No matter whether you are on a health kick, starting a weight loss journey, or hoping for a long-term lifestyle change for the better: the chances are, you have heard of the power of superfoods.
But what are superfoods? And what makes them so special?
In this guide by Olivia’s Kitchens, you can find everything you need to know about this group of foods and how to introduce them into your diet to enhance your health.
What Are Superfoods?
The term “superfood” was coined in the late 1910s as part of a marketing campaign to promote bananas, which had been imported in large quantities by the US. Given the history of superfoods, there is no exact definition that can be used, and they are certainly not a defined nutritional category of foods.
However, to understand what categorizes a superfood, it is important to look at the characteristics of some ingredients. Generally, superfoods are those foods that are “whole”, unprocessed, organic, natural, and boast high concentrations of certain nutrients. Some of the foods considered nutritional powerhouses are rich in antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins.
When looking at the foods that are considered “superfoods”, it is possible to find popular ingredients like almonds, kale, and açaí berries. Most other superfoods are plant-based, with some exceptions for fish and dairy products, like salmon and Kefir.
Are Superfoods Good for You?
Now that you know what superfoods are, you are probably wondering if superfoods are, indeed, good for you. As we have seen above, the main characteristic that makes certain foods “super” is their high concentrations of nutrients and vitamins.
So, yes, superfoods are generally good for you. Especially when eaten in moderation and as part of a balanced diet!
While the nutrients and antioxidants in superfoods can reduce the likelihood of cancer, prevent diseases like diabetes, and protect you from heart disease, some of these foods (i.e.: nuts)are high in calories. Consulting a nutritionist is the best way to safely and efficiently incorporate these foods into your diet.
Why Are Superfoods Good for You?
Superfoods are high in vitamins, antioxidants, minerals, fiber, flavonoids, and healthy fats. These nutrients offer a wide range of health benefits, including:
- Boosting heart health and reducing the risk of heart diseases and stroke
- Strengthening the immune system
- Preventing cancer
- Promoting weight loss
- Improving energy levels
- Slowing down the effects of aging
- Reducing inflammation
- Reducing “bad” cholesterol
- Preventing diseases like obesity and diabetes
The Best Superfoods To Try This Summer
The list of superfoods has been steadily increasing since the original superfood, the banana, was added. Some of the best ones to try this summer include:
- Açaí Berries
- Sweet Potatoes
- Olive Oil
If you are unsure how to incorporate these foods into your recipes, you are certainly not alone! Some of these ingredients might seem unfamiliar and difficult to use in your meals. Luckily, with Olivia’s Kitchens meal prep services, you won’t have to worry about this aspect, because all the most delicious superfoods you need are already part of your favorite recipes!