Eat This With That: Food Pairings to Maximize Nutrition

Enhance the absorption rate of one food's star nutrient by pairing it with a complimentary food that plays a powerful supporting role

Photo: Filipp Romanovski on Unsplash

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A commanding lead performer may be great, but the movie just doesn’t work as well without the supporting cast. It turns out, your body works the same way. As you’re picking out foods based on the vitamins and nutrients you want, keep an eye on what you’re serving those items with. The right food pairing can bring together complimentary nutrients and enhance the absorption rate of the good stuff. Try matching up these power couples:

Iron + Vitamin C
Whether from beans or beets, iron from non-meat sources is best absorbed when paired with vitamin C.
TRY: Mix up a beet and citrus salad

Calcium + Vitamin D
In order to absorb the most calcium from our foods, our bodies require a healthy dose of Vitamin D.
TRY: Toss cashews and broccoli together in your stir-fry

Quercetin + Catechins
Anti-inflammatory quercetin reduces blood clots while antioxidant catechins work against hardened arteries.
TRY: Snack on skin-on apples with dark chocolate or berries with green tea.

Healthy Fats + Vitamins A, D, E and K
Health benefits abundant in fat-soluble vitamins – A, D, E and K – cannot be wrought without the help of fats.
TRY: Drizzle olive oil over tomatoes or Brussels sprouts to increase the absorption of these vital nutrients

RELATED: This Is the Best Time of Day to Take Vitamins, According to Health Experts

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