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Nutrition-Packed Foods

03/08/2013 10:53AM ● Published by Brian O

by Dr. Niki Young with Revolutions Natural Medical Solutions in Folsom

The relation of nutrition to health is hard to ignore these days.  Everywhere you look is another advertisement of “one weird trick” to achieve fantastic results. Obviously, these claims are a bit exaggerated. Fortunately, there are some foods that really do pack a one-two punch for taste and healthy eating. If I had to pick 5 foods that I couldn’t live without, the winners would be as follows.

1. CHIA

These tiny seeds aren’t just for the kids’ home gardening projects anymore. Soak them in water to make a thirst-quenching beverage, or sprinkle a teaspoon over a salad to take advantage of the high fiber, protein and omega-3 content.

2. QUINOA

This gluten-free pseudo-grain is a good source of protein that’s suitable for vegans and makes a great substitute for rice or pasta. The addition of quinoa to the diet has been shown to lower lipid and blood glucose levels. The seed is actually closer to a beet than a grain and has high levels of protein, polyphenols, phytosterols, flavonoids, vitamins and minerals, notably a good source of vitamin E. Plant-based vitamin E is beneficial for heart and cellular membrane health, and healthy cholesterol levels.

3. SARDINES

These small fish that taste similar to tuna, but without the risk of ingesting high doses of mercury, provide an excellent source of calcium, magnesium, iron, omega-3 and coenzyme Q10. Coenzyme Q10 is a very essential molecule in the metabolic process to create energy for all of our muscle cells, especially heart muscle cells. One brand even boasts a BPA-free can. If the ick-factor is still a little too much, Pacific or Alaskan canned salmon is also a great choice.

4. SPAGHETTI SQUASH

The flesh of this fruit falls away in strands like spaghetti when cooked. Rated low on the glycemic load, it’s an excellent alternate in pasta dishes for diabetics or those with gluten sensitivities. Itís also a good source of vitamin A, beta-carotenes, niacin, vitamin B6, pantothenic acid, potassium and manganese, and a very good source of dietary fiber and vitamin C.

5. ORGANIC BLUEBERRIES

The blue pigment is a result of molecules called anthocyanins, powerful bioflavonoids known to prevent DNA and estrogenic damage that could lead to cancer. They are potent antioxidants, are anti-inflammatory and beneficial for night vision. Mixing frozen blueberries into a morning protein shake is a fast and easy way to ensure you have the most important meal of the day. Freezing breaks the cell walls, allowing for more potent flavor and release of nutrients.

RUNNERS UP :SPIRULINA

A microalga with huge antioxidant power; rich in protein, vitamins and minerals.

COCONUT OIL

Contains medium-chain triglycerides, which have been shown to increase energy, satiety, and facilitate weight control when used instead of oils with long-chain triglycerides such as lard, corn oil or olive oil.
A recent study suggested that the nutrients in our food work together to prevent the spread of cancer to other parts of the body. In a nutshell, there isn’t just one food that is going to change the state of your health overnight. To keep your body full of energy and functioning properly, eat a variety of fresh, organic foods packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber and phytonutrients. Besides, eating just one food all the time would get boring very fast.

super foods chia quinoa sardines spaghetti squash blueberries organic spirulina coconut oil