"Superfoods" For The Win
Althoug not scientifically classified as "superfoods", these foods are superb in our minds!
“You are what you eat” is probably one of the most used phrases in the health industry, and for a good reason. To achieve good health and well-being, we must nourish our bodies from the inside.
Many of us already follow or at least attempt to follow a healthy and balanced diet. But is there a way to incorporate even more nutrient-rich foods into our diet? The answer is – yes! Adding superfoods to your diet will most certainly increase the nutritional density of your diet.
Many healthcare professionals argue that the food industry coined superfoods as a marketing term, leading to the false idea that a single ‘superfood’ can prevent diseases and significantly improve health. Although incorporating these foods into your diet will certainly not cure or prevent diseases, they offer significant value in improving health, especially when combined with a balanced diet.
Superfoods contain higher volumes of minerals, nutrients, and antioxidants. Not only do they boost your health, but they also add so much flavor to your meals. It is a win-win!
As you know, we at Country Life Natural Foods are all about a healthy diet and lifestyle. And if we can do anything to improve it, even more, why not?!
Let’s take a look at ten superfoods you can easily add to your diet and how they benefit your health!
10 SUPERFOODS TO ADD TO YOUR DIET
Berries are a great source of vitamins, nutrients, fiber, and antioxidants.
Some of the most common berries include Raspberries, Strawberries, Blueberries, Blackberries, and Cranberries.
Not only do they add enormous nutritional value, but they are also known to improve digestion.
Berries can easily be incorporated into your diet by adding them to your breakfast, smoothie, or salad. Dried berries are also fantastic as a mid-morning or afternoon snack.
We have some delicious dried berries for you HERE.
DARK LEAFY GREENS
Common dark leafy greens include Kale, Swiss Chard, Collard Greens, Turnip Greens, and Spinach.
These green superfoods are an excellent source of folate, zinc, calcium, iron, magnesium, Vitamin C, and fiber.
As a bonus, these dark leafy greens have very few carbohydrates, sodium, and cholesterol.
You can add these greens to any salad or vegetable dish. They especially work well in smoothies.
Legumes including beans, soybeans, lentils, peas, peanuts, and alfalfa are fantastic plant-based protein sources. Not only are they high in protein but they are also low in fat and sugar.
Legumes are loaded with nutrients, minerals, and disease-fighting properties. Many of their health benefits include reducing blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and risk for heart disease.
Due to their high fiber content, beans and lentils are excellent to keep you fuller for longer and promote good gut health.
Enjoy legumes in any dish where you would have used meat.
You can find all beans and lentils HERE.
Seeds like flax and chia seeds are great to incorporate into your diet daily. Not only are they easy to add to dishes but since most are tasteless, they are versatile and take on the flavor of the dish.
Seeds are high in fiber and an excellent source of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Thanks to their high fiber content, seeds can help with digestive issues like constipation, lower cholesterol levels, and improve insulin sensitivity.
Chia seeds contain antioxidants such as caffeic acid, chlorogenic acid, kaempferol, and quercetin. These all help reduce free radicals in the body and fight inflammation that causes chronic diseases.
Chia seeds can be added to desserts, breakfast cereals, or enjoyed in a smoothie. Add flax seeds to hot or cold cereals, casseroles, sauces, or salad.
Stock up on seeds HERE
Avocado is a wonderfully tasty and highly nutritious addition to any diet.
Eating avocado may reduce your risk of heart disease and diabetes and is also linked to reducing inflammation in the body.
Other health benefits associated with avocados include osteoarthritis relief, fetal health support, and reducing depression risk.
Avocados can be enjoyed on their own or as an addition to any salad or wrap. Many chefs in the vegan food industry also use avocados instead of butter and oil to make chocolate mousse and chocolate brownies.
Nuts are an excellent healthy go-to snack in-between meals when hunger strikes. They are a rich source of plant protein, have plenty of dietary fiber, are high in heart-healthy fats (including plant omega-3 fatty acids), and are low in saturated fats.
They also pack various plant compounds with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which can protect against oxidative stress.
Research has found that eating nuts can have a protective effect against heart disease, regulate blood sugar, lower cholesterol, and aid weight loss.
Top up on nuts HERE
Quinoa is a gluten-free seed and low-carb rice substitute with many health benefits and uses.
Quinoa acts like a whole grain, but it is essentially a seed from a weed-like plant called goosefoot, closely related to beets and spinach.
Quinoa has an excellent nutrition base and is a great source of fiber, protein, B vitamins, and iron.
One cup of cooked quinoa provides about 8 grams of protein and 5 grams fiber.
Unlike some plant proteins, quinoa is a complete protein, which means it contains all nine essential amino acids that our bodies cannot make on their own.
Replace rice or pasta with quinoa in any dish as a healthier alternative.
Find organic quinoa HERE.
Sweet potatoes are very versatile, nutritious, and delicious root vegetables.
The sweet potato is packed with medicinal benefits and contains many nutrients. It's definitely a healthy, staple pantry item!
Scientists have determined that sweet potatoes contain anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, and anticancer properties.
Baked sweet potatoes are packed with vitamins A, C, and B6. They also contain minerals including potassium, calcium, and magnesium while providing 142 calories, 32 grams of carbohydrate, and 5 grams of heart-healthy fiber.
Seaweed is a term used to describe a group of nutrient-rich sea vegetables. It’s most commonly consumed in Asian cuisine but is gaining popularity in other parts of the world due to its nutritional value.
Seaweed packs multiple nutrients, including vitamin A, B, C, E, and K, folate, iodine, and fiber. It is also a rich source of unique bioactive compounds — not typically found in land vegetables — which may have antioxidant effects.
Some of these compounds may reduce your risk of cancer, heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.
The fiber in seaweed can help with diabetes, support gut health, and help with weight loss.
Herbal teas contain a blend of spices, herbs, medicinal plants, and fruits such as chamomile, ginger, lavender, peppermint, and elderberry. These herbs and medicinal plants add beneficial properties making herbal teas a healthy alternative to medicine to treat ailments naturally.
Most herbal teas don't contain any caffeine, which is perfect for those who want a warm, comforting drink without the caffeine side effects.
Herbal teas have numerous benefits, including strengthening the immune system, helping with digestion, helping with sleep, can fight chronic diseases, and assisting with weight loss. Read more HERE on various herbal teas and their benefits.
Get your tea fix HERE.