Power foods are yummy, nutritious eats that help fuel you for the day.
We ignored the trendy new fruits with names no one can pronounce, hard to swallow vegetables and expensive concoctions in favor of these accessible, but powerful foods.
Nutrition researcher Tia M. Raines recommends replacing the junkier processed foods you might grab on the run with these power foods.
One of the most portable foods, bananas are low in saturated fat, and a good source of dietary fiber and potassium. Opt for less ripe bananas for slower digesting carbohydrates. At about 100 calories, and 20 grams of carbohydrate, bananas are a great workout food, supplying energy and replacing electrolytes.
Yogurt provides about 450 mg of bone-strengthening calcium and over 10 grams of protein in an 8 oz. serving,. It’s easier to digest than milk so even lactose intolerant tummies can eat it. Bacterial cultures keep your colon healthy. Choose low- or no-fat varieties, and avoid added sugars.
Today’s chickens are fed a healthier diet and produce nutritious, 75 calorie eggs that satiate and are good sources of vitamins A, D, E, and the Bs. Eggs contain mostly polyunsaturated fat, which actually lowers blood cholesterol. One egg provides 6 grams of high quality protein with all of the 9 essential amino acids. Athletes consider eggs “muscle food.”
Another portable power food, 1/4 cup of almonds packs 7 grams of protein, heart healthy monounsaturated fat, and antioxidants in about 200 calories. Almonds lower cholesterol and help maintain blood sugar. Eaten whole or in nut butters, almonds are a dieter’s best friend, helping stave off hunger.
This green beauty is easily added to soups, pastas and smoothies. The anti-inflammatory phytochemicals in spinach are proven cancer fighters. Loaded with antioxidants, spinach fights oxidative stress. Spinach is an excellent source of fiber, vitamin A for your skin, and Popeye knew the Vitamin K upped his bone health.
Your grandma’s oatmeal is full of protein, cholesterol-lowering fiber, and antioxidants that promote heart health. Oatmeal boosts immunity and helps regulate blood sugar. If gluten is an issue, look for varieties packaged in gluten-free environments.
This low-mercury fish is a great source of Omega 3 fatty acids, which improve heart health, reduce inflammation and potentially improve brain health. A 4 oz. serving has 150 calories, 25 grams of protein and is a great source of vitamins D and B12.
The fruit with the highest concentration of antioxidants, blueberries boost your immune system and prevent infection. They contribute to eye, heart and brain health as well as prevent and fight cancer. Enjoy frozen berries all year.
Make a smoothie with banana, yogurt, and spinach, (you won’t even taste the spinach) or combine oatmeal with chopped nuts, and feel the power of healthy foods as you cruise through your day.