Good to Super: Food Combos For Your Health

Posted by Surterre Properties on Thursday, June 23rd, 2011 at 2:41pm


Apparently our taste buds know a thing or two about our health. In her Newsweek article on power food combinations, Divya Gugnani explains Epidemiologist, David R. Jacob’s idea of “Food Synergy.” While the name may seem new and exciting, the concept has been embedded in our instincts all along.

“New evidence suggests that certain foods that taste great together also interact with one another in nutritionally positive ways. In other words, two particular foods consumed in combination can actually deliver more benefits than either one would on its own,” explains Gugnani.

She goes on to list 10 different power foods that once combined, create a super food that could greatly impact your health.

The first winning combo is spinach & beets. Because green leafy vegetables like spinach and kale are high in iron, it is helpful to eat them with foods like beets, tomatoes or bell peppers that are high in Vitamin C, which improves iron absorption in your intestines. There are many fun salad recipes that can combine these ingredients for an all-together healthy meal.

Next on the list is tomatoes and olive oil. It’s no wonder the Greeks have a higher life expectancy than Americans, they eat more tomatoes and olive oil per capita than any other country, according to Gugnani. “Tomatoes are rich in an antioxidant called lycopene, which has been proven to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and certain cancers. But lycopene is also fat-soluble, which means combining it with a healthy, monounsaturated fat like olive oil helps boost absorption even more,” says Gugnani. Add a little basil and mozzarella to the mix and you’ve got a winning, and heart healthy appetizer.

Beef and Carrots is another healthy combo our taste buds have been leading us to for years. The protein in the beef will help bind the Vitamin A in the carrots once put together, giving your immune system a boost. Also, beef is loaded with Zinc, which can help protect you against weakening of your immune system.

While Green tea can be used to soothe a sore throat or warm you from harsh weather, it can also speed up your metabolism while administering you a wealth of antioxidants. Mix Green tea with lemon and you’ve just revved up your tea so your body can absorb 13 times the antioxidants than it would by drinking Green tea alone.

A few other great combinations that are probably already flagged in your cook book, but hold far more nutritional value than you could have known include: fish and garlic, red meats and rosemary, Orange Juice and oatmeal, apples and red wine, blueberries and grapes, and finally, nuts and dried fruit.

But with every good mixture, there are bad ones. Just because our taste buds tell us its right, doesn’t mean it is. Every Orange County resident loves a bit of coffee with their breakfast, but according to Gugnani, you must be careful with what you eat with your cup of Joe. Apparently, the “polyphenols found in coffee actually reduce iron absorption from the eggs and decrease calcium in your bones,” Gugnani explains.

For more information about exactly what the super food combinations can do for your health, as well as the list of combinations to avoid CLICK HERE.


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