Mix it up! Some healthy foods, when eaten together, become nutritional superstars--greater than the sum of their parts, says Jennifer McDaniel, RD, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Get more bang for your buck with these power pairs.
Yogurt + Granola
Start off your day with a wholesome parfait.
Most yogurt contains probiotics (look for live and active cultures on the container), and whole grains act as prebiotics, which feed probiotic bacteria, says McDaniel. Consuming both allows probiotics to thrive and your digestive system to run smoothly. (But beware of the One Yogurt You Should Never Eat!)
Green Tea + Lemon
Lemon keeps the powerful antioxidants in green tea from being destroyed before you can use them.
"Just a splash of lemon contains enough vitamin C to help reduce the breakdown of catechins in the digestive system," says McDaniel. That's good news, since these antioxidants may boost cognitive ability.
Brown Rice + Onion and Garlic
Add some sauteed onion and garlic to your next batch of brown rice.
Research published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that their sulfur compounds may increase absorption of the zinc and iron in some grains, helping you maintain a healthy metabolism and overall energy.
Salmon + Turmeric
Try a turmeric spice rub on salmon fillets.
The combination of DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid in fish, and curcumin, a potent antioxidant and component of the spice turmeric, could slow the growth of certain breast cancer cells more than when eaten separately, according to a 2011 study in BMC Cancer. To upgrade your next meal's nutritional value, try one of the 6 Foods That Should Rule Your Meals.
Broccoli + Radishes
Cooking broccoli destroys the enzyme myrosinase, which helps convert broccoli's cancer-fighting compound sulforaphane into its active form. To reap the benefits, McDaniel suggests fortifying your meal with another myrosinase-containing food, such as raw radishes or mustard.
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