My favorite healthy food pairings are options that don’t require too much stress, or time to prepare, but still satisfy my taste buds and hunger levels. Pairing certain foods together can make them much more effective than eating them alone. The combination of nutrients from certain foods helps to enhance their effects, as well as hold us over longer. The more the merrier, I say, when it comes to eating healthy foods! Pair these together and take your healthy lifestyle to a whole new level!
1. Almonds and Carrots
One of my all time favorite healthy food pairings is almonds and baby carrots. I adore this snack! In a pinch, it could even make a good breakfast on the go. Almonds are a great source of plant protein, with 7 grams per half cup. Their fats are also wonderful for your metabolism, and help lower the glycemic index. This is important for your snacks, as well as meals early on in the day. Keeping your blood sugar stable as much as possible will do wonders for your health and your weight. Carrots are a great source of healthy carbohydrates, with little sugar and no fat. With only 25 calories per half cup, and 4 grams of fiber, they make an excellent carb to consume with almonds to satisfy your sweet tooth. Both almonds and carrots are crunchy, satisfying, and also lower your stress levels due to high magnesium content, B vitamins, potassium, and fiber.
2. Leafy Greens and Hemp Seeds
Leafy greens are one of the best plant-based sources of iron you can eat, along with hemp seeds. Both are also rich in natural plant proteins and fiber, making them an excellent healthy food pairing. Leafy greens like spinach, kale, arugula, Swiss chard, romaine, and many others are also rich in chlorophyll, as are hemp seeds. Chlorophyll helps to not only ground the body, but also alkalize the body, preventing external and internal stress. Consuming them both together, either cooked or in a salad, will enhance their effects tremendously. I like to have hemp seeds tossed over a large leafy green salad for lunch with raw tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, and a lemon garlic tahini dressing. It combats stress and fatigue, as well as reduces blood sugar levels.
3. Garlic and Tomatoes
Garlic might not smell so great, but it is fantastic for you! Garlic is rich in antioxidants that combat virus, diseases, and bacterial infections. It is also rich in Vitamin C, as well as Vitamin B6. Both of these nutrients combat inflammation, wrinkles, and fatigue. They also reduce stress, almost as soon as they are consumed. Garlic is also rich in sulfur, which helps detox the body. When combined with Vitamin C rich tomatoes, the effects are even greater, and the two taste amazing together. Be sure to consume plenty of lower sugar vegetables and fruits like garlic and tomatoes whenever possible to keep your blood sugar levels steady around the clock.
4. Greek Yogurt and Berries
This old time favorite combo is one that seems to never get old. Greek yogurt’s protein content and berries’ low sugar content are always a win-win choice for reducing the glycemic index, halting hunger, and staving it off for hours to come. Plus, they both contain large amounts of potassium, which reduces blood pressure. Eating foods that reduce your blood sugar is critical for reducing stress, especially mid morning and mid afternoon.
5. Avocados and Tomatoes
Tomatoes also pair well with the amazing avocado. Avocados are a personal favorite food of mine for so many reasons. They have plant protein, healthy fats that lower your glycemic index and your waistline, and they have a huge variety of vitamins and minerals. They are rich in potassium and B6, as well as Vitamin B5. B vitamins help to combat stress, and they help reduce fatigue. The fats in avocados help to enhance the effects of all the precious vitamins in tomatoes. Tomatoes’ Vitamin C content is better absorbed when eaten with fat, along with the lycopene content tomatoes contain. Plus, avocados and tomatoes are both fruits to choose if you live a low glycemic lifestyle. Pair them together in a salad, or just nosh on them raw.
6. Salmon and Leafy Greens
Salmon is my favorite type of fish for so many reasons. Being a vegetarian, it’s one of the only animal proteins I’ll eat. If I’m going to have fish once in awhile, I always choose wild Alaskan salmon since it is lower in mercury and toxins than farmed varieties are. The lean protein, healthy fats, Vitamin D, Vitamin B6 and B12, and magnesium content is salmon create such a powerful combination for reducing your weight, and lowering your blood sugar levels. Leafy greens are fantastic to pair with salmon because they are high in iron, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, magnesium, and Vitamin K. All of these vitamins are absorbed easier when eaten with a healthy fat. When choosing this combination for a lunch or dinner, rest assured you’ll be fuller longer, with less calories overall.
7. Oatmeal and Greek Yogurt
Another winning healthy food pairing for weight loss, or for overall health, is whole grain oatmeal and plain Greek yogurt. Oatmeal is low glycemic, and lower in carbs than processed cereals or other grains. This makes it better for your blood sugar levels, as well as your overall weight. Greek yogurt’s protein content is also fantastic for helping reduce hunger for hours, along with lowering abdominal fat. The fiber in oatmeal combined with the lean protein in Greek yogurt is a winning combination to reduce hunger, raise your metabolism, and prevent hunger pains a few hours later. Be sure you choose whole, rolled oats or steel cut, not instant, and also be sure to choose plain, fat free or 2% Greek yogurt to keep the sugar content low. I also suggest adding some stevia if you need to sweeten, along with some cinnamon, which is delish!
These healthy food pairings can be consumed throughout the day however you choose. Remember when pairing two foods together, they should complement each other nutritionally, as well as be long-lasting and sustainable. You don’t want to eat anything that’s going to leave you hungry and jittery an hour later. What’s your favorite healthy food pairing?