Natasha Withers: You are probably familiar with foods that are good for you, such as those high in refined sugar and flours as well as saturated fats. These can increase your levels of inflammation in the body which may contribute to illnesses such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and certain cancers.
So the best health foods are the ones that may help squelch harmful inflammation. Here are some top picks to put on your plate.
Number one is eye-popping produce. Certain fruits, especially those that are jewel tone in colors like blueberries and cherries contain compounds that have anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant effects.
The same is true for the vibrant reds of tomatoes and peppers, the vivid oranges of mangoes and squash and the gorgeous greens of broccoli and spinach.
Number two is zippy spices. Flavor enhancers like ginger and garlic double as anti-inflammatory agents. Number three is fill you up fiber. High fiber diets have an anti-inflammatory effect too and help protect against heart attack and stroke.
Great sources of fiber include beans, whole grains, fruits and vegetables. Good fats are number four. Cold water fish such as salmon, flaxseed and walnuts are good sources of anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acid. These good fats may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer's.
For dessert, sip green tea and indulge in dark chocolate, in moderation of course. Both are rich in healthy anti-oxidants. I am Dr. Natasha, bon apptit and live well.