At this stage, so many so-called “superfoods” have had their 15 minutes of fame. But just as their time in the headlines comes and goes, so too do their benefits. While it is true that many of these foods are high in certain nutrients, this does not give them superpowers, make them magic or give them the power to be a “quick fix” and somehow transform our health immediately by consuming them. Spoiler alert: there is no such thing as a superfood! It is just a clever marketing term, not a scientific one.
What does have a large influence on our health is our habitual diet. What we eat day in and day outwill have the greatest effect on our overall health. Focussing on maintaining a healthy, balanced diet, in accordance with healthy eating guidelines, should be the overall aim.
Notwithstanding this, many “superfoods” are high in certain nutrients and certainly have a place within a healthy, balanced diet. Let’s delve deeper to see where some of the hype is coming from for these foods.
What it is not: A superfood food that, if consumed, will transform your body shape immediately.
What it is: A green leafy vegetable which contains vitamins A, C and K. Kale can be a nice addition to a salad or to a main meal(in a stew, for example), but you can also have a healthy diet without it.
What they are not: Superfood “immune-boosters”. (There is no such thing!)
What they are: Berries, such as blueberries, raspberries and strawberries, are high in vitamin C, which is one of many nutrients that are required for a healthy immune system. They are also delicious as a snack or as a porridge topping!
To learn more about how nutrition plays vital in supporting a healthy immune system, click the link below:
What it is not: A seasoning that will prevent numerous chronic diseases.
What it is: A delicious spice that can add flavour and sweetness to many sweet dishes, possibly reducing the need to add sugar or sweeteners. Cinnamon can add a lovely cosy and autumnal flavour to porridge, stewed fruit or spiced lattes at this time of the year!
What they are not: “Essential for a healthy diet”
What they are: A source of unsaturated fatty acids, which can help to maintain heathy levels of cholesterol in the blood. They are also delicious with eggs on toast, mmm.
To learn more about unsaturated fat, click the link below:
What it is not: A superfood powder with “anti-cancer properties”.
What it is: A powdered form of algae, which contains certain vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, C and E. It is definitely an acquired taste and might not be to everyone’s preference!
So, once again, the take home message is to enjoy a wide variety of foods in moderation and in accordance to the healthy eating guidelines. Incorporating some of these foods into your regular diet may increase your intake of certain nutrients and if you enjoy them, that’s great. But, equally, by not consuming them you will not miss out on their misinterpreted “superpowers”. After all, they don’t exist!