What Superfoods Improve Your Immune System?

Published on 03/23/2020
ADVERTISEMENT

In times like today when everyone is trying to protect themselves from the pandemic virus with gloves and facemasks, the next most effective measure we can take is to boost our immune system as much as possible, to give our bodies that extra bit of strength to stay healthy and fight off whatever nasties may come our way. Although this is particularly true currently, it is also true for every other day of the year, every year! We have put together a list of the most powerful (and delicious!) superfoods that are readily available in stores, some of which you may already have at home, that will give your immune system that extra boost as well as help fight off dangerous diseases like diabetes, clogged arteries, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and obesity.

Oranges

– Vitamins D, C and E

– Beta-Carotene

– Zinc

This soccer mom staple is more than an energy boost for pre-teens at halftime! On top of quenching your thirst, you’ll gain some serious nutrients that will assist your immune system: vitamin C, potassium, and pectin (which is fiber). Turns out, potassium isn’t just in bananas; it also helps lower blood pressure, moderate sodium intake, and neutralize proteins that contribute to heart scar tissue or heart failure. Pectin plays an important role too and helps absorb the cholesterol in foods.

Oranges

Oranges

Kiwi

-Vitamin C,B,D6,A

-Magnesium,Iron

Don’t confuse the cute bird with the cute fuzzy fruit! Inside one kiwi you’ll find a juicy green fruit that’s packed with vitamins B, C, & E; polyphenols, magnesium, potassium, and copper. (Inside the other, a tiny bird!) These edible elements from the periodic table reduce clots and keep your whole heart system healthy, helping your immune system stay strong.

Kiwi

Kiwi

Almonds

-Vitamin E

-Manganese

-Magnesium

As arguably one of the most tastiest members of the nut family, these gems not only help your immune system stay robust but studies show that almonds are also loaded with healthy nutrients that can help boost your memory, intelligence and reduce your risk of diabetes and heart disease. So eating a handful of almonds can help lower cholesterol and due to a high level of plant sterols, prevent the absorption of harmful LDL and slash the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Almonds

Almonds

Garlic

-Vitamin C

-Vitamin B6

-Manganese

One of the most versatile foods on our list, garlic provides the flavor, vampire repellant, and heart boost! More importantly though, garlic is also a warrior of the immune system, so much so that when a sailor got sick on board a ship, the other crew members would all take raw garlic to keep their immunity up and avoid sickness. Not only that, but garlic also reduces enzymes that negatively impact your blood vessels and tackles the plaque in your arteries.

Garlic

Garlic

Salmon

-Cobalamin

-Magnesium

-Vitamin B6,C

Even though this fish is known for swimming upstream, it helps your blood flow downstream by expanding constricted vessels. However, your cook it (or not, for any sushi fans reading), you’ll find that taking a bite of salmon will help your body take a bite out of triglycerides and blood clots. Whether you prefer Chinook, Coho, Chum, Sockeye, or Pink, you’ll certainly love decreasing your risk of heart disease with salmon.

Salmon

Salmon

Lentils

-Iron

-Manganese

-Vitamin B6

These yummy and versatile legumes are one of the most unsung heroes of the immune system! They have more potassium than a banana and brings a lot of vitamins and minerals to the table. In the right soup or dish, you’ll get plenty of protein and energy and is another food on our list that is a part of the DASH diet. Although “super legume” doesn’t have the same ring to it as “super fruit,” lentils do reduce blood pressure and are another important food for a healthy heart, all of which help strengthen our overall health and ability to ward off sickness.

Lentils

Lentils

Pomegranates

-Potassium

-Vitamin C

-Vitamin B-6

You know what? Scratch the whole list so far. This superfood seems to have the longest list of benefits yet. On top of preventing heart disease and protecting your arteries against plaque, this fruity blend of antioxidants helps prevent strokes, prostate cancer, diabetes, and Alzheimers, according to studies, and gives your immune system that extra strength it needs. Not enough? It also keeps skin, joints, teeth, and livers healthy. Time to start calling it a “pomegreat!”

Pomegranates

Pomegranates

Blueberries

-Vitamin C

-Vitamin B6

-Magnesium

The ever-intrepid heart researchers and nutritionists recommend three servings of blueberries and/or other berries per week to keep your heart and arteries healthy! (Read on to see what other berries come highly recommended!) Like many other food packed with nutrients and antioxidants, blueberries help ward off some of the causes of cancer while they reduce the risk of heart disease. Amazing how such little things can be such powerful immune system warriors!

