This post is about the top healthiest fruits and vegetables. There are many different products you can choose from, but some will provide more benefits than others. What type of products do you like to eat regularly?
We will give an overview of what each fruit or vegetable has that makes it so healthy and why it should be included in your diet.
Fruits and vegetables are the building blocks of a healthy diet. Eating plenty of these foods is important for your health, energy levels, fitness, weight management, moods and immune system.
But not all fruits and vegetables are created equal! Some have more nutrients than others which makes them healthier choices to help you maintain optimal health.
This blog post will review some of the top healthy fruits and vegetables that can be incorporated into your diet daily for their nutritional value, as well as how easy they are to include in your day-to-day life.
Your body needs at least five servings of fruit or vegetable each day, so this list is just what you need to keep up with those guidelines without breaking too much of a sweat!
Healthy eating is all about balance, and it’s important to ensure that your diet includes a wide variety of nutritious foods. So we’ve put together this list of the top healthiest fruits and vegetables for you.
Fruits and vegetables are an essential part of a healthy diet. They can provide vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, fibre, water and more to the body. With so many types of fruits and vegetables available, it is important to know which ones are best for you.
Do you know what the healthiest fruits and vegetables are? Do you want to eat more of them but don’t know where to start from? In this blog post, we’ll highlight some of the top healthy choices that can be found in your local grocery store.
Did you know that eating fruits and vegetables is one of the most important aspects of living a healthy lifestyle? Well, it is! Eating lots of fresh produce has been shown to have many health benefits. Here are some top choices for your next trip to the grocery store.
We’ve compiled a list of our favourite fruits and vegetables for their taste, nutritional benefits, and versatility in cooking. The best part is that these choices are easy to find at most supermarkets! It would be best if you tried adding one or two new items each week until they become staples in your diet.
Let’s get started!
What Is The #1 Healthiest Food In The World?
The competition is extremely tough here. However, there are so many healthy foods out there, and they all do good things for our health.
But which food can be crowned number one healthiest food to eat? Really, there is no true number one; the diversity of benefits is too wide and individual, but where’s the fun in that?
Eating healthy has oodles of positive benefits – for the body and the mind alike. When we eat well, we feel good. When we feel good, we’re happier. When we’re happier, we’re more productive… and the wonderful cycle continues.
Increasingly, shops and restaurants worldwide are getting on the healthy eating bandwagon – making it easier for people to treat their bodies right.
This list of the healthiest foods in the world is just a beginning guide – a way to understand the essential vitamins and minerals the human body needs to stay functioning at its best.
And as an added boost – these healthy foods are all downright delicious!
So, having scoured the full list of applicants, we have crowned kale as the number 1 healthiest food out there.
Kale has the widest range of benefits, with the fewest drawbacks when stacked up against its competitors. So for us, kale is truly king. Read on to find out exactly why.
So, kale might top the list, but that doesn’t mean we should be eating plates full of kale and nothing but kale from now on.
There are plenty of other delicious and versatile superfoods out there that we can add to our diet.
Kale’s closest relative is arguably a very close second in the Healthiest Food in the World competition.
We all know the power of this leafy green from a famous, muscle-popping cartoon character, but spinach’s range of benefits is much wider than just making Popeye’s biceps bulge. This delicious green vegetable is high in beneficial antioxidants and can significantly reduce cardiovascular risks.
The list of essential nutrients it packs in is too long to list here! It is also versatile, affordable and widely available in many forms, meaning it is easy to add to our daily diet.
Try these amazing recipes for new and exciting ways to get your spinach in.
Spirulina is a high-protein seaweed supplement that’s typically dried and sold in powdered form. The dried stuff is about 60 per cent protein, and, like quinoa, it’s a complete protein, meaning it can be converted directly into muscle in the body and is thus a great weight loss tool.
A tablespoon of the blue-green algae delivers 8 grams of metabolism-boosting protein for just 43 calories, plus half a day’s allotment of vitamin B12, which in and of itself can give you more energy and boost your metabolism.
Try tossing some spirulina into a smoothie and watching the pounds melt off.
3. Black Beans
Filled with super-healthy antioxidants, black beans digest slowly – keeping you feeling full for longer. These little beauties are full of calcium, protein and fibre, and they also taste great!
