5 Suprisingly Healthy Foods

5 Surprisingly Healthy Foods for the New Year
Posted by Katherine @ 01.02.11
article borrowed from a fellow RD’s blog
Since good health and losing weight are part of many New Year’s resolutions, I wanted to give you the scoop on a few foods that you don’t have to feel guilty about eating this year. (Or at least not too guilty!) Here are 5 foods that you might be surprised to learn are actually good for you.
1. Potatoes.
Hey, I hope you’re not still caught up in that ‘no carb’ craze. The truth is that many carbohydrates are good for you. Potatoes got a particularly bad wrap in the last decade. But the potato is a nutritious, versatile, and inexpensive food that has a place in a healthy diet. One medium-sized potato (with skin) has just 110 calories and is one of the best sources of potassium and fiber in the produce section. Baked, mashed, or roasted, potatoes make a wonderful side or a base for a healthful meal (just make sure to go light on the toppings).
2. Avocados.
If you love the creamy, rich taste of avocados but worry about the fat and calorie content, let me put some of those fears to rest. While avocados are higher in fat, most of it is “heart healthy” mono- and polyunsaturated fat. Concerned about calories? One-fifth of a medium-sized avocado has about 50 calories. Not bad considering these versatile fruits are nutrient-rich, containing nearly 20 vitamins and minerals. As long as you use moderation as your guide, avocados are a very nutritious―and tasty―addition to sandwiches, salads, and dips.
3. Pistachios.
Pistachios offer more than 30 different vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients including lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants associated with a reduced risk of age-related macular degeneration. Worried about the fat and calories? Pistachios are one of the nuts lowest in calories and fat. (They have only three calories per nut―about half the count of most snack nuts.) Small and flavorful, pistachios make a satisfying snack as well as a healthful ingredient in many meals.
4. Eggs.
Once demonized as an artery-clogging food, eggs have been exonerated by new research and now have a place in most diets. Packed with nutrients, one egg contains 13 essential vitamins and minerals, high-quality protein, and healthy unsaturated fats for just 75 calories. While yolks do contain about 213mg of dietary cholesterol (the daily limit is 300mg), eating a whole egg a few times per week falls within heart-healthy guidelines if cholesterol from other sources―such as meats, poultry and dairy products―is limited.
5. Coffee.
Is cutting out coffee the best bet for your health? Not necessarily. Sure, if you drink too much, caffeinated coffee can give you the jitters or interfere with sleep. But you can also reap significant perks from coffee, both caffeinated and decaf. Studies show that drinking coffee regularly may reduce your risk of Parkinson’s disease, colon cancer, diabetes, and even headaches. Scientists also believe that coffee may play a role in improving memory and decreasing the risk of Type 2 diabetes. Multiple studies have shown that coffee drinkers are up to 80 percent less likely to develop Parkinson’s disease. In other studies, colon cancer was reduced by about 25 percent in individuals who drank at least 2 cups a day. While more research is needed, most health experts now believe that the health benefits of coffee outweigh the negatives.
Until next time…
look good, feel good, do good

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