The What, How and Why of Food Synergy for Weight-Loss
Annie looked in the mirror, watching her eyes glaze over as she thought of all the projects, she was facing for the rapidly approaching holidays. The familiar feeling of anxiety was beginning to manifest.
“What’s going on Annie, you look worried.” LJ walked up to her and turned her around to face him. I know that look, and what I see is my wife, who is starting to get anxious. Is it the holidays?’
“Yes, we have so much we need to get done by the end of the year, and I don’t want to disappoint anyone, including us.”
“The holidays can be overwhelming, especially this year, since we have to continue social distancing, yet we want to connect with our family and friends like we always do, so let’s just recognize that this years’ celebrations will be unique, and take that approach. How about we look at our schedule and break tasks down into manageable units? That way, we’ll cruise through the next weeks right on into a glorious new year.”
Annie hugged LJ, “Okay, and while we’re at it, maybe we should look at incorporating some synergistic foods in our daily diet to help us.”
“Good idea, except, I’m not sure what you mean by synergistic foods.”
“Nutrition scientists continue to better understand the interactions of food. They are finding evidence that eating certain foods together is healthier than eating them separately. In other words, food synergy; by consuming specific foods together, their vitamins and minerals become more bioavailable, making it easier for our body to absorb. These combinations also contribute to weight-loss/maintenance and an energy boost.”
“Oh, you mean like eating tomatoes and avocados together in a salad because the fat in the avocado leads to satiety, and helps us absorb tomatoes vitamin A, the nutrient that provides immunity and vision protection?”
“I feel better, already, LJ. You are exactly right. There are other foods that also work synergistically, like today, when we had oatmeal, topped with a banana, and fresh-squeezed orange juice for breakfast. The banana provides fiber and heart-healthy fats, meaning we stay fuller longer, so more energy. The vitamin C in the OJ helps keep our arteries clean, and the phenols in oatmeal and orange juice alleviate our LDL (bad cholesterol) when eaten together.”
“Food synergy makes a lot of sense. Today for lunch, I will prepare a salad topped with eggs. This way, we will be sure to get the full effect of the lycopene (tomatoes) and beta-carotene (carrots) that also helps keep us alert and heart-healthy. Because these nutrients are fat-soluble, the fat in eggs helps make them more absorbable.”
“Now, you’re talking. If you make lunch, I will make dinner. What do you think about almond-crusted trout and kale with mushrooms and olive oil? The omega-3 fatty acids in trout help reduce the risk of blood clots; and normalize blood pressure, which lowers heart disease risk. Almonds contain essential fatty acids for a healthy heart. Kale is a source of vitamin K, which transports calcium to our bones. Vitamin D in mushrooms and the K in Kale, in combination, helps prevent bone loss. The addition of olive oil with its fat-soluble vitamins increases D and K’s absorption thereby, boosting bone density.”
“That sounds like a hearty dinner. Do you mind adding a squeeze of lemon juice on the kale because it helps make the iron in kale more absorbable, which will help us increase our muscle strength and immunity?”
“Great idea, sweetheart. I always appreciate your gentle suggestions. And since I know how much you love apples,” laughed Annie, “we’ll have chocolate fondue and Red Delicious apples for dessert. Apples are filling and high in quercetin, the flavonoid that helps reduce the risk of allergies, prostate and lung cancer. Dark chocolate contains the flavonoid catechin that helps reduce cancer and atherosclerosis. In combination, the two flavonoids loosen clumpy blood platelets, helping improve heart health.”
LJ reached over and hugged Annie. “It sounds like we’ve got a synergistic food plan. Now let’s work on a synergistic tasks plan over a glass of synergistic wine.”
Annie and LJ are a fictional couple introduced to the readers of the Healthy Healing Eats blog in January 2020. Their storyline promotes healthy
eating and earth-friendly practices.
Andrea Breaux is the Founder of Healthy Healing Eats. She writes about food-as-medicine and earth-friendly lifestyle practices. Find her weekly blog, recipes, and products at healthyhealingeats.com.