List of 6 Top Superfoods EVERYONE Should Eat!

There are a lot of misconceptions about the best superfoods to eat, and it seems that every day a new superfood hits the shelf, so it can be a minefield to try to find out which superfoods you can really benefit from eating.

I’ve done some research and picked out six of the top superfoods that have proven health benefits, and they are:

Chia Seed

chia seedChia may be one of the smallest seeds, but they are amongst the most healthy foods. Calorie for calorie, Chia ranks as one of the most nutrient dense food sources.

Chia is a great source of fibre, protein, omega-3 fatty acids, as well as several micronutrients.

A 28g serving of Chia provides 11g fibre, 4g protein, 9g fat (including 5g omega-3 fatty acids), 18% RDA calcium, 30% RDA manganese, 30% RDA magnesium, 27% RDA phosphorous, as well as zinc, vitamin B3 (niacin), potassium, vitamin B1 (thiamine), and vitamin B2, in just 137 calories.

Chia seeds are also loaded with anti-oxidants, these help to neutralize the damaging-effects of free-radicals, so can help to prevent ageing, and various diseases linked to free radical cell damage.

Chia has an exceedingly low carbohydrate content, of just 1g digestible carbs per 28g of Chia seeds, and because the seeds absorb 10 to 12 times their weight of water, they become a gel-like mass that will help you to feel full for longer, and help slow the absorption of food.

The fibre in Chia will help to feed the friendly bacteria in your gut, which is essential to good health(1).

The protein that Chia contains has a good spectrum of amino-acids, which gives it a good bio-availability.

The minerals that Chia contains are all essential to good bone health.

One study(2) found that consuming Chia prior to exercise improved sports performance as much as drinking a sports drink prior to workout.

Pinto Bean

pinto beansPinto beans are a great source of several minerals, as well as protein, and B vitamins.

One cup of cooked pinto beans supply all of your recommended daily amount of molybdenum, 74% RDA folate, 62% RDA fibre, 41% RDA copper, 39% RDA manganese, 36% RDA phosphorus, 31% RDA protein, plus vitamin B1, B6, magnesium, potassium, and iron.

The fibre in pinto beans can help to lower cholesterol levels, and prevent blood sugar levels from rising too rapidly after eating a meal, which can make them a useful food to help control diabetes, insulin resistance, or hypoglycemia.

The combination of minerals in pinto beans, including magnesium and potassium can help to maintain normal blood pressure, and improve blood flow, which can lessen the risk of heart attacks.

Pinto beans are a great source of slow-release energy, which makes it a great food for both people wanting to lose weight, and athletes who want a long lasting source of energy.

The high amount of molybdenum in pinto beans is useful for detoxing sulphites from the body. Sulphites are a very common preservative, and consuming pinto beans can help to reduce any sensitivity to sulphites.

Pinto beans are a great source of manganese and copper, which are key trace minerals which are essential co-factors of superoxide dismutase, which disarms free radicals produced within the cells of our bodies.

The vitamin B1 in pinto beans can help to improve our memory, and prevent age-related diseases such as senility, and Alzheimer’s disease which is characterised by a decrease in acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter which the body requires vitamin B1 (thiamin) to synthesise.

Flaxseed

flaxseedAccording to the American Nutrition Association, Flaxseed is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids including linoleic acid, and alpha-linoleic acid (ALA), as well as fibre, vitamins, and minerals.

Flaxseeds are rich in a type of phytoestrogen called lignans, which have anti-oxidant properties in the body.

Flaxseed is rich in both soluble and insoluble fibre. It can therefore help to lower blood cholestrol and glucose levels, and add bulk to your digestive tract to help keep things moving.

A 1 ounce (3 tablespoon) serving of flax contains 6,338mg omega-3 (ALA), 8g fibre, 6g protein, 31% RDA vitamin B1, 35% RDA manganese, 30% RDA magnesium, 19% RDA phosphorus, and 10% RDA selenium.

The ALA in flax seed can help to make your skin and hair look more healthy, and can improve the symptoms of acne, rosacea, and eczema, as well as helping reduce the symptoms of dry eye syndrome.

As flaxseed is full of healthy fats and fibre, it can help you to feel full for longer, which can help with weight loss. It can also help to reduce inflammation(3).

Green Pea

Green peas are an often overlooked “superfood”, rich in a polyphenol called coumestrol. This can help to prevent stomach cancer, according to a study conducted in Mexico(4).

Peas are a good source of fibre, B vitamins, vitamin C which has anti-oxidant properties, and several key minerals.

Peas can help to lower cholesterol levels, and build or support strong bones.

Peas also contain anti-inflammatory phytonutrients which can help with type-2 diabetes by regulating blood sugar levels.

Quinoa

quinoaPronounced “keen-wah”, this is fast becoming one of the worlds most popular health foods, and for good reason. It is high in protein, and contains all nine essential amino acids.

Quinoa is also high in fibre, magnesium, B vitamins, iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorous, vitamin E, and several anti-oxidants.

It is a very nutrtious food, and whilst many people think it is a grain, it’s actually a seed.

One cup of cooked quinoa (185g) contains 8g protein, 5g fibre, 58% RDA manganese, 30% RDA magnesium, 28% RDA phosphorous, 19% RDA folate, as well as copper, iron, zinc, and potassium.

Quinoa contains thousands of other nutrients that we are not so familiar with, including several flavinoids including quercetin, and kaempferol which have anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-cancer, and anti-depressant effects (5,6,7,8).

Quinoa contains about twice as much fibre as any grain (about 10 to 16g of fibre per 100g), which makes it helpful for weight loss as it can help you to feel fuller for longer.

Quinoa is very high in protein, and contains all the essential amino acids, making it a complete protein that has a high bioavailability.

The low glycemic index of quinoa makes it great for controlling blood sugar levels, and it is very high in anti-oxidants which can help to reduce oxidative-stress in the body.

Chick Pea

chickpeaA key ingredient in hummus, and falafels, chick peas are high in fibre (both soluble and insoluble), a good source of protein, an excellent source of manganese, high in iron, contain folate and magnesium which can help to strengthen blood vessels and keep your heart healthy, and contains saponins which can help to protect against osteoporosis.

Also known as garbanzo beans, chickpeas have been shown to help to lower bad cholesterol (LDL) levels(9), and reduce your risk of heart attack.

Chick peas are one of the top sources of non-animal protein, containing 23% protein by weight, by they are not a complete source of amino acids, so it is recommended to have chick pea in combination with other protein sources.

Benefit from these top six superfoods daily!

vi shape superfood shakeNew Vi Shape Superfood Shake contains all six of these superfoods in a convenient tasty format, and a month’s supply costs just $89.99 for 24 delicious nutritious superfood meals.

Vi Shape Superfood Shake is perfect for weight loss by replacing a couple of meals a day with superfood shakes, or building lean muscle by adding superfood meals to your healthy diet*.

* In combination with an effective exercise program.

Sources:

  1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12583961
  2. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21183832
  3. http://jn.nutrition.org/content/140/11/1937.full
  4. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2787087
  5. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18555853
  6. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2480745
  7. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18467024
  8. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0028390809003426
  9. http://www.cmaj.ca/content/early/2014/04/07/cmaj.131727

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