Easy eating tip: Think Mexican food! Burritos, nachos, tacos… whatever tickles your fancy.
According to a review published in the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, anthocyanins, flavonoids that give eggplants their unique colour, will provide you with an array of impressive benefits.
Said perks include but are not limited to obesity control, diabetes control, cardiovascular disease prevention, and improvement of visual and brain functions such as sharper short-term memory and reduced inflammation.
Go ahead and toss some of this yummy veggie into a stir-fry or make some babaganoush—an eggplant-based spread with fewer calories than hummus.
5. Mustard Greens
Popular in East & South Asian cuisines, mustard greens are a lesser-known superfood but are by no means any less healthy.
They are one of the best sources of vitamin K, which plays a vital role in preventing blood clotting and improving heart and bone health. Other possible benefits of piling on mustard greens are improved immunity and eye health.
All of that in a delicious green that can be thrown into stir-fries, curries and soups for a delicious tangy hit.
According to a 2014 study published in the journal Obesity, chewing until your food is lump-less increases the number of calories the body burns during digestion: about ten extra calories for a 300-calorie meal, meaning that just by slowing down the rate at which you chew, you could potentially burn approximately 2,000 extra calories each month.
The study also found that chewing food more thoroughly increases blood flow to the stomach and gut, which may help to improve digestion and absorption of more nutrients from your food.
Considering celery has long been lauded as one of the chewiest veggies around, making it virtually calorie-free, it’s worthwhile to add some to your diet.
Try tossing the hydrating veggie into a tomato or chicken soup for an added crunch that will easily lower the overall calorie count of your meal. Aside from being super chewy, celery is also low-carb and relatively high in fibre—just one cup of the chopped veggie has 1.6 grams of the satiating nutrient.
With more antioxidants than any other nut, walnuts are also brimming with Vitamin E and rich in plant serums, omega three oils, and healthy fats.
Easy eating tip: Keep a supply in your bag for an easy, healthy snack on-the-go.
We’ve already covered kale’s prowess as a superfood, but it’s so healthy, we are going again. And a good thing too, as the list of health benefits is too long for just one mention.
Kale has an abundance of fibre, antioxidants, calcium, vitamins C and K, iron and more. All of these are known to help prevent various health issues.
People with diabetes can benefit greatly from increasing their kale consumption, as it has been shown to reduce the production of toxins associated with high blood sugar issues.
Kale is also recommended for increasing your fibre and potassium intake, both of which can reduce your cardiovascular risks.
The list goes on. Kale contains chlorophyll, which can bind carcinogens and prevent the human body from absorbing them.
While we recommend reducing your exposure to carcinogens as much as possible, some exposure is unavoidable by not smoking and avoiding animal foods. So kale for lunch can help reduce your cancer risk!
Finally, kale can even contribute to healthy skin and hair. It is a healthy helping of beta carotene, which contributes to maintaining our body tissues.
Good for the brain and skilled at lowering blood pressure, the humble beet is often overlooked as one of the healthiest foods on earth. The brightly-coloured root vegetable is filled with folate, magnesium and Vitamin C.
Easy eating tip: Grate them into salads for a sweet, crunchy boost.
It’s a natural diuretic, so asparagus, which contains less than 5 grams of sugar per serving, can help relieve bloating and other unpleasant feelings.
According to a study in the Journal of Food Science, the green veggie’s balance of amino acids and minerals may also help alleviate hangover symptoms.
A distant cousin of kale, watercress has been associated with lower cancer risk and helping to lower blood pressure, both of which are major killers in the US.
It is also set apart from other plant-based superfoods by its omega-3 content. These heart-healthy fats are essential for preventing heart disease, another of our most prominent killers!
Watercress also allows us to take our healthy additions everywhere with us, as it can be added to our quick, on-the-go meals such as sandwiches and salads!
Fungi are considered health food all-stars because they are a great source of potassium, which is vital for muscle health and recovery and can lower blood pressure and decrease the effects of a high-sodium meal.
In addition to being low-cal and fat-free, research has shown eating fungi can lead to increased immunity and protect against cancer.
One study printed in the journal 3Biotech that compared the effects of the mushroom extract on mice found that those treated with the extract experienced reductions in prostate tumour size and tumour cell proliferation compared to the control group of mice that were not treated.
