Over the last 10 years we’ve seen the rise of so called super foods. But can you really put your finger on just what’s so ‘super’ about them?
Now there’s actually no official definition of what is classed as a superfood. But when it means we can indulge in dark chocolate covered strawberries, tuck into pumpkin pie and load up on sweet potatoes fries, do we even care?
To get all technical about it, the EU has now banned health claims on packaging unless they are officially confirmed by scientific reports.
So, when we have good ol’ social media constantly telling us there’s something new to eat which will keep us living healthier for longer, how can we tell what is reality and what is just hype?
Among the fitness gurus and clean eaters among us all, superfood favourites have ranged from dark chocolate, kale, quinoa and even salmon. All of these boast having ‘superfood’ properties, but let’s take a closer look at what this actually means.
“Thou shall have a fishy on your little dishy” – Salmon, commonly known as the fattiest fish of the sea. We’re obviously talking about all of the good fats here. Rich in omega 3 which, according to the American Heart Association, can decrease the risk of abnormal heartbeats, reduce triglycerides (the chemical form of fats in most foods and in your body) and slow the growth of plaque in the arteries. Cause let’s be honest ain’t nobody got time for plaque!
This leads us nicely on to dark chocolate. This dark horse is packed with lots of beneficial minerals such as potassium, zinc and selenium. A 100g bar of dark chocolate (70 per cent or more) provides 67 per cent of the RDA of iron. That said, just because it’s good for you, it doesn’t mean that you need to eat an entire slab of it in one go. Eaten as part of a balanced diet, this bad boy is sure to give you the boost you need until tea time.
Vibrant, green and full of iron. Would you believe that Kale is not only low in calories, but its high in fibre and has zero fat. You heard us, Z E R O fat. No wonder it’s a popular choice with clean eaters. Though some may find the taste quite bitter, there are many ways that you can add kale to your diet. Try blitzing it in with some avocados, kiwis, lime juice and banana in the morning for a breakfast super green juice. Or alternatively, you could just steam it with a little bit of olive oil and add some minced garlic to it and et voila, you have the tastiest greens to accompany your evening dinner. Did we mention that it’s low in fat?!
From low in fat to all the good fats, avocados much like salmon is rich in omega 3 and packed with protein. Eating foods that contain these properties can help you feel fuller for longer once consumed.
Though these are usually eaten, how about mixing it up a bit and using this super fruit as a cooling and moisturising face mask? Don’t be scared, we’re not about to tell you to go all “breaking bad” on us and bust out your science kit.
Simply mash up one whole avocado, add in a pinch of turmeric powder and apply to your face with either a brush or your hands. Leave the mask on for around 15 minutes to ensure that all of the soothing properties of this rich luxurious fruit is absorbed in to your skin. If your skin is feeling particularly dehydrated, why not leave on for 30 mins and then wash off with warm water. The three good things about this are:
1- it’s inexpensive to make
2- You don’t have to worry about your eyes stinging with any added chemicals that you might find from store bought products
3- It tastes good
Finally, and no means least, let’s talk about Quinoa or Qeenwah. (You know that grain that everyone pronounces differently!) QUINOA, is a fantastic substitute for rice which many people find too carby or starchy. But this teeny tiny grain packs some serious nutrition and it’s the only grain or seed that provides all nine essential amino acids our bodies can’t produce themselves. How amazing is that?!
So there you have it. Our top superfoods that we think ARE worth the hype. Don’t believe us? Try them for yourself. We’d love to hear what you think.