Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Last of the Super Foods


Why They're Healthy:
-- Rich in healthy, satisfying fats proven in one study to lower cholesterol by about 22 percent.

-- One has more than half the fiber and 40 percent of the folate you need daily, which may reduce your risk of heart disease.

Quick Tip:
Adding it to your salad can increase the absorption of key nutrients like beta-carotene by three to five times compared with salads without this super food.


Why It's Healthy:
-- Garlic is a powerful disease fighter that can inhibit the growth of bacteria, including E. coli.

-- Allicin, a compound found in garlic, works as a potent anti-inflammatory and has been shown to help lower cholesterol and blood-pressure levels.

Quick Tip:
Crushed fresh garlic releases the most allicin. Just don't overcook; garlic exposed to high heat for more than 10 minutes loses important nutrients.


Why It's Healthy:
-- Spinach contains lutein and zeaxanthin, two immune-boosting antioxidants important for eye health.

-- Recent research found that among cancer-fighting fruits and veggies, spinach is one of the most effective.

Quick Tip:
Spinach is a healthy -- and flavorless -- addition to any smoothie. You won't taste it, we promise! Try blending 1 cup spinach, 1 cup grated carrots, 1 banana, 1 cup apple juice, and ice.


Why They're Healthy:
-- Eating a serving of legumes (beans, peas, and lentils) four times a week can lower your risk of heart disease by 22 percent.

-- That same habit may also reduce your risk of breast cancer.

Quick Tip:
The darker the bean, the more antioxidants it contains. One study found that black bean hulls contain 40 times the amount of antioxidants found in white bean hulls.

So here is what I am thinking sounds good for dinner.  You take some baby spinach, a few mixed greens, and you put them on individual serving plates.  You top that with some Kidney beans, cheese, sour cream and some salsa.  Finish it off with slices of avocado.  The garlic.....that's up to you to figure that one out.  I will tell you this, you can never have to much garlic.

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