Are These 10 Trendy Health Foods Worth The Hype?

July 23, 2014 12:27 PM

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Are These 10 Trendy Health Foods Worth The Hype?

Almonds are a rich source of fiber, protein, heart-healthy fat, antioxidants and vitamins and minerals, making them a one-stop food. "[They make] a great snack but watch your portion size as almonds are high in calories," warns Johnson. "Stick to no more than one ounce." That's 23 whole, shelled nuts. While the monounsaturated fat works to lower LDL cholesterol, their significant dose of vitamin E provides antioxidant power. What's more, a quarter-cup of almonds has about 100 milligrams of magnesium (about 25 percent of a daily allowance), which promotes vascular and heart health, and 257 milligrams of potassium, which helps prevent high blood pressure. These benefits also have a track record in real-world scenarios: in five longitudinal cohort studies, including the Iowa Women Health Study and the Nurses' Study, researchers found that replacing some portion of carbohydrate with nuts like almonds led to a heart disease risk reduction of 30 percent. And in a study in the journal Metabolism, researchers found that eating almonds along with a high glycemic index food (such as white bread, potatoes or sweets) at breakfast significantly lowered the overall glycemic index of the meal by helping to modulate the postprandial blood sugar rise.

Apples are an "excellent source of pectin, a soluble fiber that can lower blood cholesterol," says Wixom. The fruit is also high in fiber and its peel contains something called ursolic acid, which has been shown in recent studies to lower the incidence of obesity. "Apples also contain quercetin, whi...

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