What is a superfood?
Superfoods are one of the new trends right now, even though there is no legal or medical definition for Superfood they are foods that are rich in nutrients and considered to be especially beneficial for health and well-being. Superfoods provide nutritional value and contain high amounts of antioxidants, minerals and vitamins that our bodies need to live healthy lifestyles. Eating foods that are high in nutritional value can reduce our risk of many common health issues and slow down the ageing process, increase energy levels and help with depression and anxiety. Here is a list of some of the top superfood you should included in your diet to maximize in nutritional benefits.
Top 10 superfoods
1. WATERCRESS: Watercress is a member of the mustard plant family, and, as the name implies, is a water soluble herb that is an excellent source of phytonutrients. Watercress is one of the top superfoods and definitely is under the radar and not many people know about all amazing benefits. There are only 11 calories in a 3.5 ounce serving, plus it has high levels of antioxidant properties. Watercress is loaded with gluconasturtiin, vitamins A, B-complex, C, E, and K, sodium, potassium, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, selenium, zinc, lutein, riboflavin protein, fiber, and carbohydrates. Watercress can be eaten as a vegetable and it is a good additive in salads, sandwiches, soups, and pureed vegetable drinks. This leafy herb adds a peppery flavour to foods and its fiber content helps to satisfy your hunger quickly, which helps to suppress your desire to snack between meals.
2. BLUEBERRIES: A one cup serving of blueberries, about 84 calories, will provide you with a dynamic supply of fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, and manganese. They contain the highest amount of antioxidant flavonoids found in any other commonly eaten fruits and vegetables. The flavonoids, also known as polyphenols, help to eliminate belly fat. As a hunger curbing snack between meals, the blueberry is sweet tasting and can be eaten fresh, frozen, or mixed in a smoothie.
3. DARK CHOCOLATE/COCOA: This is a favourite weight loss Superfood. A single 3.5 ounce bar of dark chocolate with a cocoa content of 70 – 85%, about 600 calories, is loaded with fiber, iron, magnesium, copper, manganese, zinc, selenium, and potassium. The fat content is primarily saturated and monounsaturated. Cocoa rich dark chocolate has plenty of antioxidants, increases your metabolism rate, and encourages your body to burn more fat. Dark chocolate with cocoa reduces the brain wave signals from ghrelin, the hormone that encourages you to eat more. One or two small squares of dark chocolate after dinner will satisfy your sweet tooth while helping you slim down.
4. FLAXSEEDS/LINSEEDS: One tablespoon serving of flaxseeds, also called linseeds, has 55 calories, and contains a healthy amount of fat, fiber, arginine, glutamine, essential amino acid protein, vitamin B1, copper, and magnesium. The seeds are beneficial as whole seeds and as an oil used in cooking and on salads. The soluble fiber in flaxseeds lets you feel fuller quicker and that works to reduce hunger and cravings between meals. Because of the fiber content in flaxseeds, you should drink 8 to 10 glasses of water every day.
5. GINGER: This outstanding Superfood, also known as ginger root, is a nutritional and healthy spice that can be consumed as a juice or an oil. The ginger root can be sliced and eaten fresh or dried, and it can be used as a powder additive in recipes. Ginger possesses a high degree of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits. Ginger helps the body reduce indigestion and speed up the process of emptying the stomach. The increased metabolic effects of ginger make it a positive weight loss Superfood.
6. GREEN TEA: Green tea contains a moderate amount of caffeine, a stimulant, which increases the body’s metabolism and fat burning capabilities. Green tea is an excellent antioxidant source of Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG) that works to break down fat in the fat cells and move the fat into the blood stream to be used as energy. A cup or two of green tea during the day helps your body to constantly burn calories throughout the day and even when you’re sleeping. Another dietary benefit of drinking green tea is that the liquid fills you up and reduces snack cravings between meals. One of my favourite snacks are the Isadelight chocolates that are infused with green tea.
7. KALE: Kale is a great nutritional leafy green. A 2.4 ounce of raw kale, about 33 calories, provides vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B6, C, and K, Iron, calcium, copper, manganese, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, fiber, and protein. Kale’s antioxidant properties come from its various flavonoids. The beauty about eating kale is that you can eat all that you want by adding it to salads, as a snack, or as an added nutritional boost when you make smoothies. The fiber contents of Kale will help you satisfy your hunger cravings between meals.
8. OATS/OATMEAL: Oats are a beneficial source of whole grain nutrients. A 2.75 ounce serving of dry oats, about 303 calories, supplies your body with healthy carbohydrates, beta-glucan fiber, protein, heart healthy fat, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, iron, zinc, folate, vitamins B1, B3, B5, and B6, calcium, and potassium. Oatmeal is a common source of breakfast food, but oats are also used in muffins, granola bars, and other forms of baked foods. Oatmeal is a fiber filling food that satisfies your hunger quickly so that you tend to eat less often between meals, and that helps you lose weight. I love adding oats to my Isagenix shakes to make them extra filling, especially when Im super hungry and have a big day of activities.
9. SALMON: The nutritional benefits of salmon are extensive. A 3.5 ounce portion of wild salmon has 182 calories and the same size portion of farmed salmon has 206 calories. Salmon is a rich source for omega-3 fats, protein, potassium, vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B9, and B12, selenium, and the antioxidant Astaxanthin. The high protein levels in salmon support the regulation of your body’s hormones that control your eating satisfaction so that you will feel full while eating less. Other benefits of this Superfood are the loss of belly fat and the loss of weight due to an increase in your metabolism.
10. ALMONDS: A one ounce serving of raw or roasted almonds, about 161 calories, delivers a powerhouse of fiber, protein, monounsaturated fat (the good type of fat), vitamin B2, vitamin E, manganese, magnesium, and copper. Their antioxidant properties protect against the aging effects of free radicals. Eating almonds can boost your metabolism. Because of their hunger curbing satisfaction, you’ll feel fuller longer. An added bonus is that 10 – 15% of calories from almonds are not absorbed in your system.
Superfoods contain a bounty of healthy, nutritional values, and they can even help you lose weight and slim down without hunger pains. I highly recommend you incorporate these superfoods into your diet and eat as many raw plant base as you can.
To learn more about the benefits of plant based diets please watch the documentary forks over knives.