Top 10 Superfoods Everyone Should Be Eating
The definition of a superfood is a nutrient-rich food considered to be especially beneficial for health and well-being.
I know there is a lot of controversy over the idea of superfoods and whether or not they are even real – but I am a firm believer that there are many foods out there that are undeniably powerful and their properties are too strong to deny their super-ness!
I honestly could’ve made a list of about 50 foods I believe to be ‘super’, but instead of doing that to you guys – here are 10 foods that I believe are super and should be eaten by everyone on a regular basis.
1. Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are the healthiest food on the planet. They are a nutrient powerhouse! 2 tablespoons contain 64% more potassium than a banana, 2x the antioxidants of blueberries, 41% of your daily fiber, 5x the calcium of (cow’s) milk, 100% more omega-3s than salmon, 3x more iron than spinach, and 32% of your daily magnesium. Protein also makes up 20% of those two tablespoons.
They have been found to protect again heart disease and diabetes, aid in weight loss, boost energy, reduce joint pain, balance blood sugar, promote bone and digestive health, neutralize free radicals, reduce inflammation, and more.
My favorites ways to eat chia seeds are in oatmeal &smoothies, making chia seed pudding (recipe coming soon), and in my superfood bircher (click here for recipe)
Popeye had it right, my friends! Spinach is such an incredible thing to put into your body. It is extremely high in iron, vitamins A, C, B6, B1, riboflavin, calcium, folate, niacin, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids.
It is high in fiber, so it keeps you full longer and aids in digestion. It’s also high in antioxidants, so it is great for neutralizing free radicals and reducing inflammation throughout the body. It has been found to lower blood pressure, improve vision, strengthen the immune system, fight diseases, strengthen bones, promote healthy, glowing skin, and aid brain and nervous system function. It also aids in weight loss as it is low in calories but high in nutrients.
My favorite ways to eat spinach are in smoothies (click here for my favorite recipe), salads, and sautéed with root veggies and tempeh!
Almonds are (in my opinion) the most delicious nut, but also the healthiest! They are packed with nutrients, such as vitamin E, antioxidants, fiber, calcium, protein, magnesium, potassium, and healthy fats.
Almonds help people manage weight, lower cholesterol, lower risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes, reduce cell damage, and improve digestive health. They also lower the GI of meals, provide consumers with sustained energy, prevent cancer, improve brain powder, strengthen bones and teeth, and promote healthy skin and hair. They have also been found to be a remedy for those suffering with anemia.
My favorites ways to eat almonds are by the handful, in granola, as a smoothie bowl topper, or in the form of almond milk or almond yogurt! So yummy!
4. Fermented Foods
Fermented foods are often a turn-off for people because (1) they don’t sound appetizing whatsoever, and (2) they can sometimes have a very unusual smell and/or taste. I highly recommend everyone gives them a chance, though!
Fermented foods have increased enzyme content, which helps one absorb nutrients, reducing the need for vitamins and supplements. They also contain good bacteria (probiotics) that help restore balance in the gut and aid digestion and immune health. The lactic acid created during the fermentation process killed E. coli as well, making it safer to consume than raw vegetables, and the lacto-fermentation process stores food longer than canning without depleting any nutrients. Last but not least, the fermentation process increases the nutritional value by enriching certain nutrients.
I won’t go through the benefits of every fermented food out there, but here are a few suggestions if you want to do some research on your own – sauerkraut, yogurt, kimchi, kombucha, tempeh, miso, pickles, and sourdough.
My favorites are kombucha (click here to shop my favorite brand), tempeh, vegan yogurt, and pickles!
5. Flax Seeds
Flax seeds are my absolute favorite nice cream topping, and not just because I find them delicious!
These beautiful little specs are high in fiber, antioxidants, protein, omega-3s, B vitamins, potassium, iron, copper, phosphorus, manganese, lignans (tumor-blocking compounds that help protect against breast, colon, and prostate cancer), and magnesium. They are anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and hormone balancing.
They have been found to aid digestion, promote healthy skin, bone health, and weight loss, fight cancer, burn fat, lower/stabilize cholesterol and blood pressure, fire up one’s metabolism, repair cellular damage, and prevent complications from diabetes.
