What are Superfoods?
Superfood is a marketing term for food with supposed health benefits as a result of some part of its nutritional analysis or its overall nutrient density.- Wikipedia
They are tagged as superfood label because they’re loaded with nutrients and play a role in preventing and managing various diseases. These are naturally high in antioxidants which is a substance that helps fight ‘free radicals’.
They contain a large percentage of vitamins, amino acids, and antioxidants. Superfoods often have 12 or more nutritional properties, unlike most healthy foods, which normally contain two or three.
Let’s begin with a List of 10 Superfoods from your kitchen which are super healthy and can power-pack your meals and snacks.
Coconuts are packed with powerful nutrition. Its a unique combination of ‘healthy’ fatty acids, which can have a positive effect on health, coconuts are also a rich source of minerals, including copper, iron, zinc, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium.
Every food product derived from the coconut provides different nutritional value. For example; Its Flesh is a good source of vitamin B and potassium. Its Milk has significant benefits for hair, skin, and health. Coconut oil is one of the healthiest oils available in the market, high in lauric acid, a type of fat which promotes good cholesterol and lowers bad cholesterol.
Include coconut water in your daily diet and coconut oil while cooking veggies as a healthy fat.
Tomatoes are the major dietary source of the antioxidant known as lycopene, which is linked to many health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease and cancer. They are loaded with vitamin C, potassium, vitamin K and folate.
You can include them in your daily diet in the form of salads, soups and pasta sauce provided its cooked in less and healthy oil. The anti-oxidant lycopene in tomatoes becomes more beneficial for your body to use when tomatoes are cooked in a healthy fat such as olive oil.
Berries like strawberries, blueberries, Indian gooseberries, and grapes are naturally high in fiber, berries are naturally sweet, and their rich colors mean they are high in antioxidants and disease-fighting nutrients. It helps in lower cholesterol level and may help in improving blood sugar and insulin response.
You can include them in your smoothies, shakes, cereals or just pop them raw as a snack.
Yogurt contains good bacteria and probiotics which have positive effects on brain health and good for the stomach at the same time. It’s also rich in nutrients which strengthen your immune system. A good source of calcium and protein which may protect against osteoporosis.
Include yogurt in your diet in plain form or by adding fruits. Also, you can use it as sour cream or in your dips.
Garlic is definitely a superfood with its anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and antibacterial properties. Garlic can treat sickness including the common cold. The active compounds in garlic can reduce blood pressure and also improves cholesterol levels, which may lower the risk of heart disease. Garlic is highly nutritious and has very few calories, consuming raw garlic has a host of benefits.
Include raw garlic in your diet or you can also use it in your dressing over salads and dips.
Nuts and nut butter are a great source of unsaturated fats that help lower blood cholesterol. Nuts like hazelnuts, almonds, cashews, walnuts, and pecans are a good source of protein. These are a staple in the Mediterranean diet, which has been linked to longevity and can prevent cardiovascular diseases.
Include them in your diet by having a variety of them, However, remember to stick to a small quantity. When it comes to nut butter choose all natural with no added sugar and salts. Have them as a snack on your salads and desserts.
Beans are also called legumes and pulses and include lentils, kidney beans, black beans, garbanzo beans, soybeans etc. They are the perfect balance of fiber, protein, and complex carbs. Also, they are plant-based protein, you can use them to your diet and reduce meat consumption which according to WHO may increase cancers as they are processed. Consuming beans can help reduce the risk of heart disease.
Include beans in your diet as a salad, soups, wraps or as a hummus dip or kidney bean dip etc.
Pomegranate seeds get their deep red color from polyphenols. These chemicals are powerful antioxidants. Pomegranate contains higher levels of antioxidants than most of the other fruits. and to your surprise, it has three times more antioxidants than the red wine and green tea. Its a great source of vitamin C and aids digestion.
The antioxidants present in pomegranate are high concentration is believed to delay the progress of Alzheimer disease and protect memory. As per nutritionists, pomegranate juice is the most heart-healthy juice and protects your heart and arteries. Flavonols present in pomegranate juice may help block the inflammation that contributes to osteoarthritis.
Include a juice of a single pomegranate which has more than 40% of your daily requirement of vitamin C. Vitamin C can be broken down when heated, so opt for cold pressed, homemade or fresh pomegranate fruit to get the most of the nutrient.
Beetroots are low in calories and a great source of nutrients, including fiber, folate, and vitamin C. It also contains nitrates and pigments that help in lowering blood pressure and improve athletic performance.
Include beetroots in your diet as salad or juice. Also, you can add boiled beets to your dough to make healthy lavash etc.
So which one is your favorite superfood? let us know in the comments section below.