10 Most Hated Foods

 And why you should be eating them right now

fat fuck

Children are expected to say things like, “I don’t eat eggs, ever.” Or, “Liver? Gross!” However, when adults do it they better have a severe allergy or a convincing health, political, or environmental argument to back it up. Not liking a food, no matter how it’s prepared, makes you seem like an unworldly country bumpkin. On a first date, it tells your companion that you’re unadventurous and unhealthy because your diet rarely strays far from the beaten path.

Most of us developed these food phobias during childhood, but it’s never too late to get over them. In fact, foods many people hated as children not only provide essential nutrients for adult bodies but they house a potpourri of savors, tangs, and zests. Here are the most common “ick” foods that are actually incredibly good for you—and tasty.

1. BRUSSELS SPROUTS

brussel

Health benefits
Very high in fiber and protein, it can be a filling but low-calorie side dish. Scientists also believe the vegetable may protect against cancer because it’s rich in indole—a phytochemical—and vitamin C.

 

Learn to like it
Buy fresh Brussels sprouts that are still on the stalk. These will taste much better than the frozen. Slice each one down the middle and cook them in extra-virgin olive oil with freshly chopped garlic on the stove. Salt and pepper to your taste. To “gourmet-it-up,” add walnuts, shallots, grated cheese, and bacon in moderation.

2. BROCCOLI

broccoli

Health benefits
Vitamins C, K, and A are all represented in spades in broccoli. As well as being high in fiber, it has multiple anti-cancer nutrients such as diindolylmethane and selenium. The diindolylmethane is also known to fight other viruses and bacteria. In studies, men who eat a lot of broccoli generally reduce their risk of aggressive prostate cancer and heart disease.

Learn to like it
There’s no need to avoid broccoli on the appetizer tray, just dip it in hummus or add a dab of ranch dressing. You can also crumble some florets on your salad; they will make it more filling. Steam or bake them with olive oil for a quick side dish. If you decide to go more extreme, cover a casserole dish with florets. Pour three tablespoons of melted butter over it and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle cheddar cheese on top and bake for 10 – 15 minutes.

3. FISH

fishy fish

Health benefits
The American Heart Association recommends men eat fish twice a week to get enough omega-3, the fatty acids that reduce the risk of heart disease and the most common type of stroke. Some research even suggests omega-3s increase brain and visual functions and fight everything from asthma to depression. Eating fish instead of other meats can also reduce your cholesterol.

Learn to like it
Not all fish has that fishy-taste. Try halibut, tilapia, mahi-mahi, or throw a tuna steak on the grill instead of a burger. Stuffed flounder will taste like whatever you stuff it with. You can even start with something as small as a couple anchovies in your Caesar’s salad. And there’s the whole world of shellfish and mollusks too. Buy some tempura batter mix and it’s easy to make lightly breaded fish that go great with potatoes or in tacos.

4. TURNIPS

turn ip headHealth benefits
Turnips are a strong source of vitamin C, fiber, folic acid, manganese, pantothenic acid, and copper; plus they contain thiamine, potassium, niacin, and magnesium. They’re starchy like potatoes, but with one-third the calories.

 

Learn to like it
Substitute turnips where you usually make potatoes. Not only will this diversify your at-home menu, it will cut down on caloric intake. You can bake, mash, and cut them into French fries. They can also be served raw on a veggie tray.

5. BEETS

beat beatHealth benefits
High in carbohydrates, they’re a quick energy source without the crash you get from processed carbs. Beets are good source of magnesium, calcium, iron, and niacin, as well as vitamins A and C. Studies also show they reduce the risk of colon cancer.

 

Learn to like them
Throwing a couple on a salad is an easy way to get used to the odd-looking vegetable. When you’re ready to dive in, make a beet salad. There are a variety of recipes that are tasty and will impress a female dinner guest. A great southern favorite is roasted beet salad with bacon.

6. LIVER

its alive

Health benefits
Obviously it is a good source of protein, but it is also nature’s most concentrated source of vitamin A. Patients with iron-deficiencies eat it due to its highly usable form of iron and all of the B vitamins. Many also claim it fights fatigue.

 

 

 

Learn to like it
Preparing liver doesn’t have to be a big event. The next time you crave a barbecued steak, substitute thinly sliced beef liver. Fry it in a pan with onions and your favorite barbecue sauce or right on the grill.

7. SPINACH

popeye

Health benefits
Like the other vegetables profiled already, spinach’s A and C vitamins, fiber, folic acid, magnesium and other nutrients help prevent cancer, especially colon, lung, and breast cancers, and heart disease. Also the flavonoids in it reduce against age-related memory loss. But a big one in spinach is lutein, which prevents cataracts and macular degeneration.

Learn to like it
The great thing about spinach is its versatility. Throw it in omelets with cheese, turkey, or ham. Pour warm bacon vinaigrette over a bed of spinach and chopped purple onions (a little bit of bacon seems to help mask all healthy foods). Even toss raw spinach with melted margarine and heat in the microwave for a quick side dish. Want to keep it extra simple? Chop up strawberries and walnuts and sprinkle them over a bed of fresh spinach for a delicious salad.

8. AVOCADO

advocate

Health benefits
Dubbed the world’s healthiest fruit for its source of vitamin K, dietary fiber, potassium, folic acid, vitamin B6, vitamin C, copper, and oleic acid, a medium avocado can have 27 grams of fat. However, its monounsaturated fat helps lower cholesterol and its folate aids heart health.

 

Learn to like it
If guacamole hasn’t already turned you on to avocados, add a wedge to a turkey sandwich instead of cheese. Or slice a little with black beans and rice for a hot lunch. The protein will satiate your hunger longer.

9. COTTAGE CHEESE

cottage cheese

Health benefits
High in protein and low in carbohydrates, cottage cheese is a breakfast that will stay with you. Most of its protein is casein, a slow digesting form that reduces hunger for longer periods of time. It’s also high in calcium, which is important not only for bones but maintaining normal blood pressure.

 

Learn to like it
If eating cottage cheese with sliced fruit doesn’t intrigue you, try adding hot sauce and salt. It’s great sweet or savory. If you’re already a fan of guacamole, add a few spoons of cottage cheese to your mix. It will make it heartier and prevent it from turning brown.

10. EGGPLANT

egg plant

Health benefits
It has much of the same laundry list of nutrients these other vegetables have offered including fiber, folate, niacin, etc. On top of that, eggplants are a great source of antioxidant called phytonutrients including the potent antioxidant called nasunin, which prevents the damage of cell membranes.

Learn to like it
Eggplant’s porous flesh soaks in whatever flavors surround it and adds its own, making complex tastes: Eggplant Parmesan, ratatouille, Arabian moussaka, and many Indian dishes. It’s a vegetarian’s favorite because it’s a great substitute for meat-based dishes. It can even be grilled like a burger. Each dish is completely different so keep trying.

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