Caitlin Bell is a public relations student studying at Humber College.
Posted on March 3, 2015.
There are some foods that have been given pretty bad reps due to lack of research and silly fad diets. Let’s be honest. We have all been fooled at least once or twice; I know I have! However, now that I know a little bit better, it gives me great joy to shed some light on these 5 foods that are surprisingly healthy for you.
Click here to check out what WebMD has to say about some of these foods!
Cacao is the (not-so) secret ingredient for making dark chocolate so nutritious, but it’s because of its bitter taste when eaten alone that milk, sugar and butter are added to better satisfy our tastebuds. It is because of these additions that consuming dark chocolate in moderation is healthier than eating an entire 100g bar in one sitting. But, don’t let that scare you! Dark chocolate is packed with minerals, including iron, fibre and magnesium, so if you feel like you need a snack, don’t feel guilty when you reach for a few squares of that decadent dark chocolate. Indulge a little bit!
Normally when we hear the word “fat” we run for the hills, but the fat you’ll find in avocados will make you never want to run again. Avocados are stuffed with healthy monounsaturated fatty acids and fibre, making them a tasty snack that will keep you full for longer. If you’re low in potassium and think it’s best to eat a banana or two, think again! Avocados contain 4 per cent more potassium than bananas do, so you’re allowed to change it up every once in a while.
Coffee is filled to the brim with caffeine, a stimulant that blocks an inhibitory neurotransmitter called Adenosine in the brain. Because of this blockage, our brain decides to create more of other neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine. This increase leads to better brain function, higher energy levels and it can also lift our mood. Another one of the many benefits of coffee is that it burns fat. Caffeine can speed up your metabolic rate by 3 to 11 per cent; therefore, it speeds up the rate at which your body burns fat. Although coffee has lots of amazing benefits, please don’t start drinking 10 cups a day because you think it will help you lose that extra weight. Excessive amounts of caffeine can damage your body and some of the benefits tend to wear off for long-term coffee drinkers.
There are some nuts that are healthier for you than others. A few of the healthier ones you should include in your diet are almonds, cashews and pistachios. Nuts, just like avocados, will help you feel full for longer because of the winning combination of omega-3 fatty acids, protein, and fibre. Because of the high fat content they have on their own, try to avoid nuts roasted or packaged in oil. A healthier option would be to eat dry-roasted nuts, although some of the nutrients will be destroyed during the heating process. Ultimately, to get the maximum benefit of nuts, simply enjoy them raw!
The one you have all been waiting for. Yes, wine can actually be healthy for you! Once again, in moderation, some red wine has been known to keep a heart healthy by lowering cholesterol levels. The antioxidants in red wine, called polyphenols, can also help reduce the risk of unwanted clotting by keeping the blood vessels flexible. Not only can red wine keep a heart healthy, but it may also help diabetics manage their blood sugar. So, go on! Say “yes” to that glass of wine with dinner and don’t you dare regret it!
Dr. Oz has some surprisingly healthy foods of his own. Click here to see what he has to say!
It’s safe to say that learning about how healthy these foods are has definitely brightened my outlook on life a little bit! I have been left with a lot less guilt and a lot more joy and excitement. I challenge you all to add a few of these foods to your diet! See if you find any hidden benefits, and if you feel like sharing, let me know what you discover!
Are there any other foods you didn’t see listed here that are surprisingly healthy? I’d love to hear about them!
Until next time,
Live long and prosper.