I am sure you have heard the term “superfoods” before. I, personally, always think of goji berry, even though it is not the only superfood out there. In this article, I want to list the most popular types, which can be found on the market and explain their properties. I will also refer to the definition of “superfoods” and explain why they are so healthy for us. Let’s dive in!
What are superfoods?
The free radicals are external and internal factors, which impact our skin cells. Those factors include UV light, pollution, radiation, smoking, poor nutrition, overeating, stress, alcohol, and drugs, etc. The antioxidants protect the body from oxidative stress and free radicals damage. If your body cells are not protected, the oxygen has a harmful effect on them.
Let me give you an example. If you peel an apple, you remove its “protective coating,” which keeps the sensitive inner cells from oxygen interaction. And if you leave the peeled apple for a few minutes, you see that it starts to “rust”; it’s color changes from white-ish to golden-brown. The effect when oxygen reacts with the cells of your body is the same! And if they do not have protection, they will become damaged. In the long run, those cells are prone to abnormal development, chronic diseases, and viruses. The antioxidants act against this damage by forming a protective layer around the body cells to stop the harm from oxygen to occur.
But the superfoods do not only work to protect! They also “feed” the cells with vitamins and minerals to make the body stronger and healthier.
Are there any superfoods that won’t break the bank?
The brands which sell products labeled as superfoods often raise the prices, because we are willing to pay more for a product which is indicated as healthy. However, this is only a marketing trick! Superfoods surround us! I am sure you have eaten some of those foods for years and did not even know that they are so nutritious and healthy!
In the following section, we will list the superfoods which are affordable and easy to find. We do not aim to mention the “fancier” and “overpriced” superfoods, which are often sold only in specialized shops and supermarkets. That is why you won’t find any spirulina or acai berries in this list!
10 popular and affordable superfoods
- Dark chocolate. Yes! But it should be with at least 80% cocoa content. This product is rich in:
- Iron, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus
- It releases the stress levels in the body, reduced blood pressure, and protects the body against heart, neuro, and brain diseases.
- Blueberries. They are packed with:
- Vitamins C and K
- They improve your memory, protect against heart diseases and cancer.
- Broccoli. They are a great source of:
- Vitamins A, C, K and B9 (folate)
- Broccoli lowers blood pressure, prevent heart diseases, and diabetes type 2. They also boost overall health condition, increase the energy levels, and strengthen the muscles.
- Garlic. It is rich in:
- Vitamins C and B6
- Magnesium and selenium
- It acts as a natural antibiotic, yet at the same times protects the body cells. It lowers the bad cholesterol levels and blood pressure, prevents inflammation and infection, and protects against cancer.
- Beetroot. It is rich in:
- Vitamin B9
- Iron and magnesium
- It helps to reduce symptoms of fever, inflammation, and high blood pressure. It stimulates the creation of red blood cells to strengthen the immune system. Besides, it helps with weight management as it boosts the metabolism.
- Green tea. It has a high content of:
- All B group vitamins
- Potassium, magnesium, fluoride
- It boosts the metabolism, reduced bad cholesterol levels, fights against Alzheimer and heart diseases. There are some studies, which show that green tea prevents cancer and malignant tumors.
- Fatty fish. Those include sardines, salmon, trout, herring, mackerel, tuna, and others. Those are packed with:
- Vitamins B and D
- Omega-3 fatty acids
- Oily fish is essential for the prevention of heart and eyes diseases, memory loss, and prostate cancer. It lowers bad cholesterol levels and improves blood pressure.
- Goji berries. They are rich in:
- Vitamins A and B2 (Riboflavin)
- Selenium and iron
- They stimulate brain activity, improve your memory, protect against cancer, and thyroid gland problems.
- Wheatgrass. It is packed with nutrients, such as:
- Vitamins A, C, E
- Calcium, magnesium, iron
- It boosts the immune system by stimulating red blood cells production. Also, it reduces inflammation, balances the blood pressure, and stimulates hemoglobin production to prevent anemia.
- Walnuts. They are rich in many micronutrients:
- Vitamins B, C, E
- Calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, sodium, zinc.
- Healthy fats, omega-3 and 6
- Walnuts boost brain function and prevent dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. They also decrease the bad cholesterol levels, help with weight management, and prevents diabetes type 2.
To conclude, the superfoods are all around us! When you go to the supermarket, do not immediately go to the “healthy aisle.” Instead, buy colorful foods that you know well and that have an antioxidative effect (or at least you have heard that they have such an effect). Yet, the most important thing is to eat diverse meals and stay positive! And if you sometimes wonder what superfood to buy that won’t break the bank, you can always refer to this list and integrate those foods into dishes.