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What is the secret to a long and healthy life? Well, you are what you eat, or rather what you absorb and assimilate, so why not start with food? Here are 10 low-carb power-packed foods.
As you well know, not all food is created equal. Some "food" is completely void of nutrition and others are super nutrient-dense. We're focusing on nutrient-density in this list. Choosing and eating the right foods may help increase your life expectancy as well as the quality of your life. It's not just about looking good, we want to feel good and live a long happy life!
Now, some of the items on this list are highly controversial in the low-carb and keto community because they can be a bit higher in carbohydrates. Some folks have a hard time with some of these items due to food sensitivities and intolerance. So, take the full list with a grain of salt and include what works for your individual biology. We're all different and have different nutritional requirements and tolerances.
Some will argue that beans are high in carbohydrates, and they will vary by the type of bean. But I will include them in this list because they are lower in carbs and will fit quite comfortably in many low-carb lifestyles. If they give you gas, take precautions before you eat them. Soaking them first can help. Beans of all kinds (kidney, navy, lentils, chickpeas, and northern) are high in protein. If fiber is a problem in your diet, eating beans can keep your digestive system healthy.
The antioxidants found in dark green vegetables help counteract the oxidative muscle damage that comes with heavy training or exercise. So vegetables like broccoli, collard greens, lettuce, kale, and our hero spinach should be high on your list.
Fruits are filled with antioxidants such as Vitamin C and A. Antioxidants fight free radical damage in the body and reduce the risk of cancer. Berries such as blueberries and grapes have the highest amount of antioxidants. But choose an array of fruits in a wide variety of colors for maximum health. The antioxidants in fruit boost the immune system to fight the effects of aging in the body.
This class of foods includes garlic, onions, leeks, and shallots. Garlic is known for lowering cholesterol. Allium vegetables help guard the body against the risk of cancer and many other ailments. They also help lower blood pressure and prevent blood clots. Eating these power-packed vegetables in their natural state especially garlic increases their health benefits.
No low-carb power-packed foods list would be complete without salmon! Eating foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids reduces the risk of heart disease and other conditions like atherosclerosis. Wild salmon is a fatty fish but it contains good fats that have been proven to improve health in children and adults. Salmon is rich in protein which is of great use after an exercise session to build muscle tissue.
I have a super easy salmon packet recipe that you might want to check out if you're nervous about cooking salmon at home.
Like salmon it contains omega-3 fatty acids. These seeds also contain omega-6 and omega-9 fatty acids. You get a lot of power to fight high cholesterol, heart disease, and diabetes with this seed. Ground flaxseed can be added to fruit smoothies, sprinkled in yogurt, eaten with cereal or added to pancake mix to name a few.
Peppers are colorful. They contain antioxidants like beta-carotene and Vitamin C. Peppers range from mild and sweet to so hot you’ll be calling the fire department. All peppers contain a substance called capsaicin. Capsaicin has the properties of an anti-inflammatory, a pain reliever, lowers cancer risk and heart disease. They are good in salads, salsa and all sorts of dishes.
Tomatoes are loaded with vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytonutrients. And because they’re particularly rich in vitamin C and carotenoids, they may boost heart health, fight oxidative stress, protect against a variety of cancers, and combat inflammation. Tomatoes also contain potassium, an electrolyte that helps maintain fluid balance.
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts are high in fat and we love fat. Peanuts, almonds, Brazil nuts, walnuts, and pistachios are all providers of fats and protein. Crush them into a fine powder and use it as a coating instead of higher carb bread crumbs. Nuts help to lower cholesterol. Eat them right out of the shell with no additives.
The full-fat plain variety is good for you. Yogurt contains calcium, Vitamin B, and protein. Yogurt is an alternative to get your calcium to build strong bones and teeth. Live yogurt also contains friendly bacteria to help promote a healthy digestive system.
Building a healthier body begins with what you eat. Try these low-carb power-packed foods to get started on the right foot. I recommend you start with the tomatoes, I just love them!