It only takes a little knowledge about food and it will go along way in terms of your health. ‘Superfoods‘ are a term we have all become familiar with over the last few years, and there are many foods that deserve this status due to their superior quantities of nutrients, phytochemicals and antioxidants in comparison to other foods.
Below is a list of the top 6 best super foods that are easily found in your supermarket and are simply bursting with nutrients.
DO YOU NEED MORE ENERGY?
For most of us the answer is YES. Our vitality depends on a balance of around 50 different nutrients that include calories, amino acids, essential fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. Deficiencies in the last 3 are very common and can lead to lethargy, a compromised immune system and many other diseases and illnesses.
For energy specifically, hundreds of chemical reactions need to take happen involving 30 different vitamins and minerals. The body needs these essential micro-nutrients to unlock the energy potential from the food we eat, and if just one of them is missing then vitality and optimal performance in both the body and brain cannot happen.
You were Born to Feel Good!
So knowing all this, it is easy to see why high value nutrition food is crucial, but the problem is a lot of people have no clue they are not performing at their optimal levels. They have lived a certain way their whole life – yes they feel tired a lot, have brain fog, weight issues, anxiety, depression, aches and pains and a million other little niggles, but it seems normal to them.
But this is actually not normal for the body, and shouldn’t have to be either: you are supposed to have energy and vitality, and to feel good about your life and not feel like you are just muddling through.
Easy Steps to More Energy and Vitality Like Never Before
This is where eating superfoods can help you feel healthier, have more energy, and a zest for life that you maybe have never before experienced – especially if you have always numbed yourself out with sugar and junk foods.
It really does work, if you start to make even small changes for your health you will start to feel good and you will become ‘addicted‘ to the high of feeling good – and there are a lot worse addictions that that out there than that!
Start incorporating these superfoods into your diet today, the more the better, and you will start to feel the difference. For much more in depth advice on turning your health around with a plant based diet, please read the posts I have added below for you. Here you will find easy ways on how to slip effortlessly into a healthy way of eating, and make those life long changes that seem so hard (they’re honestly not).
THE BEST SUPER FOODS – TOP 6
Avocados are the first on the list as I believe they truly are the number one superfood EVER! They are bursting with heart healthy monounsaturated fatty acids, contain high amounts of potassium (more than a banana), are high in fiber, and also boast high levels of Vitamin K, E, C, B5, B6, potassium and folate.
Avocados can also –
- Lower Cholesterol – can help lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, cutting your risk of heart disease.
- Boost vitamin absorption – avocados contain fats that boosts the absorption of all the other nutrients contained in it. Eating fats such as avocado (or any other healthy fat for that matter) along with a meal will help boost the absorption of vitamins A, D, E and K and the antioxidants by up to 15 fold. Now that’s impressive!
- Offer eye protection – due to their antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin. These nutrients dramatically reduce the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration.
- Help you to lose weight – avocados are low GI so help to keep blood sugar stable, plus their fats make you feel satiated which will keep you full for hours, and stop you from snacking later on. This really does work, I have half an avocado with my main meal every day and I’m full for the rest of the evening. The avocado also helps you to lose stomach fat specifically.
You can easily incorporate avocados into your diet by adding them to smoothies, salads, sandwiches or guacamole – or just chop them and add them as a side with a meal. Squeezing lemon juice on avocado not only adds to the flavour, but also stops them from going brown and oxidising, which happens very quickly after exposure to air.
These little purple gems are not only low in calories and sugar, but contain one of the highest amounts of antioxidants of all the common fruits and vegetables. Their main antioxidant compound (flavonoid) that they contain are called anthocyanins, and is the reason for its super powerful antioxidant qualities.
Blueberries can also –
- Offer cancer protection – due to their antioxidant capacities they can help neutralise free radicals and reduce DNA damage, which can help protect us from cancer.
- Lower heart disease risk – can protect LDL (bad cholesterol) in the blood from oxidative damage. Oxidative damage to LDL cholesterol is a vital step towards heart disease and so MUST be avoided.
