In our world of fast food, microwaveable meals and processed, boxed, bagged empty calories, too many of us are getting less and less of the foods we should be eating. Let’s change that right now: Stock your fridge with these five foods and eat them every day (or at least most days).
1. Broccoli: Who knew a little green “tree” could pack so much power? Broccoli contains sulfur compounds (e.g., sulforaphane) that help fight cancer, and research proves it. Can’t stomach broccoli? Try dicing it into your favorite dish or pulverizing it into a smoothie.
2. Berries: Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries – you name it! Berries have a long list of health benefits, not the least of which are protection against chronic disease and cancer. So get your daily antioxidants with a cup of berries today!
3. Oats: Worried about high cholesterol, high blood pressure and heart health in general? It’s oats to the rescue! This whole grain features beta-glucan, which helps keep cholesterol and BP in the safe range. So swap out those high-sugar cereals and plain bagels with a cup of oats every morning; your heart will thank you for it.
4. Lean Protein: It’s a carb world, at least in the United States, and those excess carbohydrates are leading to weight gain, diabetes and a host of other health complications. The solution: balance your diet with more protein! Protein contains amino acids, the building blocks of muscle; and may help increase your metabolism, which in turn will help burn more fat. Think fish, skinned turkey or chicken, beans, tofu, yogurt (particularly Greek yogurt), or powdered protein sources for your favorite shake.
5. Tea: Sodas and sweetened beverages are destroying our teeth, promoting weight gain and leading to insulin resistance. Go the healthier route by switching to plain water and tea, the latter of which has been shown to protect against heart disease, stroke and cancer.