The Finest Chefs

Archive - July 2014

Essential Healthy Ingredients – Uses and Benefits

ingredients

No matter what recipes you love cooking for you and your family, it is very important to have certain ingredients around the house, as these can easily be incorporated in any recipe, tasty and great for your health.

The characteristics of all these ingredients are that they contain little fat, they have almost no salt or sugar, and they do not contain preservatives.

When putting together your grocery list, always add the following ingredients.

Canola oil

This type of oil has no content of saturated fat, and it is known for being the healthiest of all oils. According to the American Heart Association, canola oil is the most recommended for people with heart conditions. It can be used for frying, baking, and for salads.

Non fat yogurt

If you like your sauces and dips to be thick and tasty, but still healthy, Greek or any kind of non fat yogurt is the best choice, and it can successfully replace mayonnaise and sour cream. Yogurt can also be consumed as it is, and it makes for a great breakfast option.

Garlic and onions

Onions make for a great addition in any salad, but they can also be added to soups and stir fry recipes.

It must be mentioned that the consumption of onions is much recommended for those with diabetes, or who have problems regulating sugar levels in their blood.

Including onions regularly with meals helps reducing inflammations and allergies.

Also, if you are an avid onion eater, your body becomes richer in agents for fighting bacteria and diseases caused by them.

Garlic is similar to onion, but it has a higher content of selenium. It is recommended for preventing heart conditions, and it works wonders on cholesterol levels. Here is a quick tip for cooking garlic. After you chop it, let it rest a little, as this helps retaining its most nutrients. Another advantage of garlic is that it helps the absorption of iron in the body and red blood cell production.

Obese people are recommended to consume garlic often, as it is believed to help preventing weight gain and even stimulate weight loss.

Tomatoes

Tomatoes have a great taste, and they can be mixed with almost any type of meal. They are great with pasta, as a side dish and in salads.

Tomatoes are rich in a substance called lycopene, essential in the production of collagen. Collagen is the building block of human skin, and responsible for maintaining your skin young and elastic. Lycopene is also helpful for correcting sleeping patterns, and it can also help you develop less sun burns when you go to the beach.

  • It is advisable to eat tomatoes to prevent osteoporosis later in life.
  • Because they are rich in antioxidants, they are also considered a great ally in cancer prevention.
  • To enhance their nutritional advantages, combine them with a bit of olive oil.
  • If you are looking for tomato varieties low in calories, choose cherry and grape tomatoes.

Herbs

Healthy meals must also be tasty, and a simple way to obtain this is by mixing some herbs in the mix. Aromatic spices can be grown in pots, indoors, so you can always have them at hand.

Rosemary is one of the most popular herbs used for cooking. It can be used for soups, chicken recipes and even tea. It is also helpful for older people who suffer from memory loss.

Parsley is another herb you can use, because it has a high content of minerals and many vitamins.

Ginger can be added for additional taste, but it is also very helpful for making your digestion easier. Dried ginger is used to make tea for cold. When you have a running nose, it helps opening the sinuses. You can also chew ginger to relieve tooth pain.

Spices

Spices are great ingredients to have around, because they add taste to any meal, but without adding calories or fat. It must be mentioned that spices are also great for your health.

Chili peppers are rich in anti-oxidants and they help you beat the cold. They are promoters of weight loss, and they keep your heart healthy. Chili peppers are also rich in substances that regulate digestion, cholesterol levels and triglycerides.

Turmeric is a spice rich in protein and fiber, as well as many vitamins and minerals. Consuming turmeric brings an important intake of vitamin C, E and K. Among the minerals found in turmeric, calcium, copper, magnesium, iron and zinc must be mentioned.

Consumption of turmeric helps fighting cancer, arthritis, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s, among many health conditions. It also helps improve digestion, it contributes to weight loss, it regulates cholesterol levels, and it is a natural detoxifier for your liver. It is also known as a great immune system booster.

Garlic is used for cooking, but it is also effective in reducing cholesterol and high blood pressure. It is also known for its qualities in alleviating the symptoms of atherosclerosis and heart conditions.

