Healthy Drinks to Beat the Bulge

By Betty Murray

Liquid diets are never recommended as a long-term diet solution (unless you have specific health problems that require you to be on a liquid diet), but weight loss drinks may help you shed a few unwanted pounds quickly, particularly if you have reached a plateau in your weight loss.

Replacing meals with protein shakes can reduce your daily caloric intake, resulting in weight loss. However, you will eventually need to return to eating solid foods, at which time you may regain any weight that was lost. Relying too much on protein drinks also means you’re missing out on the nutritional value of whole foods.

When Protein Shakes Can Help

The average adult should get at least 46 to 56 grams of protein per day (possibly more, depending on your weight). If you are already eating a healthy, nutrient-rich diet but are struggling to get adequate protein, adding a protein shake to your daily diet can help you get closer to the recommended daily dose of protein. Protein increases calorie burn, so upping your protein intake can boost weight loss.

When Protein Shakes (and other weight loss drinks) Can Hurt

Even though a shake or drink isn’t a solid food, it still contains calories—and you might be surprised just how many calories are in a drink. Protein powder, though it varies, generally contains about 140 calories per serving, so a protein shake made from protein powder could contain as many as 300 calories. One Special K Milk Chocolate Protein Shake contains 190 calories.

Unless your physician has prescribed a liquid diet to battle other health concerns, going on a strict liquid diet simply to lose weight is not ideal. If your weight loss has stalled out, or you just need to lose a few pounds before heading to the beach, try replacing one meal a day with a protein shake.

The best formula for weight loss is to maintain a healthy, nutrient-dense, protein-rich diet and to get at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise every week.

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine and founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Living Well Dallas and she is the Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. She specializes in autoimmune conditions, MTHFR, digestive disorders and complex health issues.  Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.

 

Healthy Drinks to Beat the Bulge

By Betty Murray

Liquid diets are never recommended as a long-term diet solution (unless you have specific health problems that require you to be on a liquid diet), but weight loss drinks may help you shed a few unwanted pounds quickly, particularly if you have reached a plateau in your weight loss.

Replacing meals with protein shakes can reduce your daily caloric intake, resulting in weight loss. However, you will eventually need to return to eating solid foods, at which time you may regain any weight that was lost. Relying too much on protein drinks also means you’re missing out on the nutritional value of whole foods.

When Protein Shakes Can Help

The average adult should get at least 46 to 56 grams of protein per day (possibly more, depending on your weight). If you are already eating a healthy, nutrient-rich diet but are struggling to get adequate protein, adding a protein shake to your daily diet can help you get closer to the recommended daily dose of protein. Protein increases calorie burn, so upping your protein intake can boost weight loss.

When Protein Shakes (and other weight loss drinks) Can Hurt

Even though a shake or drink isn’t a solid food, it still contains calories—and you might be surprised just how many calories are in a drink. Protein powder, though it varies, generally contains about 140 calories per serving, so a protein shake made from protein powder could contain as many as 300 calories. One Special K Milk Chocolate Protein Shake contains 190 calories.

Unless your physician has prescribed a liquid diet to battle other health concerns, going on a strict liquid diet simply to lose weight is not ideal. If your weight loss has stalled out, or you just need to lose a few pounds before heading to the beach, try replacing one meal a day with a protein shake.

The best formula for weight loss is to maintain a healthy, nutrient-dense, protein-rich diet and to get at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise every week.

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine and founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Living Well Dallas and she is the Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. She specializes in autoimmune conditions, MTHFR, digestive disorders and complex health issues.  Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.

 

Your Life in Balance


By Betty Murray

The types and amounts of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins you take in on a daily basis matter. But ultimately, what matters when it comes to weight loss and weight management is calories. Balancing how many calories you take in with the number of calories your body burns is the secret to losing weight and keeping it off.

What’s your caloric balance? If you are maintaining your current weight, you are consuming about the same amount of calories your body is using. If you are gaining weight, you’re in caloric excess, which means you’re consuming more calories than your body is burning. If you are losing weight, it means you’re in caloric deficit, and eating fewer calories than your body is using.

When the body is in caloric deficit, it begins to pull stored fat from cells in the body to use as energy, thus reducing the amount of fat in your body and decreasing your weight.

How many calories should I consume?

Keep in mind that one bound of body fat is equal to approximately 3,500 calories. Start by keeping a food journal and writing down all the foods and drinks you consume each day. This will help you have a better understanding of how many calories you’re consuming on a daily basis. Also keep track of your daily physical activity and the length of time you do it.

