Superfoods tend to come with many super claims. Claims of boosting your immune system, protecting against heart disease and cancer, and promoting weight loss, to name a few. Are all of these types of statements true? Or, are we just victims of marketing propaganda and ingesting foods that can actually be bad for us?
What is a superfood?
According to the Oxford Dictionary, nutrient-rich food is considered to be especially beneficial for health and well-being.
The Origin of the Term “Superfoods”
The use of the term “Superfood” has been recorded as far back as the beginning of the 20th century. However, it is only in the last decade, that it became popular in the mainstream language. Possibly as a result of a growing public interest in healthy food.
The First Superfoods
Spinach is probably the first vegetable with a claim to this title. Sales peaked in the 1950s as a result of the popularity of Popeye, the cartoon character who gulped down tins of spinach to give him strength.
5 Myths about Superfoods Busted
1) Goji Berries
The Claim: Goji berries have been a traditional part of Chinese medicine for centuries. Available in dried fruit or juice form, these shriveled, red berries are alleged to boost the immune system and brain activity, protect against heart disease and cancer and improve life expectancy.
The Reality: The British Dietetic Association (BDA) argues that you would need to drink 13 servings of goji berry juice to get as many antioxidants as you’d find in one red apple.
- Organic Berries Bursting With Flavor - Small but mighty, goji berries deliver bright and tangy flavors of fruity goodness with every bite. Eat them by the handful, steep them in hot water for a goji berry tea, or add them to breakfast classics like yogurt and smoothies.
- Low-Fat Treat for Guilt-Free Snacks - This powerhouse berry is packed with mouthwatering flavor, adding a tart yet sweet taste to all your kitchen favorites. Substitute mix-ins like chocolate chips, raisins or cranberries for this low-fat superberry in your salads, trail mix, and gluten free snacks.
- Delicious Superfood - As a nutritious superberry, gojis are low in saturated fat and packed with good-for-you nutrients like iron and fiber.
- Sustainably Sourced Super Grade Goji Berries - Also known as the ‘wolfberry’, each goji berry is handpicked and naturally shade dried to perfection in the Tibetan plateau of the Himalayas.
- Certified USDA Organic Gojis - These super-grade dried berries are certified USDA Organic and Non-GMO Project Verified. Plus, they’re Certified Gluten-Free, Paleo and Vegan, making them a perfect addition to many diets.
- Healthy: Goji is revered for its health support due to naturally-occurring vitamins & minerals
- Powerful: formulated w/ Mangosteen, Pomegranate, Noni & other organic juices, a nutritional goldmine
- Choose Organic: Dynamic Health Goji Juice Blend is 100% USDA Certified organic
- Quality: Vegetarian, Gluten-Free, BPA-Free & Kosher. No expense is spared in our products quality
The Claim: The South American supergrain contains up to 18 percent more protein than any other grain, and amino acids to build muscle and body tissue. Naturally gluten-free, it also has a low glycemic index (GI).
The Reality: Despite the protein, quinoa contains potentially gut-irritating saponins and lectins. Some report gas and bloating after eating it, which might be because of its very high fiber content.
- Pre-Washed, Gluten Free. Organic, 100% Whole Grain
- From farms that use best practices and time-bonored tradition.
- Premium Quality Quinoa
3) Coconut Water
The Claim: Coconut water has become one of the fastest-growing soft drinks in Europe. It is said to be high in potassium and magnesium. These minerals are depleted after exercise, so coconut water is often sold as a post-workout drink.
The Reality: While coconut water is relatively low in calories (around 20kcal per 100ml), most of these come from naturally occurring sugar. One 330ml serving contains three teaspoons of sugar, half your recommended daily allowance.
- 100% Natural hydration
- Replenish, refresh, refuel
- Bursting with naturally occurring electrolytes
- More potassium than a banana (don't tell the monkeys) - potassium, helps keep your body properly hydrated
- Big night out? Vita Coco is the perfect pick-me-up
4) Acai Berry
The Claim: With double the antioxidants of blueberries, along with protein, fiber, essential fats, vitamins, and minerals, they are also touted as a weight-loss aid.
The Reality: The supposed weight-loss effect is unproven, and few scientific studies have tested the benefit of acai in promoting weight loss.
- Terrasoul Superfoods Acai Berry powder, 8-ounces (2 - 4 oz Packages)
- 100% Certified Organic, Non-GMO, Raw, Gluten-Free, Vegan
- Acai powder is loaded with antioxidants, an optimal combination of essential amino acids and is packed with monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids
- A good source of vitamin C and contains many other micro-nutrients including ployphenols and flavonoids
- A perfect addition to yogurt, smoothies, shakes and many other recipes
The Claim: Loved by everyone from Gwyneth Paltrow to Elle Macpherson, this liquidized or powdered grass is an ingredient in juices and smoothies.
The Reality: It doesn’t even enough nutrients to count towards your five-a-day.
- US Grown Organic Wheatgrass Superfood Powder 16 Ounce, 100% Whole-Leaf, Premium Wheat Grass Supplement Organic, Vegan Friendly.
- Rich in Fibers, Minerals (Potassium, Magnesium, Calcium and Zinc Vitamin), Immune Vitamins (Vitamins A, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B12, Vitamin C, Biotin), Protein, Essential Amino Acids (GLA, Arginine), Enzyme and Flavonoids, Premium Wheat Grass Powder Organic.
- Rich in Antioxidants, Which Provides Supports to Colon, Heart and Overall Well Being.
