Are superfoods really that super?
We all know there is such a buzz around superfoods currently, and all the supposed miraculous things they can do for you.
Recently I have been thinking a lot about them. Are they really that fantastic?
During my training from the T Colin Campbell Centre for Nutrition Studies we were taught that yes there may be superfoods, but overall the best superfoods for you are the ones that you eat most often as a part of your daily diet.
At Integrative Nutrition we looked at superfoods further, learning a lot during lectures from raw food guru David Wolfe. His energy in these lectures was incredible. It blew me away how alive he was - it was like he was on something (superfoods?!).
But seriously, I have to admit his energy was contagious and it sparked my interest in adding more superfoods and raw foods to my daily diet. I will be experimenting with incorporating these and if they make a difference to how I feel. Watch out for more to come on that!
The main thing I have taken away from studying superfoods is that it's your decision about what you want to include as a part of your diet. Yes, there are scientific studies behind many of these superfoods we hear about now, but they can be expensive. There is also some question as to whether or not the active ingredients still hold their nutrition value by the time you eat them after being processed, packaged and stored, before they even make it to your cupboard. The solution to this is to do your research into the food you are considering.
Superfoods don't have to be super rare, expensive and difficult to source! Good ol' cabbage is a superfood! It is tremendous for your gut health when eaten raw and has also been shown to help reduce cancer risk (thanks to the sulforaphane levels). If you want to try eating raw cabbage, start by chopping it up really small and chew it well! Check out my Pinterest Salad Love board for some rainbow salad inspo!
We all know how popular kale is right now. Kale is not that expensive either. Dr Fuhrman ranks it among the top foods for nutrient density on his ANDI scale of nutrient dense foods. Meaning for the calories it provides, you are getting the most nutrients above any of the other foods on this list. Can you add an extra handful of dark leafy green to your meals for a boost?
Basically I want to show you that superfoods can be for everyone! It is about choosing what you want to invest your money in, and what you actually want to eat day after day… if you don’t like something, don’t eat it!
Finding the foods that are most readily available to you has to be the best start. What can you easily get from your local grocers, farmers market or supermarket? Greens? Carrots? Potatoes? Fruits? Apples? Mangoes? Berries?
Choosing organic is a wise move, especially when choosing things to eat raw, such as cabbage, greens, berries, grapes, celery, tomatoes and bell peppers. This helps you to avoid digesting nasty pesticides and herbicides. [ Read my more about the hidden poisons in our food here! ]
The general advice from me is eat more colourful fruit and veg whenever possible! In my opinion they are all the superfoods you need.
What are your favourite fruits and vegetables? Can you get more of the rainbow on your plate? The more brightly coloured the fruit and veg the more antioxidants, phyto-nutrients and vitamins are present, meaning more goodness for you!
A selection of my favourite everyday superfoods are broccoli, kale, red cabbage, blackberries, blueberries, and raspberries.
Some of the more traditionally regarded 'superfoods' I have tried are cacao, maca, acai berries, goji berries, lucuma, algaroba, and turmeric. Some of them I have liked more than others! After adding a tbsp of maca to my morning smoothies I notice it gives me an energy boost for the day. My favourite so far has to be cacao powder though - because chocolate (!) - and my least favourite is definitely algaroba (reminded me of smelly feet !!!!).
I recommend trying what takes your interest and sticking with what you like! When introducing something it might be a good idea to keep a journal and notice if it makes you feel any different? Get in touch if you want help with this!
Eat the food you love and let it empower you!
Do you have favourite superfoods? Have you noticed any differences after introducing a superfood into your diet? I’d love to hear about it! Let me know by connecting with me on social media!