Healthy Food Combinations That Work Best on a Plant Based Diet
The right nutrition enhances your brain functions, has a good impact on your nervous system, improves immune system, etc. Eating more plant-based products is the first step to a good healthy nutrition. However, to make it more effective, try food combinations that will help your body absorb the best elements from the products.
Food Combinations to Improve Your Health
Green Foods and Unsaturated Fats
Green vegetables are considered one of the most nutritious food groups. Cucumbers, broccoli, kale, zucchini, spinach, etc. are low in calories yet high in vitamins. To get the most from these vegetables, it’s good to mix them with unsaturated fats. The fats will add more vitamins and minerals, and also be a sort of sponge for the beneficial elements of green vegetables. Besides that, as low calorie foods don’t make you full for long, healthy fats will help with that.
When making a healthy salad, add some fatty ingredients. Avocado, olives, coconut, seeds, and nuts are great companions to green vegetables. You can also make smoothies with greens and avocado, or add some almonds or coconut butter when roasting vegetables.
Grains and Berries
This is one of the most popular food combinations, and reasons for that go beyond just good taste. Grains are good sources of B group vitamins, iron, and fiber. Berries provide you with water, fiber, and vitamin C. A simple oatmeal with berries will help you get more iron, as combining grains with vitamin C increases iron intake. The water will help your body digest all the fiber you eat along with this healthy meal. Also, these foods will improve your blood pressure by combining potassium and magnesium, and keep you full for a long time.
Mushrooms and Unsaturated Fats
Mushrooms are the best source of vitamin D. It helps fight depression, prevents colon cancer, osteoporosis, and other diseases. But it’s a fat-soluble vitamin, which means that to absorb it, your body needs fats. The best option is using healthy unsaturated fats.
Add avocado or almonds to your salads with mushrooms. You can also make a delicious low carb vegan pizza with mushrooms and olives.
Greens and Lemons
Lemons and greens are one of those food combinations that increase iron uptake. Greens are one of the best sources of iron, and lemons are rich in vitamin C and other alkalizing elements. Eating them together will increase your body’s ability to absorb iron. This combination will also become a great immune system booster and helps you prevent anemia and other health problems connected to iron deficiency.
Squeeze a bit of lemon juice for a green salad dressing, add it to your roasted vegetables or smoothies. Lemon juice will make a wonderful dressing for any dish if combined with olive oil.
Tomatoes and Unsaturated Fats
Tomatoes provide you with lycopene – a great nutrient that has an anti-cancer effect. It’s best absorbed with healthy fats. So if you cook anything that contains tomatoes, make sure to add some healthy fat to the dish.
Cook tomatoes with olives and avocados – they taste great when you grill them. If you like eating tomatoes raw, make sure to add some avocado or olive oil to your salads.
Apples and Walnuts
For an anti-cancer effect, eat apples and walnuts together. The antioxidant quercetin that is found in apples, and the ellagic acid that enters your body within with walnuts, work perfectly together. The acid increases the anti-cancer effect of the aforementioned antioxidant.
Eat apples and walnuts together as a healthy snack. If you like roasted apples, make sure to sprinkle a bit of smashed walnuts onto the dish. You can also add raspberries or grapes to this pair to enhance the effect, as these two foods also contain the necessary elements to prevent or fight cancer.
Chickpeas and Onions
It has been proven that onions contain sulfur compounds that help iron (the element contained in chickpeas) to be absorb better. Iron is vital for a human body, as it’s responsible for the transportation of oxygen to all the body systems.
To combine these nutrients, you can make a nourishing soup. Put onions, a bit of garlic and olive oil into a saucepan and sauté them until the onions soften. Mix them with vegetable broth and add a bit of rinsed chickpeas. Add any spices you usually use, some vegetables if necessary, and cook the mixture gently for about 15 minutes. This soup will provide your body with the right amount of sulfur compounds and iron.
Combining Nutrients for a Healthier Diet
In order to get the most from your meals, they have to include protein, fats, and carbs in sufficient amounts, depends on what diet you follow (low carb, low fat, etc.). You can get all these healthy nutrients from plant-based foods. If you cook legumes, make sure to add some unsaturated fats and greens into your meal. If you prefer more green dishes, add some beans and a bit of healthy fats along with greens. You can make your own variants, adding foods you like the most.
Along with these three vital elements of your diet, it’s important to consume food combinations that will provide you with vitamins, minerals, and other beneficial nutrients. Aside from iron & vitamin C, and healthy fats & vitamins A, D, E, K, there are some more healthy nutrient pairs.
- Calcium and vitamin D
Calcium is best absorbed when combined with vitamin D. Try cooking mushrooms and broccoli together or eat roasted mushrooms in a green salad.
- Catechins and Quercetin
Catechins is the antioxidant that helps cure hardened blood vessels, and quercetin reduces blood lumps with its anti-inflammatory effect. To get such a health-friendly pair together, try eating apples with their skins on, adding a bit of dark chocolate. You can also eat berries and drink green tea to get this combination.
Is Combining Foods Good for You?
Combining products wisely will help you absorb vitamins and minerals better, thus making you a healthier person. So, whenever you can, try these food combinations to improve your diet. By doing so, you will get the most out of your meals. Besides, you will make your diet more diverse, which will help you forget about any bad eating habits you might have had.