Just like you have a playlist for your digital music collection for quick access to your favorite tunes, you need a healthy, low-calorie playlist. superfoods to make your body sing. You know your favorite foods by heart, but they’re probably not the healthiest to eat every day. But can you put together a checklist of super healthy foods that energize your body and prime him against the disease for the least calories?
Right. That’s why we can all use a playlist of favorite low-calorie superfoods to fit into our daily meal and snack rotation. Here’s an inventory of the best ones you can choose from, recommended by expert dietitians. Read on, and for more, don’t miss The 7 Best Fruits You Should Eat Every Day, Dietitians Say.
Snack on this superfood as often as you like. “With about 80 calories per cup, fresh blueberries are not only low in calories, but high in brain-healthy antioxidants,” says Eatthis.com medical review board member Lisa Moskovitz, Dt.P.CEO of NY Nutrition Group and author of The Core 3 Healthy Eating Plan.
“Studies show that blueberries can fight against age-related memory lossThe powerful brain-boosting compounds in berries are flavonoids. Blueberries are also a major source of vitamin C, vitamin K, and digestion-regulating fiber.
“kale originally as a garnish, but has now become one of the leading low-calorie superfoods,” says Moskovitz. This dark green leafy vegetable is an excellent source of nutrients such as vitamin K, magnesium, calcium, iron, vitamin C and fiber. And you get it all for just 10 calories per cup.
A medium apple is only 95 calories, less than those 100 calorie cookie packets. But an apple is much better for you because, well, you know what they say about an apple a day… Eat the skins; it’s where you’ll find all the good stuff, including fiber and lots of healthy nutrients. Apples contain a variety of phytochemicals, including quercetin, catechin, phloridzin and chlorogenic acid, all of which are powerful antioxidants that a Nutrition review A study suggests it may help prevent DNA damage that leads to cancer.
The dark red color of pomegranate seeds and their juice should tell you about their high nutrient content. Pomegranates are loaded with polyphenols, compounds believed to protect the body against oxidative stress and reduce the risk of inflammation, heart disease and cancer. Choose a high-quality, 100% pomegranate juice like POM Wonderful, which is fully pressed to release polyphenols in the rind, marrow and arils, says a medical review board member and registered dietitian. Toby Amidor, MS, RDauthor of Diabetes Build Your Plate Meal Prep Cookbook.
“A in vitro study at UCLA found that 100% pomegranate juice on average had more antioxidant power than red wine, Concord grape juice, or green tea,” she says. Pomegranate juice is also a good source of potassium, an important electrolyte for healthy muscle function.
Try Amidor’s recipe for Pomegranate-lime-mint popsicles.
greek yogurt is an excellent source of protein and provides a significant dose of calcium, a nutrient that most people don’t get enough of. A 5.3-ounce single-serving container contains about 80 calories and 14 grams of protein. “Pair Greek yogurt with fruit, granola, or nuts to increase fiber, another nutrient under-consumed by most Americans,” says Amidor. “A few of my favorite snack recipes with fat-free Greek yogurt include Berry smoothie, Apple Pie ParfaitsWhere Lemon-Raspberry Protein Popsicles.”
“In my opinion, all non-starchy vegetables are superfoods,” says an Eatthis.com medical review board member and registered dietitian. Amy Shapiro, MS, RDfounder of real nutrition. “They fill you up with fiber, vitamins, minerals, and water, help you fight free radicals, and prevent aging and disease.” For a complete list of non-starchy vegetables, see American Diabetes Association website.
The Japanese have very low rates of colorectal cancer, leading researchers to look into a possible link with seaweed consumption, a popular dish in Japan. In study, researchers found that red algae may have a protective effect against cancer. You can now find fresh seaweed salad at most grocery stores. And it is also available in dried leaves as snacks. “I love seaweed snacks from give me snacksbecause they are crunchy, salty and very low in calories but rich in minerals, including iodine necessary for the management of hormones,” Shapiro explains.
Like any leafy green, spinach is super low in calories but packs a huge nutritional punch. For one thing, spinach is rich in iron and magnesium, two nutrients linked to a healthy calorie-burning metabolism. “Green vegetables (like spinach) are always a ‘go-to,’ because they’re filling, water-dense, and nutrient-dense with lutein and zeaxanthin to protect your eyes from macular degeneration,” says Shapiro .
Even though they are tiny, seeds are considered a superfood because they contain so many good things: healthy fats, protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals. Gram for gram, seeds are technically high in calories, but since the usual serving size is small, they still qualify as a “low-calorie superfood.”
Some of the best are pumpkin seeds (126 calories per ounce), which are rich in magnesium to control blood sugar, your mood and your sleep; Sun-flower seeds (51 calories per tablespoon), one of the richest sources of vitamin E; hemp seeds (55 calories per tablespoon), a fantastic source of vegetable protein; and both chia and linseed (55 calories per tablespoon), which are rich in fiber for digestive health and plant-based omega-3 fatty acids.
Pick up any diet book and you’ll find broccoli recommended as a super food. Not only is it low in calories, but it is also high in sulforaphane, a compound that to research indicates that it fights the storage of body fat. Growing clinical evidence suggests that this phytochemical is effective in the prevention and treatment of various cancers, such as prostate cancer, breast cancer, colon cancer, skin, bladder, and mouth cancers , according to American Institute for Cancer Research.
A ½ cup serving of this colorful root vegetable packs a slew of health benefits in just 41 calories. For starters, carotenoids, the pigments that give carrots and other vegetables their orange, red, yellow and purple colors, may have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer effects, according to research in the British Journal of Pharmacology.
Carrots also contain the powerful antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which can prevent macular degeneration, a common age-related disorder that causes vision loss. And the eye health benefits don’t stop there: half a cup of raw baby carrots provides 51% of your daily vitamin A needs, an essential nutrient for your vision.