Super foods: Definition And Health Benefits

NZ superfoods
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Superfoods are nutrient-rich foods considered to be especially beneficial for health and well-being. People who eat NZ superfoods benefit from the high amounts of vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, and antioxidants in these foods. Scientific research indicates several health benefits of common superfoods, including improved cardiovascular health and lower cancer risk.

Superfoods are generally rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein, essential fatty acids (like omega-3), antioxidants, and various phytochemicals. Many super foods are available in raw and cooked forms; some can be eaten raw like coconut oil and others only when cooked (such as kale and quinoa).

Superfoods can help you maintain a healthy weight and support your immune system. They may also protect against cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and other health problems.

Some of the most popular super foods today include:

1. Avocado

The avocado is a popular super food that has recently enjoyed popularity. This fruit contains mono- and polyunsaturated fats, associated with improved cholesterol levels. Avocados also have high fiber, potassium, vitamin E, B vitamins, and antioxidants.

2. Blueberries

These nutritious berries contain antioxidants called anthocyanidins, responsible for their deep blue color. Studies indicate that blueberries may improve short-term memory, lower blood sugar levels, and protect against colon cancer.

3. Broccoli

This superfood contains many nutrients, but its high vitamin C content makes it especially beneficial. Some studies suggest that broccoli can reduce inflammation and prevent some types of cancer.

4. Chia seeds

These tiny seeds contain fiber, protein, and omega-3 fatty acids. For those who do not eat fish or other sources of omega-3, chia seeds can be a great way to boost the intake of this essential nutrient. Some research also suggests that chia seeds may improve heart health, lower blood pressure levels, and reduce the risk of diabetes.

5. Coconut oil

Coconut oil is high in lauric acid, a compound with antibacterial properties. It also boosts immunity and metabolism and has been shown to improve cholesterol levels when consumed regularly in place of other oils or fats.

6. Kale

This superfood is packed with vitamins and antioxidants, including vitamin C, beta-carotene, and manganese. Kale also contains indole-3-carbinol, which researchers believe may lower the risk of several types of cancer.

7. Olive oil

Extra virgin olive oil has been shown to improve cholesterol levels and lower the risk of heart disease. Its many antioxidants, such as vitamin E and polyphenols, may also play a role in protecting cells from damage.

8. Salmon

Cold-water fish like salmon can boost immunity due to high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids. These fatty acids have improved brain health, heart health and reduced the risk of dementia. They are also believed to have anti-inflammatory properties.

9. Turmeric

Turmeric contains a phytochemical called curcumin shown in studies to fight cancer cells, improve metabolism, lower cholesterol levels, and protect against Alzheimer’s disease. This spice can be added to your favorite foods, including curry dishes.

10. Eggs

This superfood is high in protein and contains vitamin A, omega-3 fatty acids, B5 and B12, selenium, phosphorus, zinc, iron, and calcium. Research indicates that people who eat eggs for breakfast are less likely to be obese than those who eat other breakfast foods.

In summary, superfoods can improve your health and protect against certain diseases. Although some of the above foods may be unfamiliar to you, such as amaranth and quinoa, they can all be found in most grocery stores or ordered online.

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