All foods have some nutritional value. The world has become so dependent on pills and chemical supplements that it sometimes forgets the organic aids that nature provides us. There has been a lot of research done on nutritiously-thick foods that gives the body the nutrition it needs to stay healthy and fit. Superfoods! It can help you live a longer and healthier life, slow the aging process and help prevent cancer and diabetes. Superfoods are a group of wholesome foods that pack a nutritious punch. Most of these Superfoods are available in your fridge but you don’t eat them. The antioxidants found in these products are a class of vitamins, minerals and enzymes that may help eliminate chemically active oxygen molecules thought to contribute to aging and chronic ailments such as cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease.
List of Top 10 Super foods:
- Broccoli: Broccoli boosts the digestive system and can actually assist in weight loss. It contains antioxidants (vitamin C), folate a naturally occurring folic acid (benefits in preventing heart disease), phytochemical called sulphoraphane (that has specific anti-cancer properties). Broccoli also contains an antioxidant called lutein that can delay the progression of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) which affects 10% of people over 60 and is a major cause of impaired vision and blindness.
- Baked Beans: Beans can help maintain a healthy blood sugar level. The best part about beans is there is such a wide range of types and flavours. The small baked bean is a nutritional powerhouse of protein, fibre, iron, carbohydrate and calcium. The tomato sauce covering baked beans is also a good source of lycopene, another powerful antioxidant shown to help prevent heart disease and prostate cancer. The insoluble fibre in prepared grilled beans is not consumed but goes into the large intestinal tract, where bacteria acts on it and produce short-chain fatty acid. These fatty acids are thought to supply the intestinal tract coating and protect it from dangerous (cancer-causing) intruders.
- Yogurt: Yogurt is an easily absorbed source of calcium. It has calcium to help fight against osteoporosis, magnesium with helps absorb the calcium so that your bones get the full effect, contains probiotics that can help regulate digestive problems of the people who can’t digest large amounts of the milk sugar, lactose. The bacteria Lactobacillus GG, added to some yoghurt, are not digested, and reach the large intestine intact where they top up the other friendly bacteria living there. The friendly bacteria fight harmful bacteria, including Clostridium difficile that can cause diarrhoea after a course of antibiotics.
- Salmon: Salmon is an oily fish with a very high nutritious profile. It contains omega 3 fats, good quality proteins, vitamin D, calcium (in canned salmon) and magnesium. People who eat salmon can keep themselves safe from lot of diseases. The proteins in salmon boost your energy and the calcium part of salmon takes care of your bones. Omega-3 fats mainly help in reducing inflammation in our bodies. Inflammation is the base of many health problems including heart disease, diabetes, some types of cancers and arthritis. Omega-3 does also help prevent the blood clots which cause many strokes. Omega 3 fats also help to prevent depression, and protect against the attack of dementia. If you are a vegetarian and don’t want to eat a fish, you can try these veggie alternatives for Omega 3 fats.
- Avocado: Avocado is a nutrient-dense food with an impressive list of nourishing contents. Avocados are excellent source of potassium, magnesium, folate, vitamins (B, E and K), lutein, fibre and omega-3 fatty acids. The delicious healthy monounsaturated fat in the avocado is one of its biggest Superfood health claims. About 75% of an avocado’s calories come from its monounsaturated fat. The only other fruit with a comparable amount of monounsaturated fat is the olive. The monounsaturated fat in avocados is oleic acid, which may help lower cholesterol. High avocado intake lowers blood cholesterol levels. Due to a combination of specific aliphatic acetogenins, avocado is under preliminary research for potential anti-cancer medicine.
- Blueberries: Blueberries is another antioxidant Superfood. Packed with antioxidants and phytoflavinoids, these berries are also high in potassium and vitamin C, making them the top choice of doctors and nutritionists. It contains the same amount of age-defying antioxidants as five servings of other fruit and vegetables. It is believed that consumption of ellagic acid, an antioxidant found in blueberries reduce a person’s risk of cancer by blocking the metabolic pathways that can promote cancer. Other important benefits of blueberries includes prevention and fight against Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease, eye disease and some forms of blindness, urinary tract infections and other serious and potentially deadly conditions. By preventing infectious bacteria from clinging to the wall of the gut, bladder and urethra, blueberries also offer protection against cystitis. They contain polyphenols, which combat the effects of free radicals, a key cause of wrinkles, and so keep skin looking younger for longer. They also help the body to make collagen, which keeps skin slender. When selecting blueberries, note that the darker they are, the more anti-oxidants they have and frozen blueberries are as good as fresh.
- Tea: Not everything nutritious has to be a food or fruit. Tea is also an excellent source of anti-oxidants. Tea is a Superfood for lowering cholesterol and inhibiting cancer. The overall antioxidant power of black tea is the same as green tea. A recent Japanese study on green tea found that men who drank green tea regularly had lower cholesterol than those who didn’t. Researchers in Spain and the United Kingdom have also shown that ECGC, found in green tea can inhibit the growth of cancer cells. Tea counts towards the recommended eight cups of fluid daily, which is the minimum to avoid dehydration. It also creates its own form of caffeine that will give that same boost as dark chocolate and is helpful for stimulating alertness, mood and motivation. It is also believed to encourage weight loss. People tend to lose more weight on their diet if green tea is included versus people who do the same diet, but do not include green tea. Catechins, the anti-oxidants found in tea, protect the artery walls against the damage that causes heart disease and prevents formation of sticky blood clots.
- Apples: Apples are grown all over the world. There are more than 7,500 varieties of apple. There is a huge list of healthy benefits of Apple. You have always heard that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but have you ever thought about the real benefits of apple? They are packed full of antioxidants, especially vitamin C for healthy skin and gums – one apple provides a quarter of your daily requirement of vitamin C. There is a huge role of apples in bone protection. Boron, an ingredient in apple, strengthens bones and also French researchers found that a flavanoid called phloridzin that is found only in apples may protect post-menopausal women from osteoporosis and may also increase bone density. One study showed that children born to women who eat a lot of apples during pregnancy have lower rates of asthma than children whose mothers ate few apples. Other noticeable benefits of apple includes prevention of Alzheimer’s disease, lowers cholesterol and keep the digestive system healthy, lowers risk of lung, colon , liver and breast cancer, manages diabetes by controlling of blood sugar levels and helps in weight loss.
- Bananas: It’s a myth that bananas are fattening. Bananas are slightly higher in energy than other fruits but the calories come mainly from carbohydrate; excellent for refuelling before, during or after exercise. Bananas also have a rich content of antioxidants. These antioxidants protect cells in the body against damage from free radicals that can cause heart disease and cancer. According to a study, the probability of developing kidney cancer in females decreased by 50% when eating bananas four to six times a week. Bananas are also packed with potassium that helps lower blood pressure and vitamin B6 for healthy skin and hair. One banana has an impressive 34% of the RDA of vitamin B6, which serves many important roles in the body’s health like prevention of cardiovascular disease, type II diabetes and obesity and plays an important part in cell formation and proper nervous system function. Bananas can diminish the uncomfortable effects of diarrhoea. Along with lowering blood pressure and preventing constipation, potassium prevents the weakening of the body bones by neutralizing the high amounts of sodium in one’s diet.
- Turmeric: Turmeric is a yellow-orange powder that is widely used as an aroma in various Indian dishes. Giving an attractive colour to the foods, this ginger-based herb has many health benefits as it contains aromatic oils that exhibit anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer movement. Turmeric also protects against free radicals which are harmful for health causing various diseases when present in excess.
There are many other Superfoods that the Mother Nature has provided us. But we need to have a balanced diet along with these Superfoods. [Article View] : 2741