Not sure how many calories you’re eating or how many you’re losing through exercise? MyFitnessPal is a great free resource to track your food and exercise to find out if you are in caloric balance. MyFitnessPal will also show you the nutrients that are in your food, so you can easily see if you are getting enough vitamins, minerals, protein, etc.

A Fitbit is another tool you can use to help you stay motivated by tracking your physical activity. Fitbit will sync with MyFitness Pal to give you an accurate picture of your daily calories in/calories out.

How much exercise do I need?

The American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes (30 minutes, five days a week) of moderate intensity exercise per week for the average adult. This recommendation is based on keeping the heart healthy and strong. If you want to lose weight, you may need to increase the amount and intensity of your exercise.

Remember, some exercise is better than no exercise. You do not have to get in a full 30 minutes of exercise at one time. If your schedule does not allow you to spend that much time exercising at once, break it down into smaller segments throughout the day. Ten minutes here or there will make a big difference.

By using tools like Fitbit and MyFitness Pal, you can easily keep track of the calories you consume and the calories you burn on a daily basis, giving you the information and the motivation you need to meet your weight loss goals.

Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.

 

 

Your Life in Balance


By Betty Murray

The types and amounts of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins you take in on a daily basis matter. But ultimately, what matters when it comes to weight loss and weight management is calories. Balancing how many calories you take in with the number of calories your body burns is the secret to losing weight and keeping it off.

What’s your caloric balance? If you are maintaining your current weight, you are consuming about the same amount of calories your body is using. If you are gaining weight, you’re in caloric excess, which means you’re consuming more calories than your body is burning. If you are losing weight, it means you’re in caloric deficit, and eating fewer calories than your body is using.

When the body is in caloric deficit, it begins to pull stored fat from cells in the body to use as energy, thus reducing the amount of fat in your body and decreasing your weight.

How many calories should I consume?

Keep in mind that one bound of body fat is equal to approximately 3,500 calories. Start by keeping a food journal and writing down all the foods and drinks you consume each day. This will help you have a better understanding of how many calories you’re consuming on a daily basis. Also keep track of your daily physical activity and the length of time you do it.

Not sure how many calories you’re eating or how many you’re losing through exercise? MyFitnessPal is a great free resource to track your food and exercise to find out if you are in caloric balance. MyFitnessPal will also show you the nutrients that are in your food, so you can easily see if you are getting enough vitamins, minerals, protein, etc.

A Fitbit is another tool you can use to help you stay motivated by tracking your physical activity. Fitbit will sync with MyFitness Pal to give you an accurate picture of your daily calories in/calories out.

How much exercise do I need?

The American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes (30 minutes, five days a week) of moderate intensity exercise per week for the average adult. This recommendation is based on keeping the heart healthy and strong. If you want to lose weight, you may need to increase the amount and intensity of your exercise.

Remember, some exercise is better than no exercise. You do not have to get in a full 30 minutes of exercise at one time. If your schedule does not allow you to spend that much time exercising at once, break it down into smaller segments throughout the day. Ten minutes here or there will make a big difference.

By using tools like Fitbit and MyFitness Pal, you can easily keep track of the calories you consume and the calories you burn on a daily basis, giving you the information and the motivation you need to meet your weight loss goals.

Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.

 

 

Your Life in Balance


By Betty Murray

The types and amounts of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins you take in on a daily basis matter. But ultimately, what matters when it comes to weight loss and weight management is calories. Balancing how many calories you take in with the number of calories your body burns is the secret to losing weight and keeping it off.

What’s your caloric balance? If you are maintaining your current weight, you are consuming about the same amount of calories your body is using. If you are gaining weight, you’re in caloric excess, which means you’re consuming more calories than your body is burning. If you are losing weight, it means you’re in caloric deficit, and eating fewer calories than your body is using.

When the body is in caloric deficit, it begins to pull stored fat from cells in the body to use as energy, thus reducing the amount of fat in your body and decreasing your weight.

How many calories should I consume?

Keep in mind that one bound of body fat is equal to approximately 3,500 calories. Start by keeping a food journal and writing down all the foods and drinks you consume each day. This will help you have a better understanding of how many calories you’re consuming on a daily basis. Also keep track of your daily physical activity and the length of time you do it.

Not sure how many calories you’re eating or how many you’re losing through exercise? MyFitnessPal is a great free resource to track your food and exercise to find out if you are in caloric balance. MyFitnessPal will also show you the nutrients that are in your food, so you can easily see if you are getting enough vitamins, minerals, protein, etc.

