Superfoods – The Complete Guide: What Are They? Benefits, Importance, Types, Use, Recipes

If you still don't know what superfoods are and why they are important or how they should be consumed, here is a guide to help you understand everything about them and why it is important to use all types of superfoods.

In the fight against processed products, those that have unhealthy preservatives, and additives, we turn our attention to alternative options. Few know about superfoods and how they can be a perfect ally for a balanced diet. Less popular or consumed but without really knowing how beneficial they are, superfoods deserve a special status.

If you still don’t know what superfoods are and why they are important or how they should be consumed, here is a guide to help you understand everything about them and why it is important to use all types of superfoods.

What are superfoods?

Superfoods are a diverse collection of foods rich in nutrients. In this category, we will find berries, cereals, seeds, algae, vegetables, and fruits that can have a beneficial effect on the body. All superfoods contain a high percentage of vitamins, enzymes, minerals, and amino acids or antioxidants.

Compared to classic healthy foods that generally contain some nutritional properties, a superfood will have 12 or even more beneficial properties.

Superfoods deserve their name because they are products rich in nutrients and vitamins (vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin D) that contain few calories and lead to a reduction in diseases such as obesity, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, etc. 

Also, superfoods have such a name due to the rich content of zinc, calcium, magnesium, selenium, potassium, phosphorus, etc.

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Superfoods in traditional medicine

Long before this concept of “superfoods” was launched on the nutritional market, traditional forms of medicine used certain foods with healing properties, which ensured body-mind balance and supported well-being. 

Traditional Chinese medicine, for example, considers medicinal mushrooms, ginseng, and goji berries to be superfoods. Ayurveda (traditional Indian medicine) relies in the same way on seasonal fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and healing spices.

Superfood benefits

Superfoods contribute to well-being, balanced, both mentally and physically. Here are some benefits:

• strengthen immunity

• are a dose of clean energy and can help with metabolic processes

• for the skin they maintain firmness, stimulate collagen production

• prevent the effects of premature aging, by providing vitamins, minerals, antioxidants

• provides high doses of nutrients that most of the time we do not take from something else we consume

• they are like fuel, as they help to achieve the ideal weight (burning calories)

• contributes to the detoxification of the whole body, by regulating the pH.

The importance of superfoods

Very often modern diets are not very nutritious although they should be. There are many foods available on the market that are not healthy at all and that are easy to prepare and consume quickly compared to their healthy equivalents.

However, an unhealthy diet is not at all beneficial for the body, hair, skin, and immune system. It has a negative impact even on your emotional state. When a diet includes superfoods every day, it gives your body everything it needs to function well and stay healthy.

There are several types of superfoods and the list is also very comprehensive. To make things simpler, in the following I will explain each of the 4 categories in which they are divided.

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Types of superfoods

1) Green superfoods

These superfoods are vegetables with green leaves that have high concentrations of vitamins, proteins, minerals, healthy bacteria and we can include here:

• Wheatgrass

• Barley grass

• Cabbage kale

• Spinach

• Lettuce

• Broccoli

• Leeks

Legumes like

• Peas

• Lentils

• Beans

2) Nuts and fruits superfoods

Many fruits and nuts have very good properties that help to quickly eliminate bad bacteria. The most important are:

• Acai berries

• Cranberries

Blueberries

• Goji berries

• Noni

• Mulberry

• Aronia

• Sea buckthorn

• Pomegranates

• Maca

• Almonds

• Cocoa beans

• Coconuts

3) Superfood spices and aromatic herbs

On the list of superfoods, you can also find a series of healthy herbs that contain a lot of vitamins. Besides all this, most have medicinal properties. Among them is

• Aloe vera

• Nettle

• Ginseng

• Echinacea

Ginger

• Marigolds

• Turmeric

• Basil

• Anise

4) Other types of superfoods

Bee products such as

• Pollen

• Royal jelly

Honey is one of the superfoods.

It is also a great variety of algae (such as spirulina) that can be considered superfoods.

Oils:

• Rapeseed oil

• Coconut oil

• Avocado oil

Pumpkin seed oil

• Sesame seed oil

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Use of superfoods

Superfoods can be eaten at any time of the day. We also present a daily diet that includes superfoods.

• For breakfast you can start with almond milk and oatmeal, to which you can add a few pieces of dark chocolate and chopped nuts.

• For lunch you can take a slice of wholemeal bread that has been toasted with olive oil, slices of tomatoes, garlic, and sprouted seeds as a garnish.

• For dinner, go for broccoli, spinach, or even kale with vegetables, along with a healthy portion of quinoa.

• For snacks, on the list of options you can find green apples, oranges, blueberries, or even a handful of nuts.

Recipes with superfoods:

Conclusion

In conclusion, superfoods must be part of a diverse menu. These superfoods can be consumed daily, long-term, safely, including by children.

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