Eating just one or two avocados a week gives you all the benefits of healthy monounsaturated fats, Vitamin B6 and loads of folate. Check with your local grocer to find out when this spreadable fruit is in season in your area.
Easy eating tip: On toast with salt and pepper, or a slice of cheese if you’re that way inclined.
14. Sun-Dried Tomatoes
This version of the wonderful tomato is perhaps the most delicious and healthy of all.
They are full of essential antioxidants that contribute to immune system health, healthy eyes and lowering inflammation all over the body.
15. Spaghetti Squash
The average American consumes approximately 15.5 pounds of pasta each year—and most of it is refined white stuff.
Unfortunately, this type of noodle is usually void of fibre and micronutrients. On the other hand, Spaghetti squash boasts only about 40 calories per cup—more than 75 per cent fewer calories than a cup of plain pasta—and is an excellent source of vitamin A and potassium, which will keep your muscles toned and strong.
The gourd also contains cancer-fighting beta carotene and double the amount of omega-3 fatty acids found in butternut squash.
16. Dark Chocolate
According to recent research, chocolate contains more antioxidants, gram-for-gram, than most fruit juices – great news for chocoholics!
On top of protecting the body from diseases and helping to prevent heart conditions, dark chocolate is a natural mood booster.
Easy eating tip: Eat this healthy food in moderation – just one or two squares per day is enough to reap the benefits.
Artichokes rank as some of the most antioxidant-rich vegetables out there. They are delicious, low in fat and piled high with vitamins and minerals like vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, phosphorus and magnesium.
This impressive profile can help lower bad cholesterol and increase good cholesterol, which is essential for reducing our risk of heart disease. Other possible benefits include lower blood pressure, improved digestion, anticancer effects and treatment of IBS.
Like most berries, raspberries are filled with antioxidants to help keep the body healthy and free of disease. Fresh or frozen, they also provide Vitamin C, calcium and iron.
Easy eating tip: Sprinkle them on yogurt or porridge in the morning to start your day sweetly and deliciously.
Onions are rich in quercetin, a flavonoid that increases blood flow and activates a protein in the body that helps regulate glucose levels, torches stored fat and kept new fat cells from forming.
Not to mention, onions are basically the unsung hero of cardiovascular health—an important area of wellness for everyone, but especially those who hit the gym hard to accelerate their weight-loss efforts.
The culinary staple can help lower cholesterol, ward off the hardening of the arteries and help maintain healthy blood pressure levels. The best part?
Onions are super low-cal and easy to throw into just about anything, from soups, homemade burgers, sandwiches and tacos to kinds of pasta, salads, veggie sides, rice and omelettes.
These small but mighty green vegetables are a vitamin and protein powerhouse.
A three-quarter cup serving of peas packs more protein than a one-quarter cup of almonds or a tablespoon of peanut butter, so be sure to add these little protein bombs into your after-workout meal. They are also a mighty serving of essential vitamin K, great for combating osteoporosis.
So, if you were one of those kids who squashed your peas under your knife to hide them from your parents, it may be time to reconsider this versatile little superfood!
This pungent bulb has been used to ward off disease for centuries, as it inhibits the growth of bacteria, lowers cholesterol and blood pressure and has some serious anti-inflammatory power.
Easy eating tip: Crush it and cook it. Garlic tastes great in everything from dressings and sauces to curries and soups.
Pickles are low-cal, filled with fibre, and covered in vinegar, which is good news for your waistline. In fact, just one large pickle has 15 calories and 2 grams of belly-filling fibre, so eating three or four can actually leave you feeling pretty satiated for less than 100 calories!
Every dieter knows that eating filling snacks are paramount to weight-loss success, but how does vinegar help the fat-fighting cause?
Studies show acidic foods help increase the rate at which the body burns off carbs by up to 40 per cent—and the faster you burn off carbs, the sooner your body starts incinerating fat, which can help you get that lean look you crave.
Add these tangy, pickled cucumbers to sandwiches and burgers or munch on them solo to start feeling more confident in your skivvies.
Peppers truly are the versatile superfood. They come in all kinds of shapes and colours, all of which have their flavours and uses. Colour is so often nature’s way of telling us it is good inside, and peppers are the perfect example.
