Oh the miracle powers of exotic super foods: After being pummeled by years of marketing and media blitzes promoting them, it's hard not to feel a bit skeptical.
Acai, goji berries, and their rainforest ilk have been touted for their exceptionally nutritious profiles -- but they come with high food miles and skyrocketing price tags.
The truth is, their more humble local relatives are no less miraculous and can also greatly improve your intake of antioxidants -- the nutritional heart of miraculous super foods, which can protect the body from conditions such as heart disease and cancer. Sneak local super foods into your diet with the 10 simple (and tasty!) swaps here.
1. Sweet Potatoes for CarrotsOne cup of cooked sweet potatoes provides 1,922 micrograms Retinol Activity Equivalents (mcg RAE) of beta carotene, double that of carrots, and 16 times that of broccoli. Sweet potatoes have four times the US Recommended Daily Allowance for beta-carotene when eaten with the skin on. Sweet potatoes have an abundance of vitamin E, and they are virtually fat-free, which makes them a superior Vitamin E source. (Most Vitamin E rich foods, such as vegetable oils, nuts and avocados, contain a hefty dose of fat.) Sweet potatoes also provide Vitamin B6, potassium and iron.
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