10 Foods You Should Eat Every Day

These suggestions serve as a foundation for a healthy diet
healthy food
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Maintaining a wholesome diet is vital to your health, but there are so many “right” ways to eat today — so how could one possibly determine which method is best? Registered dietitian and director of nutrition at Brain Balance Achievement Centers Holly Larson says we tend to be the healthiest when we’re eating a variety of unprocessed foods. Her 10 recommendations below offer a framework of ingredients you can add alongside your favorite foods for a healthier diet.

Olive oil

Olive oil
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Unrefined, pure olive oil is healthy for your heart and brain. It also contains a high level of antioxidants, which can reduce your risk of cell damage and disease. Olive oil can help reduce your risk of a stroke, depression, breast cancer, Alzheimer’s, pancreatitis, ulcerative colitis and more.

Water

Water
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While this technically isn’t a food, water should be our main beverage. If you don’t like it plain, add citrus juice, fresh herbs or sliced cucumbers for flavor. Here’s how much you should be drinking and what can happen if you don’t drink enough.

Berries

Berries
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Blueberries, raspberries and strawberries are chock-full of vitamins, minerals, fiber and phytochemicals, which could help reduce the risk of cancer. Berries are also lower in sugar than many other fruits. To save at the grocery store, go for frozen instead of fresh because they’re less expensive but just as nutritious and have a longer shelf life.

Turmeric and other spices

Turmeric and other spices
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Spices are great because they add flavor to bland foods. Many, like turmeric, are also anti-inflammatory, meaning they could help alleviate symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, asthma, Crohn’s disease, lupus and more.

Nuts and seeds

Nuts and seeds
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A variety of nuts and seeds offers a multitude of nutritional benefits like protein, healthy fats and minerals. Nuts are also a great source of antioxidants.

Leafy greens

Leafy greens
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Put a handful of spinach in your morning smoothie or use these leaves as a base in a salad for lunch. Leafy greens are packed with vitamins (A, C, E and K), minerals, fiber, iron, magnesium, antioxidants, potassium and calcium.

Dark chocolate

Dark chocolate
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“Not only is chocolate good for the soul, it is good for our heart, too!” Larson says. Dark chocolate has a lot of surprising benefits (most exclusively from cocoa) including mood enhancement, cancer prevention, natural energy, improved eyesight, heart health, lower cholesterol and more.

Broccoli or cabbage

Broccoli or cabbage
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Cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower, kale, broccoli and cabbage contain sulforaphane, which may reduce the risk of cancer and diabetes, improve heart health, help with digestion and protect against sun damage.

Coffee or tea

Coffee or tea
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Plain coffee and tea are rich in antioxidants, which fight inflammation and some of the deadliest diseases. Coffee in particular could make you live longer, help your heart beat, prevent brain deterioration, lower your risk of depression, thwart cavities and boost productivity. Tea could reduce your risk of heart attack or stroke, help with weight loss, protect your bones, strengthen your immune system and protect your lungs from damage caused by cigarette smoke.

Something joyful

Something joyful
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Larson’s last suggestion is not a food, but rather an equally important way to nourish not only your body, but also your spirit. “From using your favorite coffee mug to taking the time to have your meal outside or lighting candles at dinner, our meals can enrich our days. Enjoy meals away from screens and other distractions.” Now that you have the foundation for a healthy diet, the next step should be knowing which eats to avoid — and according to science, these everyday foods could increase your risk of cancer.

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