Know the best sources of antioxidants — substances that may help your immune system

Picture of grapes for article about foods with antioxidants

Different foods may have a variety of specific benefits to your health. Red grapes, eggplant, beets, and cantaloupe are loaded with antioxidants, which are substances that may protect your cells and help boost your immune system. The easiest way to make sure you’re getting antioxidants in your diet is to choose fruits and vegetables that are purple, blue, red, orange, and yellow in color. Berries in particular are excellent sources of antioxidants, so look for strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, or blackberries when you are food shopping.

If you want to lower your cholesterol, there are certain foods that may help. Try oatmeal or oat bran at breakfast, and reach for a small handful of walnuts or almonds as an afternoon snack. Fish such as albacore tuna or salmon may also help thanks to their high levels of heart-healthy fatty acids. Don’t like fish? Canola oil and ground flaxseed also contain these healthful fatty acids.

It is important to eat a balanced diet with a variety of whole grains, fruit, vegetables, dairy (or dairy substitutes), and proteins. Before making any changes to your diet, consult your health care provider.

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