Oregano is a rich source of antioxidants, and it also has antifungal and antibacterial properties. It fights inflammation in the body, and it helps preventing cancer and respiratory infections.

Basil is traditionally called St. Joseph’s Wort. It has a high content of antioxidants, as well as vitamins – A, K, C – and minerals – iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium. Among its most important benefits, it must be mentioned that it fights aging, swelling and inflammations.

Thyme is used for cooking, but it also has medicinal properties. Because of its aspect, it is used as ornamentation. Adding thyme to your recipes helps you reduce blood pressure, prevent bacteria from developing and it stuns yeast growth. This spice is also known for preventing and lowering the risk of colon and breast cancer.

Rosemary is rich in antioxidants and it also fights inflammation effectively. A good aid to digestion, it is known for helping people suffering from memory loss, and it helps you maintain for brain younger for a long time. It is a great ally in fighting cancer.

Parsley is rich in anti-oxidants, folate, iron, fiber and vitamins A, C and K. It protects the body against rheumatoid arthritis and it is of great help in fighting heart conditions.

Ginger is often found in medication for digestive problems. It is of great help in reducing pain caused by menstruation, migraines, and intensive exercising. It regulates blood pressure and it helps preventing ovarian cancer. Ginger is used to alleviate nausea caused by chemotherapy, and for treating asthma.

Clove is mostly beneficial for people with digestive problems, like diarrhea, gas, vomiting and symptoms of an upset stomach. It is also helpful in alleviating pain, such as tooth ache, and it is used for its expectorant properties in treating colds.

Proper Nutrition Essentials

healthy diet featured

If you are not used to eating healthy, starting to do so may seem like a lot of work. However, you should know that you have nothing to fear. Changing your habits and starting on a new path is not rocket science.

All you need to do is to start being more knowledgeable about what foods are good for your health.

Healthy eating is part of living a healthy life. Good, nutritious food gives you energy so you can go through the day without feeling starved and tired. It also helps your body function well, so you will be able to stave off diseases. It all depends on what habits you have; if you manage to change these habits and turn your diet around, you will find yourself more energetic, healthier, and happier. The goal you should have in mind is to create a diet you can follow on the long run.

Where to start? Well, first things first, you need to throw away all the processed foods you have in your pantry or refrigerator. These are bad for your health, because they are not nutritious, but, instead, they are packed with salt and sugar. Remember to throw away soda and cookies, as well, because these are sources of extra calories that do not give your body what it needs, in terms of vitamins, minerals and other essential nutrients.

Why do you have to do this? As the old saying goes, out of sight, out of mind. If you do not have bad foods and snacks to indulge in, you will not fill your stomach with them. If, instead, you have around fresh fruits and veggies, all you will eat will be healthy, even if you may feel tempted to overeat sometimes. Rice cakes and other products made of cereals are also great healthy snacks.

If you like sweets, replace cakes and other sweet snacks with nutrition bars. These have a low content of sugar, but they taste great because of the flavors added. Atkins bars and Brownies have no sugar whatsoever, but they still taste great.

What should be included in a healthy meal?

If you have no idea how to put together a healthy meal, here is where you should start. Any healthy meal should include some lean meat and healthy carbs. Whole grains are the most recommended, but do not forget about fruits and vegetables. Keep in mind that sugar is not necessary for your health, so, if you can get rid of it altogether, you will make the wisest choice.

A nutritious meal is rich in nutrients, as the name indicates. But what are nutrients? All the minerals, vitamins and other good substances found in healthy foods play a role for your body. Some help you build muscles, others are great for building bones, while there are some that are necessary for a healthy brain. If you eat only foods that can supply your body with nutrients, you will be healthy and happy.

The key to eating healthy is to understand what nutrients do for your body. With this knowledge at hand, you will be able to make the best choices when it comes to your diet.