Blueberries

Blueberries

Cabbage

-Vitamin B6,C,A,D

-Magnesium,Calcium

-Iron

For yet another way to add some variety in your salad, look to this leafy green to bring some vitamin C your way! In addition to being a key antioxidant that boosts your immune system, vitamin C also helps keep arteries healthy. Cabbage is quite a low-calorie way to keep your heart healthy!

Cabbage

Cabbage

Apples

-Vitamin C,A

-Magnesium

-Potassium

With a palette of flavorful varieties, apples should be a superfood most folks can happily consume. Your heart will be Golden with this Delicious treat, your doctor will be Jazzed about your heart health, and you’ll increase your odds of living to be an old Granny Smith with this antioxidant-laden fruit in your diet.

Apples

Apples

Broccoli

-Vitamin C,K

-Potassium

-Manganese

The vegetable that prolongs children’s time at the dinner table can also help prolong your life. Look to broccoli for help keeping cholesterol in check and blood vessels pumping! Compared to the other superfoods on this list, what makes broccoli unique is sulforaphane, which serves both as an anti-inflammatory and a way to prevent chronic blood sugar problems. The tiny ones in stir fry dishes count for all this, right? Cause those ones are so much more palatable…

Brocolli

Brocolli

Beets

-Magnesium

-Vitamin B6 , C

-Iron

Beets. Betaine. B-vitamin folate. While not as infamous or catchy as Dwight’s “Beets. Bears. Battlestar Galactica.” from The Office, our list only contains things that help your heart! (The latter two are plant alkaloids and antioxidants found in beets.) Just about everything on this list lowers your chance of heart disease. Beets do it by reducing how much homocysteine is in your blood.

Beets

Beets

Kale

– Vitamin A,K,C,B6

– Maganese

– Calcium

Beyond being the most joked about cabbage, kale brings the heart as well as the laughs. Whether you massage it before tossing it in a salad or mix it into a smoothie, kale is loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and (you guessed it) more fiber! Kale leads the leafy greens as far as heart health goes, as it helps with maintain the cardiovascular system and helps prevent heart disease. Naturally, it’s low in fat and calories as well, which rounds out this near perfect leaf quite well.

Kale

Kale

Chickpeas

-Vitamin B6,C,A

-Calcium

-Iron

For those among us who like hummus, here’s another reason to put your pita in this popular dip! Chickpeas bring a lot to the table: potassium, vitamin B6, fiber, and vitamin C, which all help to lower cholesterol and drop your risk of heart problems later on. Not bad for a food normally eaten after its been churned into a thick legume smoothie.

Chickpeas

Chickpeas

Seaweed

-Magnesium

-Iron

-Calcium

Use it in sushi or as a standalone treat! Seaweed is the rare veggie that provides a healthy dose of omega-3 fatty acids. It’s also loaded with components that prevent sudden strokes or heart attacks, like magnesium, zinc, iron, potassium, and iodine. Be on the lookout for seaweed listed as “nori” on a menu and rock’n’(sushi) roll with this heart-healthy ingredient!

Seaweed

Seaweed

Figs

-Vitamin C

Newton knew what he was doing: figs are a rich source of heart healthy nutrition like calcium and fiber. Eating it raw, dried, or in a jam is more than a good preventative move, it can also reverse the effects of heart disease.

Figs

Figs

Avocados

-Vitamin B6,C,A

-Calcium

-Iron

Now that Hawaii can share their avocados with the world, it should be easier to get ahold of this single seed berry. (Surprise! Didn’t think this would be one of the berries this article alluded to earlier, did you?!) Avocados have been hilariously blamed for shifting millennials’ spending power from home ownership to toast but what you can actually blame avocados for is being rich in potassium and monounsaturated fats. That helps you lower cholesterol and keeps your heart healthy. Maybe millennials are planning for their future by eating all that avocado toast…

Avocadoes

Avocadoes

Eggplant

-Vitamin B6,A

-Magnesium

-Iron

Eggplants are for more than saucy text messages! They are great not just as a meat replacement for a parmesan dish but also to help your cardiovascular system improve circulation. Surprisingly similar to chocolate, eggplants also have flavonoids. On top of that, a charming cocktail of nasunin, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals round out this member of the nightshade veggie family and make it a formidable opponent to high cholesterol, cell membrane damage, cancer, blood clots, and heart disease.

Eggplant

Eggplant

Chicken

-Vitamin B6,A

-Iron

-Magnesium

If you need a break from “chicken of the sea” and other fish and you’re trying to be heart-conscious and avoid red meat, chicken packs the protein punch for you! This lean meat fills the meat cravings for the health-conscious carnivore and keeps you heart-healthy, provided you order or make it grilled, baked, or stir fried and not fired or wrapped in red meat.

