Decoding “Super Foods”: Things you must know!

They are easily available, don’t cost a fortune and best of all, taste wonderful!


1. Chia seeds

Packed with fibre and Omega 3 fatty acids, this little seed can help regulate appetite. How much: 1 tbsp a day is sufficient for most people. Best way to consume: Add to a large glass of water and leave for 2 hours for it to reach its hydrophilic potential. Can also be added to cereals and bakes.

2. Eggs

Quality protein and choline which the brain uses to improve memory and learning . How much:6-8 a week is safe. Plenty of benefits without cholesterol worries. Best way: Boiled, scrambled, omelette with plenty of veggie topping.

3. Broccoli

Packed with calcium, protein, chlorophyll, magnesium, Vitamin C, fibre, and much more. Fiber and iron rich, this vegetable definitely punches above its weight. How much: 4 times a week, or 10 cups, is a good starting point. Best way: Stir fry, steam, bake — add to entrees.

4. Berries

Antioxidants, flavonoids to protect your body from free radical and oxidative damage. Prevents plaque build-up in heart and brain. Great for skin and an anti-ageing food. How much: 2 to 3 small cups of berries a week. Best way: Fresh or as puree, added to shakes or juices.

5. Turmeric

The curcumin in turmeric has shown to have anti-inflammatory properties. How much: 1 to 2 grams if using the root or 2 to 3gms if using high-quality turmeric powder. Best way: Raw grated turmeric can added to black tea. Most curries have a pinch of turmeric powder to enhance flavour and colour.

6. Avocados

Loaded with potassium and fibre, high content of B vitamins and Vitamin E. How much: 2-3 avocados per week, depending on body weight (excess can result in weight gain). Best way:Raw (check for ripeness). In guacomole, for instance.

7. Dark chocolate

Boosts mood due to presence of phenylethyamine and amino acid tryptophan, both of which release serotonin, the happy hormone. How much: 1 small square a day.

8. Salmon, mackerel, sardines

Rich in omega 3, heart healthy, bone healthy and skin healthy. How much: Twice a week, up to 300gms a week. Best way: Grill, poach, steam, bake.

9. Spinach and kaleHigh levels of folate, phytochemicals, niacin,zinc, vitamins A, C,E, K calcium and iron. Great for hair and skin. How much: 2 cups 3 times a week. Alternate the two. Best way: Have them raw in salads, smoothies, or lightly steamed or stir fried.

10. Green tea

Loaded with polyphenols, flavonoids, catechises which are all antioxidants and help fight diseases. Always chose good brand of green teas. The lower quality ones may not be as beneficial and may contain excessive fluoride. How much: 2 to 3 cups of green tea a day in between meals. Boosts metabolism, protects your brain and keeps you alert.

11. Almonds

High in Vitamin E, omega 3 fatty acids , proteins and fibre. manganese strengthen bones and controls blood sugar dips. How much: 8-9 a day. Best way: Soaked overnight. Easier to digest.

12. Garlic

Contains allicin and selenium which helps in liver cleansing and reducing bad cholesterol. How much: Raw cloves 2-3 a day. Best way:Raw in the morning. Cooked garlic has less healing potential as do garlic pills and powder.

13. Grapefruit

Vit C, pectin and glutathione which neutralise free radicals, keep liver clean. How much: 2 grapefruits a week.

14. Beetroot

High in flavonoids and beta carotene are natural blood purifiers and support liver function. How much: 200 gms a day, twice a week. Best way:steam them, boil them, juice them.

15. Natural yoghurt

Good source of natural calcium and probiotics, for digestion and gut health. How much: 150-180gms per day. Best way: Straight from the pot.

16. Lemon

Vitamin C in lemons help liver produce enzymes that aids digestion. Best way: Drink hot water with lemon juice in the morning. Squeeze lemon over salads, soups and veggies for better iron absorption.

17. Oats

High in soluble fibre and low glycemic index carbs. How much: 30-40gms daily, upto 200 gms a week. Best way: Slow cook them with cinnamon, top with fruits, seeds and yoghurt or even vegetables.

18. Pomegranate

Great source of iron, fibre, Vit A, C, E . How much: 1 cup of pomegranate pearls at least twice a week.

19. Goji berries

Excellent source of amino acids vitamin A and C and iron. Boosts immunity, anti-inflammatory. How much: up to 100 gms, 2-3 times a week. Best way: Add to salads or brew in water like tea. Drink the tea and chew the berries to get rid of pimples and pigmentation.

Is everything that’s claimed about super foods true?

Dubai: Get up, close and personal with super foods – the myths surrounding them and the health benefits.

Can foods still be categorized as super foods and regular foods?

Super foods is a relatively new term, often used for food items that are nutrient-dense and the specific nutrient composition has better bio-availability, which means that the body can utilize and absorb the nutrients easily.

When we talk about ‘regular foods’, that constitutes of almost all other food items that should be consumed in a complementary way.

Are some foods more equal than others?

Just as some individuals are naturally physically stronger or taller, certain food items have better density for particular nutrients. Nutrients’ usability for humans is not something nature sets priorities for, but our research enhances understanding and hence, some foods have been classified as super foods.


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