Superfoods are the buzzword that has been going around in the health, fitness, and lifestyle industry. And, we’re pretty sure that you must have come across this term once, if not on a regular basis.
Superfoods have successfully managed to enter the mainstream market, with more and more people getting acquainted with them. However, we do understand that there are people out there who are still relatively new to the whole phenomenon.
Well, we are here to tell you that you need not look further, for this blog post is your beginner’s guide to superfoods. This blog will tell you everything there is to know about superfoods.
What are superfoods?
Starting off by answering the most basic and obvious question: what are superfoods?
To put it very simply, superfoods are food items that are very high in nutritional value. Don’t worry, superfoods are not as fancy as they sound. In fact, most superfoods happen to be very affordable and can also be availed very easily.
Not only are superfoods dense in nutritional value, but also relatively low in calories. What makes these foods ‘super’ is their rich content in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Antioxidants, in particular, carry a number of potential health benefits. They help in neutralizing free radicals in the body.
Free radicals are a derivative of energy produced by the body that can actually be very harmful for the body. Antioxidants have the potential to nullify the effect of free radicals on the body and help prevent issues like heart diseases, cancer, stroke, respiratory diseases, Parkinson’s disease, immune deficiency, etc.
Obviously, superfoods cannot be treated as medicine for your body. But, they can be a wonderful addition to your diet to help add that ‘super’ element to it.
Benefits of Superfoods
Weight loss is one of the reasons why superfoods assumed the popularity they enjoy today. Superfoods are dense in nutritional value, while simultaneously being less in calorie count. Including superfoods in your meals can help you feel fuller for longer while restricting your calorie intake all at once, helping you lose weight sustainably.
Managing blood sugar
Most superfoods have low glycemic index, which becomes a boon for patients of diabetes. Moreover, as we stated earlier, superfoods are rich in nutritional value and can help you feel full for longer durations. This helps in managing the insulin production in the body, and can even help in managing insulin resistance.
Superfoods also pride themselves in carrying healing benefits and boosting the body’s immunity. If you are someone who falls sick during changing seasons often, including superfoods rich in citrus content, such as oranges, berries, etc, can greatly help in strengthening your immunity. Not only will this make the body readier to fight off common colds, but also, help in fighting off stronger viruses and diseases.
Including superfoods in your diet
Superfoods can be a great addition to your meals and diet plans, emphasis on ‘addition’. One needs to understand that while superfoods carry tons of goodness, they can’t be treated as a replacement for meals. Hence, they should be treated as an ‘addition’ to your meals, rather than a meal itself.
As stated earlier, no matter how fancy ‘superfoods’ sound, most of them are usually very inexpensive and can be easily availed. You can add them as toppings, grind them into your milkshakes and juices, and even consume them in their original form.
Another great way of including superfoods in your diet is through supplements. There are a number of supplements available out there in the market.
Superfoods can cater to a lot of your health needs. However, it does require some concentrated time and effort to figure out what exactly your body needs, if your requirements are very specific. It must also be kept in mind that while superfoods carry a lot of health benefits, they cannot be treated as a substitute for serious medical conditions. They can surely be consumed to aid you in easing your medical condition and improving your health, but cannot be treated as a ‘medicine’ in itself.
Here’s a list of some of the superfoods that you can include in your diet:
- Nuts like almonds, cashews, walnuts, etc.
- Seeds like chia seeds, flax seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, etc.
- Berries like strawberries, blueberries, gooseberries, mulberry, etc.
- Beans and lentils
- Sea Kelp
- Dark chocolate (not milk chocolates)
Including superfoods in our diets can improve the quality of our meals and the quality of our health alike. While superfoods can’t be treated as a cure to all ailments, they can certainly assist you in improving your health. Once you start identifying your health needs with more clarity, your concept of superfoods is bound to get clearer, too. Superfoods aren’t a food group in themselves. Anything that helps you fulfill your health and fitness requirements, and improve the quality of your meals qualify as a ‘superfood’.