Chicken

Chicken

Chilli Peppers

-Vitamin C,B6,A

-Calcium

-Iron

Buying tickets to a Red Hot Chili Peppers concert might be good for your heart’s emotions but a consumable red hot chili pepper is good for your actual heart! Pick a pepper with capsaicin, if you can handle that extra kick! That spice will help lower blood pressure and cholesterol.

Chilli Pepper

Chilli Pepper

Ginger

-Mangesium

-Vitamin C,B6

-Calcium

Those thin slices on your sushi tray are for more than palate cleansing before your next roll! Consuming this hearty root will add a fragrant spice to your dish and help you avoid high blood pressure and coronary heart disease.

Ginger

Ginger

Grapefruit

-Vitamin C,B6,A

-Magnesium

-Calcium

Many people aren’t sure what the difference between a grape and a grapefruit is (seriously?!). If you’ve figured it out, you’ll be able to add a lot of fiber, potassium, lycopene, vitamin C, and choline to your diet. That’s a lot of heart maintenance in one fruit! Grapefruit is also a recommended fruit on the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (aka DASH) diet, which has been proven by the National Institutes of Health to lower and control hypertension. The U.S. News and World Report also ranked DASH the #2 diet for folks with diabetes.

Grapefruit

Grapefruit

Carrots

-Vitamin A,B,K

-Biotin

-Potasium

Turns out, carrots don’t help you improve your eyesight but you can thank the British for spreading that lie to protect their new radar technology from German eyes during World War II! And just like the Allies fighting the Axis with secret tech, carrots fight free radicals (which contribute to heart disease) with carotenoids, yet another important antioxidant. Carotenoids combined with vitamins A, K, and C and other nutrients round out this super food’s superpowers that benefit your skeletal, nervous, and cardiovascular systems.

Carrots

Carrots

Sardines

-Iron

-Calcium

-Cobalamin

Potentially known to some as the “anti-chocolate” this acquired taste is worth it if you value high levels of good cholesterol and lower levels of the detrimental triglyceride. Thanks to those omega-3 fatty acids, sardines can help your heart do those two things and bring down inflammation and prevent heart disease.

Sardines

Sardines

Cranberries

-Iron

-Calcium

-Sodium

Spice up a salad, sip on cranberry juice, or snack on these natural gummies on their own. This super fruit helps your heart stay healthy and prevents UTIs. On top of that, adding these to your diet lowers your chance of getting gum disease, stomach ulcer, and even cancer!

Cranberries

Cranberries

Flax Seeds

-Magnesium

-Vitamin B6

-Iron

Flax seeds bring the heat! If by “heat” you mean “omega-2 essential fatty acids.” This popular add on for everything from smoothies to salads is rich in estrogen and antioxidants. If you don’t eat fish or nuts, its time to make flax a starting player instead of second string in the lifelong game for a healthy heart!

Flax Seeds

Flax Seeds

Green Tea

-Minerals

-Mainly Potassium

-Zinc,Manganese

This calming tea packed with antioxidants, which makes it another ally in the fight against plaque in arteries! And it does that while lowering LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Can someone make a wine-coffee-green tea super cocktail so we can get all the benefits at once? (Just kidding, don’t do that! Gross.)

Green Tea

Green Tea

Kidney Beans

-Magnesium,Iron,Calcium

-Vitamin C,A,B6

We know its names for the kidney but – surprise! – kidney beans really “bean-efits” your brain and heart. (“Heart & Brain Bean” just doesn’t have that same ring to it.) Kidney beans help boost your memory on top of the plethora of heart benefits, like lowering homocysteine (and therefore your risk of having a heart attack). This bean is low in fat and high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals, which reduces the risk of peripheral vascular diseases, strokes, cancer, and diabetes. Certainly, that makes it the #1 kidney shaped food on this heart-healthy list!

Kidney Beans

Kidney Beans

Pumpkins

-Vitamin C,A

-Iron , Magnesium

-Calcium

Next Halloween, be sure to save the guts from your carving to harness the vitamins, antioxidants, and more for your heart! Pumpkins, like most items on this list, have potassium and fiber. They also contain beta-carotene, phytoestrogens, and vitamin C. That will pack quite a punch to help your immune system, cholesterol, blood pressure, and heart health! Let’s keep Halloween scary because of the costumes not because of your heart, okay? Add pumpkin to your diet for a seasonal twist to assist your cardiovascular system!

