20 good foods–getting healthy from what you eat

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The foods listed in the chart below ranked among the highest in a new antioxidant study. To come up with the ranking, researchers with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) extracted the antioxidants from 100 common foods using special solvents, then ran them through a device that uses fluorescent light to monitor a chemical reaction that measures antioxidant activity.

Researchers then took the resulting numbers—what they call the total antioxidant capacity (TAC)—and compared them.

The good news:

You don’t have to put your diet under a microscope to reap the benefits of the top 20. Rather than zeroing in on a particular food because it scored high, use the list to help you put a little variety on your plate.

TOP TWENTY

Consider this your shopping list of power foods, based on their total antioxidant capacity (TAC) per serving (1 piece fruit/potato, 1/2 cup beans/dried fruit, 1 cup berries/artichoke hearts, 1 ounce nuts).

Food TAC

1 Small Red Beans 13,727
2 Wild Blueberries 13,427
3 (Red) Kidney Beans 13,259
4 Pinto Beans 11,864
5 Cultivated Blueberries 9,019
6 Cranberries 8,983
7 Artichokes 7,904
8 Blackberries 7,701
9 Dried Plums (Prunes) 7,291
10 Raspberries 6,058
11 Strawberries 5,938
12 Red Delicious / Granny Smith Apple 5,600
13 Pecans 5,095
14 Sweet Cherries 4,873
15 Black Plums 4,844
16 Russet Potato 4,649
17 Black Beans 4,181
18 Plums 4,118
19 Gala Apple 3,903
20 Walnuts 3,846