- Help lower blood pressure – considering high blood pressure is a precurser to strokes and heart attacks, keeping it down is a must – and a great reason to eat blueberries.
- Help in the prevention of heart disease – although only small studies have been done on this so far with much success, it seems likely to be true given the already known benefits blueberries have on the precursers to heart attacks.
- Improve memory – as oxidative stress can affect the brain, blueberries may help to improve memory and brain function due to their high amounts of antioxidants.
- Be anti-diabetic – the compound called anthocyanins in blueberries can be anti-diabetic due to its beneficial effects on insulin sensitivity and the metabolism of glucose, thus helping to lower blood sugar levels.
- Ward off bladder infections – just like cranberries, blueberries can help fight urinary tract infections by preventing bacteria binding to the wall of the bladder.
- Repair muscle – blueberries help repair damage after exercise and hard training, due to their antioxidant and anti inflammatory properties.
Broccoli is full of fiber, vitamins B6, B1, A, E, potassium, magnesium, manganese, omega 3 fatty acids, protein, zinc, calcium, iron, and niacin.
Broccoli can also-
- Help prevent and treat many types of cancer – due to its strong anti-carcinogenic compounds and other anti cancer nutrients, and is especially beneficial for breast and uterine cancer as it helps remove excess estrogens out of the body.
- Be a great detoxifyer of the body – broccoli helps remove free radicals from the blood, therefore purifying it of toxins to help prevent diseases.
- Anti aging – can slow down the aging process due to its antioxidant vitamins of C and E, and essential fatty acids: all of which the skin, hair and nails need to look glowing and stay youthful. Broccoli also helps reverse the negative effects of sun damage thanks to the photonutrients it contains.
- Be great for stomach problems – as broccoli is high in fiber it helps with constipation, and its other nutrients like magnesium also cure acidity, help digestion, and help the absorption of the other nutrients it contains.
- Help prevent heart disease – steamed broccoli specifically can help prevent heart disease, as its high nutrient content helps reduce bad cholesterol. Steaming helps broccoli’s fiber combine with bile and also helps it retain more of its nutrients intact.
- Eye health – broccoli contains an array of all the nutrients needed to maintain eye health, thus protecting against macular degeneration and cataracts.
- Improve immunity – all of broccoli’s impressive nutrient profile work together to boost the immune system.
- Be great for bone health – especially in the elderly, children or pregnant and lactating women. Broccoli is full of highly absorbable calcium making it perfect for strong bones.
- Help treat anemia – due to its high amount of copper and iron, both of which are lacking in those with this condition.
- Help regulate blood pressure – chromium is found in abundance in broccoli and is a compound that helps regulate blood sugar, which in turn regulates blood pressure.
Beetroot, or beets as they’re sometimes called, are high in potassium and a good source of many other minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, zinc and sodium. Beetroot is often used by athletes for its endurance properties making it a superfood superstar.
Beetroot can also-
- Help lower blood pressure – due to its nitrate compounds that convert into citric acid, which in turn help to relax the blood vessels.
- Increase muscles power in heart patients – one 2015 study showed that the nitrates in beetroot juice increased the muscle power of patients in heart failure by 13% just 2 hours after consuming the juice.
- Slow down the progression of dementia – these same nitrates increase blood flow to the brain, specifically the frontal lobes which are associated with cognitive behaviour and thinking.
- Cancer prevention – the vibrant colour in beetroot comes from an antioxidant called betalain. These betalains may help protect against cancer due to their free radical scavenging abilities: they also help destroy unstable cells.
- Immune supporter – beetroot contains good amounts of vitamin C, which is great for the immune system and as an antioxidant. Vitamin C also scavenges the free radicals in the body and is a well known anti-ager as it helps with the production of collagen, which keeps skin youthful and vibrant.
- Support the liver – another substance in beetroot called betaine helps reduce and prevent deposits of fat in the liver and helps protect the liver from toxins.