Pumpkin

Pumpkin

Sesame Seeds

-Protein,Iron,Calcium

-Vitamin B6

Sesame seeds are the teeny tiny seeds that we usually find on certain bread buns, although, there are several other ways of incorporating these nutritional seeds into your diet. The oil-rich seeds are found in pods in the Sesame Indicum plant and they are packed full of beneficial nutrients that can provide you with several health benefits from a strengthened immune system to a lower level of cholesterol and healthier blood pressure.

Sesame Seeds

Sesame Seeds

Brussel Sprouts

-Vitamin C

-Vitamin A

-Iron,Calcium

Once a despised vegetable for children, this veggie is a popular roasted appetizer at restaurants. These sprouts have so much glucosinolates, protein, iron, and potassium the health benefits are basically sprouting out of them! Sprouts will help you detox and lower your cancer risk all the while boosting your heart health.

Brussel Sprouts

Brussel Sprouts

Horseradish

-Vitamin A

-Iron,Calcium, Protein

Horseradish root has been praised for its lengthy list of health benefits and the evidence-backed science behind the root suggests that it is a fantastic superfood for those hoping to strengthen their immune systems. The root contains beneficial anti-inflammatory properties and studies prove that the high nutrient content of horseradish is able to combat high cholesterol and even improve kidney functions to mention only a couple of exceptional health benefits.

Horseradish

Horseradish

Cruciferous

-Vitamin C

-Vitamin A

-Iron,Calcium

Cruciferous veggies refer to Brussel sprouts, broccoli, and a few other dark greens that are packed with nutrients. This category of vegetables are high in vitamins A and C; vitamins that have magical impacts on the health and strength of the bodies immune system. What’s more, the impressive nutrient content of these veggies will also provide benefits such as reducing risks of developing cancer and lowering inflammation.

Cruciferous

Cruciferous

Whole Grains

-Magnesium,Iron,Calcium

-Vitamin D,B6,C

Whole grains contain fibre, protein, B group vitamins, trace minerals, antioxidants, and other nutrients that provide exceptional health benefits. Incorporating whole grains in your diet will strengthen your immune system and reduce the risks of developing several dreaded health conditions from diabetes to forms of cancer. Therefore, switching from unhealthy starchy white bread to whole grain loaves will be an extremely wise decision.

Whole Grains

Whole Grains

Miso

-Vitamin C,A

-Iron , Magnesium

Miso is a Japanese seasoning that is produced through the process of fermenting soybeans with a few other ingredients. While incorporating miso into your diet will boost your overall mental and physical wellbeing, the nutrients found in the unique seasoning include folic acid, vitamins E and K, as well as B group vitamins and a few others. The fermentation process enhanced the beneficial bacteria content found in miso, which is the main reason the seasoning is so incredibly healthy.

Miso

Miso

Edible Seaweed

-Potassium

-Copper

If you’re a lover of all things sushi related, you will be pleased to know that one of the staple ingredients in most forms of sushi, edible seaweed, is an immune-boosting superfood. However, if you aren’t a fan of sushi, there are other ways of incorporating edible seaweed into your diet. This superfood contains a lengthy list of impressive nutrients, such as iodine and tyrosine, which are beneficial for thyroid functions, as well as several vitamins and minerals, fibre, and beneficial antioxidants. Including edible seaweed in your diet means you will be able to note health benefits from reduced weight to improved gut health and, of course, a strengthened immune system that will help keep dreaded cold and cases of flu at

Edible Seaweed

Edible Seaweed

Goji Berries

-Thiamine,Potassium,Iron

-Vitamin C,A

-Protein

The second-to-last berry on our list is another delicious option. They are laden with iron, which helps your body deliver oxygen to your cells efficiently. Other components include copper, vitamin C, and, just like the açaí berry, antioxidants!

Goji Berries

Goji Berries

Mackerel

-Magnesium,Iron,Calcium

-Vitamin D,B6,C

-Cobalamin

Like all the fish on this list, mackerel is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and makes it another option in a pescatarian’s diet to protect your heart against disease and cancer. On top of omega-3’s, it’s got minerals like selenium that help keep you healthy!

Mackerel

Mackerel

Oatmeal

-Magnesium,Calcium,Iron

-Vitamin B6,A

-Potassium

Despite the ever-popular Brown Sugar & Cinnamon and other flavor options, it’s probably best for your heart to stick with plain oats and add on your favorite fruit topping. Oatmeal is a top breakfast choice for weight loss, diabetes, and – no surprise here – keeping your heart healthy! The secret sauce in oatmeal is folate, potassium, omega-3’s, and fiber.

