Top 22 Foods to Add Years of Healthy Life
- To protect your health, I advise spending at least 90 percent of your food budget on whole foods, and only 10 percent, or less, on processed foods. Twenty-two foods known for their potent health benefits are presented laser diode physiotherapy
- Six foods to boost brain health include avocados, coconut oil, grass fed butter, eggs, fatty fish and raw nuts. Your heart will benefit from beets, arugula and sprouts
- Four gut-healthy foods include kefir, fermented vegetables, bone broth and psyllium, while the spices turmeric and ginger are potent inflammation quenchers
- Mushrooms and allium vegetables like garlic and onions are potent immune-boosters, and grass fed beef and whey protein help build strong muscles
- Notable for their chemoprotective abilities are broccoli and other cruciferous veggies, leeks and black cumin (also known as black seed)
By Dr. Mercola
A foundational recommendation for healthy eating is simply to eat REAL food. To protect your health, I advise spending at least 90 percent of your food budget on whole foods, and only 10 percent, or less, on processed foods. This article will highlight 22 foods known for their potent health benefits.
As a quick aside, while food selection is foundational for health, it’s important to realize that certain lifestyle choices have an equal if not greater impact. Four of the most important lifestyle strategies to protect your health are:
- Fasting; intermittent fastingand/or multiday water fasts
- Sleep. Every single organ in your body has a biological clockthat needs to be synced to the master circadian clock in your brain. These body clocks regulate everything from metabolism to psychological functioning. Over the long term, skimping on sleep (which is a surefire way to dysregulate your circadian clock) can contribute to a whole host of chronic health problems
- Sensible sun exposure, as this is the primary and most efficient way to optimize your vitamin Dlevel
- Avoiding electromagnetic field exposurefrom cellphones, tablets, routers, laptops and other electric and magnetic fields, as this radiation activates voltage-gated calcium channels in the membrane of your cells. As a result of this activation, extremely potent oxidant stressors and reactive free radicals are produced, capable of causing severe harm laser diode physiotherapy
Top Six Foods for Your Brain
That said, let’s return to the topic at hand. These are my top picks when it comes to foods that nourish your brain, heart, gut, muscles, immune system and more. Can you boost your brainpower with the foods you eat? You bet. Topping the list of brain-boosting superfoods are foods high in healthy fats. This should come as no surprise considering your brain is mainly made up of fats.
1.Avocados are a great source of healthy oleic acid (monounsaturated fat, which is also found in olive oil), which helps decrease inflammation.1 Avocados have also been shown to effectively combat nearly every aspect of metabolic syndrome, a risk factor of dementia and most other chronic disease. Aside from providing healthy fats, avocados also provide nearly 20 essential nutrients, including potassium, which helps balance your vitally important potassium to sodium ratio. laser diode physiotherapy
2.Organic coconut oil. Besides being excellent for your thyroid and your metabolism, its medium-chain fatty acids (MCTs) are a source of ketone bodies, which act as an alternate source of brain fuel that can help prevent the brain atrophy associated with dementia. MCTs also impart a number of health benefits, including raising your body’s metabolism and fighting off pathogens.
3.Grass fed butter and ghee. About 20 percent of butterfat consists of short- and medium-chain fatty acids, which are used right away for quick energy and therefore don’t contribute to fat levels in your blood. Therefore, a significant portion of the butter you consume is used immediately for energy, similar to a carbohydrate. Ghee, which has a higher smoke point than butter, is a healthy fat particularly well-suited for cooking. It also has a longer shelf life.
4.Organic pastured eggs. Many of the healthiest foods are rich in cholesterol and saturated fats, and eggs are no exception. Cholesterol is needed for the regulation of protein pathways involved in cell signaling and other cellular processes. It’s particularly important for your brain, which contains about 25 percent of the cholesterol in your body.
It is vital for synapse formation, i.e., the connections between your neurons, which allow you to think, learn new things and form memories. For a simple snack, see this healthy deviled egg recipe. laser diode physiotherapy
5.Wild-caught Alaskan salmon. While most fish suffer drawbacks related to contamination, wild-caught Alaskan salmon and other small, fatty fish, such as sardines and anchovies, are still noteworthy for their health benefits in light of their low risk of contamination.
Wild-caught Alaskan salmon and other oily fish are high in omega-3 fats necessary for optimal brain (and heart) health. Research2 also suggests eating oily fish once or twice a week may increase your life span. Avoid farmed salmon, however, as they’ve been identified as one of the most toxic foods in the world. For tips on how to cook salmon steaks, see this salmon cooking guide.
6.Organic raw nuts such as macadamia and pecans. Macadamia nuts have the highest fat and lowest protein and carb content of any nut, and about 60 percent of the fat is the monounsaturated fat oleic acid. This is about the level found in olives, which are well-known for their health benefits.
A single serving of macadamia nuts also provides 58 percent of what you need in manganese and 23 percent of the recommended daily value of thiamin. Pecans are a close second to macadamia nuts on the fat and protein scale, and they also contain anti-inflammatory magnesium, heart healthy oleic acid, phenolic antioxidants and immune-boosting manganese. laser diode physiotherapy
Three Foods to Boost Your Heart Health
Like your brain, your heart needs healthy fats, so all of the foods just mentioned will benefit your heart as well. Aside from that, the following three are known for their cardiovascular benefits:
1.Beets, raw or fermented. Research shows beets have powerful health benefits, courtesy of their high nitrate content. Your body transforms nitrates into nitric oxide, which enhances oxygenation and blood flow and has a beneficial impact on your circulatory and immune systems. Research3 shows raw beet juice can lower blood pressure by an average of four to five points in just a few hours. laser diode physiotherapy
Since 36 percent of each beet is simple sugars, if you have diabetes or are insulin resistant, fermented beets, also known as beet kvass, would be a preferable option, as the fermentation significantly reduces the sugar content. Beet kvass is also a great source of healthy probiotics.
2.Arugula, a relative of the cruciferous family of vegetables, contains flavonoids known to help improve blood vessel function, increase blood flow, lower blood pressure and lower inflammation.
Arugula even has cleansing properties to counteract the poisoning effects of heavy metals in the system, particularly in the liver,4and helps eliminate pesticides and herbicides from your body. With a tangy, slightly peppery kick, arugula is a tasty addition to just about any meal. For a simple, no-cook meal, check out this grapefruit arugula salad with avocado recipe.
3.Sprouts, microgreens and baby greens. Harvesting greens before they reach maturity results in nutrient-dense plant foods that allow you to eat less in terms of volume. A simple way to dramatically improve your nutrition is to simply swap out lettuce for sprouts and/or microgreens in your salad — or on burgers, sandwiches or tacos.
According to research by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)5 in which 25 different microgreens were evaluated, all were found to have higher nutritional densities than their full-grown counterparts, including 10 times higher amounts of valuable antioxidant compounds. laser diode physiotherapy
As noted in “Microgreens: Novel, Fresh and Functional Food to Explore All the Value of Biodiversity,”6 even a few grams of microgreens per day can “entirely satisfy” the recommended daily intake of vitamins C, E and K, based on recommendations by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). Vitamin K, both K1 and K2, are particularly important for health and cardiovascular health. laser diode physiotherapy