Keeping up with the never-ending list of superfoods may seem tedious. Walking through the grocery store you may see various foods labeled as such- but what makes a food “super”? A superfood is a food that is rich in compounds considered beneficial to a person’s health and wellness. We believe that superfoods should contain a combination of the following:
Antioxidants: Superfoods should have antioxidant-rich properties. Antioxidants help protect cells from damage (known as oxidative stress) caused by free radicals- unstable molecules that are naturally produced as a reaction to stress, environment or other pressures. Plant-based foods (particularly berries!) are often high in antioxidants.
Fiber: Fiber is an important part of the diet often associated with digestive health. It is the part of plant-based foods that the body can’t easily break down, helping to keep the digestive system clean and healthy. Healthy fiber levels also promote skin health, healthy cholesterol levels, healthy blood sugar levels and weight management. Try incorporating fiber-dense superfoods like chia seeds into the diet.
Fatty acids: Fatty acids occur naturally in fish, nuts and vegetable oils. Fatty acids, such as omega-3 fatty acids, are essential fats necessary to the normal functioning of all tissues in the body. Find omega-3 fatty acids in fish, leafy greens, nuts and unrefined oils.
Eat Healthy, Whole Foods
No single food - not even superfoods – can offer all the nutrition needed to thrive. A healthy diet should combine healthy choices from across all food groups while remaining conscientious of caloric intake. We believe that superfoods should be natural and dense in nutrients. With several different food items being touted as superfoods, it may get confusing as to which ones are good for us.
There is no definitive list- most plant foods can be considered superfoods. If a food was grown out of the ground, picked off a tree or pulled off a vine then the chances are it is nutritionally dense and diverse. Dark leafy greens, berries, legumes, nuts and seeds, avocado, mushrooms, olive oil, whole grains and cruciferous vegetables are a few of the diverse superfoods one can incorporate into the diet.
Our Favorite Superfoods
Chia seeds are unprocessed whole grains derived from the desert plant Salvia hispanica. Chia is an increasingly popular food ingredient and is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, protein, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber. This super seed ticks all of our requirements for making it the perfect superfood.
Nature’s Lab Organic Maca Root Powder
Maca is a cruciferous vegetable, meaning it is related to broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and kale. The root of the maca plant is often dried and consumed in powder form. Maca is a rich source of several important nutrients, vitamins and minerals (such as vitamin C, copper and iron) and is also a good source of fiber.
Nature’s Lab Organic Turmeric Root Powder
Another superfood favorite that we love is Turmeric. This bright yellow spice has earned its reputation as a superfood due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The anti-oxidative properties of curcumin (a component in turmeric) help protect cells from free radical damage. This powerful herb also promotes immune, digestive, liver health and skin health.
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