Oatmeal

Oatmeal

Pears

-Vitamin K,C

-Potassium

-Copper

While always playing second fiddle to the ever-popular apple, pears are an “appletizing” option that brings some of the same benefits with a comparable blend of fiber, nutrients, and antioxidants. Pears help lower blood pressure, cholesterol, and risk of heart disease.

Pears

Pears

Blackberry

-Magnesium

-Vitamin C

-Calcium

The final berry on our list, they share a lot of health benefits of the other berries, including antioxidants and vitamin K. Blackberries are one of the many ways you can keep your blood pressure in a normal range and boost your immune system.

Blackberry

Blackberry

Asparagus

-Magnesium,Calcium,Iron

-Vitamin B6,C,A

If your heart could talk, it’d say “asparagus is a great pair for us!” Asparagus is a great pairing for your heart health cause it’s loaded with vitamins A, C, E, & K; folate, and fiber. That’s great for everything from regular bowel movements and general digestive health to endocrinological health (i.e., diabetes) to cardiovascular health. You probably wish this list was all wine, chocolate, and coffee but, as you can see, vegetables are so important to heart health!

Asparagus

Asparagus

Quinoa

-Fiber

-Vitamin B6

-Protein

This Peruvian super grain sounds a lot more exotic than it tastes! That makes it an easy addition that adds texture to chili, salad, and other dishes or an easy replacement for rice for folks who need to add a ton of fiber to their diet. It’s got all nine essential amino acids. Of course, it’s also got minerals and antioxidants. It’s an ideal choice for regulating your cholesterol levels, blood sugar levels, weight, and blood pressure. You know what? Cancel the list. We’ve peaked with quinoa.

Quinoa

Quinoa

Spinach

-Protein

-Iron,Calcium

-Vitamin C,B6

Just kidding! Don’t cancel the list, we’ve got more superfoods to cover. Less than a handful of spinach will give you five times your daily dose of vitamin K. Spinach keeps your bones strong and lowers the chance of blood clots. Like quinoa, it can go in salad, the right soup or stew, and mixes well with pasta.

Spinach

Spinach

Strawberries

-Vitamin C

-Calcium

-Magnesium

This classic summertime fruit helps your body work well year round. Strawberries pack a flavorful low-calorie punch to help burn fat, widen arteries, and prevent plaque build up.

Strawberries

Strawberries

Sweet Potato

-Vitamin A,C,B6,D

-Iron

-Calcium,Protein

Despite many grocery stores not knowing the difference between a sweet potato and a yam, this versatile potato can round out a ton of dishes! (Hint: chain grocery stores tend to label sweet potatoes as yams!) A true sweet potato will be backed with potassium and can help regulate your heartbeat and lower blood pressure.

Sweet Potato

Sweet Potato

Walnuts

-Magnesium

-Calcium

-Protein,Fiber

Nuts are a great heart-healthy snack and walnuts are a prime example! They’ve got an omega-3 called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and you’ll notice a theme on this list: Omega-3’s are one of the most mentioned components to a heart-healthy food! Walnuts will help you keep your blood pressure and cholesterol in check.

Walnuts

Walnuts

Watermelon

-Vitamin C

-Vitamin A

-Iron,Magnesium

The “water” in “watermelon” is no joke – watermelon is over 90% water. Eat them beachside, poolside, or as a side and you’re giving your body vitamins A, B6, & C; magnesium; and potassium. Watermelons are great for hydrating and controlling blood pressure and cholesterol.

Watermelon

Watermelon

Bananas

-Protein

-Potassium

-Vitamin B6

If you remember the 1997 classic “Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves” then you know that bananas are packed with potassium! (If that statement confuses you, we suggest catching up on Rick Moranis’ filmography!) Bananas truly have it all: protein, fiber, resistant starch, and the aforementioned potassium. This low-energy-dense food helps everything from weight loss, muscle performance, heartbeat, and blood pressure. Keep your heart healthy and reach for a banana, especially if you can’t find the potassium pills and your parents have shrunk and can’t help you find your potassium pills!

Bananas

Bananas

Olive Oil

-Iron

Extra virgin olive oil is a key Mediterranean ingredient and adds a heart-healthy boost for everything from sautéing to dipping bread. This oil is packed with monounsaturated fat, which helps lower harmful LDL cholesterol, keeps your blood flows uninhibited, and helped keep your blood glucose at healthy levels.

