There are many foods that are actually considered very healthy for you, and could in some ways be considered superfoods because they have been shown in various studies to promote long lives. Below we have listed some of these amazing foods and how they help promote health.
Clearly the old adage an apple a day keeps the doctor away has been well touted for years. Apples truly are good for your health- they are known for reducing bad cholesterol- LDL, and increasing good cholesterol- HDL. Apples are high in antioxidants such as querectin, which is found in high amounts in the apple skin, and can help remove toxins from the blood. They are also high in fiber, helping to promote regular bowel habits.
There are several types of berries that are great for promoting health. Blueberries in particular are high in antioxidants as well as pack a high dose of vitamin B, C, and E into just a small serving. They also promote brain health and are high in copper, selenium, zinc, and iron. Acai berries are great for promoting weight loss, improving circulation, and protecting cells from damage.
Chocolate is normally thought of as a guilty pleasure and the unhealthiest thing in our diets. However, most of these warnings come from the high doses of sugar, ice creams, and caramels we combine with chocolate and not chocolate itself. In fact, the cacao found in dark chocolate has actually been associated with reduced blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and risk of heart disease. Dark chocolate contains antioxidants which help resist damage of free radicals that are formed in the body. Even the fat found in dark chocolate can help reduce cholesterol levels so when eaten in moderation can be beneficial overall for health.
Eggs are very good for you in several ways. Eggs can help prevent the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration, which both affect your eyes. Eggs are even thought to help protect memory. In addition, eggs contain protein, which can be vital for reducing hunger and giving healthy calories.
Nuts tend to have a high concentration of unsaturated omega-3 fatty acids. This type of fatty acid can help dissolve blood clots and reduce the risk of heart disease. They can also help reduce bad cholesterol and increase good cholesterol levels. Walnuts also include twice the amount of antioxidants as peanuts and almonds, though both also have significant levels themselves. Pecans in particular are high in vitamin E that helps reduce cholesterol.
Oats are whole grains and can be found in things like oatmeal. Oatmeal contains Vitamin B and E. High quantities of fiber are beneficial for bowel regularity and decreasing total cholesterol. In addition, whole grains have a low glycemic index which can help prevent diabetes.
Olive Oil is known to be associated with a heart-healthy diet. Olive oil can be preventative against stroke. It has antioxidants and is easy to use as a part of regular cooking instead of other oils which can be more destructive to blood vessels.
Resveratrol is a polyphenol is a compound found in red wine, and is known to have an effect on slowing aging, decreasing risk of cancers, and decreasing inflammation in the body. Resveratrol can also reduce blood clots similar to the action of aspirin. Red wine has also been seen in recent studies to reduce blood pressure. Wine can be safely consumed regularly but not in large quantities, and its use must be approached carefully. No more then 4-8 ounces of red wine daily is cardio-protective, but even daily use should be closely monitored because it is highly addictive.
Fish has been advertised in the past few years as being heart-healthy. Salmon, especially, is high in omega-3 fatty acids which can reduce blood pressure, block clot formation, and prevent plaques in arterial walls. They have also been suggested to decrease risk of dementia. One or two servings of fish a week have been associated with a reduced risk of heart disease by 30%.
Spinach is a very important vegetable that contains many important health boosters. It is high in antioxidants, and a great source of vitamins A, C, and Folate (B9). Because of this, it fights cancer, heart disease, and mental disorders. Folate in particular can help reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.