8. Eat a Sweet Potato
potatoes have high amounts of beta-carotene, equal to that of carrots;
for only 90 calories per sweet potato, you get a huge amount of
health-building nutrients. Beta-carotene is a major fighter against
cancer, heart disease, asthma, and rheumatoid arthritis. The bright
orange flesh contains carotenoids that help boost your metabolism,
stabilize your blood sugar, and lower insulin resistance, which makes
your cells more responsive to insulin. Sweet potatoes have four times
the Recommended Dietary Allowance for beta-carotene when eaten with the
skin on. In fact, it would take 20 cups of broccoli to provide the
amount of beta-carotene (vitamin A) available in a cup of cooked sweet
potatoes. They are a source of vitamin E, vitamin B6, potassium, and
iron, and have even been found to provide as much fiber as oatmeal. Plus
they’re fat-free! Sweet potatoes are definitely a superfood!
9. Eat Asparagus
vegetable is easy to cook and is a heart-healthy source of vitamins A,
C, and K. In addition, it also contains the carbohydrate inulin, which
promotes the growth and activity of good bacteria in your intestines.
Pregnant women can especially benefit from its high folate levels, which
help prevent birth defects.
10. Eat Quinoa
as “the gold of the Incas,” this grain—a complete protein— includes all
nine essential amino acids, making it an excellent choice for
vegetarians, vegans, and everyone else as well! Quinoa has extra-high
amounts of the amino acid lysine, which is essential for tissue growth
and repair. Combine this protein with quinoa’s high amounts of potassium
and its magnesium content to help lower your blood pressure and
strengthen your heart. For such a small grain, quinoa not only provides a
whole lot of nutrients and helps boost your metabolism, but it may also
be especially valuable for people with migraine headaches, diabetes,
atherosclerosis, and other debilitating health issues. It is also a very
good source of manganese as well as magnesium, iron, copper,
phosphorus, and B vitamins.
11. Pile on the Garlic
Garlic, one of the world’s most
popular culinary herbs, has a long history as a medicinal plant. Indeed,
scientific studies have verified what herbalists have known for
centuries—that garlic both prevents and treats illness in a wide variety
Among its many attributes, garlic is
known to lower cholesterol levels, thin the blood, kill bacteria, boost
the immune system, lower blood sugar levels, reduce the risk of certain
types of cancer, and fire up the metabolic furnace. There is also
evidence that the herb helps relieve asthma, eases ear infections, and
facilitates healthy cell function. Bottom line: Those who wish to
maintain their health and age well should eat lots of garlic.
fresh garlic into salads by chopping, crushing, or putting it through a
garlic press (2 or 3 cloves a day is optimum). Whole garlic bulbs can be
oven roasted and the individual cloves can be squeezed out onto bread
or toast as a creamy spread. If you decide to take garlic capsules, take
1 to 3 capsules daily, or follow the label directions. Garlic has
blood-thinning properties so, if you’re taking it in supplement form,
tell your doctor before surgery and use caution when using antiplatelet
or blood-thinning medications.
12. Eat Parsley
Parsley is loaded with compounds
that purify your blood and expel toxins from your body. It is also dense
in vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin K, iodine, iron, and chlorophyll.
Actually, parsley has higher vitamin C content than citrus and is an
excellent ingredient to battle inflammation. It also contains certain
volatile oils that have been shown to inhibit the formation of tumors,
particularly in the lungs. Parsley is also rich in flavonoids known for
their antioxidant activity and helps prevent free radical damage (a
major metabolism buster) to your body’s cells. Parsley’s dark green
color also provides needed oxygenating chlorophyll, which increases the
antioxidant capacity of your blood.
13. Try Sea Vegetables
Gram for gram, sea
vegetables—seaweeds and algae—are higher in essential vitamins and
minerals than any other known food group. These minerals are
bio-available to the body in chelated, colloidal forms that make them
more easily absorbed. Sea vegetables that provide minerals in this
colloidal form have been shown to retain their molecular identity while
remaining in liquid suspension. The following is a descriptive list of
what sea vegetables can add to your daily diet:
• They can contain as much as 48 percent protein.
• They are a rich source of both soluble and insoluble dietary fiber.
• The brown sea varieties—kelp,
wakame, and kombu—contain alginic acid, which has been shown to remove
heavy metals and radioactive isotopes from the digestive tract.
• They contain significant amounts of vitamin A, in the form of beta-carotene, as well as vitamins B, C, and E.
• They are high in potassium, calcium, sodium, iron, and chloride.
• They provide the fifty-six minerals and trace minerals that your body requires to function properly.