Olive Oil

Olive Oil

Soy

-Protein

-Vitamin B6

-Iron,Calcium

Vegans and vegetarians should already know the benefits of tempeh and tofu for packing protein into a meatless diet! Those soy-based meat substitutes and other soy products add a ton of protein, fiber, and omega-3’s into anyone’s diet. Some studies report soy can lower LDL cholesterol. We also know that are cholesterol-free and low in saturated fat. Next time, reach for soy milk for your latte instead of lactose-laden cow’s milk!

Soy

Soy

Apple Cider Vinegar

-Potassium

-Magnesium

-Calcium

Often used for setting fruit fly traps, this stinky vinegar can also trap you into heart-healthy habits! It’ll help lower cholesterol, blood pressure, triglyceride levels, and – most importantly – your risk of heart disease.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple Cider Vinegar

Black Beans

-Protein

-Calcium

-Vitamin K

Burritos, soups, and dips – oh my! These beans help you feel full without adding too much fat to your diet even though they are packed with fiber, potassium, protein, and other vitamins and nutrients. Lower cholesterol & reduce your risk of heart disease with some black beans today!

Black Beans

Black Beans

Reduced Fat Yogurt

-Protein

-Vitamin D,K,C

-Calcium,Iron

Yogurt’s active cultures add vitamin A, B2, B6 & D; iodine; zinc; calcium; and another common item on this list, protein! Ward off strokes, heart disease, and cancer while you reduce blood pressure with reduced fat yogurt!

Reduced Fat Yogurt

Reduced Fat Yogurt

Brown Rice

-Protein

-Fiber

-Magnesium

We all know brown rice is second to white rice in popularity but brown rice beats white rice for most nutrients! Brown rice has more nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. Swap out white rice for brown if you’re looking for weight loss, diabetes preventions, and a lower chance of heart disease. Cause, in the words of Mitch Hedberg, “Rice is great if you’re really hungry and want to eat two thousand of something.” It’s also great for heart health!

Brown Rice

Brown Rice

Coconut Oil

-Burn fat

-Boosts Energy

This ingredient barely made it onto the list so be cautious about overdoing coconut oil! Coconut oil’s lauric acid can increase LDL cholesterol but it also contains HDL cholesterol. If you remember, LDL cholesterol is the one we want less of however we want more HDL. The idiom elementary teachers use for glue, “a little dab will do ya,” certainly applies here!

Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil

Cauliflower

-Vitamin C

-Magnesium,Calcium

-Iron

The Robin to broccoli’s Batman, this sidekick will never get as popular as broccoli but that doesn’t mean you should avoid it! Swap in this veggie to your diet if you want to keep your cardiovascular system in tip-top shape! Health benefits include: prevent stomach disorders, fight respiratory problems, strengthen bones, and more! Call on cauliflower for high fiber, low carb option.

Cauliflower

Cauliflower

Dragon Fruit

-Vitamin C

-Fiber,Magnesium,Calcium

-Betalains,Hydroxycinnamates,Flavonoids

Dragon fruit won’t breathe fire but it will help you put up a fight against heart problems! Delicious taste & immune system boosting, this fruit brings loads of phytonutrients, antioxidants, polyunsaturated fatty acids, and vitamins into your body to keep you going!

Dragon Fruit

Dragon Fruit

Pistachio

-Protein

-Fiber,Magnesium,Calcium

-Vitamin B6,A

Unfortunately, pistachio ice cream likely does not count for heart health, even if it reduces stress as you eat it! Look to these to provide good fats and plant sterols to help you go from cardi-no to cardi-yes! Puns aside, these nuts hold a lot of protein, potassium, and antioxidants inside their shells.

Pistachios

Pistachios

Olives

-Calcium,Iron,Magnesium

-Vitamin K,E,B6,A

-Protein

Olives can add a heart-healthy touch to a pizza or ruin the slice completely, depending on how your taste buds feel! If the benefits help the anti-olive crowd stomach them, then its worth noting they are overflowing with monounsaturated fat, antioxidants, and nutrients. A good choice for heart health and weight management!

Olives

Olives

Cinnamon

-Fiber

-Calcium

-Iron,Magnesium

The viral cinnamon challenge had some serious health drawbacks but this spice in moderation is an extremely healthy spice! Cinnamon has a lot to offer, including calcium and manganese, which helps you think and keep your heart pumping. Combined with fiber, it’s the perfect way to spice up your health and control blood sugar and cholesterol levels.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon

Edamame

-Calcium,Magnesium

-Iron

-Protein

This addicting Asian appetizer is absolutely appealing for cardiovascular health! The plant proteins, folate, fiber, and phytosterols help this soy snack regulate cholesterol levels.

