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5 Superfoods – You Should Start Eating Now

Coral Summers

Diet and nutrition tips are everywhere we turn. Because of that, the consumer is often inundated with information and left not knowing what to believe. There are some foods, though, that have been scientifically proven to show high amounts of vitamins and nutrients. They’re called superfoods and can reduce one’s risk of cancer, diabetes, and even heart disease in addition to reducing hunger pangs. Let's take a look at five of them:

Kale and other green vegetables

Everyone knows that vegetables are full of health benefits, but the green kinds are even better. They’re rich in easy to digest nutrients and even contain healthy bacteria which can aid the digestive system in functioning properly and protect you from disease. Start by picking up some kale on your next trip to the grocery store. This dark green vegetable is part of the cabbage family and resembles lettuce. Kale’s main benefit is its high vitamin C content as well as other nutrients such as vitamin A, potassium, and calcium.  Braising is the most popular way to prepare kale, but it can also be consumed raw in salads or other dishes.

Blueberries

This blue fruit is easy to come by in the United States and is low in calories. This summertime favorite is loaded with antioxidants, vitamins and fiber and should make its way into your refrigerator on a consistent basis. Consume them raw for the greatest benefit. Blueberries make great additions to smoothies, desserts and fruit salads

Eggs

Eggs are packed with protein, easy to prepare, and when eaten for breakfast, may keep you from overeating later in the day. They also contain twelve vitamins and minerals including vitamin D and vitamin B12 which are vital to optimal health. Try eating one a day and your body will thank you!

Nuts and seeds

Unknown to many, nuts and seeds have a high concentration of antioxidants and omega-3s and help lower your risk of heart disease. The FDA endorses the consumption of seven varieties of nuts and seeds including peanuts, walnuts, almonds, flaxseeds and pumpkin seeds. Be sure to buy for the unsalted and raw varieties at the grocery store for the greatest benefit. One thing to be aware of is that nuts are not a low calorie food, so do not go overboard. A small handful of 1 or 2 oz is all you need.

Salmon

Full of omega-3s, this lean protein is a fine dinner choice. It can help prevent blood clots and heart disease while lowering blood pressure. Keep your serving size no bigger than a deck of cards and limit your intake to once a week.

Even if you don’t care for a particular food, try preparing it a different way than usual. Putting a little kale in the blender as part of a fruit smoothie is an easy way to reap the nutritional benefits without going overboard. Try adding a few nuts to a salad or to your morning oatmeal. Also, be aware of how you prepare the superfood. If it’s loaded in sugar or oil, the nutritional value is significantly reduced.

Finally, the reason why superfoods are so important is because of their high nutritional value and the fact that they do not contain empty calories. It should be noted that there isn't one perfect food, though. By combining a variety of nutrient packed foods into your diet, your body is more likely to get what it needs.


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