The importance of cooking at home

Would you let someone else in control of your life? Then why should you do it when it comes to food? Cook at home as often as possible, because this is the only way to control the ingredients that go in your food, in order to make sure that your meals are as healthy as possible.

Making a plan

The truth is that in this day and age, it is very difficult to keep up with a healthy diet, if you do not have a good plan at hand. One of the most important rules to keep in mind is to have good planning for your meals. There should be a time for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Do not skip meals and do not rush when you have to eat. Replacing the meals of the day with snacks and fast food will have a terrible impact on your health on the long run. For instance, you can bring your own lunch to work, to avoid the temptation to snack on junk food. Also, during weekends, make sure that you cook enough food for the following week, so you do not have to cook when you obviously do not have the time to do so.

Use your pantry and your freezer to store ingredients and cooked meals, so you are never out of healthy food to eat. You can always see what frozen foods are available at the supermarket, but make sure to read the labels. Healthy Choice is a very good brand to rely on, if you do not have time to cook yourself.

Learn where to shop

When you enter the supermarket, and you want to buy food, here is a simple tip to keep in mind. On the sides, you will always find the healthy foods, the meat isle, and the dairy, while on the center, you will only find processed foods, sweets and other bad foods for your health. If you ignore the center isles and focus on the periphery of the supermarket, you will never feel tempted to put unhealthy foods in your cart.

In brief

Eating healthy will not happen overnight. It is best to take small steps rather than taking no steps at all. So, begin by giving up on soda, and drink water instead. Water has zero calories, but it is essential for your well being and the good functioning of your entire body. Over time, you will make other chances, and you will become healthier. With such good habits learned, you will never turn back to the bad ones.

Cooking Healthy Meals with Tofu

tofu

Tofu is known under various names, such as bean curd or soybean curd. It is essential for any vegan diet and it is very popular, as well. It is believed that tofu was made for the first time in China, more than two thousand years ago. Because of its nutritional value, it is considered a great alternative to meat. As the legend goes, it was one of the rulers of the Han dynasty, Liu An, who first discovered the great qualities of tofu.

Still, there are other theories regarding the first appearance of tofu in the Chinese cuisine, as some think it dates from the second century BC.

It is believed that tofu was discovered completely by accident when some boiled soy was thrown in sea water. The jelly substance that resulted was tofu.

Others say that the Chinese actually found about how to curdle soy milk taking after Mongolians who were curdling milk.

What is tofu, exactly?
Rich in protein, tofu has the great quality of having almost no calories. In the same time, it is a great source of iron. No animal protein can be found in it, since it is obtained from soy beans.

Selecting tofu after texture
When soy milk is gone through the coagulation process, certain enzymes are present, which is why tofu is such a prized ingredient for many sweet dishes. Different coagulation agents can be used, such as gypsum, calcium chloride, glucono delta-lactone, or papain. After going through the curdling process, the soy milk gets the jelly like texture is known for. However, you can obtain two different types of tofu: silken tofu and firm tofu.
The first maintains most of its moisture, because the coagulation process is carried in such a way that moisture is not eliminated. Firm tofu, on the other hand, is made by squeezing all the moisture from it. The traditional method involves placing the tofu between two wood blocks. The final color varies from white to light red, the coagulant playing an important role in this.

How does tofu taste like?
Tofu, per se, does not have a particular taste, and it can be said that it almost has no taste. However, when cooked with other foods, it manages to draw the flavor from other spices of veggies used in the recipe.

 

How is tofu good for your health?

  • As it almost has no calories, tofu can be consumed by anyone. Also, being a healthy source of protein, it can replace meat and other protein sources in any diet.
  • Only 2% of silken tofu to 5% of firm tofu represents fat. You can include tofu in your diet to regulate the levels of cholesterol and triglycerides.
  • Tofu is rich in iron, calcium and omega 3 fatty acids.

