Healthy eating is more than a culinary delight; it is a way of life. Nutrient-rich foods are highly sought after, and for good reason. Various diets contain healthful foods which are the best way to live a healthy lifestyle. When you eat well, you decrease your risk of chronic disease and you can lead a much better life. Not only is it believed that some diseases can be prevented by healthy eating, a well balanced diet can also improve the outlook for individuals who have already been diagnosed with a serious disease.
Unhealthy eating has contributed to the obesity epidemic in the US, with over a third of US adults rated as obese. Major health concerns such as hypertension, heart disease, and certain types of cancer can be reduced or eliminated simply by sticking to a healthy diet.
If you are looking to improve your diet and live a better quality life, our listing of the 10 healthiest foods is a great place to start!
10 – Grapefruit
Before we extol the virtues of grapefruit, you cannot eat this if you are taking cholesterol medication a.k.a. statins. Grapefruit is fantastic for weight loss. Multiple studies confirm this, and for good reason. Grapefruit can reduce insulin resistance and it helps to fill you up if you have a serving of grapefruit before your regular meals. This appetite suppression effect is a great reason to consume this fruit. This nutrient rich, low caloric fruit features many important nutrients such as magnesium, folate, thiamine, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C, fiber, protein, and carbs.
09 – Lentils
Lentils are legumes, much like peas and beans. First of all, they grow in pods and they are rich in protein, low in fat, and the ideal substitute for meats and fish. Legumes like lentils are filled with fiber, potassium, iron, phosphorus, and folate. You can pick from red lentils, brown lentils, or even green lentils. Luckily, it’s pretty easy to prepare these foods. You simply remove the debris, rinse them and then cook them. Be sure to cook for at least 20 minutes for red lentils, 30 minutes for brown lentils, and 40 minutes for green lentils. Add garlic, salt, and seasoning for flavor and enjoy.
08 – Tuna
Tuna is a wonderful food. It’s one of those fish that is incredibly versatile and can be used in all sorts of meal options. It’s high in protein, low in calories, and it’s a lean fish. Believe it or not, fitness gurus love tuna and for good reason. You’ll often see bodybuilders and models including tuna in their diet. One of the best weight loss strategies is to cut out carbohydrates and fat and replace them with proteins like tuna. How about trying a tuna pizza, a tuna salad, a tuna avocado and bacon sandwich, easy tuna casserole, and Asian tuna patties. There are lots of options with this tasty fish.
07 – Lean Beef
Lean beef is a fantastic source of protein. It’s all loaded up on iron, and if you remove the fatty parts, it’s an amazing food to include in your diet. You can use lean beef in pretty much any lunch or dinner meal you can imagine. For starters you can try out ground beef zucchini enchilada boats, cauliflower ground beef hash, gluten-free meatloaf muffins, sweet potato noodle taco bowls, beef and eggplant casserole, paleo burgers with caramelized balsamic onions and avocado, Swedish meatballs, or stuffed spaghetti squash with tomato and ground beef. The options are limitless and for the most part, you don’t even need to source these ingredients if you decide to pick delivered meal services.
06 – Whole Grains
Whole grains are super foods and they are really important to include in your diet. They are a great source of soluble and insoluble fiber. Plus, they’re also loaded up on phytonutrients, vitamin B and more. Like other super foods, they protect against diabetes and heart disease. Including whole grains in your diet is pretty easy – simply prepare a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast or brunch, and use brown rice instead of a baked potato. Be sure that your whole grains are 100% whole wheat flour. If you’re into meal kits, you may want to doublecheck that you’ve included several meals with whole grains in them.
05 – Bok choy
When you’re looking for healthy foods, your best bet is to pick the dark leafy green vegetables. We’ve all heard about romaine lettuce, spinach and kale, but there is an Asian vegetable that looks a little bit like celery and its name is bok choy. It is fantastic for preventing all sorts of illnesses and ailments such as cancer, inflammation, and autoimmune conditions. You want to get at least 2 cups of salad greens of vegetables in your diet every day.
Bok choy is rich in vitamin A and beta-carotene. If you are wondering how to cook this delicious superfood, simply heat some olive oil or grapeseed oil in a skillet on a wok with some garlic for about two minutes. Next, mix in your bok choy and cook it until the green parts of the leaves become bright green and somewhat transparent. This takes up to 8 minutes. Once it’s done, add a little salt for taste and enjoy.
04 – Fish
Not every fish is good for you, but the oily fish such as anchovies, herring, sardines, trout, mackerel and salmon are fantastic. The omega-3 fatty acids in these fish are great for your body and they work wonders on your central nervous system and your heart. If you have inflammatory conditions such as psoriatic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and others, omega-3 fatty acids are a godsend.
People who consume a low-fat diet with lots of fish are generally less prone to cancer. When you’re preparing fish meals, it’s always a good idea to supplement with lots of vegetables, fruits, nuts, salads and whatnot. For some incredibly succulent fish dishes, you may want to try out some of the best delivered meal services on the market.
03 – Eggs
When you’re looking to supplement your diet with lots of protein, eggs are a great way to do it. Eggs are used to prepare all sorts of delicious dishes including batter for fish and schnitzel, meringues, poached eggs, scrambled eggs, French toast, fried eggs, egg biscuits, and hundreds of other delicious food offerings. So, what’s inside of eggs? Well, for one there is lots of vitamin B-2, vitamin B-12, leucine and more. Contrary to popular opinion, eggs are not going to increase your risk of heart disease.
02 – Avocados
Avocados aren’t only great for guacamole dips, they’re also ideal for pretty much everything else you want to prepare. Avocados can be used in smoothies, salads, and wraps too. They are rich in folate, potassium, B vitamins, vitamin C, vitamin E and vitamin C to name but a few. True, they are high in fat but it’s the good fat – monounsaturated fat that actually helps to lower your cholesterol levels. 1 ounce of avocados contains 50 calories, so the serving size is about a third of an avocado. Luckily, you can use these super foods in a wide array of dishes.
01 – Broccoli
Broccoli is one of the most nutrient-rich foods you can imagine. It’s filled with vitamin C, beta-carotene, folate, calcium, fiber and potassium. But more importantly it’s also rich in phytonutrients. These are the best compounds to help reduce cancer, sulforphane, diabetes, and heart disease. Experts say that 100 grams of broccoli is the equivalent of 1.5 x your daily required intake of Vitamin C. For those who love this veggie, it’s great to eat it lightly steamed or even raw.