This morning, Dr. Joy Bauer listed her top healthy food for 2012 on the Today show. (See: Today show “Healthy Food for 2012” video) Although Ann Curry began the segment with “move over quinoa” (which I still love) and “put down those kale chips” (which I’ve been meaning to try), this list is pretty awesome.
Seeds — I’ve really been getting into a number of seeds lately, and Dr. Bauer specifically comments on pumpkin seeds and chia seeds. I love pumpkin seeds (the hulled ones, not so much the ones in their tough white “shell”) and Dr. Bauer says the zinc in them can help your skin and immunity. They’re also a good source of magnesium. As far as chia seeds, I’ve only just recently tried them in this Chia Goodness breakfast cereal. The cereal is tasty, and Dr. Bauer says chia seeds have as much omega-3 fatty acids as flax seeds, but they have more calcium and fiber.
Protein powders — I’ve been a big fan of protein powders for years because I’ve never really had a big appetite for meat. I can’t have whey or soy protein powders, but I have found brown rice protein powder and hemp protein powder that work for me. Pea protein powder also exists.
Mini desserts — Dr. Bauer commends some chain restaurants for offering smaller portions of their original calorie-bomb desserts. While I can’t eat any of these — and even before my allergy-friendly diet, even thinking about finishing off a whole one would make my stomach queasy — it is great to hear that restaurants are offering more sensible options for people with a sweet tooth!
Tart cherries — Dr. Bauer calls these the “new super-fruit” because of their inflammation-fighting properties. I remember my mom telling me cherries have anti-inflammatory properties, but I didn’t know tart/sour cherries specifically were the inflammation fighters. Dr. Bauer recommends a handful of dried tart cherries after a workout.
Grapeseed oil and truffle oil — These are the new olive oil, apparently. I’ve heard about grapeseed oil, but truffle oil sounds like it should be used for fancier dishes. Even though Dr. Bauer says truffle oil doesn’t usually have any real truffle in it, she still describes the flavor as strong.
Black lentils — Mmm, I love lentils. Dr. Bauer says all lentils are great for you, but black lentils have extra antioxidants (which they get from anthocyanins).
Brussels sprouts — Apparently, these are a 2012 food because celebrity chefs are using them a lot and making them fashionable. I only discovered roasted Brussels sprouts a few years ago, and I have a pretty easy recipe that I’ll post soon.
Frozen Greek yogurt — Sadly, I can’t have yogurt. But I think it’s about time food companies are making frozen treats out of this high-protein variety of yogurt.