15 Foods That Could Literally Save Your Life

Staying healthy may be as easy as making a few changes in your diet, Entrepreneur reports. Some changes are lifestyle related such as getting a dog, reading, and laughing more.

Other ways to improve your life (and possibly save it) could mean increasing your fiber intake and eating more whole foods. Whole foods are often found in the produce aisle, typically in a Mediterranean diet. In fact, people who followed diets rich in vegetables and fish have an overall 20% mortality reduction. So which foods could actually save your life? And which one was named as being a true life saver (page 9)?

1. Egg yolks

 separate egg- white and yolk

Don’t nix the egg yolks, they’re a great source of protein and several vitamins. | iStock.com/svehlik

Packed with vitamins, egg yolks contain 6 grams of protein, plus vitamins A, B2, B5, B12 and iron, phosphorus, and selenium, according to Healthline. Although people used to think the yolk was actually harmful to your health, doctors now say yolks are an excellent source of vitamin E, Time reports.

The carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin in the egg yolk actually promote eye health and decrease inflammation.

Next: This food is good for heart health.

2. Garlic

crushed garlic on wooden background

Adding garlic to your dinner is a great idea. | thodonal/iStock/Getty Images

Garlic is considered to be a wonder food because it not only reduces your risk for stroke and heart disease, it also can kill microbes like fungi and bacteria, according to Healthline. In fact, the compound Allicin, found in garlic, may even destroy antibiotic-resistant bacteria like MRSA.

Next: What is the most nutritious food you can eat?

3. Kale

Kale

This is a true superfood. | ginew/iStock/Getty Images

Named as being “most nutritious,” kale is loaded with vitamins and bioactive compounds, Healthline reports. The leafy green veggie has 10 times the recommended daily allowance of vitamin K1, twice the amount of vitamin C and three times the amount of vitamin A. Plus, kale is low in calorie, which promotes weight loss.

Kale is considered to be a cruciferous vegetable, which may prevent or fight prostate, colorectal, lung, and breast cancer, according to The National Cancer Institute.

Next: Cook with this if you are at risk of heart attack.

4. Coconut oil

Coconut oil

You can use coconut oil for many things. | Anna1311/iStock/Getty Images

Considered to be the best oil you can cook with, coconut oil may improve heart health, Healthline reports. The most pronounced fatty acid in coconut oil is 12-carbon lauric acid. Lauric acid is an effective fighter against bacteria, viruses, and fungi.

The fatty acids in coconuts oil may also reduce seizures, raise the good HDL cholesterol, and possibly improve brain function for Alzheimer’s patients, Healthline reports.

Next: Want to live past 100? Eat this!

5. Sweet potato

Raw sweet potatoes

These aren’t an ordinary potato. | zeleno/iStock/Getty Images

Researchers found that populations who regularly consumed sweet potatoes lived to age 100 and beyond, Express reports. The vegetable is high in beta-carotene, which protects against prostate cancer and may reduce arthritis pain. Sweet potatoes also contain a substantial amount of potassium, which may reduce blood pressure.

Next: This delicious fruit may prevent cancer.

6. Blueberries

Blueberries

This fruit is rich in antioxidants. | MICHAEL URBAN/AFP/Getty Images

Packed with antioxidants, blueberries may possibly prevent cancer, according to Healthline. Blueberries are also low in calorie and carbohydrates, which make them a great food for weight loss. This superfood is also thought to lower blood pressure, prevent heart disease, and may even boost memory, Healthline reports.

Next: Most Western diets are lacking in this food’s nutrient.

7. Seaweed

Closeup photo of reddish colored seaweed with holes in it along Maine coast.

Integrating this into your diet is a smart move. | iStock.com/nikkigensert

Seaweed contains a nutrient many people lack in their diet, which is iodine, according to Healthline. Iodine is vital to thyroid health, plus seaweed contains vitamins A, B1, B2, C, D and E as well as minerals including zinc, iodine, magnesium, iron, potassium, and copper. Seaweed is also high in calcium.

