The term “superfood” describes food that offer maximum nutritional benefits for minimal calories. They are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. There is no legal definition or standard criteria classify any food as a superfood at this time. Indeed, most superfoods are plant-based. However, the title “superfood” catches your attention, right? We are always seeking for a way to improve our health, so the notion of a superfood can be appealing. But let’s be clear, there is no such thing as a superfood.
Where did the term superfood originate? The earliest recorded example may have taken place in the early 20th century around World War I. Superfood was used as part of a food marketing strategy. A company started an advertising campaign to promote its import of bananas. The campaign advertised the practicality of bananas in a daily diet and they suggested adding bananas for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The Banana was a shooting star in this century. Medical journals published findings of banana diet to treat conditions like celiac disease and diabetes. Bananas have become a flagship for health.
The difference in the 21st century is that information now spread at viral speed so that a new superfood seems to appear on a monthly basis. Sure, superfoods are often nutritious, but the term is more useful for driving sales than it’s providing optimal nutrition recommendations. A downside of superfoods is that the title alone may cause people to focus on a few specific foods. The most important fact about a healthy diet is to include a wide array of essential vitamins and minerals and to prevent one from eating too much or too little of a particular nutrient.
However, we should not underestimate superfood, because these foods are not processed and are those which have the right nutrients to sustain the body. Including superfoods as part of daily nutritional intake is great but only when consuming a healthy, balanced diet overall. Eat a “super diet” rather than to concentrate on individual foods. Another important tip for a healthy diet is to buy your produce in season and from local sources to ensure the highest nutrient content.
Let’s have a closer look at some “superfoods”
- Lemon contains flavonoids which have antioxidant and cancer-fighting properties, it is rich in vitamin C, which prevents coronary heart disease.
- All types of berries contain vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants, which are powerfully nutritional. These amazing little superfoods have an incredible capacity of decreasing the risk of heart disease and cancer.
- Dates are jampacked with positive vitamins, antioxidants and they bring plenty of minerals to the body too, which keeps your bones strong. Date can give a massive boost in energy in as little as 30 minutes, this makes dates a much better pick-me-up than addictive caffeine drinks.
- Spinach promotes vision and bone health by containing antioxidants, anti-inflammatories and vitamins.
- Oatmeal is high in fiber, antioxidants, and tons of other nutrients. This breakfast staple has been shown to help lower cholesterol levels and completed with berries or bananas it is downright delicious.
- Beets are known as root vegetables and they’re packed with essential vitamin, minerals and nutrients. With high concentration of dietary nitrates, beets improve cognitive function and reduce the risk of dementia. Additionally, nitrates enhance athletic performance by boosting oxygen use and time to exhaustion. But to get this effect, it must be consumed 2-3 hours before training or competing.
- Turmeric contains curcumin, a compound with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Additionally, it increases the growth of new neurons and it contributes tremendously to lower the risk of heart disease
Roots and Friends offers a lot of these so-called superfoods in combination with healthy plant-based and handcrafted meals and shakes! Check out their menu on their website and visit Roots X Velocity at our studio in Enge! A little foretaste: Velocity has its own shake with the perfect ingredients, including spinach, avocado, orange, lime, protein and coconut water, after an exhausting power or cycling class;)