Superfoods are full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, they can help prevent diseases, and best of all, they don’t have to cost a fortune. Even though health stores are filled with neatly packaged exotic superfoods with a premium price tag, there are still plenty of foods anyone can afford that are just as amazing. Let’s take a closer look at five of them.
Superfoods don’t need to have a foreign-sounding name to pack a punch, and eggs are a great example of that. They are filled with micro-nutrients, like vitamins A, B2, B5, B12, iron, phosphorus, selenium, and they are one of the best sources of choline, which is very important for brain health. They also contain lutein and zeaxanthin, antioxidants that have been shown to protect against eye diseases. On top of that, they are protein-rich, which makes them very filling. Studies have shown that eating eggs as opposed to bagels for breakfast can substantially help with weight loss.
Liver is probably the most underappreciated superfood on the planet. This organ, regardless of whether it comes from a cow, a pig, or a chicken, is the best natural multi-vitamin you can find. A 100 g portion of beef liver contains: 6x RDA for vitamin A, 2x RDA for riboflavin (B2), 12x RDA for vitamin B12, 7x RDA for copper, massive amounts of folate, B3, B5, B6, and the list goes on. Having liver once a week or two does a lot to prevent nutritional deficiencies and strengthen overall health. And the funny thing is, it’s usually the cheapest cut of meat at the store.
Garlic lends its unique flavour to a lot of popular dishes, but it’s so much more than just a spice. Garlic consumption has been shown to improve blood pressure, triglycerides and cholesterol, markers of cardiovascular health. A few studies theorized that it could also lower the risk of stroke because it reduces platelet aggregation. High amounts of allicin make garlic one of the best natural antibiotics; it’s very effective at killing bacteria and fungi. Studies also show that all of the beneficial effects are present whether you consume garlic fresh, as a powder, or an extract.
All colourful veggies are very nutritious, but beets have some of the highest concentrations of betalains, the pigment that gives them such rich colours. Studies suggest betalains might help protect against cancer and other degenerative diseases. Beets are also a great source of vitamins A, B, and C, which boost immunity, and soluble fibre that helps digestion. They are usually available year round and don’t cost much at all.
Ginger has traditionally been attributed various healing effects, and science suggests that many of them might be real. Studies showed that 0.5 – 1 g of ginger helps reduce nausea and vomiting caused by morning sickness and chemotherapy. If you want to try ginger for motion sickness, have it in combination with a high-protein meal, that’s when it’s most effective. Ginger inhibits enzymes involved in inflammation, so its consumption can help reduce muscle soreness and even arthritis symptoms. Research also suggests that antioxidants in ginger might be able to slow down cancer growth. And it’s so cheap it’s almost a crime not to include it in your diet!