Cooking with tofu

  • Those who are lactose intolerant can greatly benefit from the inclusion of tofu in their diets.
  • Any recipes that requires the use of salt or preservatives can use tofu as a replacement.
  • You can make tasty soups, rolls and sandwiches with tofu.
  • Salads can be made better tasting and more nutritious, if you just add some crumbled tofu to the mix.
  • When you make your healthy protein shakes in the morning, add some tofu to your greens and berries for a great healthy result.
  • Tofu slices with sauce make for great snacks.
  • Tofu can be added to pastas, stir fry recipes and noodles.
  • Burgers with tofu are a healthier alternative, especially when you want to eat less fat and find a good replacement for cheese.

5 Healthy Chicken Recipes and Marinade Tips

grilled-chicken-salad

Proteins are important for anyone’s diet, and chicken is an ideal choice, because it is a leaner and healthier meat, compared to red meat.
There is another great advantage to keep in mind; chicken is easier to digest and it also contains fewer calories than other meats. With so many healthy and tasty recipes available, chicken is always a great recommendation.
Protein found in chicken meat is essential for muscle building and recovery, so the following recipes are great even for people who want to eat more sensibly.

If you like your chicken meat to be tender and tasty, instead of adding fat, you can always choose a marinade recipe.
While chicken meat is healthy for your body, you need to make sure that you are cooking it right. Healthy recipes are also great for those who want to lose weight, or maintain a healthy one.
In order for the chicken meat to become tender, it must be kept in marinade for as long as possible. However, you need to make sure that the marinade left after tendering the chicken is thrown away, because it can develop salmonella.
For healthy, ideal for weight loss and weight management, recipes, skinless meat, breast especially, is most recommended, for the low content of fat and calories. The fat in the skin can make the meat tender and tastier, but, if you care about your silhouette, just remember to remove the skin when you eat it.

Here are some the healthiest methods to cook chicken meat

How to grill chicken meat

Grilled chicken meat is very tasty and the best thing about it is that you do not have to add fat to make a great meal. It is enough to use a BBQ or an oven grill for cooking. Seasoning is important, but with just a little bit of lemon juice, pepper and paprika, you will obtain a great tasting meal, without any effort.

How to boil chicken meat
Many believe that boiling is not such a great way to cook chicken meat, because it takes off the taste. However, boiling is one of the healthiest methods, and it can make the meat tender and easy to digest. To keep its taste intact, you need to pay attention to how much water you use.Here is a great idea how to cook boiled chicken and still obtain a great tasty meal. Add just enough water to help the chicken meat become tender and let it absorb. When the meat is done, chop some red onions and add next to the chicken. Tomatoes, a bit of garlic, and some bell peppers, chopped as well, are great additions. Turmeric and salt are enough for seasoning. Let the mix cook for a minute, with the lid over, then serve with veggies and pasta.

How to properly bake chicken meat

For tasty baked chicken recipes, you need to marinade the meat properly. Leaving it in marinade overnight is usually recommended.
The following recipe will make for a great marinade for chicken. Take rosemary, juice obtained from half a lime, a bit of honey, canola oil and vinegar. Mix all these ingredients, then place the chicken in the marinade and put it in the freezer in a Ziploc bag. The next day, place the chicken in a baking pan, than bake at 375 degrees.
Baked chicken meat works great with baby potatoes, as these absorb the flavored juices from the marinade and the chicken fat. Serve steamed veggies as a side dish.

How to stir fry chicken meat
For stir frying, only a bit of oil is needed. Use a wok for best results, and make sure to stir the meat all the time, to prevent it from sticking to the pan. Chop the meat in small bits, to hurry the cooking process. You can use a mix of vegetables for the best results, such as: carrots, broccoli, cabbage, garlic, bell peppers or zucchini. For spicy chicken, use some chili or red pepper powder.

How to steam chicken meat
Steaming is a great cooking method, because it helps the retention of nutrients. Steam your chicken with vegetables for great tasty recipes.
It is important to pick fresh young chicken for these recipes, or otherwise the steaming process will cause the meat to become too tough and difficult to chew.

