Are you eating any superfood?
We always hear about the importance of adhering to a well-balanced healthy diet; the healthy eating mantra is quite ubiquitous. But the reality is that not everyone is in tune with what constitutes healthy eating.
When you think about your food choices over the past twenty-four hours, are you actually able to identify foods which you have a clear cut understanding of its nutritional value and health benefits? We all need to eat in order to fuel our bodies, but some people solely focus on making food choices that simply satisfy a craving.
If you don’t remain cognizant of the nutritional constituents of the food you ingest, then you are really missing out on daily opportunities to improve your overall health.
Nonetheless, when we talk about healthy eating, there are actually certain foods that have amplified health benefits known as “super foods”. These foods are highly nutritious and wonderful options to enhance any healthy diet.
Here are six superfoods that are easy to incorporate into your meals and may also transform your health:
(1)Green Tea: What makes green tea so special? It contains both polyphenols and catechins which are important bioactive compounds found in certain foods and beverages.
Green tea is especially abundant in the catechin called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which has potent antioxidant properties to combat free radicals that may be harmful to the body. Some research has linked drinking catechin rich tea with weight loss and even lowered levels of body fat.
The compound L-theanine is also found in green tea and has been linked to having an anti-anxiety and calming effect on the body.
Additionally, green tea contains the potent flavonoid quercetin which has anti-inflammatory activity in the body. It’s really no surprise that it makes the superfood list and has even found its way into many beauty products for hair, skin, and the body on account of the overall rejuvenating effect.
(2) Kale: Kale is a cruciferous vegetable that has earned its superfood status for several reasons.
First, it is highly nutrient dense and has extremely high levels of vitamins A, C, K, and lutein. Most people would be surprised to find out that the vitamin C content in kale is higher than the amount found in oranges.
Remember that vitamin C is a crucial vitamin that can play a role in strengthening the immune system; you definitely want to find ways to include it in your daily diet.
Vitamin A and K are both great for your bone health, while lutein has protective properties for your visual health. Kale is also rich in a compound known as sulforaphane that has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging properties.
(3)Okra: Okra also known as Abelmoschus esculentuss is a fiber rich food that is widely used in African cooking. The soluble fiber content promotes lower cholesterol in the body and can additionally play a role in improving glycemic control in those with diabetes.
The insoluble fiber found in okra is great for digestive health. This low calorie vegetable serves as a wonderful source of protein and is rich in vitamins like foliate, vitamin C, and vitamin A.
(4)Blueberries: Blueberries are also antioxidant rich and studies have associated the fruit with keeping your memory sharp, improving cognition, and your overall brain health. It also contains an added anti-aging health bonus because the fruit is highly rich in flavonoids like anthocyanin, which may aid in reducing the signs of skin aging and damage.
(5)Oatmeal: Oatmeal is another great fiber source rich in antioxidants; the potent antioxidant activity is derived from polyphenols known as avenanthramides.
Avenanthramides have been linked to regulating blood pressure, and reducing both atherosclerosis and heart disease risk. Oatmeal also contains beta glucan which plays a role in lowering total cholesterol levels as well as LDL cholesterol (“bad cholesterol”) in the body.
(6)Salmon: When it comes to an exceptional choice of fish that is loaded with nutrients, salmon ranks high on the superfood list.
The high omega-3-fatty acid content of salmon has some anti-inflammatory capacity that may potentially help reduce symptoms of arthritis. It may also aid in lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease and improving the HDL “good cholesterol” levels in the body.
Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids can be beneficial in enhancing not only cardiovascular health, but also cognitive functioning. There have even been studies associating eating salmon with an improvement in depressive symptoms.
There are many reasons why you should make it a goal of yours to routinely include super foods into your diet. The list of these nutrient rich foods is definitely not limited to the aforementioned items. The key is to remember that adding some super foods to your meals can help you remain on the path of healthy eating.