By: Paul I Costelo
Okay so maybe that's a slight exaggeration. After all there are hundreds of foods that are good for you and millions that are bad !! There are top twenty lists for muscle building, for endurance, for speed, for losing weight, for every contingency. These are the top twenty foods, in my view ,which can contribute to general health, a healthy diet, keeping illness at bay and in some cases helping you live longer. Although there's 20 they're not in any particular order. In this article I'll be covering my top ten. Look for the follow up which continues with numbers 11-20.
So let's start off with:
1.Chocolate: Sorry ,only joking !! Chocolate's not healthy but the raw cacao bean certainly is. Whilst chocolate is really not a good contributor to a healthy diet this bean is fantastic ! It contains anti-oxidants that protect the cardio-vascular system, tryptophan which makes you feel great, magnesium and potassium as well as dopamine a neurotransmitter which can help you get motivated. Use the raw bean in yogurt, fruit salad, desserts, smoothies and just about anything else you fancy.
2.The number 2 ingredient towards maintaining a healthy lifestyle is one of the cheapest foods on the planetó watercress. This great little food contains lots of Vitamin C, calcium, folic acid and iron. It will even help protect you from cancer as it also contains phenylethyl isothiocyanate , a cancer fighting ingredient.
3.Broccoli weighs in at number 3. One of the most under rated superfoods and possibly the least popular as many people think it tastes bland, this vegetable can also help you live longer. Like water cress it can help prevent cancer as it contains Indole-3-Carbinol. Also like water cress it has lots of calcium,and iron as well as sulphur. Why buy detoxifying remedies-this food will do it all for you !
4.Alfalfa Sprouts: at number 4 the humble alfalfa sprout is great for having a healthy lifestyle. This contains so much stuff that's good for you that you'll be bouncing with energy and vitality. Included are : Vitamin K, B vitamins, magnesium, zinc, calcium, as well as amino acids and iron. I'll ask you again: why buy expensive vitamin supplements when you can buy these ?
5.Beetroots- love 'em or hate 'em these come in at number five. The green leafy tops are great for a healthy diet- they contain calcium, iron and beta-carotene. They're also a great source of vitamin A , potassium and manganese. To finish off with beetroot is also meant to improve your circulation, purify the blood and detoxify your system. Wow !
6.Nettles: Not a romantic food I know but nettles can help you achieve a healthy diet. They can give you energy, and reduce water retention and high blood pressure. A fantastic food. It contains vitamin C, potassium and iron as well as cleaning the urinary tract, the blood and the bowels.
7.Ginger: ginger has been used for hundreds of years to help treat sickness and nausea. But did you know that it can also treat indigestion and bad circulation. It can boost the immune system and if you grate it into honey and lemon it will help you fight off colds and get rid of mucus.
8.Hemp seeds; coming in at number 8 the hemp seed will help you with a healthy lifestyle. These have Vitamin E as well as essential fats Omega 3 and Omega 6. Eat them with salad, on their own or sprinkled liberally with sweet potato, soup or just about anything else you fancy.
9.Flax seeds: Sprinkle these on salads and yoghurts. They contain Omega 3 fats and a gel that lubricates the bowel. Not pretty but effective! They can also help lower blood pressure and help balance female hormones as they contain lignans.
10.Artichokes: Great for helping you to keep to a healthy diet. These have been used to stimulate liver cell regeneration and to help stop fatty plaques building up inside the walls of the arteries, which causes high blood pressure.
So what do you think? Are these superfoods or not ? Cancer curing, aids to help you keep a healthy lifestyle. And cheap and easy to buy. What more could you possibly want? In my next article I'll deal with numbers eleven to twenty. Coming soon.
Paul Costello is the vice principal of a high school , a writer and a father. He is interested in diet and health and has a great web site, full of information on these subjects at : http://www.ultimatedieting.info
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