Marinade recipes
A great marinade recipe for chicken meat can be made from mustard, garlic and lemon juice. Use salt, black pepper and coriander for seasoning. A tablespoon of olive oil and a bit of vinegar should also be added.
For another great marinade recipe, use red onions, chopped in small pieces and placed in a mix of sunflower oil, honey, lime juice seasoned with rosemary, turmeric and cinnamon.

A fresh, healthy marinade idea is made with fat free yogurt, soy sauce (pick one low in sodium), thyme and pepper.

A simple marinade recipe can be made from soy sauce (without salt), garlic and a bit of onion powder.

Chicken meat can be used for many healthy tasty recipes. Use the above ideas for marinades, or create your own.
If you do not have time to make your own marinade, you can find plenty of such products in grocery stores.

17 Substitutes for Sugar You Will Absolutely Love

honey

Sugar, in its refined form, makes your recipe sweet and tasty, but it is a rich source of calories, and it can even affect your health. Besides the fact that sugar consumption can make you gain weight, it is also responsible for the appearance of dental cavities.

According to JAMA Internal Medicine, sugar is also responsible for increasing the risk of heart conditions. The same study shows that most adults in the US eat much more refined sugar than necessary, and that the high number of heart conditions appeared during recent years can be linked to sugar consumption. If you cannot give up on sugar, here are some great substitutes that are not bad for your health.

Check the following list to see which substitutes may work for you:

Honey is a great substitute for refined sugar. It is rich in antioxidants as well as vitamins and minerals. Add a bit of honey on a slice of bread or to your cereal mix, for a tasty breakfast. Honey will feed your appetite for sweets in the morning. It comes in many flavors, so you may want to try a few, to see which ones you like most.

Artificial sweeteners are used in many products, such as drinks and snacks.

You can choose from a large variety of artificial sweeteners, such as Sweet One, Stevia, Sweet ‘N’ Low, NutraSweet, Splenda and Equal.

Applesauce is a great source of natural substitute for sugar, as it is healthy and it is not rich in calories. The good news is that baked goods will taste even greater.

Dates and figs are great for adding something sweet to your recipes, without adding sugar. You can make cakes, breads, and muffins, with dates and figs that will be tasty and much healthier for any meal of the day.

Lemon juice is not sweet as sugar, but it helps fighting sugar cravings. Just add lemon juice to water, and you will find your water much tastier. Adding lemon juice in oatmeal makes it easier to eat, even without the added sweet content.

Cinnamon is used for baked goods, and because of its special aroma, you will find no more need to add sugar to your recipes. The good news is that it is very low in calories.

Raisins are a perfect source of antioxidants and natural fiber. Because of their sweet taste, you can eat them as they are, just to satisfy your craving for sugar.

Blueberries make for a great substitute for refined sugar, if you add them to your cereal bowl.

Cranberries have a particular sweet and sour taste. There are many baked good recipes with cranberries you can enjoy, so you can avoid adding unnecessary sugar to your pancakes, or muffins. Because they are rich in antioxidants, cranberries are much recommended.

Maple syrup, in its pure form, is a great source of antioxidants. Just pour some on waffles and pancakes and you will not need extra sugar. Mixing cold fat free milk with maple syrup makes for a great combination to cool yourself down during hot afternoons.

Cocoa, in its powder form, has a particular delicious taste. It can be added to milk, for a tasty beverage. Use pure cocoa powder for baked goods instead of chocolate, to limit the consumption of refined sugar.

Bananas can be used as puree, when they are ripe. Combining them with milk shake, or adding them to baked goods, enhances your recipes, without the need to add extra sugar.

Apricots can also be turned into puree and eaten instead of sugary treats. They are a great source of vitamin C, as well as iron.

Orange juice is rich in vitamin C, and makes for a good start every morning. Even without adding sugar, it is a source of energy and it can help you go through the day without feeling famished or craving for sweet.

Sucanat is made of cane juice. It is rich in various nutrients, including vitamins and minerals. A bit of it makes drinks and baked goods sweeter without adding sugar.

Molasses is obtained from sugarcane, grapes and beetroot. Rich in vitamin C, calcium and iron, it helps you make delicious baked recipes. You can also add it to fruit salads.