A Fitbit is another tool you can use to help you stay motivated by tracking your physical activity. Fitbit will sync with MyFitness Pal to give you an accurate picture of your daily calories in/calories out.

How much exercise do I need?

The American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes (30 minutes, five days a week) of moderate intensity exercise per week for the average adult. This recommendation is based on keeping the heart healthy and strong. If you want to lose weight, you may need to increase the amount and intensity of your exercise.

Remember, some exercise is better than no exercise. You do not have to get in a full 30 minutes of exercise at one time. If your schedule does not allow you to spend that much time exercising at once, break it down into smaller segments throughout the day. Ten minutes here or there will make a big difference.

By using tools like Fitbit and MyFitness Pal, you can easily keep track of the calories you consume and the calories you burn on a daily basis, giving you the information and the motivation you need to meet your weight loss goals.

Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.

 

 

Your Life in Balance


By Betty Murray

The types and amounts of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins you take in on a daily basis matter. But ultimately, what matters when it comes to weight loss and weight management is calories. Balancing how many calories you take in with the number of calories your body burns is the secret to losing weight and keeping it off.

What’s your caloric balance? If you are maintaining your current weight, you are consuming about the same amount of calories your body is using. If you are gaining weight, you’re in caloric excess, which means you’re consuming more calories than your body is burning. If you are losing weight, it means you’re in caloric deficit, and eating fewer calories than your body is using.

When the body is in caloric deficit, it begins to pull stored fat from cells in the body to use as energy, thus reducing the amount of fat in your body and decreasing your weight.

How many calories should I consume?

Keep in mind that one bound of body fat is equal to approximately 3,500 calories. Start by keeping a food journal and writing down all the foods and drinks you consume each day. This will help you have a better understanding of how many calories you’re consuming on a daily basis. Also keep track of your daily physical activity and the length of time you do it.

Not sure how many calories you’re eating or how many you’re losing through exercise? MyFitnessPal is a great free resource to track your food and exercise to find out if you are in caloric balance. MyFitnessPal will also show you the nutrients that are in your food, so you can easily see if you are getting enough vitamins, minerals, protein, etc.

A Fitbit is another tool you can use to help you stay motivated by tracking your physical activity. Fitbit will sync with MyFitness Pal to give you an accurate picture of your daily calories in/calories out.

How much exercise do I need?

The American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes (30 minutes, five days a week) of moderate intensity exercise per week for the average adult. This recommendation is based on keeping the heart healthy and strong. If you want to lose weight, you may need to increase the amount and intensity of your exercise.

Remember, some exercise is better than no exercise. You do not have to get in a full 30 minutes of exercise at one time. If your schedule does not allow you to spend that much time exercising at once, break it down into smaller segments throughout the day. Ten minutes here or there will make a big difference.

By using tools like Fitbit and MyFitness Pal, you can easily keep track of the calories you consume and the calories you burn on a daily basis, giving you the information and the motivation you need to meet your weight loss goals.

Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.

 

 

Your Life in Balance


By Betty Murray

The types and amounts of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins you take in on a daily basis matter. But ultimately, what matters when it comes to weight loss and weight management is calories. Balancing how many calories you take in with the number of calories your body burns is the secret to losing weight and keeping it off.

What’s your caloric balance? If you are maintaining your current weight, you are consuming about the same amount of calories your body is using. If you are gaining weight, you’re in caloric excess, which means you’re consuming more calories than your body is burning. If you are losing weight, it means you’re in caloric deficit, and eating fewer calories than your body is using.

When the body is in caloric deficit, it begins to pull stored fat from cells in the body to use as energy, thus reducing the amount of fat in your body and decreasing your weight.

How many calories should I consume?

Keep in mind that one bound of body fat is equal to approximately 3,500 calories. Start by keeping a food journal and writing down all the foods and drinks you consume each day. This will help you have a better understanding of how many calories you’re consuming on a daily basis. Also keep track of your daily physical activity and the length of time you do it.

Not sure how many calories you’re eating or how many you’re losing through exercise? MyFitnessPal is a great free resource to track your food and exercise to find out if you are in caloric balance. MyFitnessPal will also show you the nutrients that are in your food, so you can easily see if you are getting enough vitamins, minerals, protein, etc.

A Fitbit is another tool you can use to help you stay motivated by tracking your physical activity. Fitbit will sync with MyFitness Pal to give you an accurate picture of your daily calories in/calories out.

How much exercise do I need?

