What are the Top 10 Superfoods of 2020 and why should you eat them?
The term “superfood” is a fairly new term referring to foods that offer a high nutrient density, packed full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Most are plant-based in nature.
However, there are no standard criteria or legal definitions classify any food as a superfood at the time of this writing.
Here, we’ll take a look at the Top 10 Superfoods of 2020 and their nutritional benefits keeping in mind that the best way to incorporate them into your diet is as a part of a healthy, balance diet rather than concentrating on the individual food source.
A few commonly identified superfood berries include acai berries, blueberries, raspberries, tart cherries, cranberries, and goji berries. High in fiber, berries are naturally sweet, and their rich colors mean they are high in antioxidants and disease-fighting nutrients. Fresh or frozen, you can add them to yogurt, cereal, smoothies or eat them by themselves as a snack.
2. Dark Leafy Greens
Dark, leafy greens are a good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, and calcium and fiber!
Try varieties such as spinach, swiss chard, kale, collard greens, or mustard greens. Throw them into salads or sauté them in a little olive oil. You can also add greens to soups and stews or make baked kale chips in the oven. One cup of kale provides 550 mcg of vitamin K. That’s over 600% of a person’s daily requirements.
3. Green Tea
Tea contains few (if any) calories, aids in hydration and is a good source of antioxidants. Green tea has beneficial anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic properties.
A study published in the Journal of Physiological Anthropology examined the effects of green tea, white tea, and water consumption on stress levels in 18 students.The study suggested that both green and white tea had reduced stress levels and that white tea had an even greater effect. Larger studies are necessary to confirm this possible health benefit.
Green tea may also have an anti-arthritic effect by suppressing overall inflammation.
Garlic also tops the National Cancer Institute’s list of potential cancer-preventive foods. Whole baked garlic helps detoxify the body of heavy metals like mercury (from fish) and cadmium. Garlic also acts as an antibacterial and antiviral, boosting resistance to stress-induced colds and infections. Can’t stand garlic breath? Chew on a sprig of parsley.
Loaded with alpha-linolenic acid, an essential fatty acid that helps reduce inflammation, flaxseed has been used for centuries for medicinal and health reasons. Gandhi himself proclaimed…
“Wherever flaxseed becomes a regular food item among the people, there will be better health.”
Seeds and nuts are nutritional powerhouses, packed with minerals, vitamins and nutrients. If you’re not eating them, it is time to add them into your daily diet!
Full of Omega-3’s, the benefits of salmon involve improved control of the body’s inflammatory processes, better overall cell function, improved transfer of information between the body’s cells, and better brain function.
When researchers look specifically at intake of omega-3-containing fish like salmon, they find cardiovascular benefits, improved mood/cognition, joint protection, eye benefits (specifically related to macular degeneration and chronic dry eye) and decreased cancer risks.
The avocado is one of the most nutrient-dense foods available. Ounce for ounce, they are among the richest in fiber, folate, potassium, vitamin E, and magnesium among all fruits. It’s a healthy fat.
Sauerkraut is as a well-known superfood. At just 27 calories per cup, it is a low calorie, tastes delicious and it’s loaded with vitamins such as folate, vitamin B6, riboflavin, thiamin and vitamin K.
Aside from being nutritious, sauerkraut aids in digestion, gives your immune system a boost, helps reduce stress, may help prevent cancer and may even help you lose weight. Additionally, sauerkraut contributes to stronger bones and may promote heart health. It’s one of my favorite foods!
This inexpensive protein source is loaded with nutrients. A single large egg is just about 70 calories and offers six grams of protein. Eggs are also a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for normal body function and heart health.
According to Healthline, one large egg contains:
- Vitamin B12 (cobalamin): 9% of the RDA
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin): 15% of the RDA
- Vitamin A: 6% of the RDA
- Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid): 7% of the RDA
- Selenium: 22% of the RDA
- Eggs also contain small amounts of almost every vitamin and mineral required by the human body, including calcium, iron, potassium, zinc, manganese, vitamin E, folate and many more.
“It’s very important to realize that almost all the nutrients are contained in the yolk, the white contains only protein.”