Best superfoods to live a healthier life
Superfoods are filled with benefits that can help you achieve your health goals faster. From helping to prevent ailments to keeping you in shape, superfoods are packed with many benefits. So, try adding superfoods like berries, pomegranates, yoghurt, turmeric, and fish to your diet for your daily dose of nutrition.
The term “superfoods” is used for foods that have the ability to perform specific functions to exponentially benefit our health when consumed. These foods contain bioactive ingredients, which are known to induce beneficial effects within our cells. In simple terms, beyond providing basic nutrition to sustain life, superfoods offer a host of benefits that can improve the quality of life. Often known as functional foods, superfoods can be used strategically to prevent ailments.
Leafy Vegetables:Dark green leafy veggies (GLVs) are an important part of your daily diet. These are considered superfoods for weight loss due to their low caloric value. GLVs have an impressive nutritional profile and are rich in dietary fibre, folate, vitamin C, vitamin K, calcium, iron, and magnesium. They have substantial amounts of phytochemicals like β-carotene flavonoids required for our eyes and immune system. The high nutrient and antioxidant status makes GLVs useful in reducing the risk of chronic diseases. They also possess antimicrobial properties. You can try this Amaranth Coconut Curry or Spinach Soup to include these superfood vegetables in your diet.
Berries:The superfoods list includes berries such as cranberries, blueberries, and strawberries, which are a good source of micronutrients, fibre, and polyphenols like anthocyanins. The antioxidant properties of anthocyanins make them beneficial for human beings. They provide protection to the DNA, which is the genetic material of every cell, and also play a key role in boosting immunity. These components have been used in studies and are proven to have a positive impact on the heart as well.
Pomegranate:Pomegranate is loaded with bioactive compounds like polyphenols and has a significant role as an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antihypertensive component of the diet. The phenolic compound named punicalagin present in pomegranates is responsible for its health promoting effects and may contribute to the treatment of several diseases like diabetes and heart related conditions. Another unique function of this delicious red fruit is that it could also be used as an antimicrobial agent. The presence of ellagic acid in pomegranates imparts a strong prebiotic potential, which means the fruit can act as a food for the microbiota.
Yoghurt:Derived from milk, yoghurt has a great amount of essential nutrients like calcium, magnesium, and potassium, which is why it is a part of the Indian superfoods list. It is attributed to being helpful in protecting us against heart disorders and nerve related defects. It is one of the best superfoods and is beneficial for enhancing immunity and building strong bones. It also helps in cultivating natural flora in our gut and aids in digestion. Yoghurt may be enriched with active ingredients such as fruits, herbs, probiotics, and prebiotics to enhance its functional potential.
Turmeric:Turmeric is an Indian superfood and traditionally popular for its medicinal properties, occupying an essential place in the superfoods list. It is a great source of curcumin, a polyphenol (plant compound) that helps to manage inflammatory conditions and relieve anxiety. Its anti-inflammatory function is due to its antioxidant potential, by which it reduces the stress caused by harmful molecules known as free radicals. This is also the reason why turmeric may be used as a pain reliever.
A Blend of Seeds:Seeds of sunflower, chia, hemp, and flax may be small to the eye, but are some of the best ingredients to add to the superfoods list. They are beneficial for the intestinal cells and have gastrointestinal health benefits. They are a good source of powerful antioxidants and are beneficial for treating inflammation. Chia seeds, specifically, contain tocopherols that are useful for stabilising the membranes of our cells and may offer anti-aging benefits. They also contain myricetin that is known to exhibit antibacterial activity. You may want to try out this Superfood Salad that provides a flavourful dose of strawberries and chia seeds.
Fish:About 60% of our brain is made of fat, half of which are omega-3 fatty acids. Thus, fish, which is rich in omega 3, may be considered a brain food that also provides high-quality protein. Fish serves as an effective food for all age groups, aiding in growth and development and mental health. The processing of fish generates bulk quantities of by-products which contain protein and ω-3 rich oils that find application as superfood.
Green Tea:Green tea is produced by steaming the plucked leaves, thereby preserving their polyphenols. The high polyphenol content contributes to its health-promoting effects, mainly the flavanols. Green tea works like a charm when it comes to healing cell injuries. Its anti-inflammatory property makes it useful against insect stings and it also has the potential to halt bleeding.
Olive Oil:Olive oil is high in active compounds like oleuropein that have been proven to positively influence health. It has the capacity to neutralise the harmful effects of free radicals and is known to be beneficial for the heart. Olive oil also demonstrates antimicrobial and antiviral properties. It’s easy to incorporate olive oil into foods like salads and noodles.
Superfoods are gaining quick traction because of their immense potential to maintain optimum health. Packed with benefits, their role goes beyond just serving as a source of nutrients. They are now functioning as enablers of a healthy lifestyle that focuses on preventing disease states and promoting health. Include these top superfoods in your diet and enjoy their extravagant health benefits.