It’s one of life’s cruel jokes that the more delicious the food, the worse it likely is for you. However, believe it or not, there are some foods that are delicious, delectable and actually healthy for you. Here are a few foods you can enjoy and not feel guilty about it.
1. Dark Chocolate
Do you have a sweet tooth? You might want to switch from milk to dark chocolate as a 2004 study showed that the flavonoid content found in the chocolate has been proven to have substantial health benefits. The study found that the high flavonoid content helps to improve blood vessel structures and also contains antioxidant properties. A separate study in 2005 found that dark cholate also has the ability to reduce blood pressure.
There have been new studies showing that regular consumption of low-fat dairy products such as cheese can lower blood pressure, as well as help to regulate weight and blood sugar. Varieties such as Edam, Feta and Goat’s cheese are slightly lower in fat than standard Cheddar so they are ideal varieties to snack on.
Popcorn has been given a bad reputation for being an unhealthy snack full of butter and salt. However, when eaten plain, air-popped popcorn is low in calories and high in fiber. As a healthy alternative to butter, add olive oil and flavorful spices such as cinnamon, garlic paprika and dill.
4. Red Wine
Red wine contains antioxidants believed to be beneficial to cardiovascular health. The antioxidant resveratrol found in red wine is known to prevent damage to blood vessels and reduce LDL cholesterol (aka the “bad” cholesterol) and prevent blood clots.
Eggs often get a bad reputation because of their high cholesterol content. The egg yolk, however, contains choline, which is believed to reduce your risk of cancer. One egg contains 13 essential vitamins and minerals, proteins and healthy unsaturated fats.
6. Beef Tenderloin
Many people avoid beef due to its high fat content, but beef tenderloin is actually chock full of health benefits. In addition to being low in fat, beef tenderloin is also rich in protein and vitamin B12, and is also a source of zinc, iron, phosphorous and Vitamin B.
We often think of potatoes as being high in cholesterol, but they are way more than just fries. If you prepare them yourself at home, potatoes can be a healthy and inexpensive part of your diet. One medium sized potato complete with skin contains just 160 calories and is one of the best sources of potassium and fiber you can get from any vegetable.
This deliciously rich fruit has the reputation for being high in fat, and while that may be the case, most of it is the “heart healthy” mono and polyunsaturated kind. If calories are a concern, one-fifth of a medium-sized avocado has about 50 calories. This is a small price to pay, considering these versatile fruits are nutrient-rich, containing nearly 20 vitamins and minerals.
Having a cup of your morning joe can do more than give you a needed pick-me-up. Studies have shown that higher coffee consumption has been found to decrease the risk of Parkinson’s disease. That’s not all, though. Coffee has also been linked to protecting against liver cancer and type 2 diabetes.