I just love filling my body up with nutrient-dense wholefoods. Foods that support my health, mood, energy levels and weight…I bet you do too.
Trust me when I say it has taken years of education, dedication and trial and error to understand which foods produce the best result for my body. My guess is that most of the foods I’ve mentioned here, will be wonderful for your health too.
Below is my list of my top 20 favourite healthy foods that I eat on a regular basis.
In no particular order, they are:
1. Coconut products – oil, milk, cream, water, flour, flakes, flesh…you name it, I love it! As a medium-chain fatty acid, coconut oil gets shuttled straight to the liver to be utilised as energy instead of being converting to fat. It also contains lauric acid that has anti-bacterial, anti-viral and antioxidant properties. Head here to read my post on the importance of good fats and why coconut oil is a healthy saturated fat.
2. Organic butter – another fat that I love. Rich in fat-soluble vitamins A, E and K2 and saturated fat, it’s the perfect accompaniment to your veggies and tastes bloody fantastic too!
3. Quinoa – a fantastic gluten-free seed that’s full of protein. It also contains fibre, essential amino acids, vitamins and minerals. I love adding this to salads or as a substitute for rice, cous cous or pasta.
4. Sweet potato – I just love my sweet pots! I especially love roasting them in coconut oil with a drizzle of maple syrup (YUM). Sweets pots are high in vit B6 and carotenoids, are a good source of vit C and potassium, and contain vit D, iron and magnesium.
5. Grass-fed beef – where do I begin? Grass-fed beef is one of the most nutrient dense foods you can eat (organ meats are even better). Red meat in general is a fantastic source of protein, vit b12, vit D, and minerals such as zinc, iron and magnesium. However, grass-fed beef contains between 2-5 times more omega-3 than grain-fed beef. It also contains between 2-3 times more conjugated linoleic acid (CLA). CLA exhibits potent antioxidant activity, and research indicates that CLA might be protective against heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Another reason grass-fed meat surpasses grain-fed is that it contains considerably more antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. To learn more read this post by Chris Kresser.
6. Wild caught salmon – the highest source of omega-3 fats EPA and DHA, which are fantastic for brain and heart health, plus loads of beneficial vitamins and minerals. Where possible, you should only have wild caught salmon. This is because the salmon is eating in it’s natural habitat whereas farmed salmon are fed genetically modified soy and corn. Fish farms may also breed disease due to crowding too many fish together in a small space. I buy my wild salmon at the Subiaco Farmers Markets here in Perth.
7. Free-range chicken – if you can find organic chicken, even better (but a bit pricey). Chicken is a great source of protein and pastured-raised chickens are generally higher in omega-3s and antioxidant nutrients. I love eating chicken as it’s so versatile.
8. Cruciferous veggies – broccoli, cauliflower, kale, brussels sprouts, cabbage and bok choy have it all: fibre, phytonutrients, vitamins, minerals and have been linked to lowering your risks of cancer. Note: it’s best to blanch these veggies and not eat them raw as they contain goitrogens that suppress thyroid function.
9. Spinach – this healthy green is full of vitamins, antioxidants and minerals. Spinach has an extremely high nutritional value and is rich in antioxidants. It is a good source of vitamins A, B2, C and K, and also contains magnesium, manganese, folate, iron, calcium and potassium. I love adding baby spinach to my smoothies.
10. Avocado – oh how I love avocados! Have you ever noticed that an avocado resembles a womb when cut in half? Well wouldn’t you know that avo’s are a fantastic fertility food! They’re also high in monounsaturated fats (great for improving skin tone and cardiovascular health), potassium, vit E, folate and fibre.
11. Organic eggs – if I were vegan I would bend the rules slightly to at least include some organic, pastured raised eggs from happy chickens.
They are one of the healthiest foods on the planet, and as a source of saturated fats they do not cause high levels of cholesterol in the body – this is a complete myth.
The nutrient content of organic eggs is far superior to conventional eggs. They contain 2/3 more vit A, 2 times more omega-3, 3 times more vit E and 7 times more beta carotene. Eggs in general are high in tryptophan and tyrosine, which are amino acids high in antioxidants. Eggs also contain high levels of protein, fats, vitamins and minerals. Two raw eggs (or lightly poached) contain nearly twice as many antioxidants than an apple! I love these eggs.