- May help reduce bad cholesterol – down to its high amounts of phytonutrients and flavonoids.
Points to Remember with Beetroot:
Beetroot can turn your urine and stools red, but do not be alarmed by this as it is perfectly harmless. If you have low blood pressure then beetroot juice may lower it further but only if drunk regularly: do not drink beetroot if you are prone to calcium oxalate kidney stones.
Almonds are a great low GI snack, packed with fiber, protein, and other antioxidants that work together to give you a boost of energy. They are the most nutritionally dense of all the nuts and are a great source of vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, iron, and potassium.
Almonds can also –
- Be beneficial to the heart – and may help reduce bad cholesterol.
- Can help you lose weight – snacking on almonds in moderation, instead of other junk foods, automatically ups your intake of protein and fiber and therefore make you feel full. They will also stabalise your blood sugar, stopping that urge for sugary junk foods. Another plus point for almonds (and all nuts in general) is about 10-15% of their calories are not even absorbed – so yet another reason to make them one of your favorite weight loss snacks.
- Help control blood sugar – because of their low carbohydrate, high fat, protein, and magnesium ratio, this makes them the perfect blood sugar balancing snack for diabetics.
Garlic is full of a sulfur containing compound called allicin which is prized for its antibacterial properties, and many other nutrients including Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, C, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, sodium, zinc, potassium, and phosphorus. It offers triple protection as it is an anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal all in one. If you don’t like the taste of garlic your really should consider taking supplements as you just can’t afford not to have these fantastic benefits in your life.
Garlic also –
- Is anti aging – garlic purifies the blood and flushes out your system to give you a healthy glow: it also protects the skin from free the radicals that slow down the depletion of precious collagen.
- Can kill cold and flu viruses – garlic can kill these viruses AND stop them from even getting a hold on you in the first place. I have taken a 2000mg garlic supplement for the last 5 years and I have never had a cold, flu or virus in that time – prior to doing this I regularly got colds all through the winter months. You really do need to buy the one that isn’t odourless, becaue it is the smell that means it still has all its active compounds. Just take it before a meal or bed if you are worried about and it affecting your breath.
- Can help prevent heart disease – garlic has the ability to help lower cholesterol, and also helps regulate blood sugar and blood pressure – all of which lowers heart disease risks.
- Be highly anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral – garlic has been used for the last 7000 years in the treatment of fungal, bacterial and parasite infections – so nobody can say that it’s not tried and tested!
Points to Remember About Garlic:
If you are asthmatic you should consult your doctor before eating large quantities, or supplementing with garlic. And you should stop garlic supplements 1 week before an operation.
GREEN SUPER FOOD POWDER
I couldn’t finish this list without mentioning adding a very important detoxifying food like this to your healthy eating plan.
If you cannot get enough of the above superfoods into your everyday diet, OR if you have extra cash to spare and want to boost your antioxidant intake even more, then you should most definitely be taking a shot every day of some kind of green superfood powder such as chlorella, spirulina, wheatgrass or barley grass. Remember HIGH antioxidant intake is the key to health.
Green super food powders will not only ensure you keep you body detoxifying itself from all the hundreds of chemicals, fumes, fertilisers etc that it is bombarded with every day, but will also help keep you trim. When your body can safety eliminate toxins (which are stored in our fat cells), then these fat cells will shrink.
Super Food Blends
You should ideally take a mix of all the powerful green super food powders like you get in ‘Dr. Schulze’s Super Food’ This is a botanical, organic blend of lots of algaes such as spirulina, chlorella, blue-green alga, wheatgrass, seaweed, beetroot, cherry, spinach, rosehips and much more. You feel this stuff working within about 20 MINUTES, you will notice an energy boost and sparkling eyes – so you can only imagine the good it’s doing on the INSIDE!
Tip: Unless you are sick or recovering from an operation, then you do not need as much as it says on the jar. I find I get the benefits from 2 heaped teaspoons in water or juice a day after a meal.