Nutritional scientists today are finding many food combinations that can boost your nutrient intake dramatically.
You may know that both spinach and blueberries are high on the list of good-for-you, nutrient dense (or nutrient “rich”) foods but, did you know that eating spinach and blueberries together can improve your nutrient intake exponentially? While nutrients in spinach (called nitrates) can help muscles work more efficiently, blueberries can reduce the amount of oxidative stress placed on the body during muscle use. This is a win – win for exercise recovery and anyone worried about muscle soreness after a move or new activity!
The combination of legumes (aka: beans) with lemon produces a synergistic benefit to the body. Beans deliver healthy doses of iron (important for transporting oxygen to cells) but, this iron can be difficult to absorb. When iron is paired with the Vitamin C found in a lemon however, iron is much more easily absorbed and used by the body.
According to a study in the Journal of Functional Foods (Veda & Srinivasan, 2009), black pepper can help improve the intestinal absorption of beta-carotene. Eating pumpkin soup or butternut squash with black pepper will help your body soak in all that great beta-carotene your body relies on for healthy skin and eyes.
Other beneficial nutrient combinations include:
Edamame & Cayenne: reduce inflammation in the body
Chicken & Carrots: transport vitamin A to the body
Raspberries & Apples: kill off cancer cells – ellagic acid (antioxidant in raspberries) combines with quercetin (antioxidant in apples)
Greek yogurt & Hemp seeds: combined proteins protect immunity and promote cellular recovery
These nutrient dense combinations are why many people are saying today that a single pill or vitamin simply cannot compare to the power of whole foods. (Kadey, 2013)