12. Sauerkraut – eating fermented foods such as sauerkraut and kimchi and drinking fermented drinks like kefir and kombucha, will introduce beneficial bacteria into your digestive system and help the balance of bacteria in your digestive system. Probiotics have also been shown to help slow or reverse some diseases, improve bowel health, aid digestion, and improve immunity! Fermented foods are also high in live enzymes helping you to break down and absorb the nutrients from your foods.
13. Sheeps or goat’s milk yoghurt – both are naturally homogenised which means smaller fat globules and medium-chain fatty acids (has 35% compared to cow’s 17%) which aids in digestion. Many who find themselves intolerant to cow’s milk will be able to digest sheep or goat’s milk with no problem. They are both also filled with friendly gut bacteria.
14. Almond milk – I love this stuff! Rich in vit E, fibre, minerals and protein, plus small amounts of vid D and calcium, almond milk is a great milk alternative (although not as many nutrients as raw cow’s milk). I would make it yourself or buy cold-pressed raw organic almond milk (you can find it at the Subiaco Farmers Markets in Perth). If that’s not an option for you, make sure the store bought almond milk is unsweetened and doesn’t contain unwanted additives.
15. Raw activated nuts & seeds – raw nuts & seeds are a fantastic healthy snack, loaded with protein, healthy fats, fibre and important minerals like zinc, magnesium and calcium. However, nuts also contain natural chemicals that can interfere with the absorption of these nutrients. Raw nuts contain phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors that can reduce the body’s ability to absorb certain nutrients properly. That’s why it’s best to ‘activate’ your nuts by soaking them in water and salt and then dehydrate them, which breaks down the hard to digest components. I explain the length of time for each nut in the ‘Relationship with Your Body’ section of my eBook.
16. Dark raw chocolate – raw cocao is where all the nutrients are at…not your average cocoa found in commercial choccie. Raw cocao is loaded in minerals and antioxidants that reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. To read more about its benefits, head on over here. It’s important to note that although much healthier than a freddo frog, raw chocolate still contains sugar. My vote goes to Loving Earth’s raw choccie as they use coconut nectar (instead of agave or raw sugar), which is very low in fructose.
17. Berries – packed full of antioxidants and phytonutrients, berries get a daily munch in my house! The antioxidants in berries can help your body fight oxidative stress caused by free-radicals that can lead to illness. They’re also a powerful brain food and are low in fructose.
18. Pure Life sprouted bread – my fav is the sourdough as it’s the lowest in sugar, but I also like the rye variety. Pure Life sprouted bread is made from Australian grown Demeter certified biodynamic grains with no additives, preservatives, yeast, salt, sugars, flour or added gluten. The gluten is reduced by 50% making it much more digestible for gluten intolerant people. The sprouting process retains grain nutrients, increases vitamin and mineral levels that are vital in a healthy diet and is high in fibre.
19. Chia seeds – this versatile seed is loaded with antioxidants, fibre, omega-3’s, protein and minerals such as calcium, phosphorus and magnesium. I just love a chia pudding or adding them to my smoothies.
20. Bone broth or Great Lakes gelatin – helloooo nutrients galore! Bone broth is probably the most healing food for your gut. It helps heal a ‘leaky gut’ as the gelatin in bone broth protects and heals the mucosal lining of the digestive tract and helps aid in the digestion of nutrients. The glucosamine in bone broth can actually stimulate the growth of new collagen, repair damaged joints and reduce pain and inflammation. The collagen and gelatin in bone broth supports hair growth and helps to keep your nails strong. To read more, check out this article. Great Lakes gelatin is a fantastic alternative to making bone broth, which you can learn about here.
And there you have it my friends! There are many other healthy foods out there of course, such as superfoods (I love maca). If you’d like to learn more about which healthy foods get my vote, check out my eBook which has a section devoted to healthy foods and includes a one-day meal plan.
Over to you…
What foods from the above list do you love? Got any others you’d like to add? Leave your comments below. And why not share this healthy message with your friends 🙂
P.S. Do you live in Perth? Check out the deets to the workshop I’m running in June here!
What a great list Liz. I love all the above apart from the meat based one’s 😉 Totally agree about the organic eggs too. I feel Vegan to me would be include cruelty free/home grown animal products like eggs. You’ve met my horrifically spoiled princess treatment chooks – I couldn’t give up eating their eggs, especially teamed with organic sourdough xx
Thanks Kat! Lucky you having happy, healthy chickens in your backyard! What a fabulous bonus 🙂