As a health conscious consumer, you know that you are what you eat, and you want to select foods that will make you feel great today and keep you healthy for years to come. The following five super foods work best along with a fresh organic diet that emphasizes vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, nuts and seeds.
Berries Blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and cranberries are all good choices. These fruits are low on the glycemic index so they are easy on blood sugar, and they are packed with antioxidants to protect against heart disease, eye and nerve damage, and aging throughout the body. Raspberry leaf tea is a great women’s tonic and smooth muscle relaxant (good for menstrual cramps). Unsweetened cranberry juice helps to stave off bladder infections and kidney stones.
Broccoli The cruciferous (or brassica) family of veggies provides great liver detoxification support. This family includes such delights as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, turnip, mustard greens, kale, rutabaga, kohlrabi, and collard greens. These foods are the dietary source of nutrients which aid in the safe breakdown and elimination of estrogen, and have been shown to lower the risk of breast cancer.
Coconut Oil Many people are surprised to hear that coconut oil is a healthy choice. Yes, it is a saturated fat, but we actually do need some saturated fat in our diets. Instead, you need to carefully avoid trans fats. Coconut oil is great for cooking because it resists heat damage. It is easy to digest and enables the body to burn fat for energy. This makes it a great weight loss food that also helps to maintain healthy cholesterol levels and lower the risk of heart disease. Coconut oil is a great source of lauric acid, which is the same substance in breast milk that helps to strengthen the immune system.
Flax Seeds (raw, ground) Among the variety of healthy nuts and seeds, flax plays a special role. Flax oil is a tasty and balanced source of both omega 3 and omega 6 oils. What makes flax so unique, however, is the high dose of lignans in the fiber obtained from grinding the seeds into a powder to be sprinkled over foods or mixed into drinks. The lignans promote healthy hormone balance while aiding digestive function and prevent colon cancer. Eating 2 Tbs. per day can help with hot flashes, PMS, PCOS, diarrhea and constipation. Because it can be damaged by heat, flax should be stored in the fridge and eaten raw.
Yogurt and Kefir These fermented foods are a great source of the good bacteria that we all need to maintain a healthy colon. Keeping a good balance of colonic flora promotes proper digestion and immune function to help with IBS, yeast infections, and recovery after antibiotics. Good sources of calcium and protein, yogurt or kefir can make a great snack or smoothie.