To mark World Food Day, Krishnendu Ayurveda recommends some of the world’s most nutritious foods and health benefits they provide. From cancer-fighting antioxidants, anti-inflammatory components to heart-healthy fats, these foods if added to your daily diet help you stay healthy, hearty and fit.
One of the healthiest foods on the planet, spinach is rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, including folate, vitamin A, iron, potassium, calcium, zinc, and selenium. Spinach also contains flavonoids that may help protect your body from free radicals, while offering anti-inflammatory benefits and antioxidant support.
Beets are high in immune-boosting vitamin C, fiber, and essential minerals like potassium (essential for healthy nerve and muscle function) and manganese (which is good for your bones, liver, kidneys, and pancreas). Beets also contain the B vitamin folate, which helps reduce the risk of birth defects.
Pomegranate’s antioxidant activity is known to inhibit cell proliferation and invasion, and promote apoptosis (cell death) in various cancer cells. The antioxidants in pomegranates may also help reduce inflammation that contributes to the destruction of cartilage in your joints, a key reason for the pain and stiffness felt by many osteoarthritis sufferers.
Blueberries exert positive effects upon your lipid profile, reducing your risk for type 2 diabetes. And because of their bountiful antioxidants, blueberries are one of the best fruits to protect you from premature aging. Blueberries have also been shown to alleviate inflammatory intestinal conditions, such as ulcerative colitis.
Avocado is considered as one of the healthiest foods as it is loaded with healthy fats. It contains monounsaturated oleic acid that is also present in olive oil along with other important nutrients like fibre and potassium.
The fats in Avocado encourages nutrient uptake from the vegetables up to 15-folds. Eating just one or two avocados a week gives you all the benefit of healthy monounsaturated fats, Vitamin B6 and loads of folate.
Often touted as the world’s healthiest food, lemons have strong anti-inflammatory qualities and can help to inhibit the growth of cancer cells. They also have just as much Vitamin C as oranges.
This pungent bulb has been used to ward off disease for centuries, as it inhibits the growth of bacteria, lowers cholesterol and blood pressure and has some serious anti-inflammatory power.
Apples are a good source of soluble fiber, which can lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels. Fresh apples are also a good source of vitamin C — an antioxidant that protects your body’s cells from damage. Vitamin C also helps form the connective tissue collagen, keeps your capillaries and other blood vessels healthy, and aids in the absorption of iron.
Besides being a good source of folate, broccoli also contains phytonutrients. Broccoli is also an excellent source of vitamin C — an antioxidant that protects your body’s cells from damage. It is also an excellent source of vitamin A and is linked to preserving eye health.
Eating a serving of legumes (beans, peas and lentils) four times a week can lower your risk of heart disease by 22 per cent. That same habit may also reduce your risk of breast cancer.