These healthy foods have been proven to contain minerals, vitamins and other nutrients that are vital for health and maintenance of your body. Rich in dietary fiber, they can also help you to stay away from health complications like high blood pressure, gout, heart attacks, cancer, and diabetes.
Tip: since most of the list is comprised of vegetables and fruits, it’s fairly environmentally and ethically, as well.
Top 12 healthiest foods on Earth list:
#1 Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes, also known as yams, are rich in fiber, beta-carotene, vitamin B6, vitamin C, and complex carbohydrates. One sweet potato has almost 8 times the amount of cancer-fighting and immune-boosting vitamin A you need daily. Furthermore, being a rich source of water-soluble flavonoids that are responsible for their different colors, research also suggests that isolated purple sweet potatoes anthocyanins can improve cognitive function and can efficiently stop the degeneration of the brain.
#2 Red Cabbage
Due in large part to its vitamin C content, red cabbage is a high-antioxidant food that fights free radical damage and strengthens the immune system. While both green and red cabbage are good for you, red cabbage packs a more powerful nutritional profile (red cabbage contains 10 times more vitamin A than green cabbage). In fact, red cabbage has more vitamin C than oranges, believe it or not!
Bananas contain a valuable fiber named ”pectin,” which gives them their structural form. Pectin, along with resistant starch in bananas, is considered to moderate sugar levels and slow stomach emptying after meals, which makes them great for endurance athletes to avoid blood sugar crashes. Bananas also have norepinephrine, which regulates our ”fight or flight response,” which helps to regulate stress.
The health benefits of apples include improved digestion, prevention of constipation, stomach disorders, gallstones, liver disorders, heart disease, gout, anemia, diabetes, rheumatism, eye disorders, and a variety of cancers. Based on recent studies, one antioxidant found in apples is called polyphenol, which has the capacity to extend lifespan.
The antioxidant plant pigments that make blueberries blue – flavonoids termed anthocyanins, guard against heart disease and age-related blindness. While research is ongoing, the scientists found strong evidence to suggest blueberries are a potential therapeutic agent for early stage prostate cancer or a possible means of prostate cancer prevention. Also, blueberries might help reverse the short-term memory loss that often comes with aging.
Broccoli contains sulforaphane, a sulfur-containing substance present in cruciferous vegetables. This amazing substance seems to stimulate a variety of antioxidant defense pathways in your body that can directly reduce oxidative stress and slow down the decline in your immune system that occurs with age. One medium stalk of broccoli contains more than 100% of your daily vitamin K requirement and almost 200% of your recommended daily dose of vitamin C, two important bone-building nutrients.
Watermelons are mostly water, about 92%, but this delicious fruit is soaked with nutrients. The red color in watermelon is lycopene, a powerful antioxidant that may help prevent cell damage. The health benefits of watermelon include the prevention of high blood pressure, kidney disorders, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, gout, macular degeneration, and impotence.
Garlic is one of the best kept medicinal treasures of the past era and it has been used as an antibiotic to treat fungal, bacterial and parasitic infections for the last 7,000 years. The sulphur-containing compound, allicin, a substance found in garlic, works as a powerful anti-inflammatory and has been shown to help lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and blood pressure levels. In addition, many numerous studies have shown that regular consumption of garlic can lower blood pressure.
As a legume, chickpeas are considered both a protein food and vegetable, helping you hit 2 essential food groups at once. Because they are so low in calories but high in dietary fiber and protein, they are an excellent food for those that need to lose some weight but who are watching calorie intake. Moreover, chickpeas are an important source of folate (also known as vitamin B9), which is vital for helping the body to effectively produce new cells as it plays a role in copying and synthesizing DNA.
Radish is well-traveled and ancient, mentioned in historical Chinese annals as early as 2,700 B.C. Radish is also known as Daikon in some parts of the world, especially in Asian markets. They have antifungal, antibacterial, and detoxifying properties, containing compounds that soothe dryness, rashes, and other skin disorders. Radishes can also regulate blood pressure, prevent respiratory problems such as bronchitis or asthma, and relieve congestion.
Carob is usually used as a chocolate substitute in baking and in sweets, although it is not from the same plant. The health benefits of carob are mainly attributed to its mineral and vitamins content, like calcium, zinc, potassium, phosphorous, vitamin K, riboflavin, and vitamin-E, as well as its natural antioxidants.
#12 Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are full of antioxidants, which are crucial in the battle against free radical damage in the body. According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, one ounce of chia seeds contains 138 calories, 12 grams of carbohydrate, 8 grams of fat, 10 grams of dietary fiber and 5 grams of protein.
These 12 healthiest foods should be included in your daily meal plan for better overall body and mental health.