By Melissa Williams
Knowing what to eat is one thing, but knowing what foods should be consumed with others is an entirely new ball game for many of us.
But according to recent reports, some vitamins and minerals are more effective when eaten together. This means taking your produce and adding a bit of creativity to your meals.
Here are a few suggestions.
Spinach is Popeye’s go-to for iron, but if you eat spinach alone you’re missing out on a lot of that iron, as it isn’t very easily absorbed by your body. If you combine plant-based iron foods, however, with vitamin C-rich options, the iron becomes more digestible. Try a spinach and grapefruit salad.
Consuming enough calcium is a challenge for many women. And if you just try to down it in one glass — whether of the cow or non-dairy variety — you might be missing out on an important piece of the puzzle. For the calcium to be absorbed into your body you need to consume it with magnesium. (This is why most calcium supplements now contain magnesium as well.) So try adding magnesium-rich grains to your dairy (cereal and milk, cookies and milk), or if you’re calcium is coming from greens like kale, be sure to balance it out with some whole grains like wild rice.
Raw tomatoes are delicious, but when cooked, tomatoes release even more nutrients. When you pair a cooked tomato with a fat, such as olive oil, you’re able to absorb more lycopene in the system. This isn’t the only product variety that prefers to be consumed with a bit of healthy fat. Grapefruit is also more utilized when you eat it with a healthy fat— try it with Greek yogurt, or toss a salad with grapefruit and almonds.