthy diet patterns have been shown to able to help to decrease the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers. DASH diets and Mediterranean diets and others that are mostly plant based have demonstrated significant health benefits and decreases of chronic diseases. There are few foods that can be singled out for special recognition that offer important nutrients that can power pack meals and snacks to further enhance healthy eating patterns.
Berries are high in fiber and naturally sweets with rich colours that typically mean a high antioxidant and disease fighting content.
Fish can be a great protein and omega-3 fatty acid source to help prevent heart disease.
Dark leafy greens are a great source of vitamins A & C, calcium, fiber, and several phytochemicals that have positive effects on health.
Nuts such as pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts, and almonds are loaded with plant protein that contain monounsaturated fats which may help decrease risks of heart disease.
Olive oil contains vitamin E, polyphenols, and monounsaturated fatty acids that can help to decrease the risks of developing heart disease.
Whole grains are sources of soluble and insoluble fiber as well as several B vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients that have been shown to lower cholesterol levels and help protect against heart disease and diabetes.
Yogurt is a great source of protein and calcium which contains live probiotics that can help protect the body from other more harmful bacterias.
Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, turnips, cabbage, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, kale, mustard and collard greens, kohlrabi, and radishes are excellent sources of vitamins, fiber, and phytochemicals that may help to prevent against some types of cancers.
Legumes are a broad category including red, black, garbanzo, and kidney beans, as well as peas and soybeans which are all great sources of folate, fiber, and plant based protein that may help to protect against risk factors of developing heart disease.
Tomatoes are high in lycopene and vitamin C content which has been shown to help reduce the risk of developing prostate cancer.
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