By now, we’ve all heard the buzzword “superfoods”. What are they, and do they really have the nutritional benefits they’re touted to have? At Natures Naturals, we thought this was worth looking into.
Kale is a spinach-like green vegetable that has many nutritional benefits. It is high in iron, fibre, calcium, vitamin K, and chlorophyll, and is an alkaline substance. Alkaline foods help keep your stomach calm, and lower your body’s acid levels, which helps your organs to run healthily.
It contains many other beneficial vitamins and minerals. Kale is great in salads and vegetable sauces. When fried, it turns quite crispy and is delicious, but you lose some of its healthy qualities and add fat.
Chia is a small seed that was cultivated by the Aztecs in ancient times, being one of their primary sources of carbohydrates. It contains a high level of omega 3, which is good for your heart and brain health (not to mention your joints, skin, nails, and hair). It also contains B vitamins, zinc, magnesium, iron, calcium, and more.
Goji berries are a small Asian fruit that is most commonly consumed dried, similar to raisins. Goji juice and wine is also available. It can be brewed as a tea. It contains very high levels of vitamin C, which is an antioxidant. Antioxidants are great for your body, as they fight free radicals (free radicals are known to cause illnesses such as cancer).
They also have a mild laxative effect (being very high in fibre), so one should only consume about a handful of goji berries per day. They contain high levels of protein, copper, potassium, vitamin A, iron, and more.
Macadamia nuts are one of the most nutrient-rich nuts, containing a high level of natural monounsaturated fat (the good kind – can lower cholesterol), thiamine, vitamin B6, protein, magnesium, manganese, fibre, and more.
Olives and olive related products are another great health source. They are high in antioxidants, have anti-inflammatory properties, and are known to be good for your circulatory system and brain.
Although we’ve listed some examples of truly healthy superfoods above, remember that most natural foods are high in nutrients, and a balanced diet doesn’t need to focus on superfoods.
The term isn’t really a bad thing, as it has helped bring attention to some very healthy food sources, and it has inspired people to consume the foods that have the specific nutritional properties that they need.