Edamame

Edamame

Collard Greens

-Vitamin A,C,B6

-Magnesium

-Calcium, Iron

Beyond just soul cooking, this family includes the previously mentioned broccoli, cabbage, Brussel sprouts, and kale as well as bok choy, rutabaga, and turnips. Collard greens are the Avengers of fighting heart disease, obesity, and diabetes. Low in calories and high in vitamin A, lutein, and zeaxanthin, choose collard greens as the veggie choice for your next meal!

Collard Greens

Collard Greens

Water

Surprised? No? We weren’t either. Water keeps you hydrated, which is a key part of staying healthy. Combine a fruit from this list to add a subtle flavor to your glass of H2O that assists weight regulation, cardiovascular performance, and cognition, all while providing a metabolism boost.

Water

Water

Tuna

-Protein

-Sodium

-Vitamins and Minerals

Jessica Simpson help raised the profile of this fish, although it’s probably tasty enough to stay a staple of many folks’ diets! Her gaffe if your gain, cause this fish has the omega-3’s and essential amino acids you need to keep your muscle tissues and heart healthy.

Tuna

Tuna

Raspberries

-Vitamin B6

-Calclium

-Magnesium

These also bring the manganese! This chemical supports bone health and is best when combined with calcium, zinc, and copper. Raspberries also contain other key heart-protective nutrients, including polyphenols. Polyphenols have been shown to lower the chance you’ll get heart disease. Vitamin C, fiber, and low-fat content round out a delicious list of components in a delicious Lil’ berry!

Rasberries

Rasberries

Brazil Nuts

-Magnesium,Calcium,Iron

-Selenium

-Protein

Outside of being a tasty nut from South America, these nuts lower the risk of heart disease. Not surprising, considering they contain good fat, nutrients, and antioxidants.

Brazil Nuts

Brazil Nuts

Other Fish

-Omega 3

-Protein

-Vitamins and Minerals

We’ve covered tuna, salmon, sardines, and mackerel but if those four aren’t your favorites, substitute in lake trout and herring to keep your omega-3 consumption high! Even though these fish count as fatty fish, certain fatty fishes are very healthy for cholesterol and your heart overall!

Other Fish

Tomatoes

-Vitamin C

Tomato, tomahto; sliced or sauced…however you eat this super food, you’re adding essential vitamins, minerals, and even lycopene to your diet. All of those things will prepare you to battle cardiovascular disease and reduce your risk of a heart attack. Tomato juices reduce low-density lipoprotein, which is bad cholesterol.

Tomatoes

Tomatoes

Açaí Berries

-Vitamin A

-Calcium

-Boost Brain Function

These berries have invaded smoothies and bowls for years now! (If you haven’t had an açaí bowl yet, you are seriously missing out!) They top the list of antioxidant sources and keep your body prepared to hopefully fight off cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

Acai Berries

Acai Berries

Coffee

Before you shift your diet to only chocolate, wine, and coffee, its worth mentioning the keyword here: moderation! A recent study showed coffee has properties that reduce some serious health issues like heart failure, stroke, and coronary heart disease. No word on creamer, cow’s milk, and sugar but I wouldn’t hold your breath for those popular coffee additives to make this list!

Coffee

Coffee

Black Tea

-Antioxidant

-Boost Heart Health

-Help Reduce Blood Pressure

Warm up with a cup of heart-healthy antioxidants that will help even the most black-hearted among us lower blood pressure & LDL cholesterol levels. (Don’t forget: LDL is bad, HDL is good!)

Black Tea

Black Tea

Chia Seeds

-Magnesium,Iron

-Vitamin A,B6

-Calcium,Protein

Don’t slaughter your Chia Pet just yet! Make sure your chia seeds are approved for consumption before adding one of the healthiest superfoods to a dish or making some pudding. On top of growing green hair in a terracotta bust, chia can help you grow your daily-suggested value of fiber and protein.

Chia Seeds

Chia Seeds

Peanut Butter

-Protein

-Fiber,Calcium

-Potassium

Unsweetened, natural peanut butter is packed with protein, fat, and good nutrients. So it’ll fill you up for longer and help you keep your blood pressure in check, thanks to potassium. (It also means it’s got a high calorie count, so calorie counters, be warned!) Other great things hidden in peanut butter’s creamy goodness are monounsaturated fats, fiber, and vitamins.