I love putting ground flax seeds on my nice cream/smoothie bowls and in my bircher (recipe here), oatmeal, and granola.
Spirulina can be a very intimidating food. It has a very earthy taste which can take awhile to get used to, but I have learned to absolutely love it. Spirulina is a blue-green algae, often sold in the form of a powder or a capsule. It has the highest concentration of protein by weight found in any food in the world.
It contains 2,300% more iron than spinach, 375% more protein than tofu, 3,900% more beta carotene than carrots, and 300% more calcium than (cow’s) milk. It is loaded with healthy fats, omega-3s, and A, B, E, & K vitamins. 100 grams of spirulina contains 57 grams of protein, while 100 grams of beef contains 25 grams of protein. It is also 65-71% complete protein, while beef is only 22% complete protein.
Spirulina has been found to detox heavy metals in the body, eliminate candida, improve HIV/AIDS, prevent cancer, lower blood pressure, reduce cholesterol, lower chances of stroke, boost energy, speed up weight loss, alleviate sinus issues, and more.
My favorite way to eat spirulina is in green smoothies with lots of sweet fruit! I promise you can barely even taste it! Click here to make my favorite spirulina mermaid bowl.
I feel so bad for kale because it is associated with so many stereotypes and negative connotations, but it’s actually so delicious and nutritious!
Kale is high in fiber, antioxidants, protein, thiamin, riboflavin, folic acid, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, potassium, copper, manganese, and vitamins A, C, K, & B6.
It has been found to aid weight loss, keep skin healthy and strong, fight off inflammatory diseases, support heart and vision health, prevent cancer, promote healthy brain development, activate detoxifying enzymes in the liver, boost metabolisms and immune systems, and protect against macular degeneration.
I love eating kale blended in smoothies, massaging it with lemon juice or avocado to make it less bitter/tough & eating it raw in salads, and/or sautéing it in spices + apple cider vinegar and eating it with other cooked vegetables and a protein source such as tofu or beans!
We all know the obsession with avocado toast, but do we know this beautiful fruit is packed with incredible healthy nutrients?
Avocados are high in fiber, vitamin A, B’s, C, E, & K, protein, folate, phytonutrients, potassium, and healthy (monounsaturated) fats. They are also alkaline rich and loaded with antioxidants.
They promote eye health, improve nutrient absorption, slow the aging process, aid digestion, lower cholesterol, boost metabolism, help bodies burn fat, promote weight loss, help rejuvenate the skin, fight against Diabetes and Alzheimer’s, control blood pressure, and more.
My favorite ways to eat avocado are on gluten-free toast, on salads, or in pretty much and & every savory meal I could possibly imagine to make!
Chocolate, guys! Cacao is high in antioxidants, vitamin C, copper, magnesium, zinc, iron, and calcium.
Cacao has been found to combat free radicals, promote cardiovascular function/health, prevent strokes, lower blood pressure, improve body circulation, enhance physical & mental well-being (boost mood), improve digestion, increase insulin sensitivity, push toxins out of the body, increase blood circulation, prevent aging & improve longevity, reduce cancer risk, aid in weight loss, balance hormones, improve brain function, reduce headaches, and act as an aphrodisiac.
You guys know I had to put this bad boy in here! Açaí is not only one of the most delicious things ever, it’s also super good for you! It is loaded with fiber, amino acids, antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, iron, calcium, vitamin A, anthocyanin, manganese, electrolytes, and B vitamins,
Açaí has been found to boost and strengthen the immune system, aid weight loss, promote a healthy sex drive, healthy skin, & high energy, improve mental clarity & function, aid digestion, reduce irritation – particularly associated with respiration, improve vision, cleanse & detoxify the body, support heart health, prevent diseases such as heart disease, cancer, & diabetes, reduce fatigue, and promote circulation and oxygenation of blood throughout the body.
I hope you decide to try out some of these foods and thoroughly enjoy not only their flavor but the amazing things they do for your body! Please feel free to ask me any questions, and tag me if you decide to make recipes using them because of this post! I am @fruitful_soul in Instagram!
And like I said, I could go on forever listing foods I believe to be superfoods! If you’re interested, here are some runner-ups that would’ve made my list if I didn’t just do a Top 10:
Apple Cider Vinegar