- No GMOs, No Additives, No Preservatives, No Artificial Colors, No Flavors, No Soy, No Fillers and No Gluten
- Scoop included to get the measurement every time. Take it daily with or between meals by adding it to a shake or smoothie, see what the most nutrient dense food on the planet is all about.
The Real Superfoods as Ranked by the Experts
Researchers at William Paterson University, New Jersey recently produced a list of “powerhouse fruits and vegetables” ranked by the amounts of 17 critical nutrients they contain.
The superfoods are scored by their nutrient density – the content of fiber, potassium, protein, calcium, folate, vitamin B12, vitamin A, vitamin D and other nutrients, all considered important to public health. These truly deserve the title “The Real Superfoods.”
6 Superfoods Trending at the Moment
As we all know, superfood trends tend to come and go. Here are the top superfoods people are talking about at the moment and why.
1) Bee Pollen
What: The pollen collected by bees from flowers. It is rich in proteins, amino acids, folic acid and contains all of the B vitamins, including vitamin B12 which can be hard to find in vegetarian sources.
Potential Benefits: Boosts energy levels, soothes skin conditions, curbs cravings and acts as an aphrodisiac.
Use: Sprinkle bee pollen (check price on Amazon) on salads and smoothies.
What: A root with a rich supply of nutrients, including minerals, vitamins (particularly B vitamins), fatty acids, amino acids, and sterols.
Potential Benefits: Increases energy levels, reduces stress and improves libido and general immune function.
Use: Maca powder (check price on Amazon) can be added to smoothies, juices, yogurts and fruit salads.
- Premium maca with a premium flavor
- USDA certified organic
- Healthworks 100% Satisfaction Promise: Get a full refund or replacement within 30 days if you are not completely satisfied
3) Brussel Kale
What: A combination of kale and Brussel sprouts that is produced ‘naturally’ through cross-pollination
Potential Benefits: A 100 grams of Brussel Kale is said to have double the vitamin B6 and twice the amount of vitamin C compared to its father (the brussel sprout).
Use: As part of a meal, similar to as you would with other types of vegetables from the cabbage family.
4) Sasha Inchi Seeds
What: The seeds of a plant grown in Peru.
Potential Benefits: Contains tons of healthy omega acids including 3, 6, and 9. Promotes the reduction of high cholesterol levels and excess weight gain.
- SUPER SEED — Sacha Inchi is the ultimate on-the-go snack for a supercharged lifestyle. This amazing seed is packed with complete protein and healthy Omega 3 oils, making it is the perfect fuel for hikes and workouts.
- PROTEIN AND OMEGAS — With more than 20x the Omega 3 content of wild pink salmon, Sacha Inchi is an amazing source of vegan essential fatty acids. Each handful contains an incredible 8.5g of complete protein for satisfying hunger and muscle recovery.
- EASY TO EAT — Enjoy this toasted, lightly-salted seed by the handful, in salads, smoothies and trail mix.
- ETHICALLY ORGANIC — Imlak’esh Sacha Inchi is ethically sourced from small family farms in pristine rainforest regions. Certified Organic, Ethically Sourced, Fair Trade, Non-GMO, Vegan, Gluten-Free, and Kosher.
- GLASS PACKAGING — Our jars keep foods fresh, are super reusable, easily recycled, and better for the environment.
- ORGANIC RAW| 100% cold pressed extra virgin sacha inchi oil, air transported from the Amazon Rainforest of Peru to your table! This is a 3,000 year old superfood full of the perfect balance of Omega 3,6&9
- GREAT FATS| easy and light in flavor, our Sacha inchi is perfect to add to salad dressings, on top of cooked meals or even taking it straight out of the bottle. Each serving yields 6,700mg of Omega 3
- VEGAN OMEGAS| Paleo and keto friendly, this oil promotes the reforestation of the rainforest and is grown sustainably so future generations can enjoy it too.
- GREAT FOR SKIN| Unlike other oils, Sacha inchi absorbs rather quickly into your skin, leaving it nice and smooth while also hydrating it with their natural antioxidants vitamins A & E, this allows the oil to preserve fresh without any additional chemicals or preservatives.
- SMOOTH TASTE| unlike other sacha inchi oils, ours has a very mild taste and great to flavor some salads or meals
What: A white root vegetable which goes by the name “oyster plant.”
Potential Benefits: Low in calories, high in fiber and helps keep weight and belly fat down.
Use: The root can be used like a potato – try mash, roast or bake. While the shoots and flower buds can be added to salads.
What: A seaweed which is rich in minerals – iodine, potassium, magnesium, calcium, and iron.
Potential Benefits: Regulates metabolism, promotes healthy skin and hair and helps the functioning of the thyroid gland.
Use: In salads and stir-fry dishes or add kelp powder (check price on Amazon) to smoothies.
- Latin/Botanical Name: Ascophyllum nodosum
- Origin: Canada
- Certified Organic by QAI - In accordance with the USDA National Organic Program Guidelines
- Kosher Certified by Kosher Certification Services
- cGMP Compliant (current Good Manufacturing Practices)
The truth about superfoods. Pin It For Later!
Looking for the secrets to living a long and healthy life could be as simple as following the same lifestyle as your parents and grandparents. They grew up at a time when food fads weren’t as prevalent as they are today yet they were healthy enough to raise a family. Please share the truth about superfoods with your friends and family.
Last update on 2023-10-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API