5 Best Food Pairings For Better Health
Food pairing does not exist just to make your meals more palatable, but also can work together for a variety of health benefits. Food combining for healthy reasons happens when a certain food offers a bit more nutritional value when eaten together with other food than eaten separately. Think of it as one and one make three, that way, you’ll be sure to be more motivated with these excellent and healthy food pairings.
1. Vitamin C + Iron in Veggies & Grains
Probably one of the most popular healthy food-pairing, vitamin C is believed to help iron absorbs better into our system.
Iron comes in two different forms in food. The first one is ‘heme’ as found in fish, meat and poultry which is easily absorbed by the body. Another form is ‘non-heme’ which is found in veggies and grains, which does not absorb as easily. By adding vitamin C food when you eat veggies or grains rich with iron, you can double or triple the absorption.
Try : Tomatoes with beans, lemon juice with spinach salad, or fruits topping with your oatmeal.
2. Fat + Vegetables
In general, eating vegetables with added fats helps improve the absorption of beta-carotene in the vegetables. Carotenoids serve as antioxidants in the body and can be found in vegetables, particularly the colorful ones such as tomatoes, carrots or spinach. These compounds are fat-soluble, which means that adding fat may increase your body’s ability to take up more carotenoids. So adding a little fat will help you absorb them better.
Try : Avocado or olive oil in your salad, butter as oil in your veggie-sauteed meals.
3. Calcium + Vitamin D
A Nutrition Journal study found that diets rich in both calcium and vitamin D can significantly decrease the amount of fat the body absorbs and stores. Calcium and vitamin D work together to protect your bones—calcium helps build and maintain bones, while vitamin D helps your body effectively absorb calcium. So even if you’re taking in enough calcium, it could be going to waste if you’re deficient in vitamin D.
4. Lemon + Green Tea
Green tea, as we all know, is called “liquid gold” for the numerous health advantages it offers. It is loaded with antioxidants, flavonoids and other phytonutrients which are proven to fight many diseases including cancer. Adding fresh lemon juice to this drink can double its medicinal properties, along with enhancing the taste. Green tea and lemon together make a Vitamin C drink that has anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties to help you stay away from medicines.
Try : Substitute lemon with any fruit that’s rich in vitamin C!
5. Peanut Butter + Banana
This list will not be complete without the duo of peanut butter and banana listed. The combo has been proven to aid with muscle recovery. Normally you will also add in bread to join the two together, creating a healthy and yummy meal on the go. With the right kind of bread, a peanut butter and banana sandwich is a nutritious food that supplies a healthy dose of fiber, protein and certain vitamins and minerals.
Try : Fortified whole-wheat bread for extra iron and calcium.