Superfoods are any type of nutrient dense food that is considered to benefit your health – and although that seems like a general statement, there is a specific criteria that food has to meet in order to be considered a ‘superfood’s. This newfound term has changed the way the health and fitness industry categorize and view dieting. Healthy food companies are now even creating superfoods that come in the form of powders.
Superfoods can come in the form powder, usually known as an all-natural drink containing all the daily requirements of nutrients and anti-oxidants. These types of healthy food products can be food at your local natural food stores or easily bought online.
On the other hand, there are dozens of raw foods, like beans, nuts, seeds and whole grain, which nutritionists have found to fall into the category of ‘superfoods’. In effort to condense the list, we have gathered the top superfoods available for consumption:
Blueberries: the best sources of flavonoids, a vitamin that has been shown to help preserve memory function; used to fight off fight more serious memory problems like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Each cup of berries contains 14 percent daily fiber and 24 percent of the suggested daily intake of Vitamin C.
Different ways to prepare blueberries include: smoothie, frozen, salad or sorbet
Spinach: Like blueberries, it contains a different variety of flavonoid compounds, acting as powerful anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer fighting agents. It also is full of Vitamin K, which is vital in maintaining bone health. It is also full of antioxidants such as vitamin C, beta-carotene, and manganese.
Different ways to prepare spinach: boiled, creamy, boiled or sautéed
Dark Chocolate: Before getting excited, just know that not all dark chocolate is beneficial – only the bars that contain high cocoa content. According to Authority Nutrition, one gram bar of dark chocolate with 70-85% cocoa contains 11 grams of fiber, 67% of the RDA for Iron, 58% of the RDA for Magnesium, 89% of the RDA for Copper, 98% of the RDA for Manganese.
Egg Whites: Known for its low fat and calories, egg whites are a rich source of pure protein. Egg whites contain your body’s entire essential amino acids that are needed to perform daily activities. According to the USDA, one large egg white provides you with 3.6 grams of high-quality protein.
Different ways to prepare egg whites: boiled, raw or omelet style
Pumpkin: The most surprising addition to our list is pumpkin, which most people see as a Halloween decoration rather than a type of food to consume. This fruit, which is very low in calorie intake, contains variety of anti-oxidant vitamins such as vitamin-A, vitamin-C and vitamin-E. It is also recommended by doctors to reduce cholesterol levels. Its seeds are also a great source of dietary fiber and fatty acids.
Different ways to prepare pumpkin: bake, boil or puree
Along with the food listed above, superfoods can be found at your local organic food store or deli – you just need to know the right place to look. If you are trying to decide whether it falls into the superfoods category, just be sure to see if it is low in calories, high in nutrients and has high antioxidant contents.
Recently, the health and fitness industries have started to influence our daily lives, as people are beginning to realize more and more that the food we consume has a profound effect on our bodies. With trends like superfoods changing the way in people view and consume food it seems that as a whole, our culture is on the right path toward healthy living.