Super Foods for a Super Fit Summer

There are a plethora of foods that provide you with your daily vitamins and minerals. Some give you a good chunk of fiber and protein, while others contain disease-fighting nutrients.

Here is a list of power foods that come to your body’s aid as it is attacked by villainous cancer cells and diseases, calories from fast food joints, sugars from the endless amounts of sweets, and bad fats that end up as un-wanted baggage. These are the multitasking powerful foods that can do it all!

Apples: “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” This saying has appropriately stuck with us since the early days of our childhoods.  Not only is this juicy, scrumptious fruit packed with fiber which can fight the excess tummy fat, it is also stacked with powerful antioxidants such as Quercetin and Catechin, which prevent cancer and cardiovascular disease.

Avocados: This green superfood may be high in fat, but don’t shy away from it. They contain healthful monounsaturated fats, which are linked to lowering the risk of cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Avocados can provide up to 17 grams of fiber along with antioxidants and power nutrients, crucialto providing a happy heart and healthy eyes as well as playing a role in lowering cholesterol, preventing strokes, and leaving you with great skin.

Beans are the alpha dogs of the fiber powerhouses. They are loaded with insoluble fiber, which helps the body get rid of unwanted waste while lowering cholesterol. Beans alsoprovide a generous amount of protein.

Berries: Blueberries, raspberries, cranberries, you see the pattern. Berries provide an abundance of phytonutrients and antioxidants, which have been shown to improve vision, memory and brain function. These little berries are linked to fending off diabetes and heart disease.  They are low in calories and high in water and fiber to help control your blood sugar. Forget the anti-wrinkle creamers. Load up on these anti-aging super berries.

Broccoli is the miniature tree with a strong trunk that provides a good amount of fiber to help fill you up and  control weight. It is packed with important nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin C, and bone-building vitamin K.

Cherries are a powerful bundle of antioxidants and provide the carbohydrates active people need. Studies have shown that cherries may help with relieving muscle and joint soreness after a workout.

“Cherries are a good source of anthocyanins, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent that gives cherries their rich red color. Along with anthocyanins, cherries contain other antioxidants such as vitamin C, beta carotene, lutein and quercetin, that may work together to boost the antioxidant capacity of cherries. Studies have linked cherry consumption to reduction of pain from arthritis and gout. Tart cherries are also a natural food source of melatonin, a hormone that helps promote healthy sleep patterns,” says nutrition and wellness coach, Michelle Loy.

Dark chocolate: The moment we have all been waiting for Ń something “bad” is actually good for you. Who would’ve guessed? Reap the health benefits of dark chocolate, which contain the same disease-fighting chemicals found in apples, strawberries and cranberries.  Studies have shown that it also lowers unhealthy low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and prevents the build up of plaque in your arteries. Don’t rush off to your local candy store right away. The dark chocolate we’re talking about contains a high percentage of cacaos, 70 percent or more. The bitterer and darker, the better. But do keep in mind to eat this luxury in moderation.

Eggs: The whites and yolks of eggs provide the best of both worlds. The whites are packed with protein while the yolk contains choline, which helps protect heart and brain functions while fending off fat build up in the liver keeping cholesterol low.  The egg as a whole is a powerhouse full of nutrients and all nine essential amino acids.

Garlic: The health benefits of garlic is worth the stench. Garlic is a potential cancer-preventive food.  It helps detoxify the body of heavy metals and behaves as an antibacterial and antiviral that prevents infections and colds.

Low-fat or fat-free yogurt is higher in calcium than any other dairy producton the market. On top of great calcium package, yogurt is enriched with probiotics for a healthy balance of bacteria in your guts. In other words, they’re good economical germs that help build and maintain strong bones while keeping your digestive system running properly.

Salmon helps cut out the risk of heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, diabetes, and arthritis.

Registered dietitian Michelle Loy explains, “Salmon is loaded with the anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA, which promote heart health. Salmon is also one of the few significant food sources of vitamin D, which not only helps maintain bone health but also enhances immune function and reduces inflammation. Salmon is also a good source of selenium, which is used to make antioxidant enzymes that assist with thyroid function and immunity.”

Sweet potatoes are a vitamin A powerhouse packed with potassium as well. These dark orange vegetables keep the skin healthy while filling our tummies with a nutritious snack or meal. Other dark orange vegetable powerhouses include carrots and pumpkins.

Keep in mind, there is never a guaranteed set list of the most powerful foods. The best way is to consume a variety of the best foods.