Nutritionists are starting to realize that we like our oatmeal and OJ in the morning because we evolved to like it that way—because enjoying the two together is healthier than eating each of them alone.
Epidemiologist David R. Jacobs, PhD, of the University of Minnesota, believes this principle also explains why Italians drizzle cold-pressed olive oil over tomatoes and why the Japanese pair raw fish with soybeans.
“The complexity of food combos is fascinating because it’s tested in a way we can’t test drugs: by evolution,” says Jacobs. And, he adds, “it’s tested in the most complex of systems: life.”
What’s more fascinating, however, is that the evolution between eater and eaten might answer the long-held question about why humans live longer, healthier lives on traditional diets.
As researchers work to unravel the complexities of the interactions of the foods we eat, we present you with the 12 healthiest food combos currently known to science.