The American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes (30 minutes, five days a week) of moderate intensity exercise per week for the average adult. This recommendation is based on keeping the heart healthy and strong. If you want to lose weight, you may need to increase the amount and intensity of your exercise.

Remember, some exercise is better than no exercise. You do not have to get in a full 30 minutes of exercise at one time. If your schedule does not allow you to spend that much time exercising at once, break it down into smaller segments throughout the day. Ten minutes here or there will make a big difference.

By using tools like Fitbit and MyFitness Pal, you can easily keep track of the calories you consume and the calories you burn on a daily basis, giving you the information and the motivation you need to meet your weight loss goals.

Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.

 

 

Your Life in Balance


By Betty Murray

The types and amounts of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins you take in on a daily basis matter. But ultimately, what matters when it comes to weight loss and weight management is calories. Balancing how many calories you take in with the number of calories your body burns is the secret to losing weight and keeping it off.

What’s your caloric balance? If you are maintaining your current weight, you are consuming about the same amount of calories your body is using. If you are gaining weight, you’re in caloric excess, which means you’re consuming more calories than your body is burning. If you are losing weight, it means you’re in caloric deficit, and eating fewer calories than your body is using.

When the body is in caloric deficit, it begins to pull stored fat from cells in the body to use as energy, thus reducing the amount of fat in your body and decreasing your weight.

How many calories should I consume?

Keep in mind that one bound of body fat is equal to approximately 3,500 calories. Start by keeping a food journal and writing down all the foods and drinks you consume each day. This will help you have a better understanding of how many calories you’re consuming on a daily basis. Also keep track of your daily physical activity and the length of time you do it.

Not sure how many calories you’re eating or how many you’re losing through exercise? MyFitnessPal is a great free resource to track your food and exercise to find out if you are in caloric balance. MyFitnessPal will also show you the nutrients that are in your food, so you can easily see if you are getting enough vitamins, minerals, protein, etc.

A Fitbit is another tool you can use to help you stay motivated by tracking your physical activity. Fitbit will sync with MyFitness Pal to give you an accurate picture of your daily calories in/calories out.

How much exercise do I need?

The American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes (30 minutes, five days a week) of moderate intensity exercise per week for the average adult. This recommendation is based on keeping the heart healthy and strong. If you want to lose weight, you may need to increase the amount and intensity of your exercise.

Remember, some exercise is better than no exercise. You do not have to get in a full 30 minutes of exercise at one time. If your schedule does not allow you to spend that much time exercising at once, break it down into smaller segments throughout the day. Ten minutes here or there will make a big difference.

By using tools like Fitbit and MyFitness Pal, you can easily keep track of the calories you consume and the calories you burn on a daily basis, giving you the information and the motivation you need to meet your weight loss goals.

Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.

 

 

Your Life in Balance


By Betty Murray

The types and amounts of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins you take in on a daily basis matter. But ultimately, what matters when it comes to weight loss and weight management is calories. Balancing how many calories you take in with the number of calories your body burns is the secret to losing weight and keeping it off.

What’s your caloric balance? If you are maintaining your current weight, you are consuming about the same amount of calories your body is using. If you are gaining weight, you’re in caloric excess, which means you’re consuming more calories than your body is burning. If you are losing weight, it means you’re in caloric deficit, and eating fewer calories than your body is using.

When the body is in caloric deficit, it begins to pull stored fat from cells in the body to use as energy, thus reducing the amount of fat in your body and decreasing your weight.

How many calories should I consume?

Keep in mind that one bound of body fat is equal to approximately 3,500 calories. Start by keeping a food journal and writing down all the foods and drinks you consume each day. This will help you have a better understanding of how many calories you’re consuming on a daily basis. Also keep track of your daily physical activity and the length of time you do it.

Not sure how many calories you’re eating or how many you’re losing through exercise? MyFitnessPal is a great free resource to track your food and exercise to find out if you are in caloric balance. MyFitnessPal will also show you the nutrients that are in your food, so you can easily see if you are getting enough vitamins, minerals, protein, etc.

A Fitbit is another tool you can use to help you stay motivated by tracking your physical activity. Fitbit will sync with MyFitness Pal to give you an accurate picture of your daily calories in/calories out.

How much exercise do I need?

The American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes (30 minutes, five days a week) of moderate intensity exercise per week for the average adult. This recommendation is based on keeping the heart healthy and strong. If you want to lose weight, you may need to increase the amount and intensity of your exercise.

