Superfoods are nutrient powerhouses that can help protect against diseases and promote overall health
Superfoods are nutrient powerhouses. While there is no single food that contains all of the nutrition your body needs, superfoods are extremely rich in antioxidants, phytochemicals, vitamins, and minerals that reduce cell damage and protect overall health.
Here are 6 of the top superfoods that you should consider including in your diet.
6 of the top superfoods to include in your diet
Berries such as blueberries, acai berries, and cranberries are packed with antioxidants, flavonoids, fiber, B vitamins, magnesium, potassium, and phosphorus. These nutrients help repair oxidative damage and maintain normal blood sugar levels. High antioxidant levels have been linked to protecting cognitive function and may help slow the growth of cancer cells.
Avocados are rich in monounsaturated fats, which can improve high-density lipoprotein (HDL, good cholesterol) levels. Avocados are also packed with vitamins E and B6, which aid in red blood cell formation, protect body tissues from free radicals, and produce glycogen (an energy source for the body).
Avocados can speed up the absorption of the powerful antioxidants called carotenoids (plant pigments responsible for bright red, yellow, and orange hues) found in other fruits and vegetables.
3. Leafy greens
Leafy greens such as kale, spinach, cabbage, and broccoli are powerful superfoods that are rich in vitamins that can help prevent blood clots, support bone health, boost metabolism, and fight certain cancers.
For example, kale is high in vitamins A, C, and K and calcium, manganese, iron, and omega-3 fatty acids, which help protect the body from inflammatory conditions, such as arthritis, asthma, and certain autoimmune disorders.
Kefir is a fermented beverage made from raw milk and kefir grain. It has cultured bacteria and yeasts that are good for your digestive system. These probiotics help regulate the gut microbiome, improving digestion and encouraging regular bowel movements.
5. Olive oil
The Mediterranean diet is widely respected because it embraces the daily consumption of olive oil. Olive oil contains monounsaturated fatty acids and antioxidant properties that help lower inflammation in the body. Olive oil is also a good source of vitamin E and polyphenols, which help reduce the risk of heart disease.
Salmon is rich in vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, and selenium, all of which prevent cell damage and benefit hair, skin, nails, and bones. Including them in your diet can lower blood pressure, reduce inflammation, and even boost mood.
What to keep in mind when eating superfoods
While incorporating superfoods into your diet can help you reap the benefits of disease-fighting foods rich in antioxidants, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, keep in mind that the key to health is a balanced diet.
Eating superfoods alone does not equate to eating healthy. Therefore, focus on eating a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein in order to make sure you are getting several important nutrients on a daily basis.
Medically Reviewed on 5/20/2022
McManus KD. 10 superfoods to boost a healthy diet. Harvard Health Publishing. https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/10-superfoods-to-boost-a-healthy-diet-2018082914463