Superfood is a marketing term used to describe foods with extraordinary nutritional profiles. Though some food items contain more nutrients than others, the goal of coining this term was to sell more products.
The fact is that most fruits and vegetables are rich in nutrients, vitamins, and minerals, but some contain more than others, so they’re called ‘superfoods’. The same goes for vegetables and other food items like eggs, nuts, and fish. One thing is for sure: if you choose to eat a healthy diet filled with fresh and unprocessed food, you’re eating superfoods.
If you’re wondering “what are some superfoods I can add to my diet?”, here’s a list of 9 of the most powerful superfoods you should implement into your life.
What Are Superfoods?
Superfoods are a group of foods that contain high amounts of nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, amino acids, protein, healthy fats, and antioxidants.
However, one single superfood can’t meet all your dietary needs by itself. You should eat a balanced diet made of healthy, fresh, unprocessed food in order to feel all the health benefits of superfoods.
Listed below are some of the most popular superfoods you should include in your diet.
Berries, including strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and cranberries, are included in the superfood list because they’re rich in vitamin C which is a powerful antioxidant. They also have a variety of other vitamins and minerals, as well as dietary fiber which can help with digestion.
You eat berries as is or add them to your morning smoothie, oatmeal, fruit salad, or acai bowl. If possible, buy organic berries or visit a local farmer’s market to find the freshest berries. There’s a difference in taste and nutritional profile that you just won’t find in store-bought or frozen berries.
2. Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are an essential part of any superfood diet because they’re rich in healthy fats and omega-3 fatty acids. Nuts such as walnuts, hazelnuts, Macadamia nuts, cashews, almonds, and pistachio can help improve brain function, maintain optimal heart health, and help with weight loss.
The same goes for seeds, especially sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, flax seeds, and hemp seeds. They’re rich in vitamins and minerals, as well as antioxidants that can help reduce blood pressure and blood sugar.
Eggs are an everyday item that’s a superfood because it’s rich in protein, vitamins and minerals, and antioxidants. They’re great for eye health, bone health, and a healthy heart.
However, as with every other food, make sure to consume them moderately. Whenever possible, try to eat fresh farm eggs from a local farmer or farmer’s market from free-range chickens. These eggs are richer in nutrients than store-bought eggs from caged chickens.
4. Kefir and Yogurt
Kefir and yogurt are two of the healthiest beverages you should include in your diet. Even though they’re made of milk, they’re fermented products, which means they’re easier to tolerate for people with lactose intolerance.
Kefir and yogurt both contain high amounts of calcium which is great for bone health. They also have probiotics, protein, and B vitamins, all of which help maintain a healthy nervous and digestive system.
If you don’t consume dairy, you can also find plant-based kefir made of coconut milk or rice milk that’s been fortified with probiotics. Make sure to read the ingredients list if you’re buying mass-produced kefir as it can contain added sugar and other unnecessary ingredients. It’s best to get real kefir from a trusted farmer or make your own kefir at home.
5. Dark Leafy Greens
Kale, spinach, Swiss chard, and Turnip greens are superfoods because they’re rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and dietary fiber. They’re great in salads, smoothies, plant-based meals, and even sandwiches, so aim to always consume them fresh after rinsing them with water.
6. Cruciferous Vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower and broccoli are among the most powerful types of superfood. This is because they’re rich in dietary fiber which helps with digestion. They also have a variety of vitamins and minerals including vitamin K, folate, vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, calcium, iron, and magnesium.
Other cruciferous veggies include Brussels sprouts, cabbage, bok choy, and collard greens.
Avocados are gaining popularity as a superfood because they’re rich in healthy fats, specifically omega-3. They’re great for heart health because of the healthy fats but are also rich in magnesium which helps reduce high blood pressure and blood sugar.
Avocados have a high amount of dietary fiber which is great for digestion. You can eat avocados sliced on a toast, add them in smoothies, or make healthy desserts because of their creamy consistency.
8. Ginger and Turmeric
Ginger and turmeric are an immunity-boosting duo that can help soothe even the worse of symptoms. They both belong to the same family Zingiberaceae and are rich in anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-fungal properties.
Ginger contains gingerol, a powerful compound that can help with nausea, indigestion, symptoms of cold and flu, weight loss, and even mild pain relief. Turmeric contains curcumin, which can help fight inflammation in the body, may help prevent heart disease and can help keep sugar levels steady in Type 2 diabetes.
These two plants are among the most important superfoods for your diet to help boost your immune system, fight inflammation, and provide your body and mind with optimal health.
Fatty foods are rich in omega-3, but the healthiest among them all is salmon, specifically wild-caught salmon. Try to avoid farmed salmon as they’re not as nutrient-rich as wild salmon and may not have all the wonderful health benefits.
Salmon is rich in healthy fats which can help keep your heart healthy and maintain a healthy weight. It’s also rich in selenium, potassium, and B vitamins which help maintain a healthy and balanced nervous system. Salmon is a healthy source of protein that helps keep your muscles, bones, and skin healthy.
What Are Some Superfoods To Add To Your Diet? Now You Know!
Eating a healthy and balanced diet full of nutrients can do wonders for your physical and mental health. You’ll not only feel lighter and more vital, but your metabolism will change, your skin will improve, and your heart and digestive system will be healthier than ever.
So what are some superfoods you can add to your diet? Start simple by eating more leafy greens, avocados, and eggs. Then, you can add salmon and other fatty fish into your diet, nuts and seeds, and all kinds of berries.
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