Superfoods: Definition & Health Benefits

A significant aspect of living a healthy life is eating a nutritious diet rich in vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals. According to science, nutrient-dense foods will not only make you feel better but also reduce your risk of certain chronic conditions. At the same time, it will also provide several health benefits.

You have probably heard the term “superfoods,” which describe foods that are likely to make you feel better, look great, and help you live longer and healthier. However, what is meant by “superfoods” and what makes these foods so special?

What is Superfood?

There are no specific definitions of what makes the term “superfood.” However, superfoods are considered unprocessed, whole food rich in minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. They are usually plant-based foods, but some fish and dairy are also cut.

Examples of popular superfoods include kale, salmon, almonds, kefir, and açaí berries. Nutrient-dense foods are also placed into this category.

The Health Benefits of Superfoods

Superfoods contain high mineral and vitamin content that can help keep your body away from diseases and make you healthier. Incorporating superfoods into a balanced diet will promote weight loss, heart health, reduce aging effects, and improve energy levels.

Healthy fats found in superfoods can reduce your risk of heart disease, while antioxidants can help prevent cancer. Fiber is another nutrient in superfoods, which can help prevent digestive problems and diabetes.

Superfoods also help lower cholesterol, reduce inflammation, regulate metabolism, and protect your organs from toxins. Phytochemicals have plenty of health benefits, and one of them is that it reduces your risk of developing cardiovascular diseases.

6 Essential Superfoods for Improving a Healthy Diet

No single food can offer all the energy, nutrition, and health benefits we need to nourish ourselves. However, there are superfoods recognized for providing essential nutrients and enhancing healthy eating habits.

The list includes:

  • Berries: They are naturally sweet and high in fiber. Their rich colors indicate they are high in antioxidants and other disease-fighting nutrients.
  • Leafy greens: Dark, leafy greens are rich in several phytochemicals (plant-based chemicals with positive effects on human health). They are also a good source of calcium, vitamin A, and vitamin C, and also add fiber into their diet.
  • Nuts: Such as pecans, hazelnuts, almonds, and walnuts are a good source of plant protein. Nuts also contain monounsaturated fats – a likely factor for reducing the risk of heart disease.
  • Fish: Contains Omega-3 fatty acids and protein, which helps curb heart disease.
  • Whole grains: These are a good source of soluble and insoluble fiber. The grains also contain multiple B vitamins, phytonutrients, and minerals. Whole grains protect against diabetes and heart disease, as well as lowering cholesterol.
  • Yogurt: Contains live cultures called probiotics – “good bacteria” that protect the body from other harmful bacteria. Yogurt is also a good source of protein and calcium.