Next: This food delivers a one-two punch.

8. Salmon

smoked salmon

Salmon has plenty of Omega-3s. | margouillatphotos/Getty Images

Salmon’s Omega-3 fatty acids provide both cardiovascular and memory protective benefits, according to Healthline. The best way to consume salmon is to purchase wild caught, but farm-raised still has benefits and may be less expensive. Consuming salmon twice a week provides enough health benefits.

Next: Doctors say this is the only vegetable you need.

9. Broccoli

Broccoli in pan on wood kitchen table

Broccoli  is a true superfood. | phasinphoto/iStock.com/Getty Images

Considered to be a life-saving vegetable, broccoli is thought to provide heart health, eye health, cancer prevention, and cholesterol reduction, according to The Independent. Broccoli has anti-inflammatory properties, which is why the superfood can help the body fight chronic and deadly diseases.

Dr. Rangan Chatterjee, the author of The Four Pillar Plan wrote that broccoli was, “a life-saver,” in a Daily Mail article.

Next: This superfood will keep you regular.

10. Beans

Red bean on wooden table

Bean can add a lot to your diet. | Piyaset/iStock/Getty Images

Beans get a bad rap because, despite their gassy after-effect, beans are incredibly good for your health. They are packed with protein, fiber, and contain vitamins and minerals, such as copper, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, potassium, and zinc, according to U.S. News and World Report. Beans can fight against cancer, heart disease, and help to balance your blood sugar too.

Next: Bugs Bunny’s favorite food may help you avoid saying ‘what’s up doc?’

11. Carrots

Fresh carrots arranged on a wooden background.

These are great especially when they’re fresh from the garden. | iStock.com/Nataliia_Pyzhova

Munch on a few carrots to prevent diseases like cancer of the bladder, cervix, prostate, colon, larynx, and esophageal, according to Woman’s Day. Carrots are high in antioxidants, which may also protect post-menopausal women from developing breast cancer. The best way to eat carrots for health is to go for the raw version. You’ll get more nutrients and vitamins that way.

Next: This fruit prevents a number of diseases.

12. Grapes

Bunch of colorful grapes with leaves

Grapes do more than make wine. | karandaev/Getty Images

Grapes have polyphenols, which is a powerful antioxidant that may prevent cancer tumor growth, according to Medical News Today. Specific cancers grapes may fight include lymph, liver, stomach, breast, colon, skin cancer, and leukemia. Grapes may also keep your heart healthy, lower blood pressure, and reduce constipation.

Other diseases grapes fight or prevent include diabetes, diabetic neuropathy and retinopathy, osteoarthritis, and possibly Alzheimer’s disease.

Next: You don’t need to make lemonade to make these wonders work.

13. Lemons

Lemons are offered for sale at Eastern M

Lemons can protect against cancer. | SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

Lemons contain the compound limonoids, which may possibly protect you against breast, lung, skin, and colon cancer, Woman’s Day reports. The citrus also contains a high amount of vitamin C, according to Medical News Today.

Consuming lemons may also lower your risk for stroke, blood pressure control, and may boost your immune system too.

Next: This fungus has cancer prevention properties.

14. Mushrooms

White Mushrooms

This veggie is a great addition to your meal. | iStock.com/alfernec

Although most mushrooms are also good sources of selenium, an antioxidant mineral, as well as copper, niacin, potassium and phosphorous, Crimini mushrooms are one of the only ways you can get vitamin D through food, according to The San Francisco Gate.

In addition to providing dietary fiber, mushrooms are cancer fighters, especially for breast and prostate. Shitake mushrooms are thought to boost the immune system too.

Next: Don’t save these just for the holidays.

15. Cranberries

bowl with cranberries

Cranberries | iStock.com

Cranberries pack a vitamin punch that includes vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin K, according to Medical News Today. They also contain proanthocyanidins (PACs), which is an antioxidant that may prevent diseases like cancer and heart disease. Cranberries are also vital to urinary tract and even dental health.

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