If you are cutting calories, peppers are a low calorie, delicious food that can be thrown into stir-fries, curries and sauces or even just snacked on! They are also an excellent source of vitamins A and C and potassium, with a healthy dose of fibre and iron.
24. Sweet Potatoes
A large sweet potato contains around 4 grams of satiety-boosting protein, 25 per cent of the day’s belly-filling fibre, and 11 times the recommended daily intake of vitamin A, which has been shown to have cancer-fighting properties.
A Taiwan-based study in the Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that higher consumption of vitamin A-rich vegetables, especially garland chrysanthemum and sweet potato leaves, might provide potential protection from lung cancer.
All that nutrition and protection for less than 200 calories? Count us in!
Often touted as the world’s healthiest food, lemons have strong anti-inflammatory qualities and can help to inhibit the growth of cancer cells. They also have just as much Vitamin C as oranges.
Easy eating tip: Add a slice of lemon to your tea or water bottle to get healthy and hydrated at the same time.
Broccoli is part of the cruciferous group, alongside kale and other leafy green superfoods. So, it is part of an elite group, but luckily it lives up to that reputation!
For bone health, broccoli contains the dynamite combination of calcium and vitamin C, which work together to produce bone-strengthening collagen.
It’s also surprisingly high in protein, containing 4.3 grams per 100g. This may seem small, but its extremely low-calorie content means it can be piled high on the plate to maximize that protein content.
If you typically eat your potatoes warm out of the oven, you’re missing out on the spud’s fat-fighting superpowers. When you throw potatoes in the refrigerator and eat them cold, their digestible starches turn into resistant starches through a process called retrogradation.
As the name implies, resistant starch resists digestion, promoting fat oxidation and reducing abdominal fat.
Since eating cold baked potatoes doesn’t sound too appetizing, why not use the cooled spuds to make a potato salad instead? Here’s how: Bake red potatoes in the oven until they’re cooked through and allow them to fully cool.
Then, cut them into small slices and dress them in Dijon mustard, fresh pepper, chopped green onions, dill and plain Greek yogurt. Mix everything together and put it in the refrigerator to cool before consuming.
We were all told once in our childhood that if we ate our carrots, we would see in the dark.
Whilst this may have been a clever ploy to get us to eat our veg, it may not be as far from the truth as we think. Carrots are rich in Vitamin A, which is essential for good vision, as it helps convert light into brain signals. So, maybe your parents were superfood experts after all!
As well as night vision, carrots also provide all the benefits that come with eating more carotenoids.
These wonderful compounds not only give them their bright orange colour but are also linked with improved immune function and reduced risk of heart disease and degenerative diseases.
Sauerkraut isn’t just for hot dogs; this lacto-fermented cabbage, which contains natural compounds, may have potent cancer-fighting and belly-slimming properties.
When unpasteurized, sauerkraut is rich in Lactobacillus bacteria—even more so than yogurt—which boosts the healthy flora in your intestinal tract, bolsters your immune system, and even improves your overall health.
A 2013 study published in the World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology found that mice fed a probiotic-rich sauerkraut extract had reduced cholesterol levels.
Last but not least, this mighty legume is high in fibre and protein and adds great taste and texture to any meal. Vegans and vegetarians are often a fan of using lentils as a meat substitute in traditional recipes.
Easy eating tip: Add to salads, soups and stews for some extra oomph.
So, we have covered 30 of the healthiest superfoods out there. In our view, kale comes in on top, but really, all superfoods were made equal, so start piling your plate high with everything on this list.
Particularly, be on the lookout for those, like kale, that is in the cruciferous group (cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, cabbage, bok choy, arugula), as this group leads the way when it comes to the healthiest superfoods.
Another good tip is to always look for bright and strong colours when choosing your veg – this is almost always an indicator that they are full of healthful antioxidants, vitamins and plant compounds that will contribute to overall good health.
So, if you had a dull view of leafy greens and root vegetables before this, we hope this has changed your mind.
Healthy foods can be truly versatile, delicious, and exciting whilst providing all the essential nutrients and vitamins we need for good health and being low in calories.
We can’t ask for much more than that from nature’s bounty!