Diet :: Try more 6 super foods for better health

Good food is the foundation for good health. Volumes of studies have demonstrated that the phytochemicals, vitamins and minerals in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, legumes and tea can help ward off heart disease, cancer, diabetes, macular degeneration and many other serious illnesses.

1. Sweet potatoes, carrots, mangoes, apricots, winter squash, pumpkin and orange bell peppers.

They have many anticancer functions; strengthen the immune system; protect the retina from harmful radiation, reducing the risk of macular degeneration. They are packed with beta carotene, which our body converts to vitamin A as needed.

2. Walnuts, almonds, cashews, pecans, macadamias.

Even the fattiest nuts have been found to improve cholesterol. Nuts are high in beneficial poly- and monounsaturated fats. Studies show that you can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease by 15 percent to 50 percent if you eat a handful of nuts five times per week. Walnuts are an excellent source of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids. Almonds are a good source of calcium, magnesium and vitamin E.

3. Tea – green, black and white.

Green and white tea are particularly low in caffeine and high in flavenols that fight cancer and heart disease, such as catechins and EGCGs. Catechins were found to be more effective than vitamins C and E in blocking cell mutations that cause cancer. Catechins may also protect arteries from plaque buildup.

4. Soy foods.

All kinds, such as tofu, soy milk, soy nuts, edamame beans, tempeh and miso, lower “bad” cholesterol levels in the bloodstream, which, in turn, reduces heart-disease risk. Phytochemicals in soy have been shown to fight cancer.

5. Spinach, bok choy and other dark leafy greens.

These are a rich source of plant-based calcium, which is better absorbed by the body than the calcium found in dairy products. They contain beta carotene, vitamin C, folic acid and magnesium which help control cancer, reduce heart disease and stroke risk.

6. Papaya, pineapple and kiwi.

They contain enzymes that break down protein, freeing amino acids for their roles in everything from cell growth and repair to antibody, digestive enzyme and hormone production.

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