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Superfood Combinations

  • Chris Gallo

    Salsa + Avocado = Lower Cancer Risk

    While salsa alone is super healthy, this pairing helps you soak up four times more cancer-fighting lycopene and almost three times more immune-boosting beta-carotene, finds an Ohio State University study. You can thank the fat in avocado for the lift.

    Equally good: Use cubed avocado and salsa as an omelet filling for breakfast.

     
  • Chris Gallo

    Iron-Fortified Cereal + Glass of OJ = More Energy

    Eating iron-fortified cereal can help enhance your energy, but consuming a half cup of orange juice along with it increases the amount of iron absorbed sixfold, says Joan Salge Blake, RD, an assistant clinical professor of nutrition at Boston University.

    Equally good: Mix 1/2 cup fresh OJ, 1 tablespoon grated ginger, and 2 minced garlic cloves; add iron-packed tofu and marinate for 30 minutes. Grill over medium heat.

  • Chris Gallo

    Teaspoon of Peanut Butter + Glass of Milk = Stronger Bones

    "Drinking milk while snacking on a heart-healthy monounsaturated fat like peanut butter helps you absorb as much bone-building vitamin D as possible," says Susan Kraus, RD, a clinical dietitian at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey.

    Equally good: Mix 8 ounces skim milk, 1 teaspoon peanut butter, 1 cup fresh fruit and 1/2 cup ice in a blender for a bone-strengthening smoothie.

     
  • Chris Gallo

    Cantaloupe Wedge + Yogurt = Immunity Boost

    The vitamin A in cantaloupe helps ward off viruses, but "enjoying it with foods that are high in zinc, like yogurt, ensures that your body can utilize almost 100 percent of the nutrient," says Jonny Bowden, PhD, author of The Most Effective Natural Cures.

    Equally good: Mix 8 ounces nonfat plain yogurt, 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1/4 cup honey. Dip cantaloupe pieces in it for a snack.

  • Chris Gallo

    Spinach, Carrots, Tomato, Tablespoon Olive Oil + Marjoram = Healthy Skin

    Veggies need 1 tablespoon of full-fat dressing with olive oil in order for the body to absorb many of the antioxidants that are good for your immune system, skin, and heart, says Bowden. To up the antioxidant capacity by 200 percent more, top with the herb marjoram.

    Equally good: If you're not into fatty dressings, put pine nuts, walnuts, avocado, or a bit of blue cheese in your salad instead. They all offer the same benefits.

     
  • Chris Gallo

    Mug of Green Tea + Lemon = Heart Help

    Squeezing a lemon into green tea makes five times more catechin, a heart-healthy antioxidant, available for your body to use than if you sipped sans citrus, notes a Purdue University study. (Vitamin C slows the breakdown of catechins in the digestive system.)

    Equally good: Add a 6-ounce can of lemon-juice concentrate to 12 ounces green tea, chill, and top with 12 ounces club soda, a lemon wedge, and a few mint leaves.

    Originally published in FITNESS magazine, August 2008.

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