Guest post by Rick Hay, author of The Anti Ageing Food and Fitness Plan.
Superfoods are foods that are nutrient dense and have strong antioxidant properties and that’s a good thing as antioxidants are the good guys that help the body fight off free radicals that damage our health and our cells.
A true superfood has a high ORAC score which stands for Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity – the higher the score the stronger the food’s antioxidant ability. A super food is like a super warrior!
Often when we think about superfoods we think of things that are somewhat exotic like Acia, Goji berries or Cacao – and whilst these rainforest foods are indeed Superfoods every day foods can be superfoods too – think Beetroot, Blueberries and English Spinach.
There are even superfoods amongst your common herbs spices like turmeric, cinnamon and oregano.
All of these super spices have many medicinal qualities that modern research is revealing more and more of.
Brightly coloured fruits and vegetables are most likely to be super foods that are immune boosters in their own right. Including more coloured foods in your diet means that you are increasing your phytonutrient intake and thereby boosting the immune system.
Some herbal teas such as Licorice, Fennel and Peppermint could be considered as super and there are also herbal tincture options such as Globe Artichoke, Olive Leaf and St John’s Wort that also fall into the same category. Herbal tinctures can be powerful medicinal tools due to their anti microbial, anti bacterial and anti viral properties.
Many are also liver and gall bladder tonics whilst others stimulate digestive function and support nervous system function too.
Resveratrol which is found in Red Wine and in Japanese Knotweed is part of these plant’s natural defence mechanism and is one of the best anti ageing nutrients found thus far.
Resveratrol works in our body by protecting our telemores at a cellular level -and longer telomeres lead to a healthier longer living cell.
Research is also indicating that this super nutrient is also a potent weapon in the fight against diabetes and that it also is a cardio protective.
To get the benefits of a superfood diet then you need to eat as close to nature as you can most of the time. You should include as many brightly coloured foods as you can in your daily diet.
If you want to try some superfoods some of my favourites include:
Spirulina and Chlorella to cleanse and alkalise the system.
Boabab and Maca to help with natural energy production.
Turmeric and Olive Leaf extract to boost immunity and fight viruses, microbes and bacterias.
Cinnamon and Globe Artichoke to regulate blood sugar levels.
Bitter greens like Chicory, Endive and Rocket to stimulate liver and gall bladder function.
Blueberries and Fish or Algal Oil to help boost cognition and protect against degenerative brain conditions.
Beetroot Juice and Co enzyme Q10 to improve athletic performance.
Superfoods come in many different guises and to really benefit from them it’s not just a matter of having some Acia powder daily – you need to include the common super spices, herbs and fruits and vegetables into your diet everyday.
The more varied your diet is the closer to super it will become!
You can find Rick Hay on Twitter.
This post is part of the Clink Street Summer 2016 #blogival, which is taking place all this month. Do take time to browse round some of the other posts, which cover a wide range of reading tastes.