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7 Food Combos for Better Nutrition

7 Food Combos for Better Nutrition

Certain foods just belong together!

Some foods not only taste great when combined, but also help you absorb nutrients more effectively. Moreover, they give you the chance to break the consistency of textures on your plate, keeping you more interested in your meal.

Below, you will find 7 healthy food combos:

1. Mix a bowl of yogurt with sliced bananas:
Nutrient Duo: Protein and Potassium
If you want to build muscles and replenish the amino acids that are depleted during exercise, combine the potassium found in bananas with high protein foods like yogurt. You can have this combo after a workout for instance.

2. Dip crunchy carrots in creamy hummus:
Nutrient Duo: Healthy Carbs and Protein
If you want to curb your hunger and have an extra boost of energy, choose snacks that combine protein and healthy carbs. Baby carrots are high-quality carbs that are also high in soluble fiber. Dip baby carrots in hummus which is made from chickpeas & is high in protein you’ll have an easy, packable snack for busy days.

3. Combine avocado with salsa:
Nutrient Duo: Healthy Fats and Carotenoids
If you love going out for Mexican, salsa with avocado is a nutritional power duo. Salsa is rich in colorful veggies which are high in carotenoids. Carotenoids are disease-fighting plant pigments which help protect you from heart disease and cancer. To maximize the protective benefits, add healthy fats, like those found in avocados. Eating avocado with salsa vastly boosts the absorption of lycopene – a carotenoid in tomatoes.

4. Pair up a couple of eggs with any kind of cheese:
Nutrient Duo: Vitamin D and Calcium
Your body needs vitamin D to absorb calcium. For calcium, you can choose light cheeses to limit fat and calories. And for a source of vitamin D, you can choose eggs. So go ahead make you an omelet with low fat white cheese and add some chopped broccoli (rich in calcium) for an extra boost of nutrients.

5. Make a salad with leafy greens and olive oil:
Nutrient Duo: Vitamin K and Good Fats
Vitamin K is important for blood clotting and protects your bones. But your body can’t absorb it as effectively without eating some fat at the same time, because it is a fat-soluble vitamin. For that reason, you should always combine healthy fats like those found in olive oil, peanuts, walnuts, almonds or cashews with your leafy greens which are a great source of vitamin K.

6. Combine red strawberries with iron-rich spinach:
Nutrient Duo: Vitamin C and Iron
Iron deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency. Iron is a crucial ingredient in hemoglobin, the oxygen-bearing component of your blood and its deficiency can lead to anemia, causing fatigue, muscle weakness, and even hair loss. Combining vitamin C rich foods like citrus fruits with vegetarian sources of iron helps to enhance uptake of this crucial mineral. Make a colorful salad with sliced strawberries (high in vitamin C) and spinach (high in iron).

7. Assemble a snack of raw veggies with hard-boiled eggs:
Nutrient Duo: Carotenoids and Egg Yolks
The nutritive properties of raw vegetables are increased when they are combined with protein packed toppings. For instance, eating a raw veggie salad of tomatoes, carrots, and spinach with scrambled whole eggs absorbs more of carotenoids than when salad is taken without those eggs. Carotenoids have antioxidant properties that have been shown to help protect against eye diseases and certain cancers. So, next time you’re at the salad bar, add a few hard-boiled eggs to your bowl.

The bottom line: Be smart about how you pair your foods to make them healthy duos.

Christelle Bedrossian
Dietitian-Nutritionist
Beirut, Lebanon

 

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Christelle Bedrossian