- Absorb more nutrients with pepper. Black pepper contains piperine, which can increase food nutrient absorption by up to 25%. By adding black pepper to salads, sauces and cooked meats, the elevated digestion enzymes that result allow the food to travel through the system more quickly, which also reduces constipation.
- Add more vitamins by the handful. Include a variety of vegetables, fruits and protein for an assortment of vitamins. Try different cooking methods too: when eaten raw, our bodies can absorb more folate, vitamin C, niacin, riboflavin and potassium found in spinach. When spinach is steamed, the body is better able to assimilate its beta-carotene and antioxidant properties.
- Add more healthy fats. Not all fats are the same. Olive oils and nut oils can actually help lower the bad cholesterol, raise the good cholesterol and allow our bodies to better accept nutrients such as beta-carotene. Avocados, coconut oil and nuts provide excellent unsaturated fats and are versatile in that they can easily be added to smoothies or other dishes.
- Consume more foods with probiotics. Probiotics can assist digestion by encouraging “good” bacteria to grow in the gut, which we need for proper and consistent breakdown. Raw onions, raw garlic, bananas and artichokes can increase this effect. Other foods that provide “good” bacteria growth include fermented foods and drinks, such as Kombucha, sauerkraut and kimchi. These foods will create a better environment for nutrient absorption overall.
- Boost what’s already good. Some foods can enrich what already exists in a healthy meal. For example, vitamin C has properties that increase the ability to absorb the iron found in a dish. For example, by eating spaghetti Bolognese, we get the most iron out of the beef by introducing the vitamin C found in the tomato sauce.
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