Eating healthily can be a tricky endeavor these days. It seems healthy food is expensive and hard to find, where as unhealthy junk food is in endless supply. So how can you ensure you’re getting the right nutrients without spending too much of your time and money? One word: Superfoods. Delicious, nutritious, and often low in calories Superfoods fight disease, improve your health and fill you with more than enough vitamins to get you through the day. Here, we’ve assembled the top 10 Superfoods that are good for you and easy to find in your local supermarket!
We all know that fruit is good for us but are probably the first one you should aim to grab on your next food shop if you’re looking for Superfoods. Berries contain large amounts of fiber, which crucial to a healthy digestive system. Raspberries alone contain 8g per cup, as well as ellagic acid which helps fight cancer.
A single cup of strawberries contains more than your average daily recommendation of vitamin C, whilst cranberries help fight inflammation, improve oral health and can help prevent ulcers. Perhaps the best berry of all though is the blueberry, which is brimming with antioxidants that’ll keep your memory and your mind sharp in addition to protecting your cells from free-radicals.
You guessed it: vitamin C! One large orange contains a full day’s dose of vitamin C, a key element in producing white blood cells and antibodies that fight off illness. Oranges also contain antioxidants, which help your body produce collagen that keeps your skin firm and young.
Throughout the 1970s, Soviet Georgia boasted the most centurions of any country. Their secret? Yogurt. Yogurt contains “good bacteria” which helps keep the gut healthy, as well as calcium, potassium, zinc, vitamin B12 and protein. Yogurt can also be a healthy substitute in recipes that require mayonnaise or sour cream!
Ever wonder why porridge is a thing? It’s because oats supply us with calcium, potassium, vitamin E and protein, which improves our skin quality, lowers cholesterol and improves digestion! Not a bad thing to start your day with, huh?
Nuts – the unsalted ones I presume – are always suggested as a healthy snack because of their heart-friendly unsaturated fats. Walnuts alone are high in alphalinolenic acid, an omega 3 fatty acid that has been linked to healthier hearts. Meanwhile, just one ounce of pistachios contains as much potassium as a small banana!
One word: iron. Iron is critical to transporting oxygen around your body, so it’s pretty important you get enough of it. Just one cup of beans can provide 13mg of iron! They are also packed with fiber, with one cup of lentils containing 8g and the same amount of kidney beans packing 6g.
If you’re looking for high-quality protein – and who isn’t – then look no further than the egg. Egg yolks contain lutein and zeaxanthins, which keep your eyes healthy and protect the skin from UV damage.
Studies have also found that an egg-based breakfast is also a great way to start the day, with participants reporting prolonged energy levels between morning and lunch.
I know what you’re thinking, and yes Popeye did eat a lot of spinach. This may be down to the amounts of vitamin A, C and K the veg is carrying, as well as iron, fiber, calcium, magnesium and folate which helps produce DNA. Although probably not.
Like spinach, broccoli is filled with folate as well as vitamin C, A and K which helps improve bone health. The true hero of broccoli though has to be sulforaphane, which is thought to help fight cancer by stimulating our bodies’ detoxifying enzymes.
10. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes may be something you buy less often than the other products on this list, but you should definitely pick some up soon. The Centre for Science in the Public Health labeled sweet potatoes as one of the nutritious vegetables available, and we can see why! They contain alpha and beta-carotene, which the body converts into vitamin A, helping the bones, eyes and immune system to stay healthy. In fact, just half a cup of chopped sweet potatoes contains four times your daily vitamin A dose. They also contain vitamin C and B6, potassium, manganese, lutein and zeaxanthins!
Add one or some of the Superfoods to at least one meal daily and you’ll feel the benefits! Happy eating!