Lemons are a rich source of vitamin C, providing 64% of the Daily Value in a 100 g serving (table). Just one lemon has more than 100 percent of your daily intake of vitamin C, which may help increase “good” HDL cholesterol levels and strengthen bones. Lemons contain numerous phytochemicals, including polyphenols and terpenes. As with other citrus fruits, they have significant concentrations of citric acid. Citrus flavonoids may help inhibit the growth of cancer cells and act as an anti-inflammatory.
Broccoli is an edible green plant in the cabbage family whose large flowerhead is eaten as a vegetable. Broccoli is high in vitamin C and dietary fiber. It also contains multiple nutrients with potent anti-cancer properties, such as diindolylmethane (DIM) and small amounts of selenium.
A single serving provides more than 30 mg of vitamin C and a half-cup provides 52 mg of vitamin C.DIM is a potent modulator of the innate immune response system with anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-cancer activity.Broccoli also contains the compound glucoraphanin, which can be processed into an anti-cancer compound sulforaphane, though the anti-cancer benefits of broccoli are greatly reduced if the vegetable is boiled. Broccoli is also an excellent source of indole-3-carbinol, a chemical which boosts DNA repair in cells and appears to block the growth of cancer cells. Sulforaphane, another compound in broccoli has been shown to stop over-rapid aging.
Boiling broccoli reduces the levels of suspected anti-carcinogenic compounds, such as sulforaphane, with losses of 20–30% after five minutes, 40–50% after ten minutes, and 77% after thirty minutes. However, other preparation methods such as steaming, microwaving, and stir frying had no significant effect on the compounds.
Broccoli has the highest levels of carotenoids in the brassica family. It is particularly rich in lutein and also provides a modest amount of beta-carotene.
Apples are an excellent source of antioxidants, which combat free radicals. Free radicals are damaging substances generated in the body that cause undesirable changes and are involved in the aging process and some diseases.
A typical apple serving weighs 242 grams and contains 126 calories with significant dietary fiber and modest vitamin C content, with otherwise a generally low content of essential nutrients.
Apple peels contain various phytochemicals with unknown nutritional value,including quercetin, epicatechin, and procyanidin B2. Preliminary research is investigating whether nutrients and/or phytochemicals in apples may affect the risk of some types of cancer.
The almond is a nutritionally dense food and a 100 gram serving is a rich source of the B vitamins riboflavin and niacin, vitamin E, and the essential minerals calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, and zinc. The same serving size is also a good source (10-19% DV) of the B vitamins thiamine, vitamin B6, and folate; choline; and the essential mineral potassium. They are also rich in dietary fiber, monounsaturated fats, and polyunsaturated fats, fats which potentially may lower LDL cholesterol.Typical of nuts and seeds, almonds also contain phytosterols such as beta-sitosterol, stigmasterol, campesterol, sitostanol, and campestanol, which have been associated with cholesterol-lowering properties.
Blueberries are rich in fiber, antioxidants and phytonutrients. Phytonutrients are natural chemicals found in plants.Unlike minerals and vitamins that are also found in plant foods, phytonutrients are not essential for keeping us alive. However, they may help prevent disease and keep the body working properly.
Spinach is very rich in antioxidants, especially when uncooked, steamed or very lightly boiled. It is a good source of vitamins A, B6, C, E and K, as well as selenium, niacin, zinc, phosphorus, copper, folic acid, potassium, calcium, manganese, betaine, and iron.
7. Sweet potatoes
Sweet potatoes are rich in dietary fiber, beta carotene, complex carbohydrates, vitamin C, vitamin B6, as well as carotene (the pink, yellow ones).
The Center for Science in the Public Interest ranked the nutritional value of sweet potatoes as highest among several other foods.
Sweet potato varieties with dark orange flesh have more beta carotene than those8, with light-colored flesh, and their increased cultivation is being encouraged in Africa where vitamin A deficiency is a serious health problem.
Walnuts are a nutrient-dense food: 100 grams of walnuts contain 15.2 grams of protein, 65.2 grams of fat, and 6.7 grams of dietary fiber.
In a 100 gram serving, walnuts provide 654 calories and rich content of several dietary minerals, particularly manganese at 163% DV, and B vitamins.
Garlic has antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties. Most of its disease-fighting potential comes from its sulfur compounds, which act as antioxidants, providing many of its cardiovascular benefits. Per 100 gram serving, garlic is also a good source (10-19% DV) of certain B vitamins including thiamine (Vitamin B1), and pantothenic acid (Vitamin B5), as well as certain dietary minerals including calcium, iron, and zinc.
A typical serving of avocado (100 g) is moderate to rich in several B vitamins and vitamin K, with good content of vitamin C, vitamin E and potassium. Avocados also contain phytosterols and carotenoids, such as lutein and zeaxanthin.
Avocados have diverse fats.
For a typical avocado:
About 75% of an avocado’s energy comes from fat, most of which (67% of total fat) is monounsaturated fat as oleic acid.
Other predominant fats include palmitic acid and linoleic acid.
The saturated fat content amounts to 14% of the total fat.