Maintaining one’s health doesn’t have to involve complicated science. In fact, it can be as easy as eating — all the right food, that is. The list of things you can eat to boost your health is almost endless, but it’s important to remember that some food items are healthier than others. In a story on Independent.co.uk, nutritionists shared just six food items and two drinks that they say are best for health. If you don’t want to be overwhelmed by an entire market’s worth of healthy eats, zero-in on these nourishing picks from nutritionists:
- Aloe Vera – People don’t normally think of aloe vera as a food — the plant is, in fact, more commonly-used as an ingredient in shampoo or skincare products. But topical application is just one way of enjoying its many nutrients. The best way to make the most of the plant’s health benefits is by taking a bite out of it. Nutritional therapist Libby Limon said in the report that aloe vera doesn’t just support your immune system and balance your blood sugar and cholesterol, but also improves your body’s ability to absorb nutrients from other foods. Add aloe vera into your diet by eating the leaves raw, or juicing it. According to GraceVanBerkum.com, to prepare aloe vera leaves for consumption, you simply have to cut off the skin starting with the sharp side edges, and then the flat edges. You could easily blend the remaining part into your smoothies or juices. You could also adding try raw aloe vera gel or dried aloe vera powder to your drinks.
- Eggs – While eggs once had a bad reputation owing to their cholesterol content, eating an appropriate amount daily actually helps more than hurts. Egg yolks are loaded with a range of vitamins and minerals, as well as antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids. If you want to keep your cholesterol levels in check though, you could stick to eating just the egg whites, which are free of sugar and cholesterol, and are an excellent sources of protein.
- Legumes – Legumes such as beans and lentils contain fiber, which something many people tend to overlook. Fiber cleans out the digestive system, ridding the body of toxins and preventing constipation. It can also lower cholesterol levels, as well as reduce inflammation and risk for certain cancers, dietitian Jo Travers said in the report. Adding a can of beans to a soup or stew, or snacking on roasted chickpeas are easy, low-cost, and delicious ways to incorporate legumes into your diet.
- Colorful food – This is not so much a food item as it is a food philosophy, but keeping it in mind can help make your diet as healthy as it can be. Making sure your plate is as colorful as the rainbow ensures that you are consuming a wide variety of fruits and vegetables that can cover all of your body’s nutritional needs.
- Broccoli – This cruciferous vegetable is a healthy eater’s favorite, as much for its versatility and flavor as for its nutritional content. It is a generous source of folic acid, which boosts hormone health and produces happy hormones such as serotonin and dopamine, keeping stress at bay. It also contains a substantial amount of B vitamins, which improves brain health. Roasted broccoli with garlic makes for an easy-to-make side dish that is particularly tasty.
- Nuts and seeds (when soaked) – Nuts and seeds have enjoyed a great reputation for being a healthy snack, and that’s just as well. It’s a good source of protein, unsaturated fat, omega-3s, and vitamin E, which can boost heart health. However, as nutritionist Stephanie Jeffs said in the story, soaking nuts and seeds makes them all the more healthy, as it removes anti-nutrients, dirt, and mold while releasing enzyme inhibitors too. At the same time, she said that unsoaked nuts may contribute to allergic responses. Thus, soaking them should really be the default practice.
- Green Tea – Filled with antioxidants, green tea can help remove toxins from the liver, manage weight, and restore balance in the hormones. While the taste is not very appealing to a lot of people, sipping on this hearty brew can do wonders for your overall health.
- Water – This is arguably the simplest, most available health boost you can get — and there’s no excuse for not having enough. Majority of the body is made up of water, and having enough of it in your system is key to staying on top of your game. Drinking a good amount of water also promotes detoxification and improves your metabolism. Having a reusable water bottle is a great way to keep track of your daily water intake, and drinking water first thing in the morning is the perfect thing to jump start your day.
As you can see, these food items are easy to find and are incredibly good for you. It would do well to stock up on these nutritious food items.