What’s better than food? SUPERFOOD(s) – that’s what! Why, what were you thinking? Behave – it’s not even Friday yet. Anyway… moving swiftly on, here’s the third instalment in our superfoods series!
As you might be aware from the preceding articles, superfoods are these phenomenal creations, scattered about nature. They’re packed with nutrients, and as a result, are believed to support health and well-being. There’s an extensive list of foods that possess a number of reported benefits – too many to mention, in fact, but we’ve included some of those that are easiest to incorporate into your daily diet. Plus, there’s a decent bit of science to back up their ‘super-ness’.
This week, we’re moving up the alphabet (without sounding patronising there, boys and girls) to D, E, F.
So, here we go:
Dates are an incredibly versatile fruit that can be used to add moisture, bulk and sweetness to foods. They have a superb, toffee-like texture, and a taste that’s reminiscent of caramel. Yum! Medjool dates tend to be larger and softer, thus making them a popular choice.
They’re rich in fibre, and deliver an array of vitamins and minerals in useful quantities, to include potassium, magnesium and iron, plus vitamin B6. Opt for snack bars made with dates for a natural energy boost. However, as with all things sweet, it’s wise not to overdo it – moderation is key!
Some experts are reluctant to classify animal-derived products as ‘superfoods’ – often due to ethical reasons. In my opinion, though, it wouldn’t be right if eggs weren’t featured on the list. Reason being, they’re like elliptical powerhouses of nutrition! As well as being a source of high quality, complete protein, they also contain a cocktail of nutrients such as vitamins A, D, B12 and riboflavin (vitamin B2), along with choline, iodine, selenium, iron and zinc. A balance of healthy fats is a key constituent – including omega-3s.
Oh – and as for the ‘c’ word: cholesterol – well, that’s a topic in its own right. For now, let’s just say that the cholesterol naturally present in eggs is thought to promote cardiovascular (along with other areas) of health.
Eggs are one of the most versatile foodstuffs available! Whisk up a breakfast omelette, adding any fillings of your choice, e.g. tomatoes, mushrooms, Feta Cheese and spinach (or whatever takes your fancy), and you’ll whizz through the morning, keeping hunger pangs at bay!
Flaxseeds, sometimes referred to as linseeds, contain heart-healthy omega-3s in the form of alpha-linoleic acid (ALA), plus fibre. They’re also a great source of non-dairy calcium, potassium, iron and vitamin B6, and are loaded with magnesium! They’re often found in the ingredients list of diet protein formulae, such as PhD Diet Whey – because they add nutritional density and help to fill you up.
To optimise absorption of the nutritional goodies found within, it’s best to choose ground flaxseeds. You could of course, do this yourself with one of those little coffee or spice grinders, but why may life more complicated than it needs to be? If I were you, I’d pick up a packet of ground flaxseeds, which you can often find mixed up with other lovelies – seeds, fruit and such – sprinkling a few spoonfuls (3-4 tbps) each day over your breakfast cereal/porridge; yogurt, fruit and so on. You could also blend this in with your smoothies and shakes; soups, sauces and casserole recipes. Just about anything, really.
You could say they’re flaxible (bad).
More on superfoods soon!