Healthy Exotic Foods

Is your normal diet getting old? If you’re like most people, eating the same things over and over again in order to stay healthy or lose weight can become tiresome in quick fashion. Conventional wisdom is wrong.

 

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You do not need to limit what you eat to a grocery list of a dozen or so items. Proper diet is about balance and meeting your nutritional requirements without going overboard. If you’re tired of the same old dinner of sweet potatoes and a lean protein source, try the following exotic fruits and vegetables. They are packed with even more nutrients than their familiar counterparts. While every year or so a new “exotic” food is discovered and overhyped, these are the real deal.

Purple Potatoes

No, it is not the title of a children’s novel. Purple potatoes taste almost exactly like regular potatoes but possess slightly different nutritional properties. In a study by the University of Scranton, they found that individuals who ate the purple variety on a daily basis actually saw their blood pressure drop by as much as five percent. Cook them like regular potatoes, or just sprinkle them with some salt or olive oil and enjoy. Don’t overdo it on the salt, as that can counteract the blood pressure decrease.

Lychee

This fruit that is white on the inside and red on the outside has been enjoyed in Asia for centuries. Over the past few years, its flavor has slowly made its way into teas and other drinks in the United States. It is the raw fruit, however, that packs the most nutrients. Lychees are absolutely packed with polyphenols and antioxidants that help boost your immune system and prevent a number of chronic diseases and illnesses. They can be simmered and used as a marinade or just added to a fruit salad.

Guava

This South American fruit has almost five times as much Vitamin C as an orange. It also has high levels of Lycopene, which has been shown to help prevent heart problems. In an “apples to apples” study with other fruit, the vitamins and nutrients in Guava helped it beat out apples, grapes, and bananas to come in first place. It can be used in pastries, turnovers, and cobblers, or it can be eaten on its own.

Bok Choy

There is a reason this leafy cousin of Broccoli and Kale is the number one vegetable in China. One serving of it actually contains ten times your Daily Recommended Amount of Vitamin A, a nutrient that most people are lacking. Its high levels of antioxidants also help strengthen your immune system and prevent various cancers. It tastes a little bitterer than broccoli or kale, and it is perfect for a stir fry.

Asian Pears

This pear variant is both sweet and tart, but that isn’t what makes it so appealing. Eat just one and you will ingest ten grams of fiber. For clarification, 10g of fiber is almost half of your Recommended Daily Amount. Consequently, consuming them is a great way to lower your cholesterol, regulate your digestive system, and stay full for hours between meals.

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