From greater energy and weight loss to disease prevention, superfoods promise all sorts of extraordinary benefits. They have an exotic origin, boast amazing healing powers, and pack a ton of nutrients. Are these claims true or it’s just marketing hype? Can you really trust the power of superfoods? Let’s find out the truth!
How “Super” Are Superfoods, Really?
These nutritionally high-powered foods are marketed as a possible cure for heart disease, high cholesterol, obesity, diabetes, aging, and even cancer. Even though no official standards exist for the term “superfood,” it shows up in health magazines, blogs, and medical websites. Everyone is talking about the healing benefits of spirulina, acai berries, and chia seeds.
In general, these claims are based on the fact that superfoods contain powerful antioxidants and other compounds with proven health benefits. For example, blueberries and broccoli boast anthocyanins and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants that promote cardiovascular health, delay aging, and improve vision. Other foods contain these nutrients too, but in smaller quantities.
From a medical point of view, superfoods have alleged healing or health-promoting effects. Based on popular usage, any regular food that is highly nutritious and supports optimal health can earn “super” status. Most people use the term “superfood” when talking about berries, kale, spinach, quinoa and other foods packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals, and good fats.
Harness the Power of Superfoods
The truth is that many of these foods have been around for centuries. Their health benefits are backed up by science. The only novelty is the term “superfoods,” which is mostly used for marketing purposes. However, this doesn’t mean that superfoods are just a fad. On the contrary – they boast a high nutritional value and exhibit health properties, such as decreased susceptibility to infections, cancer prevention, stronger hair and nail, improves digestion, and stronger immunity. Other benefits of superfoods include increased energy, younger looking skin, fat loss, and improved brain function. On top of that, there are no side effects to worry about.
Superfoods can improve your health – it’s no doubt about it. There is only one catch – you have to eat clean to reap their benefits. If your daily meals consist of fries and pizza, you won’t get healthier or lose weight. Superfoods can not compensate for bad eating. They do work, but only when used as part of a balanced diet. Eating almonds or chia seeds daily is pretty much useless if your other meals are based on junk food and soda. On top of that, superfoods have calories too. Snacking on nuts all day long may cause weight gain.
The bottom line is that superfoods, high-nutrient foods or whatever you call them, are a welcome addition to your plate. Loaded with vitamins and antioxidants, they will boost your immune system and keep diseases at bay. But none of them is a miracle cure capable of erasing the negative impact of poor nutrition. The only way to harness their power is to make them part of a healthy diet.