healthy living

15 Healthy But Yucky Foods and How to Give Them a Second Chance

Let’s face it, healthy foods often don’t hit the same as fried chicken nuggets, but that doesn’t mean living healthy has to suck. Let’s dive into the top 15 superfoods that usually get the thumbs down for taste, along with some tricks to make them a bit more appetizing.

Fermented Foods: Kimchi & Sauerkraut

Fermented foods like kimchi and sauerkraut are excellent for gut health due to their high probiotic content. However, their pungent smell and tangy taste can be off-putting for some. 

  • Tip: Integrating them into dishes gradually can help acclimate the palate to their unique flavors.


Sardines are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, and vitamin D, promoting heart and bone health. Their fishy taste and texture, though, are not everyone’s cup of tea. 

  • Tip: Pairing sardines with strong flavors like lemon and garlic can make them more palatable.


Beetroot is loaded with fiber, folate, and manganese, and its nitrate content can help lower blood pressure. Its earthy taste, however, can deter people from adding it to their diet. 

  • Tip: Try incorporating beets into smoothies or roasting them to bring out their natural sweetness.


Liver is a powerhouse of nutrients, including iron, vitamin A, and B vitamins, making it one of the most nutrient-dense foods you can eat. Its strong flavor, however, is not universally appreciated. 

  • Tip: Cooking liver with onions and herbs can help mellow out its taste.

Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts are miniature cabbages packed with vitamins C and K, fiber, and antioxidants. They’re known for their potential to support heart health and improve digestion. Yet, their slightly bitter taste can turn people away. 

  • Tip: Roasting them with a drizzle of olive oil can enhance their flavor, making them a delightful addition to any meal.


Tempeh is a soy product that’s a great source of protein, prebiotics, and a wide range of vitamins and minerals. Its nutty flavor and firm texture can be unfamiliar to some. 

  • Tip: Marinating tempeh before cooking can enhance its taste significantly.


Marmite and Vegemite are yeast extract spreads famous for their strong, salty, and umami flavors. These spreads are rich in B vitamins but can divide taste buds sharply due to their intense taste. 

  • Tip: They can be spread thinly on toast or used to enrich the flavors of soups and stews.


Kefir is a fermented milk drink similar to yogurt but with a thinner consistency and more potent probiotic profile. Unfortunately, its sour taste can be a hurdle for some. 

  • Tip: Blending kefir with fruits can mask its tartness, offering a creamy, nutritious smoothie.


Seaweed is a broad term for marine plants and algae that are high in iodine, which is essential for thyroid function. Despite its health benefits, the oceanic flavor of seaweed isn’t universally loved. 

  • Tip: Adding seaweed into soups or using it as a salad ingredient can be an easy way to introduce it into your diet.

Natto (納豆)

Natto is a traditional Japanese food made from fermented soybeans, notable for its strong smell, sticky texture, and robust flavor. It’s packed with protein, vitamins, and probiotics, making it an excellent choice for gut health. Despite its health benefits, natto’s peculiar characteristics make it a challenging food for many outside Japan to enjoy.

  • Tip: Incorporate natto into dishes you already enjoy. Adding it to a salad, soup, or alongside scrambled eggs can make it more palatable. 


Kale is a nutrient-dense leafy green, high in vitamins A, K, and C, along with numerous antioxidants. Its tough texture and bitter taste can be off-putting. 

  • Tip: Massaging kale with a bit of olive oil can soften its texture and reduce bitterness.


Okra is a vegetable known for its high fiber, vitamin C, and folate content. It’s beneficial for heart health and blood sugar regulation. However, okra’s slimy texture when cooked is a deterrent for some. 

  • Tip: Cooking methods like grilling or frying can reduce the sliminess and bring out its delicious flavor.


Durian, known as the “king of fruits,” is highly nutritious but infamous for its strong odor, described by some as akin to rotten onions. Its custard-like texture is also polarizing. 

  • Tip: For those adventurous enough to try, durian can be a unique and healthy treat.

Bitter Melon

Bitter melon is known for its ability to help regulate blood sugar levels. As the name suggests, its bitterness is not warmly welcomed by many palates. 

  • Tip: Cooking bitter melon with sweet or savory dishes can help balance its taste.


Spirulina is a type of blue-green algae rich in protein, vitamins, and minerals. Its strong, seaweed-like flavor makes it a less popular choice. 

  • Tip: Mixing spirulina powder into smoothies or juices can help disguise its taste.
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