Between eating clean, detoxes, paleo and so many other finger-wagging ways to diet, it’s tough to know what we need to eat. That’s why we’ve rounded up 11 foods you must add to your diet. And they’re good for that waistline, too.
These mighty but small seeds are nutritionally impactful because of three things, reports Cooking Light: omega-3 fatty acids, fiber and lignans. The story says it can lower cholesterol and triglycerides, especially in women, reduce the risk of breast cancer, and references a Mayo Clinic study, which found that 40 grams of crushed flaxseed may reduce hot flashes.
Fiber-rich oatmeal is good for the heart, that’s for sure; but it’s also good for lowering your risk of type 2 diabetes, reports prevention.com. The site mentions a study that found that men and women who ate oatmeal were 61% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes.
You know when you’re running and you get a side cramp? Women’s Health recommends having a banana to offset the crippling pain. The article says one medium-sized banana has 400 milligrams of potassium and 29 grams of carbs. What does that have to do with cramps? Studies show potassium helps replace sweat losses and also encourages fluid absorption.
An apple a day… you know the deal. But here’s why: apples are rich in quercetin, which is an antioxidant that boost your immune system, reports Shape. The post referenced an Appalachian State University study that found that a just 5% of subjects with diets that included the antioxidant experienced a respiratory infection during two weeks.
Which has more vitamin C? An orange or a kiwifruit? A kiwi has more. And one kiwifruit has nearly the daily recommended amount of vitamin C, reports health.com. Their story also links vitamin C to better eyesight, lower cancer risk and healthier hearts.
Just pop a piece of gum, and don’t worry about the effects on your breath with garlic – think about the benefits for your body. This bulb vegetable, according to besthealthmag.ca, helps fight bacteria, and it may help fight yeast infections. It’s most effective when eaten raw, so add crushed garlic to salads and dips.
7. Low-Fat or Fat-free Dairy
If you’re looking to become pregnant, you’ll want to make sure you have sufficient calcium and protein in your diet; and dairy can help, says fitpregnancy.com. While full-fat dairy has been linked to better chances of fertility, the article does warn that you shouldn’t eat full-fat dairy all the time, and also to swap out with low-fat options.
8. Whole Grains
The next time you’re in the bread aisle trying to decide between white and whole-grain bread-bagels and buns-reach for the grains. Eating Well reports that whole grains (think whole wheat, brown rice, oats, quinoa, etc.) will help with weight loss and blood pressure.
9. Wild Salmon
Women need salmon more than men. That’s because it helps raise serotonin (happy hormones), which women have less of than men, reports sheknows.com. The article explains fish oil helps raise this happy hormone, and women are twice as likely to be clinically diagnosed with depression. Plus, salmon is loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, which helps with weight loss.
10. Protein Powder
You may think your man might benefit from protein powder, but so can you, suggests goodhousekeeping.com. This supplement can help burn fat and build muscle (which also increases your metabolism).
This healthy restaurant appetizer is something you should consider enjoying at home too. Active.com reports that edamame is loaded with protein, fiber, folate, magnesium, potassium, vitamin K, vitamin C and iron. That last nutrient is especially important to menstruating women, who often have depleted iron stores.