Beets are one of the best sources of folate, a nutrient which lowers your blood levels of homocysteine, an inflammatory amino acid produced by the body. One cup of beets provides only 60 calories, no fat, about 40 percent of your daily value for folic acid and four grams of fiber. Enjoy beets raw, sliced.... or prepare a delicious beet salad by tossing them with olive oil and a splash of lemon.

The leaves and stems are also packed with nutrition - sauté with garlic, olive oil, kosher salt, ground black pepper and dig in!

Part of the cruciferous vegetable family, one cup of chopped cabbage contains 20 calories, two grams fiber and is loaded with sulforaphane, a cancer fighting chemical that's been shown to decrease cellular damage throughout the body. Add cabbage to your salads, order steamed ‘moo shoo vegetables' at your local Chinese restaurant (request sauce on the side and go easy!), or prepare low-calorie coleslaw.

Guava is a tropical super fruit. One cup provides 110 calories, 376 milligrams Vitamin C (that's more than 300 percent of the daily value), 699 milligrams potassium and nine grams of fiber! Guava also provides a hearty dose of lycopene - an antioxidant that appears to fight prostate cancer (when it comes to lycopene, most people only think about tomatoes). You'll find this exotic fruit in Latin grocery stores and at high end markets.

Swiss Chard
This vegetable's greatest health benefit comes in the form of lutein and zeaxanthin - a matched pair of antioxidants - found in high concentrations in the tissue of the macula. Because they absorb 40 to 90 percent of blue light intensity, these nutrients act like sunscreen for your eyes. Studies have shown that eating foods rich in lutein and zeaxanthin can increase the pigment density in the macula-and greater pigment density means better retina protection, and a lower risk of macula degeneration. One cup steamed Swiss chard provides only 35 calories.

For a few more calories, try this delicious recipe: Over high heat, warm two tablespoons olive oil in a large, non-stick frying pan. Add two cloves garlic and cook one to two minutes, stirring constantly. Add two pounds Swiss chard and sprinkle with kosher salt. Cook four to five minutes until the Swiss chard is soft and reduces half in volume. Serve immediately.

2007 Joy Bauer Nutrition . All Rights Reserved.

Lawrie Whitmore
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Last Modified: 20th June 2008