It's no secret that when it comes to great food, Mexico leads the way. With such a varied mix of eclectic and vibrant dishes, each meal is an adventure in its own right and there's something for everyone to enjoy. However, Mexican food doesn't have a reputation for being the healthiest of cuisines with high-calorie items such as cheese and sour cream. Yet it is possible to stay healthy while enjoying your favourite Mexican dishes: from guacamole to salsa and everything in between, there are a lot of healthy ingredients to be found in classic Mexican dishes that you may not have known about. Let's see how they can spice up our diets.
1. Lycopene in salsa
Not only is it a totally delicious condiment, but salsa is also packed with Lycopene, not just a healthy antioxidant but one of the most powerful in the world. It occurs naturally in tomatoes, one of the main ingredients in salsa, and has many great benefits, from boosting eye and bone health to helping to fight off infections and even cancer. Dipping your veggies into salsa is a great way to get more Lycopene into your diet. You can find all sorts of homemade salsas over at La Salsa, from simple Roja to exotic Mango Lime.
2. Healthy fats in guacamole
Not all fats are bad for us. In fact, many are essential to a healthy diet. Guacamole is high in fats but not to worry, it's the good kind. The mono-saturated fats found in guacamole take the place of saturated and trans-fats and it can help to lower your cholesterol. Barrio serves up a storm of Mexican delights and has plenty of guacamole to go around, so be sure to try out the Vegetarian Torta: it's packed with roasted capsicum, mushrooms, zucchini, lettuce, black beans, and of course a healthy serving of guac.
3. Flavonoids in burritos
Whether you like them full of meat or stuffed with veggies, burritos are without a doubt the pinnacle of Mexican food. Not only are they absolutely delicious, but they are also full of flavonoids, an antioxidant compound that has a range of health benefits. Flavonoids can be found in foods such as onions and tomatoes and have been shown to aid in preventing issues such as heart disease, as well as anti-inflammatory properties. Senor Taco serves up a medley of great Mexican food and their burritos have never disappointed - but now you know they have the added benefit of healthy flavonoids, so be sure to pick up one next time your stomach begins to growl!
4. Capsaicin in chilli con carne
A good comforting bowl of chilli con carne just can't be beaten and, what's more, this spicy dish contains a good helping of capsaicin, a healthy component found in chillies. Capsaicin is commonly used to treat ailments such as arthritis and is an effective painkiller. It can also help boost metabolism and reduce the risks of vascular diseases such as strokes and heart attacks. You can find capsaicin in abundance in a bowl of Chili con Carne, so be sure to grab a bowl from Lower East Side Taqueria who make some of the best in town.
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