Best Known Superfoods and How To Eat Them
There is no single formula for optimal weight and wellness management. However, the most nutrient-dense foods that are known to boost health are given the label “superfood” by the diet industry. If you’re looking to meet your own nutrition goals, here are some esteemed groceries to add to your cart before checking out.
From one of the healthiest regions of the world, olive oil is extracted from olives and has long been a staple of the Mediterranean diet. Due to its high levels of monosaturated fatty acids, olive oil is anti-inflammatory and can reduce your risk of diabetes and cardiac disease. It also contains vitamins K and E, which are great for skin health. There are several varieties of olive oil from light to extra virgin, and you can use them to cook just about anything, but keep your temperature below 375 degrees Fahrenheit to avoid hitting the smoke point.
Green leafy vegetables can potentially ward off cancer and chronic illness due to their high levels of anti-inflammatory compounds. They are also an excellent source of nutrients including vitamin C, calcium and zinc. Some of the most popular greens include:
- Collard greens
- Swiss chard
Some dark greens can taste bitter on their own or in a salad, but you can add them to many different recipes for soups, smoothies and other dishes for additional flavor, fiber and bulk to keep you feeling fuller longer.
Seeds and Nuts
Seeds and nuts are high in healthy fats, fiber and protein. Studies show they protect against inflammation, oxidative stress and heart disease. Additionally, they’ve been linked to weight loss when added to a balanced diet. Just a few of many excellent options for healthy snacks include pistachios, almonds, chia seeds and pumpkin seeds. Combine your favorite nuts and seeds with healthy oils, kinds of butter and isolate protein powder to make delicious energy snack balls for extra fuel throughout the day.
Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and more are loaded with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that contribute to greater healthy by reducing cardiac disease and other conditions. Some berries have also been found to be effective at treating digestive problems and immune disorders when used as a supplement to medical interventions. Luckily, they are extremely versatile, and you can add them to just about any dish. Sprinkle a handful of berries over your yogurt at breakfast or dump several into your lunchtime salad.
Despite some controversy through the years about a link to high LDL cholesterol, eggs remain one of the healthiest superfoods you can consume. In fact, the latest research has shown eggs to increase HDL cholesterol, which may reduce the risk of heart disease. Not only do they contain vital nutrients like iron, selenium and phosphorous, but whole eggs contain lutein, an antioxidant that enhances vision and eye health. Preparing them is quick and you can easily substitute eggs for other proteins in vegetarian or meatless dishes.
As a staple of ancient Chinese medicine, green tea has long been exploited for its nutritional and medicinal properties to fight diabetes and prevent cancer. Rich in antioxidants as well as caffeine, research shows it to be effective for weight loss in many people. Plus, you can drink as much green tea as you want, hot or cold, all day long.
Garlic is a root vegetable closely related to shallots, leeks and onions. A common staple of cuisine internationally, the distinct flavor of garlic is beloved worldwide. Loaded with vitamin C, vitamin B6, selenium and manganese, and known for reducing the risk of high blood pressure and certain cancers, it has also become invaluable as a superfood. Plus, garlic is incredibly versatile and you can add it to almost everything you cook.
Another holdover from ancient medicine is ginger, a root from a Chinese flowering plant. Ginger is full of antioxidants and is widely used to manage nausea and digestive troubles, as well as relief for acute and chronic pain. In its culinary capacity, ginger is perfect for stir-fries, soups and sauces. You can also find it in a variety of forms, such as powder, juice or oil.
Avocado is incredibly nutritious and has become a favorite among the health-conscious in recent years. This tropical fruit is rich in fiber, vitamins and healthy fats, making it a perfect addition to your weekly shopping list. Avocados are delicious on their own, as a side dish or garnish for a variety of dishes. Sliced, diced, or mashed, you’ll never get tired of this rich, awesome superfood.
Realizing your optimal health through nutrition is about more than trendy foods or fad diets. Support your own wellness by incorporating as many superfoods as you can each day to ensure your body is able to function at its best.