6 Old-Fashioned Superfoods Your Grandmother Ate (And You Should Too)

Add these powerhouses to your daily rotation, just like Grandma.

November 13, 2017
A grandmother at the kitchen table drinking tea
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Back in her day, Grandma probably had no idea what eating clean was. And even if you tried explaining it to her, she'd probably say she didn't give a hoot. Still, her diet wasn't all Salisbury steak and Jell-O salad. Your granny and her gang ate plenty of foods that were actually really healthy, too. And even though they're uncool or outdated today, they're absolutely worth adding to your meals and snacks. Here are six to consider. Instagram them enough times, and who knows? They might even become a thing.

(Slash your cholesterol, burn stubborn belly fat, solve your insomnia, and more—naturally!—with Rodale's Eat For Extraordinary Health & Healing.)

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A bowl of cottage cheese, the new superfood
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Cottage Cheese

If protein is what you're after, make this your new go-to. A 1-cup serving of low-fat cottage cheese packs 28 grams of protein—that's about five more than your usual Greek yogurt. (FYI, there is such a thing as cultured cottage cheese so you don't have to miss out on your daily dose of probiotics.) And no, we won't make you eat it out of a cantaloupe half.  
 

A collage of bananas, the new superfood
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Bananas

They're arguably the most basic of all fruits. But so what? Bananas are rich in pectin, a type of fiber that can help protect against blood sugarspikes and slow down your digestion so you stay fuller for longer. They're also a good source of the all-important prebiotics necessary for keeping the good bacteria in your gut happy and well-fed. And seriously, what other fruit can you find for 50 cents a pound all year long? (Bonus: You can even eat the peels. Bet Grandma never did that!) Here's how to make a healthy banana bread.

Watch the below to find out why you should eat your banana peels:

A big pile of dried navy beans
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Navy Beans

Do like old-timers do and throw the creamy white beans into a soup. A cup of cooked white beans delivers almost half of your daily fiber, so you'll have zero interest in eating again for hours (and hours). They're also a good plant source of hard-to-get iron as well as magnesium, a mineral that can help your muscles relax after a workout. (Here are the 6 healthiest beans you can eat.)

Related: 14 Vegetarian Foods That Have More Iron Than Meat

Two ladies holding freshly picked cabbages
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Cabbage

Like its cooler cousins kale, cauliflower, and brussels sprouts, cabbage is a cruciferous vegetable. In other words, it's pretty much one of the healthiest things you can eat. Cabbage is packed with phytonutrients that can help lower your risk for cancer—so if you're also a fan of big, bad bacon, it might be worth loading up. Which you can totally do, since chopped cabbage only has 22 calories per cup. Cabbages are actually one of the easiest vegetables to grow in your garden.     

Related: 11 Women Share The Best Advice Their Grandmothers Ever Gave Them
 

The juicy half of a pink grapefruit
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Grapefruit

It goes without saying that trying an all-grapefruit diet is a horrible idea. But Granny's favorite breakfast food (broiled with a sprinkle of sugar, please) actually can help you lose weight. One study even found that people who ate half a grapefruit before each meal—without making any other changes to their diets—lost more than three pounds in 12 weeks and had healthier blood sugar levels.
 

A few healthy dried prunes
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Prunes

Yes, they're a good source of fiber that can help keep you regular. But that's just the beginning. Prunes (or dried plums as we like to call 'em today) are packed with anthocyanins, a family of anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic antioxidants that can help fight obesity, diabetes, and even heart disease. And since they're super sweet, you can use pureed prunes to replace empty-calorie sweeteners in oatmeal, yogurt, smoothies—or even Grandma's famous cake recipe. Just sayin'.

This article originally appeared on Eat Clean.