If you are kicking off this year with a desire to be healthy and to better nourish your body, then you might be focused on what you can cut from your diet rather than what you can put into it. The fact is that choosing healthier foods is just as important as eliminating the foods that do not provide any health benefits. Start your year off right and focus first on what you can do for yourself to increase your energy level and ward off illness.
We have compiled a list of foods that you should begin incorporating into your diet so you can get started on reaping their incredible benefits:
- Dark leafy greens: Some of the most plentiful foods in nature are dark green leaves, which is why this is largely what the diet of early humans consisted of. Given the large role dark leafy greens have always had in our diet, it should be no surprise that these vegetables contain most of the nutrients humans need to stay healthy. Greens like spinach and kale provide powerful nutrients that can protect the body from toxins, sun exposure, diabetes, and cancer. Always keep some pre-washed greens in your refrigerator to add to soups, casseroles, stir-fries, and salads, of course.
- Salmon and other fatty fish: Fatty fish like salmon, trout, tuna, and mackerel are other excellent sources of protein and can be used to replace some of the red meat in your diet. If you are afraid of the word “fat,” now is the time to get rid of that fear. These fatty fish are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which help protect against cardiovascular disease and even help fight depression. Whether you broil it, grill it, or steam it, your body will thank you for incorporating fatty fish into your diet.
- Olive oil: This is another great way to reduce your saturated fat consumption. Instead of using butter, use olive oil. Why is olive oil a healthier option? It is an anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, and rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Additionally, it has been known to protect against strokes, high blood pressure, and Alzheimer’s disease. You can do more than just cook with olive oil; you can also make your own dressings and marinades with it.
- Green tea: Green tea is not only rich in antioxidants and polyphenols, but it can also be helpful in boosting the body’s metabolism. Moreover, it can also effectively eliminate your cravings and reduce the consumption of unhealthy sugary drinks. Consider replacing your morning cup of coffee with a cup of green tea and try to slow down, take a breath, and enjoy the moment.
- Colorful fruits and vegetables: One of the best ways to ensure you are receiving all the nutrients your body needs is to eat a variety of whole, unprocessed fruits and vegetables every day. The more colorful the better, so go to the supermarket and get some lycopene-rich tomatoes, blueberries packed with vitamin C, and potassium-rich bananas.
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