How to combine foods correctly: useful tips

Elena KozlovaLS Food
Meat with pepper improves iron absorption
Meat with pepper improves iron absorption

The right combination of foods helps to avoid glycemic loads during one meal and digestive side effects such as flatulence and a feeling of heaviness.

Cereals and legumes, raw vegetables and pasta, meat and peppers are examples of how you can stimulate metabolism, support the activity of internal organs, and provide the body with nutrients, according to

How to combine foods correctly: useful tips

What is the right way to combine foods?

There are general recommendations based primarily on the principle of healthy eating.

The wrong combination of macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats) can cause bloating, a feeling of heaviness in the stomach, pain, and even weight gain.

Complex carbohydrates go well with low-starch vegetables because the fibers they contain reduce the amount of sugar absorbed by the body. In addition, eating them together with legumes creates a complete meal in terms of protein, as they complement each other in terms of amino acids.

Protein is best absorbed in combination with bitter vegetables, which stimulate the liver during digestion. In particular, red meat is best consumed with radicchio, chicory, and arugula, and boiled vegetables are also suitable for white meat.

Fats also go well with vegetables. However, in the case of aged cheeses, it is better to use diuretic and water-rich types that stimulate the kidneys.

10 healthy food combinations

Toasted bread and extra virgin olive oil

This is one of the best ways to have breakfast: The "good" fats in olive oil help to reduce and slow down the absorption of sugars contained in bread, avoid glycemic peaks, and keep insulin and appetite more stable.

Nuts and oatmeal

Another ideal combination is walnuts and oatmeal. Both foods are rich in magnesium, iron, and copper, essential elements for hemoglobin production. The healthy fats and phytosterols in walnuts, combined with the beta-glucans in oatmeal, have a beneficial effect on lipid metabolism, promote intestinal motility and circulatory health.

Raw vegetables and pasta

Pasta goes well with raw vegetables, such as lettuce, arugula, and cucumbers, dressed with extra virgin olive oil. This combination of fats and fiber slows down the absorption of sugars, limits blood sugar spikes, and promotes greater satiety.

Brown rice and chickpeas

Grains and legumes are ideal for each other because they provide a complete amino acid profile. Legumes are low in methionine, cysteine, and tryptophan, but high in lysine, while the opposite is true for cereals.

So, when combined in a dish, they become a source of complete vegetable protein. In addition to rice and chickpeas, you can also combine millet, barley, buckwheat, along with beans, peas, or lentils.

Raw tomatoes and onions

Tomatoes are rich in mineral salts and have a mild diuretic effect. For those who suffer from water retention, it is better not to add them raw to every salad. The right and smart combination to enjoy them is to add raw onions. It counteracts retention and improves renal drainage.

Salmon and arugula

Salmon is an excellent source of vitamin D, which stimulates the absorption of calcium. The latter, in turn, is present not only in dairy products but also in many vegetables, such as arugula. This combination of foods improves absorption and supports bone health.

Salad with arugula, chicory and egg

An alternative to the aforementioned fish, eggs are another valuable source of vitamin D that can be added to arugula and chicory salad to improve calcium absorption.

Meat with bitter vegetables and pineapple

Meat proteins are involved in the activity of the digestive system and, due to the high content of nitrogenous waste, also in the functioning of the kidneys. Therefore, it is better to accompany them with a mixture of bitter vegetables, such as radicchio, raw onions, endive and arugula. In addition, pineapple at the end of the meal further stimulates the digestion of proteins due to the presence of bromelain.

Meat and peppers

The iron contained in meat is of the heme type and is absorbed by the body better than non-heme (vegetable) iron. To further facilitate its absorption, it is useful to combine meat with pepper, as it contains a high amount of vitamin C.

Aged cheeses with bitter and diuretic vegetables

Aged cheeses are richer in proteins, fats and salts than dairy products, which causes water retention. The combination of raw celery, fennel, and cucumbers provides a diuretic effect, while the combination of bitter vegetables (chicory, arugula, raw artichoke, or radicchio) promotes the outflow of bile.

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