If you’ve resolved to eat more fruits this year, but aren’t sure where to start, try this list of top 10 heart healthy fruits. Packed with nutrients that can lower cholesterol and help you lose weight, fruits are a delicious and easy way to get started with a healthy new year.
1. Apples – The saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” has some truth to it. They’re packed with Vitamin C and fiber. They also contain flavonoids, which can help lower cholesterol. Keep it interesting by mixing up the kinds of apples you buy: try McIntosh, Honey Crisps, Granny Smith and Jonagolds.
2. Apricots – Whether they’re fresh or dried, apricots are a great for sources of vitamins A, C, E and K. They also contain fiber and cartenoids. They’re delicious added to cereal and as a morning yogurt-topper.
3. Bananas – Versatile, sweet, and filling, bananas are a source of vitamins B6, C, fiber, magnesium, and potassium. Look for firm bananas with the stem intact. Bake them into banana bread or top them with low-fat milk and a little cinnamon for a light and healthy treat.
4.Berries – Any kind of berry offers multiple healthy benefits. Start your day off with a smoothie blended with berries. Although it’s winter, frozen berries are a fine substitute, they’re just as nutritious and will help you get your vitamin C, folate, fiber, manganese and potassium.
5. Cantaloupe – This melon has sweet, dense flesh that provides vitamins A, B6, and C, as well as folate, potassium and fiber. Toss with berries for a fresh, light dessert.
6. Oranges- Now that it’s winter, oranges are in season, and they provide vitamins A, B6, and C, as well as folate, potassium and fiber. Eaten as a snack, a fresh orange will curb your appetite for hours. Make a spinach salad more exciting with slices of orange, and toss with a light olive oil vinaigrette.
7. Grapefruit – Like oranges, grapefruits are in season in the winter, which makes them a great choice for those who’ve resolved to eat more fruits. They contain vitamin C, potassium, calcium and flavanoids. Eat a halved grapefruit with your breakfast, or add slices to salad.
8. Kiwi- Despite common thought that you need to peel kiwis, the skin is edible. Kiwis contain vitamins C, E, fiber and magnesium. Their sweet and tangy flesh make for a delicious end to a meal.
9. Papaya- For sources of vitamins A, C, and E; folate, calcium; magnesium; and potassium, choose a ripe papaya. The skin should be yellow or green and feel slightly soft to the touch. Squirt a half of a papaya with lime juice for a refreshing breakfast.
10. Peaches- Peaches contain vitamins C, E, and K; fiber; and potassium. Peaches are in season from May to September, but in winter, frozen peaches are a good choice to add to a morning smoothie.
Ranking courtesy of Cleveland Clinic