Seven Nutritious Foods for 2016 To Change Your Diet
If you are thinking about making changes in 2016, then you may need to think about nutrient dense foods. It’s not about eating less, it’s about eating better, so look for nutrient dense foods this year.
Salmon, and other fatty types of fish, contain high amounts of Omega-3 fatty acids which may lower risk of cardiovascular problems, and large amounts of magnesium, potassium, selenium and B-vitamins which are important for heart, brain, and nervous system health. For those who are beginning a program to build muscle, salmon, especially smoked and dried is a good source of protein. It’s important to eat a protein within 30-45 minutes after lifting weights.
Believe it or not, buffalo meat is higher in protein and lower in fat, calories and cholesterol than beef, chicken or pork. In fact, buffalo meat is almost pure protein containing 25 to 30% more than beef. This nutrient dense meat doesn't shrink in cooking, so pound for pound, it doesn't cost much more than "cheaper" meats. For that reason it’s a wise choice for dieters and athletes. (1)
Fermented foods like kefir, sauerkraut, and kimchi are an extremely healthy addition to any diet. Why? The fermentation process not only preserves the food, but also creates healthy enzymes and probiotics that can aid in digestion. These foods are also high in Omega-3 fatty acids and B-vitamins. Fermented drinks like kombucha tea are a healthier choice rather than sugar filled fruit juices or soda. Fermented foods can be made at home and starter kits are usually available in the refrigerated section of most health food stores.
Greek yogurt is a nutritional powerhouse that higher in protein than regular yogurt, and loaded with probiotics which are important for healthy gut bacteria. Like fermented foods, Greek yogurt can be made at home, but, if you choose to purchase there are many more varieties available. Manufacturers are now mixing fruit with a savory twist like ginger and orange, feta and watermelon, as well as olive oil, seeds and spices. Greek yogurt can be used as a dip for vegetables, as a sauce for chicken and fish or as a topping for soup.
Soups and purees
Cold pressed juices filled with nutrients from fruits and vegetables are a popular choice for many people, but, go a step further by adding soup and you’ll find it easier to maintain or lose weight. Barbara Rolls, a professor of nutrition at Pennsylvania State University, has done extensive research on “calorie density,” or the ratio of calories to the weight of food. Many thin people follow the strategy of starting out with a sizable soup or salad, which leads them to eat less for the rest of the meal. Soups are a great beginning to any meal because they contain fiber and are filling and can be served hot or cold. Whether part of a meal or a meal replacement, studies have shown that people who eat soup before a meal have lower body weights than those who abstain. (Read How One Woman Healed her Leaky Gut and Lost Over 100 Pounds)
As people have become more health conscious, especially with regard to snacking and processed foods, manufacturers have responded with new products. Almost any vegetable can be made into a chip. Healthy delicious choices include cucumbers, sweet potatoes, kale, carrots, taro, squash, zucchini, and even cactus. You can make veggie chips at home with olive oil and spices. (2)
Seaweed popcorn is already popular in Asian countries but it making an appearance on grocery store shelves in the U.S. This gluten-free snack is high in fiber and contains vitamins A and C as well as organic iodine, a nutrient important for maintaining a healthy thyroid. Seaweed also has anti-inflammatory and auto-immune boosting properties. Brown seaweed contains a nutrient called fucoidan that is not found in land based plants. (3) Try it as a snack or make a healthy savory and sweet trail mix by adding a high fiber cereal and dark chocolate chips.