Peanut Butter

Peanut Butter

Potatoes

-Protein

-Fiber

-Vitamin B6

Yup, both sweet potatoes and potatoes are both good for your heart! Careful with the fries but with the right preparation, potatoes can help the body develop and keep your heart pumping! Potatoes pack more than a dollop of vitamins, fiber, and iron, as well as zinc and potassium.

Potatoes

Potatoes

Barley

-Magnesium

-Vitamin B6

-Iron

Barley being on this list is not an excuse to go drink more beer! Keep this grain in a soup or other healthy option in order to absorb the health benefits of the vitamin B6 and potassium it contains.

Barley

Barley

Radish

-Phosphorous,Copper

-Manganese,Sodium

-Zinc

Radish’s benefits include regulating digestion, aiding the immune system, and maintaining healthy blood pressure. Toss it in a salad or add it to cole slaw and let potassium and vitamin C get to work on your body!

Radish

Radish

Green Peas

-Protein

-Vitamin B6

-Calcium,Iron

A great low-calorie option to help boost your immune system, these little legumes help promote a healthy heart with vitamins A, C, & K and iron. It’s true: world peas could reduce the whole world’s blood pressure!

Green Peas

Green Peas

Almond Butter

-Magnesium

-Calcium

-Vitamin B6

A great option for those allergic to peanut butter, this treat comes with the same sweet goodness to keep your heart pumping, including monounsaturated fats. It’s got other nutrients that your heart will love, so switch it up with this peanut butter substitute!

Almond Butter

Almond Butter

Eggs

-Protein

-Calcium

-Iron,Magnesium

You may be wary cause of the high cholesterol content but eggs can be a great source of HDL cholesterol, which you want! Eggs are almost always sunny side up if we’re talking about the benefits for your heart! Poached, fried, scrambled, or over easy it’s a great option of protein, three different types of vitamin B’s, and even more! Could it be any more over easy to keep your heart healthy?

Eggs

Eggs

Spirulina

-Vitamin B1,B2,B3

-Iron

-Protein

Spirulina is the only cyanobacteria on our list and is often used in powder form. In one spoonful, you’ll have about 2-4 grams of protein as well as vitamins B1, B2, & B3, potassium, copper, iron, and magnesium. This super powder helps manage your blood pressure and LDL cholesterol levels with omega 3’s and omega 6’s. The first food on our list to have omega 6’s, it’s a great choice for heart health!

Spirulina

Spirulina

Cucumber

-Hydration

-Vitamins and Minerals

Cucumbers share a huge similarity with watermelons: water content. They both clock in at over 95% water but that’s where the similarities end. That other 5% holds a lot of protein, vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber! Hydrate and help your heart with one tasty salad topper.

Cucumber

Cucumber

Chocolate

-Iron

-Magnesium

-Potassium

Like you needed a list to tell you to eat chocolate! Luckily for you, chocolate (especially raw cocoa and dark chocolate) also has heart benefits. Harvard researchers found a solid benefit to eating raw cocoa regularly. Participants had lower blood pressure and symptoms of hypertension were absent. Dark chocolate is rich in flavanols, which is an antioxidant that does basically the same job that red wine does: keep blood vessels flexible, lower blood pressure, and stave off heart-related disease. Science has yet to confirm if a steady diet of both dark chocolate and red wine doubles the benefits. Better safe than sorry…

Chocolate

Chocolate

Macha

-L-Theanine

-Protein

-Caffeine

For the rare adult who can’t stand coffee, Macha has the equivalent caffeine content to a half cup of coffee! Since the leaves are ground instead of soaked in water, that means you get more of the antioxidants, vitamins, chromium, and more that are stored in the leaves. It’s a purer form of green tea and provides way more of a boost! A strong tea to keep your heart strong and the perfect ending to our list!

Macha

Macha

Red Wine

A constant favorite regardless of the health benefits, it’s nice to know that red wine also helps keep cholesterol in check and boost high-density lipoproteins (HDL) levels. Like kale, it’s loaded with antioxidants but the ones in red wine help stave off coronary heart disease. While it’s making your inhibitions flexible, it’s doing the same for your blood vessels. The bad news? Avoid the infamous “rosé all day,” the experts instead suggest moderation to fully capture the health benefits.

Red Wine

Red Wine

Tumeric

While salmon’s spawn spans across multiple oceans, turmeric has been used in the east for centuries. As its popularity grows, so do science’s discoveries about health benefits! Curcumin, found in turmeric, fights against heart enlargement. And that’s on top of helping blood pressure and weight both stay in healthy ranges.

Tumeric

Tumeric

ADVERTISEMENT