While eating a wide variety of food may seem like a recipe for weight gain, it actually helps you lose pounds by delivering the nutrients to make your body burn fat. In fact, some foods are so strongly linked to disease prevention and so rich in nutrients, it makes sense to eat them every day. Here are five superfoods to pack into your daily meal plan.
- Oranges (or orange juice): A great source of folic acid, fiber, antioxidants beta-carotene and vitamin C, and anticancer compounds flavonoids and carotenoids. Drink fresh orange juice; eat fresh oranges for snacks; make fruit salad with oranges, and toss peeled orange sections into a spinach salad.
- Dark Leafy Greens: Full of anticancer compounds, vitamins and minerals. Contains folic acid to help prevent neural-tube birth defects, antioxidants beta-carotene and vitamin C, fiber, and anticancer compounds beta-carotene and lutein. Try spinach, collard greens, kale, turnip greens. Eat raw or lightly cooked. Use in salads and stir-fry.
- Bran Cereal (or other rich source of wheat bran): Prevents constipation, is a potent anticancer agent, prevents polyps, may fight breast cancer by diminishing estrogen supplies. Mix in with your other cereals, make bran muffins, sprinkle on salads, mix into casseroles, even eat out of hand with a mix of raisins and nuts.
- Yogurt (low fat, with live cultures): Supplies calcium to prevent osteoporosis, boosts immune function, fights bacteria, has anticancer properties, may prevent yeast infections. Make fruit and yogurt smoothies, top vanilla yogurt with fresh fruit and granola, use on baked potatoes instead of sour cream.
- Green tea: Mounting evidence supports green tea's cancer fighting properties, most likely due to it's antioxidant content. Boosts metabolism and aids in weight loss or maintenance. Drink your green tea either with or without caffeine, either hot or iced. Most studies showing the weight loss benefits of green tea were designed with green tea being consumed with meals.