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If you happen to be surfing the internet lately, you might notice all the conflicting studies and stories about our food we consume everyday. One day we hear that olive oil is good then the next we hear it can cause heart disease. Or maybe you’ve heard about coffee that it is supposed to be good for you since it contains antioxidants yet studies show that coffee can lead to hypertension and high blood pressure. So who do you believe?

Well, with all foods, finding ingredients in their most natural of states is probably the best choice because once food is processed, it loses natural vitamins, antioxidants, and is also combined with other non-food ingredients and chemicals that can harm us. Here are my top food items that have had a bad rap yet are perfectly okay for you to consume in moderation of course. I’ve also included a couple of my favorite recipes that are inspired by these healthy and tasty ingredients. Happy Eating!

EGGS
One day I was watching the morning news and saw an expose on how awful eggs are for you because they can cause heart disease and raise cholesterol. Also, that they are high in fat and can make you gain weight. Well, I decided to do a little digging and happily found out that only consuming a massive amount of eggs daily (10 or more) can lead to spikes in cholesterol. Um? Call me Captain Obvious but I would think consuming anything daily in excess of the recommended amount would lead to health issues. So go ahead and eat those eggs! I love making hardboiled eggs and giving the yolk to my puppy for her coat then topping my egg whites with a dollop of homemade almond butter and fresh berries for a protein packed breakfast. But nothing’s more satisfying for an on the go breakfast than a healthy egg muffin…

Simple and Healthy Egg Muffins
Ingredients

  • 12 Eggs
  • 3 tablespoons Skim milk
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup low fat shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3 low sodium ham slices, small dice

Directions

Preheat oven to 350*. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk and pepper. Use cooking spray to coat a 6 cup muffin tin and ladle 8oz in each tin. Sprinkle with a little cheese and diced ham. Place into oven for 20 minutes and let cool. They pop out easily and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. Just reheat in a damp paper towel for 30 seconds in your microwave. For more variety, try adding cut up peppers, broccoli, chicken sausage, or any item of your choice.

CHOCOLATE
This one will make you jump for joy because who doesn’t love chocolate? Okay okay, we know that it isn’t the best ingredient out there like our friendly vegetable kale or spinach, but studies show it just might be. The cacao plant has more antioxidants and vitamins than any other fruit on the market. It is loaded with health benefits including lowering cholesterol, lowering blood pressure, and improving blood flow. Now that doesn’t mean head over to the candy bar section and grab a bunch of sugar-laden treats. If you have a chocolate craving, try scouting out the chocolate with a 70% or higher cacao bean with low sugar. This will satisfy your craving if eaten in small pieces and will make you smile when your waistline is slimmer. Win win!

Try This: Gluten Free Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Ganache Cake

WINE
Even more exciting to me than consuming chocolate is being able to sip on my favorite vino. Yes, wine does have downsides like excess of sugar and well, it is alcohol, but studies have shown a glass a day can actually be beneficial. One 4oz. glass a day is recommended because is has resveratrol, which helps to remove chemicals responsible for causing blood clots, the primary cause of coronary disease. Studies have also shown this miracle cocktail to lower the risk of heart disease and that sounds pretty darn good to my old ticker. So always remember to drink responsibly and cheers to good health!

Try This: White Lychee Sangria with Ginger

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