Blueberries are the king of antioxidants. That’s right, this tiny berry contains more antioxidants than all other commonly consumed fruits and vegetables. Antioxidants protect the cells in our bodies from free radicals, unstable molecules that can damage the delicate structure of our cells and contribute to aging and disease.
The main antioxidant in blueberries is known as anthocyanins, which has been attributed with most of it’s health benefits. Blueberries help shield our cells from DNA damage, protect cholesterol in the blood, lower blood sugar and even help prevent heart disease.
A majority of the research on blueberries has been done in the area of cognition, where blueberries have been shown to have a protective effect on brain function.
The perfect burger buddy, tomatoes are everyone’s favorite almost fruit. Making them a regular part of your diet may help stop damage caused by UV rays (such as wrinkles and sun spots) due to the presence of lycopene.
Lycopene is the pigment that gives tomatoes their red color and it is also an amazing antioxidant. It has some similar properties in common with beta-carotene, but it is not identical. Lycopene has numerous benefits, including helping to prevent cancer, keeping your eyes healthy and improving heart health.
Oats are a great source of complex carbohydrates – these are a type of carb that is low glycemic . This means they will provide you with sustained energy throughout the day, without spiking your blood sugar.
Other popular types of carbs like refined breads, rice and pasta can raise your blood sugar too high, too fast, leading to many problems down the road. High glycemic foods are also known to cause acne and wrinkles.
Oats also contain a natural plant chemical that helps prevent damage to the skin and soothe skin irritation.
The main spice in curry, tumeric could help keep your mind young. One potential cause of Alzheimer’s disease is a build-up of plaque in the brain, which can interfere with neural communication. Early research has shown that the active ingredient in tumeric, curcumin, may prevent the plaque from binding to your brain cells. Additionally, curcumin may help slow aging of the joints and reduce inflammation throughout the body.
5. Green Tea
Another powerful source of antioxidants (noticing a trend here?), green tea has been known for many years for having anti-aging properties. It is loaded with polyphenols like flavonoids and catechins that reduce the formation of free radicals within your body.
These can help prevent many types of cancers, including breast cancer, prostate cancer and colon cancer. Green tea has also been shown to help protect your brain in old age, and slow or prevent conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease.
Avocados are great for your skin, as the monounsaturated fats in them help to keep your skin hydrated. Additionally, these fats help to keep your arteries healthy and young. Avocados also contain phytochemicals and important essential nutrients to keep your cells safe from free radicals. Try replacing mayonaise and other fatty foods with avocados.
7. Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is chock-full of nutrients that have a positive effect on your body. Dark chocolate is made from the seed of the cocoa tree, and has much less milk and sugar than the more common types of chocolate. It also tastes a lot better too, at least in my opinion. Make sure the chocolate you buy has a high cocoa content!
Dark chocolate contains many important minerals and nutrients, including iron, magnesium, copper and manganese. The main benefit of dark chocolate comes from the high number of antioxidants found within it, as it has more than blueberries and acai berries. Dark chocolate may also improve blood flow and lower blood pressure.
Nuts together with a balanced diet can help to add multiple quality years to your life. Nuts contain both monosaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which have been shown to help reduce heart disease as well as lower the risk of type 2 diabetes. These fats are also great for keeping your skin glowing and healthy. They also have the potential to slow cognitive decline in older individuals.
Garlic has been understood to be a powerful herb for over 3000 years and has been used for multiple health applications. World War I medical surgeons used garlic juice as an antiseptic to help clean war wounds. In addition to being a natural antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal agent, garlic can also help lower cholesterol levels. Including garlic in your daily diet will also help elimate any digestive issues you may have. Garlic has also been shown to help protect you from diabetes!
10. Bone Broth
Bone broths are inexpensive and easy to make at home, and it is incredibly rich in protein, specifically gelatin. The broth also contains multiple other nutrients and minerals that your body can easily absorb, including magnesium, calcium, phospohorous, sulphur and more. It also contains high levels of glucosomine, which reduces inflammation, joint pain and arthritis.
Last but definitely not least is salmon, as well as other fatty fish. Aside from being delicious, salmon is rich in EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 acids are considered essential, meaning your body cannot make them and instead they must be obtained from your diet. These oils have been shown in studies to have several health benefits, including decreasing inflammation, lowering blood pressure, reudcing the risk of cancer and improving the function of the cells lining your arteries.