SMART SWAP: ANTIOXIDANT-RICH FOODS
Instead of empty calories, reach for foods that are naturally sweet and rich in antioxidant nutrients. Joy Bauer, M.S., RDN, founder of Nourish Snacks, says, “They help protect your cells from day-to-day wear and tear (i.e., sun, stress, toxins) and can help boost heart health and brainpower.” Bauer shares her favorites, noting, “Some of the most powerful antioxidant foods are dark chocolate, cherries and berries.” To make it easy, Bauer recommends keeping the freezer stocked with frozen berries. She says, “I use them for smoothies, microwave them for a warm compote, mix them in with healthy muffin batters, top a nonfat Greek yogurt and use them as pancake toppings.” For dark chocolate, she recommends enjoying a small square after dinner, sipping a cup of hot cocoa, blending cocoa powder into your yogurt or making a homemade trail mix with cacao nibs, whole-grain cereal, nuts and dried berries like blueberries and cranberries.
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