A Healthy Diet to Help Ring in the New Year!

Happy New Year

A hot topic lately is nutrition. We all know the old adage, "You are what you eat..."

There are many delicious foods that can really boost our energy, help to ward off disease and leave us feeling satisfied and healthy!
Foods that are known to be anti-inflammatory in nature are nutrient rich and crucial to a healthy diet. Inflammation in the body can express itself in a multitude of ways including joint pain, fatigue, damage to blood vessels and chronic dry eye. Increasing our natural intake of foods that fight inflammation can increase our overall health and especially the comfort of our eyes and vision.

There is something for everyone! Proteins, including salmon, poultry, tofu and tempeh are all great choices as they are high in Omega 3 fatty acids - known to be anti-inflammatory. Seeds can also give you that extra boost of Omega 3s and there are a variey to choose from. Pumpkin, chia, flax and sunflower are great options! Green leafy vegetables, including kale, spinach, brussel sprouts and collard greens, are rich in antioxidants and help fight inflammation as well as protect our macula which is responsible for our central vision. Nuts and berries are also contain many antioxidants and are tasty treats to incorporate into a nutrient rich diet. Keep in mind, the best choices of nuts are raw and unsalted! You can even mix up the old favorites by substituting typical peanut butter for almond butter or sunflower seed butter! The kids will love it!

Beans, such as lentil, pinto, black, and kidney beans are extremely healthy and are known to reduce inflammatory indicators in the blood. Its cold outside and a perfect time for chili loaded with beans! Grains including oats, barley and quinoa are important for a well balanced diet. Steel cut oatmeal is a fantastic way to start the day and quinoa is wonderful addition to any salad! Let's not forget the importance of healthy fats. Avocados, coconuts and olives are rich in carotenoids, known to fight inflammation. The big craze lately is coconut oil, it can be used in a variety of ways and has excellent health benefits!

Keep these foods in mind moving into the new year and beyond!