Eating healthy doesn’t have to mean sacrificing flavor or giving up the foods you love. In fact, many foods that might seem indulgent or even guilty pleasures can actually be good for you – in moderation, of course. Here are ten surprising foods that can be part of a healthy diet.
Avocado toast has become a popular food trend in recent years, and for good reason: avocados are a great source of monounsaturated fats, which can help lower bad cholesterol levels. They’re also high in fiber and potassium, and have been shown to help with weight management and even reduce the risk of certain diseases.
You might think of chocolate as a sinful treat, but the darker varieties (with at least 70% cocoa content) can actually be good for you. Dark chocolate contains antioxidants that can protect your heart and prevent damage from free radicals, and may even improve brain function.
As long as it’s not the buttered and salted movie theater variety, popcorn can be a nutritious snack. It’s a whole grain, meaning it has more fiber and nutrients than refined grains, and can help keep you feeling full between meals.
While high in calories, peanut butter can be a healthy addition to your diet in moderation. It’s a good source of protein and heart-healthy fats, and can even help lower cholesterol levels.
Moderate wine consumption (one glass per day for women, and up to two for men) has been associated with a reduced risk of heart disease and certain cancers. Red wine in particular contains compounds that may have protective effects on the heart and blood vessels.
Cheese can be high in fat and calories, but it can also be a good source of calcium and protein. Opt for lower-fat varieties such as feta or cottage cheese, and use in moderation as a topping or snack.
Once thought to be unhealthy due to their cholesterol content, eggs have since been shown to be a nutritious and filling food. They’re high in protein, vitamins, and minerals, and can even help with weight loss when eaten as part of a balanced diet.
For many people, coffee is an essential part of their morning routine – and it can actually be good for you. Moderate coffee consumption has been linked to a lower risk of liver disease, certain types of cancer, and even depression.
Eating healthy doesn’t have to mean cutting out all the foods you love. By making smart choices and enjoying these ten surprising foods in moderation, you can nourish your body and your taste buds at the same time.