What makes a superfood a superfood? There may be many varying criteria for different people, but almost everyone would agree that superfoods improve overall health and result in a longer life span. On top of physical activity and stress control, nutrition plays a significant role in a person’s overall quality of life. If you want to live a long and healthy life, here are the top 5 superfoods you should incorporate into your diet now:
Top 5 superfoods for a long life
If you want to live a long and healthy life, try incorporating these top 5 superfoods into your daily diet.
There’s a reason why kale is so popular among health buffs. It’s been known to contain a complete host of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that promote health and keep diseases at bay. Its popularity led to innovation among cooks, aiming to provide culinary variety to this superfood. From salads to stir-frys, there are over forty popular recipes for kale, which even include chips and pies.
However, if you feel unwilling to eat kale every single day of the week, or if you’re simply not a kale person, the good news is that you can get the same nutrients from other dark green leafy vegetables. Spinach, Chinese cabbage, lettuce, watercress, and even algae like that nori wrap you use for sushi can be great alternatives.
Eggs have always had a bad reputation in the past for having high fat content. However, more updated studies show that even consuming 6 to 12 eggs a week does not increase your risk for heart disease. In fact, eggs are still one of the healthiest foods out there. Eggs are a powerhouse rich in so many nutrients, including selenium, B vitamins, Vitamin A, iron, phosphorus, choline, high protein levels, and potent antioxidants that are helpful to maintaining good eyesight.
Tomatoes are a rich source of lycopene and vitamin C. These nutrients are shown to reduce the risk of certain cancers like prostate cancer. You can simply toss raw tomatoes over your fresh salads, but to maximize their lycopene levels, it is best to heat them, sauté them in olive oil, or opt for sun-dried tomatoes that you can tear and sprinkle over toast, salads, and other dishes.
Not only flavorful but packed with healthy nutrients, garlic is an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin B6, manganese, selenium, and fiber. It has long been known to aid in reducing cholesterol and blood pressure and support immunity. Moreover, it also contains compounds that can help prevent cancer. The beauty of garlic is that it can be easy to incorporate it with so many dishes -salads, soups, stews, stir-frys, meat, and vegetables.
Green tea is a lightly caffeinated beverage that is often served hot. It can also be served iced, with other mixtures and sweeteners, or as an ingredient in other foods like ice cream. What makes green tea a superfood is that it is very rich in antioxidants that help protect from chronic diseases like cancer. Further research shows that the antioxidants in green tea, combined with its caffeine content, make it a potentially effective beverage to help weight loss.
Top 5 superfoods for heart health
Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. These top 5 superfoods support good cardiovascular health.
This protein is tasty, hearty, filling, and packed with omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 is vastly known for being a heart-healthy nutrient. It is known to reduce inflammation, improve metabolic conditions, fight neurodegenerative diseases, improve mental health, and even help patients manage pain through its anti-inflammatory properties. When serving Salmon, though, it is best to cook healthily—boiled, poached, baked, or roasted instead of fried or buttered.
Oats are rich in whole grain fiber, which is not only essential to gut health but overall heart health too. The beta-glucan and overall heart health found in oats protect you from heart attacks and strokes. When choosing oats for better cardiovascular health, make sure to choose unflavored, sugar-free, rolled, or steel-cut oats that do not contain added sugars or fat.
Beans are an excellent meat substitute when it comes to supplying protein for heart health. In addition, beans also contain nutrients, fiber, and healthy fats that support heart health. Unlike meat, beans give a similar amount of protein without having any saturated fat, which is the type of fat that increases cholesterol and your risk for heart disease.
Nuts are yet another source of protein, fiber, nutrients, and good fat. The fat found in nuts is mono and polyunsaturated fats and omega-3 fats that you would want to increase in your diet as these are crucial in maintaining cardiovascular health.
Olive oil is rich in so much good stuff that it can help you maintain a healthy heart. These are polyphenols, vitamin E, and monounsaturated fatty acids. The great thing about olive oils is that it is versatile enough to include regularly in your diet. Use it to sauté food, drizzle over salads, coat your pasta, and substitute for butter or margarine in foods like toast.
Top 5 superfoods for overall wellness
If you want to improve your diet for overall health, here are the top 5 superfoods you can try.
Yogurt is an excellent source of protein, calcium, and good bacteria that support gut health. Having a healthy gut is essential for overall health as it is crucial in the optimal absorption of nutrients from other foods. It is shown that having a healthy gut also plays a vital role in having good immunity.
Acai, cranberries, and Goji sound so trendy and exotic that people believe them to be superfoods. While they do have a significant amount of nutrients and help out in fat burning and weight loss, they simply cannot compare to the number of antioxidants that can only be found in blueberries. The extremely high amount of antioxidants found in blueberries can help effectively protect them from chronic diseases such as diabetes and Alzheimer’s.
High in Calcium, Iron, and Magnesium, one ounce of it provides ten total grams of dietary fiber or almost half of your daily dietary fiber needs. Several studies and statements from nutrition experts, including that from the National Institute of Health, declared that a fiber-rich diet is associated with longevity. You only need a small amount of chia seeds in a day, so it’s so easy to incorporate them into your diet. It is bland in taste and blends well with many dishes so that you can sprinkle it into anything -salads, stews, stir-fries, oats, and even smoothies.
Much like olive oil, avocado contains a good amount of healthy fats. On top of that, it also has fiber, vitamins, and minerals. The primary type of fat found in avocados is oleic acid, which is found to reduce inflammation—preventing metabolic diseases and reducing the chances of developing cancer.
Living healthy and living long doesn’t have to be dull and boring. You should treat yourself every once in a while. Just make sure that your chocolate is at least 65% cacao for you to enjoy the full superfood benefits of chocolate. Candies with lesser concentrations of cacao, such as milk chocolate, may not have as many antioxidants and may be full of trans fats and refined sugars.
There are many more superfoods beyond this list, such as ginger, turmeric, wheatgrass, spirulina, barley, beets, and barley. It is essential to maintain a balanced diet that includes a whole variety of foods. Superfoods are only one great way to supplement your regular diet to boost your overall health.
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