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Top 10 healthiest foods

If you begin eating these foods you can be sure that you are getting efficient nutrition - better health with the least amount of effort.

Chia seeds are packed with essential omega 3, fibre, vitamins, minerals, protein and antioxidants. istockphoto
Chia seeds are packed with essential omega 3, fibre, vitamins, minerals, protein and antioxidants. istockphoto

What to eat and what not to eat are fiercely debated topics these days. Most of us understand that we should try to include more healthy foods in our diet, but often this is associated with requiring more time and money.

Efficiency, as economic theory tells us, is key - and here's a list of the 10 healthiest foods on the planet to get you started. If you begin eating these foods, you can be sure that you are getting efficient nutrition - better health with the least amount of effort.

The list is compiled from a selection of sources from the US and Europe, including nutritionists and dieticians from Medical News Today and Forbes magazine.

Apples

An apple a day certainly does keep the doctor away - with its excellent provision of pectin, a soluble fibre that can lower cholesterol. Apples also contain quercetin that has anti-inflammatory properties and can help reduce allergies, especially hay fever. They may also help prevent respiratory problems.

Chia seeds

These tiny seeds are packed with essential omega 3, fibre, vitamins, minerals, protein and antioxidants. They provide a wide spectrum of nutrients, giving the body an extreme boost in health and vitality. The omega 3 protects the heart, joints and brain function, stimulates the metabolism, reduces inflammation and helps lower cholesterol.

Avocados

They provide up to 20 different nutrients including essential fatty acids, fibre, minerals, vitamins, antioxidants and folic acid. They alkalise the body and act as a nutrient booster, helping the body absorb fat-soluble nutrients.

Berries

The rich colours of berries - blueberries, goji berries, raspberries - reflect the array of potent antioxidants they contain, which are very powerful health protectors, healers and cell repairers. Berries are incredibly anti-ageing, they preserve brain and memory function and can help lower blood pressure. Blueberries in particular have been associated with helping to control body weight.

Dark chocolate

Perhaps the richest source of magnesium on the planet, extremely alkali and full of antioxidants, cacao is one of the most nutrient-dense foods in the world. Its nutrients help to balance blood sugar and control appetite while protecting the heart and reducing your risk of heart attack. It also boosts your mood and gives you that feel-good factor, which makes life a little sweeter.

Leafy greens

Minerals, especially magnesium, iron and calcium, are essential for your health and well-being. Iron boosts the blood and energy, while magnesium and calcium strengthen bones, neutralise acid, reduce inflammation and heat, soothe the heart and nervous system and balance blood sugar.

Seaweed

It's one of the richest sources of iodine, which is essential for the proper functioning of the thyroid gland and the entire endocrine system. Seaweed is also incredibly rich in minerals and antioxidants that are among the best protectors of health and have great levels of vitamin D, vital for the absorption of calcium and for our bone health.

Beans

Beans mean fibre and this means digestive health, a happy colon and bowel, easier weight management and efficient elimination of waste. They are also a diabetic's best friend as they help balance blood sugar. They also provide high-quality protein that is easily absorbed by the body.

Broccoli

Research suggests broccoli has potent anti-cancer properties and phytonutrients that reduce the risk of developing heart disease, strokes and diabetes. In just 100g of broccoli, you will eat 150 per cent of your daily vitamin C. B vitamins, minerals, dietary fibre and antioxidants all combine to make broccoli a powerhouse of nutrition.

Almonds

These nuts are full of minerals and vitamin E, proving to be highly effective heart protectors, blood pressure and cholesterol reducers and metabolism boosters. In just one ounce, you will get 12 per cent of your daily protein, 35 per cent of your daily vitamin E and as much calcium as in a one-fourth cup of milk.

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