Does Your Superfood Deliver?

The term “superfood” is thrown around freely like hand grenades in battle these days. That might not be the best analogy, but you get what I mean. People will call everything from avocados to your front lawn the greatest super food available today. We are going to dive into ten foods commonly thought of to hold the title and see if the data supports their claims.

Coconut Water

Enjoy a cup of fresh coconut water under a palm tree in tropical paradise and receive riveting health benefits, or maybe not. Almost every boutique or gym you walk into will offer coconut water right at eye level in their refrigerators, but researchers found that it is no better for hydration than water. Thirsty? Save a buck and drink from the tap. (Sport Exercise Metabolism.)

Matcha

Tea has long been thought to aid in health for longer than research can truly even trace. Believe it or not, I am drinking a hot cup right now as I am writing this post! The long-term consumption of tea’s antioxidant catechins fights cancer and metabolic syndrome, a forerunner of type 2 diabetes. Time to put the kettle on. ( Chinese Medicine )

Spinach 

This well known source of popeye power rightfully earns the title of superfood. In addition to spinach’s muscle building iron content, eating one portion per day can significantly reduce your risk of heart disease in just a week! (Clinical Nutrition Research)

Almond Milk

Could the fad of almond milk be wearing out? The high price of almond milk is on par with dairy in terms of vitamins, but research shows that the nuts contain physic acid, which limit their absorption. Don’t sell your dairy cow just yet. ( Molecular Nutrition and Food Research ) 

Chia Seeds

Despite chia’s high omega-3 content, the average seed-addict sprinkles just 3g on his porridge, rendering the value moot. While you should not stop eating chia seeds completely, do not rely on them for your protein. Use plant based protein powder instead. ( Roehampton University )

Quinoa 

Think quinoa is all talk and no nutrients. Wrong. It’s a complete protein, containing every amino acid you need to build muscle. Use it instead of rice to fuel your growth. (Agricultural Food Chemistry)

Kombucha

Kombucha promises improved gut health, but scientific jury is out. A review found few confirmed benefits and several cases of liver problems. Another superfood that is moving down the list. ( Institute of Food Technologists )

Acai

Not only is açaí packed with antioxidants, but it’s also an effective anti-inflammatory. Adding it to your diet can boost recovery and limit muscle damage. The berries are worth the picking. ( Biology of Sport ) 

*For a tasty açaí recipe, check out Energy Packed Antioxidant Meal: Acai Superfood

Kale

Here comes a heavy hitter. Kale is nature’s CrossFitter. This superfood does it all. Rich in vitamins, it also contains sulphur compounds that could prevent the growth and spread of cancer. Definitely add this to your next meal.  ( Harvard University )

Avocados

This pinterest favorite deserves the publicity. Successive studies have confirmed the benefits of avocados to athletic performance and heart health. Time to slice and dice some avo on whole-grain toast or your next sandwich. ( Critical Review of Food Science and Nutrtion )

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