Remember, some exercise is better than no exercise. You do not have to get in a full 30 minutes of exercise at one time. If your schedule does not allow you to spend that much time exercising at once, break it down into smaller segments throughout the day. Ten minutes here or there will make a big difference.

By using tools like Fitbit and MyFitness Pal, you can easily keep track of the calories you consume and the calories you burn on a daily basis, giving you the information and the motivation you need to meet your weight loss goals.

Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.

 

 

Supplementing with Supplements

By Betty Murray

In a perfect world, we would get getting all the nutrients in our diet that we need to keep our body in tip top shape. Unfortunately, most Americans are missing out on vital nutrients in their daily diet. That’s where supplementing comes in. Supplements help improve overall health and there are thousands of options available. Deciding which supplements are right for you can be overwhelming. Let us simplify it for you with these three supplements everyone should take.

Essential Fatty Acids — There are two essential sources of omega 3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA. Because the human body produces neither of these, essential fatty acid supplements are an easy way to get the appropriate levels of both EPA and DHA. Both EPA and DHA are important in prevention of heart disease and nervous disorders and can be found in fish oils. Here are the differences between DHA and EPA:

  • DHA omega 3 plays an essential role in development of the brain and nervous system. For pregnant women, DHA is especially important. DHA helps the adult bran and nervous system maintain normal functionality. DHA is important for functioning of the body and is more easily absorbed into the body than EPA. Deficiency of DHA could lead to ADHD or lack of mental development in premature babies.
  • EPA plays an important role in hormones and the immune system. It is easily distinguished from DHA has playing a regulatory role in the body, rather than a functioning role. Deficiency of this omega 3 could cause a number of conditions, such as dry skin or depression.

IntraMax – Multivitamin: IntraMax is a trace mineral supplement and all-in-one multivitamin. This one supplement can provide optimum daily allowance of all essential nutrients. It maximizes energy and strength and boosts the immune system to fight off colds, flues, allergies and disease. This supplement is also important for healthy blood and bones, and can remove heavy metals and harmful toxins in the body. It is also naturally anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-parasitic and anti-fungal.

PaleoGreens — Derived from paleo nutrition (belief humans were meant to thrive on fresh, raw and green foods combined with healthy proteins), PaleoGreens are made of greens, algae, enzymes, fruits, berries and vegetables. PaleoGreens help your body get into al alkaline state to fight off tumor cells and free radicals. PaleoGreens give your daily dose of nutrition to nourish and strengthen every system in the body, increasing energy, mental clarity and overall wellbeing.

While supplements can be an important part of your overall diet, the fact that you may be taking supplements doesn’t mean you can eat an unhealthy diet and still be healthy. Supplements should be considered a complementary component of your overall nutrition rather than your primary source of vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients. It’s important to eat a nutrient-rich diet to ensure your body is getting just what it needs to be healthy and disease-free. Here are five of the most nutrient-dense foods you can eat.

5 Nutrient-Dense Foods

1.     Salmon — Salmon and other types of fatty fish contain high amounts of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are important for optimal body function. Salmon is also a great source of animal protein, and vitamins and minerals including magnesium, potassium, and all the B-vitamins. Eating fatty fish like salmon can help lower your risk of heart disease, dementia, depression, and a number of other diseases.

2.     Kale — Leafy greens are a must in anyone’s diet, but if you’re only going to eat one type of leafy green, make it kale. It is packed full of vitamins A, C, K1, B6, and minerals like potassium, calcium, magnesium, copper, and manganese. It is also a source of fiber and protein, and even contains high amounts of cancer-fighting compounds.

3.     Garlic -- Garlic is great for adding flavor to a dish, but it’s also great for your body. Garlic is high in vitamins C, B1, B6, calcium, potassium, copper, and several other minerals. The active ingredient in garlic — allicin — has been linked to lower blood pressure and LDL cholesterol, and higher HDL cholesterol, helping to reduce risk of heart disease. Like many of these superfoods, garlic also contains cancer-fighting properties and can be used to kill bacteria and fungi.

4.     Blueberries -- Blueberries may be the most nutritious fruit of them all. Not for vitamins and minerals like many vegetables, but for the high amounts of powerful, disease-fighting antioxidants. Blueberries have also been shown to improve memoriy in older adults, and to lower blood pressure and LDL cholesterol.

5.     Egg yolks -- They may have high amounts of cholesterol, but it isn’t the bad cholesterol that causes heart disease. Egg yolks are packed full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthine, which help protect the eyes. They are also a source of protein and healthy fats. For the healthiest eggs, look for free-range, organic, grass-fed eggs.

Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.