Agave nectar is a great addition to cold and hot drinks, and it is also used when making pies. Be aware that it has a high content of fructose, so it should not be consumed in large quantities.

What Are the Best Proteins from Meats and Plants for Cooking Healthy Meals?

protein

Protein is essential for the good functioning of the human body. It plays an active role in building muscles, but also helps refresh lost blood, and stimulates the production of various enzymes and other essential substances in the body.

When you suffer an injury, a diet rich in protein is often recommended. When you eat too little protein, it will show on your skin, nails and hair. You will also fall ill more easily, because your immune system is affected by the lack of protein.

Protein can be obtained in two ways: from animal meat and from plants. It can be found in fish, any type of poultry, beef and pork, as well as other meats. If you are looking for protein found in plants, grains and beans are on the top of the list.

Important reasons for having protein in your diet

It helps you shed off extra pounds

When you eat protein, you will feel full much faster and you will not feel tempted to eat more than necessary. It must also be noted that protein is much easier to digest, which means that it is transformed into energy quite fast, and it is made available for you to use. People who are exercising need plenty of protein in their diet for this reason.

It helps build muscle mass

There are many ways in which protein helps you when you are working out. Your cartilages will become stronger, which means that they will help you support the muscles while exercising. When you have plenty of protein in your diet, you will have great looking skin and reliable bone density as well. However, you need to keep in mind that protein must be consumed in moderation to avoid it being stores in fat deposits.

It promotes good brain development

The human brain needs certain amino-acids to function, and these can easily be obtained from protein.

It helps your metabolism

As you age, your metabolism rate will begin to decrease. This means that it will become easier to gain weight. Lean protein is your best choice to stimulate your metabolism but without causing any storage of fat.

It helps the body replenish loss of blood

Blood loss can occur in many different situations. In case of accident, or wounds, a diet rich in protein is much recommended, because it helps the body make new blood and replenish the lost one. It also contributes to your immune system.

When cooking meat

Never overcook or undercook meat

The protein found in meats becomes difficult to digest if you overcook the meat. Also, when the protein is exposed to high temperatures, it can become toxic for the body.

Undercooking is not recommended, either, because the meat can retain dangerous bacteria.

Take off the fat

Meat also comes with some layers of fat, and it is essential to take this fat away before you begin cooking. Leaner meats are better for your health, and you will only get to enjoy the benefits of protein without the nasty fat.

Make smaller portions

When you purchase fresh meat, cut it in smaller portions and place it in the freezer. This way, you will be able to take out only the necessary for cooking a meal. Meat cannot be frozen and defrosted more than one time, because it can let bacteria develop, causing food poisoning.

Protein from plants

Vegetables

  • 1 cup spinach contains 5 grams of protein
  • 2 cups of cooked kale contain 5 grams of protein
  • 1 cup of boiled peas contains 9 grams of protein
  • 1 avocado contains 10 grams of protein
  • 1 cup of broccoli contains 5 grams of protein
  • 1 cup of cooked sweet potato contains 5 grams of protein

Nuts

  • 2 ounces of walnuts contain 5 grams of protein
  • 1 ounce of pistachios contains 5.8 grams of protein
  • 2 tablespoons of almonds contain 4 grams of protein
  • 1 ounce of cashews contains 4.4 grams of protein
  • 3 tablespoons of tahini contain 8 grams of protein

Grains

  • 1 cup of quinoa has 9 grams of protein
  • 1 cup of oatmeal has 6 grams of protein
  • Sprouted grain breads contain 7-10 grams of protein per slice

Lentils and Beans

  • 1 cup of lentils contains 18 grams of protein
  • 1 cup of garbanzo beans or hummus has 14.5 grams of protein
  • 1 cup of black beans, pinto or kidney beans has 13-15 grams of protein
  • 1 cup of soybeans contains 28 grams of protein
  • 1 cup of tempeh contains 30 grams of protein

Non Dairy Milk

  • 1 cup of soy milk has alone 11 grams of protein

You should consume protein from plants as they:

–          Do not contain fat responsible for heart conditions and high blood pressure.

