Christmas is a time when we all over indulge. If you kept up a strict fitness regime until then, then Christmas is when you’re more likely to relax a little and eat exactly what you wanted for a few days. But come January, it’s probably time to take a fresh look at your diet and get back into good habits. With that in mind, here are five foods that have surprising properties which could help you have a healthier new year.
Flax seeds are becoming an increasingly popular part of a healthy diet plan, with their abundance of omega 3 fatty acids helping to turn the body from a fat storing machine to a fat burning machine. They are also a great source of metabolism-boosting fibre and protein.
Tiny but potent, sunflower seeds are full of vitamins and minerals with the Huffington Post even going as far as to declare them “the most underrated ingredient of our time”. Also boasting anti-inflammatory and cardiovascular benefits, they can be used in place of dairy for vegan recipes, and as a substitute for pine nuts when making pesto. They’re also very cheap.
According to the 8th-century Zen priest Eisai, who introduced the tea to Japan, matcha is “the ultimate medical remedy and has the ability to make one’s life more full and complete.” Health guru Gwyneth Paltrow is a huge fan of the trendy green tea, which can be used in everything from lattes to soup and brownies. The main health benefits come courtesy of matcha containing three times as many antioxidant, cancer-fighting compounds as standard green tea.
Venison is set to become the must-eat meat of 2016 with sales rising by 400 per cent last year. There are plenty of health benefits when comparing venison to other meats: it contains lots of iron and vitamin B2, is high in protein and is low in carbs. It can also be locally sourced in the UK and is relatively simple to cook.
2016’s must unlikely food trend looks set to be the humble black pudding, with nutrition experts proclaiming it a great source of iron, potassium, calcium and magnesium. Made from pig’s blood, onions and oatmeal, black pudding has long been a favourite of fry-up fans but its health benefits have not been recognised until now. It’s worth remembering that there is no actual meat in black pudding and pig blood is very rich in iron. Add onions which are an anti-oxidant and barley which is a super grain and you’ve got a true super food.
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