Imagine choosing foods because they can reduce anxiety, make you more alert, and give you the energy to leap tall buildings in a single bound. There just might be a little truth to the old adage, "You are what you eat."
Numerous foods can affect the way we function throughout the day--mentally and physically. In fact, what we eat drives our daily performance, social interactions, and emotional well-being.
Stay balanced with these energizing and mood-boosting recipes that provide important nutrients to keep your mind and body in sync. Start the morning with Fruit-and-Bran Muffins. A good breakfast can improve your brain power and keep you motivated. Or for a quick lift, try Banana-Peach Buttermilk Smoothie any time of the day. Rest assured, all these rejuvenating recipes will keep you on your toes.
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Many times, it's what's missing from our diets that can leave us feeling drained. Replace empty calories, such as fatty potato chips and sugary sodas, with foods that provide health benefits beyond basic nutrition.
- Low-fat milk and juices with added calcium: help prevent osteoporosis
- Fruits and vegetables: reduce blood pressure and risk of cancer and heart disease
- Whole grains: reduce risk of certain cancers and heart disease
- Oat bran and whole oat products: reduce cholesterol
- Cultured dairy products (yogurt, buttermilk, cottage cheese, etc.): reduce cholesterol and risk of cancer; promote a healthy digestive track
- Garlic: helps control high blood pressure and reduces risk of cancer and coronary heart disease
- Soy products: reduce bad cholesterol and menopausal symptoms
- Fish with omega-3 fatty acids (salmon, halibut, tuna, etc.): promote a healthy heart
For more information on functional foods, visit the American Dietetic Association's Web site at www.eatright.org.