–          Contain a lot of fiber that is used for promoting a healthy digestion.

–          Are affordable and easy to find.

You need to have a good diet if you want to get all the necessary nutrients to function well and be healthy. Carbs are great if you get most of them from fruits and veggies. Choose lean sources of protein for great tasty meals that will keep you healthy and happy.

 

10 Super Foods that Should Be Part of Your Diet

mixed berries

In order to lead a healthy, happy and fulfilling life, you need to pay attention to your diet, as well.

With supplied with the necessary nutrients to function well, your body will reward you with great levels of energy, and you will not easily fall ill. It will also keep you in good health as the years go by.

If you think good foods are expensive or they are time consuming to prepare, you should think again. If you load your refrigerator and pantry only with healthy foods, you will never feel tempted to order take out. You will easily notice how healthy this habit will be for your wallet, too.

Start by getting rid of all the bad foods from your kitchen, and replace them with healthy alternatives.

What are super foods?

Super foods are foods rich in nutrients that are great for your body. Next time you go grocery shopping, take this list with you.

Salmon

Fatty fish, like salmon, is rich in omega 3, which is a fatty acid with an essential role for maintaining your heart healthy. Studies show that people who eat salmon at least a couple of times each week have a lower risk of developing heart conditions.

Salmon is also rich in a particular substance named tryptophan. This regulates sleeping patterns, helping you get enough rest at night. Kids should also eat salmon, because it is great for promoting healthy brain development.

Your bones will also benefit from consuming salmon, as it is known to improve bone density.

Almonds

Excluding fat completely from your diet is never a good thing. Replace bad fat with good fat that can be found in nuts and seeds. Among them, almonds are a real super food. The fat found in almonds regulates cholesterol levels and almonds are also great appetite suppressants. Rich in vitamin B, copper, phosphorus, and magnesium, they are packed with a lot of the nutrients your body needs.

Chocolate

You may feel the need to quirk an eyebrow when hearing about this one. Chocolate is, indeed, a super food, but to make the best of it, it must be dark chocolate, with a high content of cocoa. Rich in antioxidants, it helps you flush the toxins out with great ease. You are also advised to consume chocolate to reduce blood pressure and inflammation. Nonetheless, you should consume chocolate in moderate quantities.

Blueberries

The specific color of blueberries is given by a particular substance named anthocyanin. This is a powerful antioxidant, known to play an important role in preventing prostate cancer. Eating blueberries on a regular basis also reduces the risk of glaucoma.

Beans

One thing your body needs and needs plenty is fiber. Natural fiber can be found in beans, which is why you need to have enough of them throughout each week. Fiber is good for your colon, and also plays an active role in building muscles. Reducing bad cholesterol is also among its attributes, not to mention they are a cheap food anyone can afford.

Eggs

A very good source of protein, eggs should not miss from your diet. For people who are exercising, eating eggs every day is highly recommended. It must also be noted that eggs are also rich in vitamin D, which contributes to the development of healthy, strong bones.

Yogurt

When choosing yogurt, pick Greek yogurt. This is rich in protein and good bacteria, essential for a strong, healthy body and for improving the immune system against disease.

Quinoa

Another great source of fiber is quinoa. These seeds are rich in iron, phosphorus and various amino-acids. People with anemia are often recommended to eat quinoa seeds. The leaves from the plant can also be eaten, but they are not so easy to find. You can add quinoa seeds to any salad for great taste and for increasing its nutritious value.

Broccoli

Broccoli is known as a great enemy of cancer. Loaded with antioxidants, broccoli can be served in various ways, from raw to steamed. Boiling is not recommended, because part of the vitamins can get lost in the process.

Sweet potatoes

This is another super food rich in fiber. Sweet potatoes also contain beta carotene, essential for good vision. They are rich in vitamin C, as well, and a diet containing them will help your body recovery and repair much easier.