The term superfood is used to describe various foods that we’re told have benefits that make them stand out from the rest. Examples include seeds such as linseed, berries such as goji berries, and leafy greens like kale. There’s no doubt that these foods have great health benefits, but are they truly better than most other fruits, vegetables, seeds, and nuts? Here at NetCost Market, we’ve been investigating what makes foods super!
Everyday foods that are also super
Focusing on foods that are considered superfoods means that those that have other great benefits are often ignored. Below, we’ve listed some of the healthiest everyday foods that, when eaten regularly as part of a healthy diet, will benefit you just as much as any so-called “superfood”!
- Broccoli – Broccoli includes a high amount of disease preventing, cancer-fighting compounds called isothiocyanates. It’s important to recognize that when broccoli is cooked, these properties are mostly destroyed, so it’s best to eat it raw whenever possible!
- Tomatoes – The humble tomato is packed full of ultra-beneficial compounds that make it rival any so-called superfood. It’s packed full of antioxidants such as lycopene which fights against the formation of cancer-causing free radicals. What’s more, lycopene is more easily absorbed when tomatoes are cooked, making that rich tomato sauce you use in your spaghetti bolognese healthier than you might think!
- Yogurt – Yoghurt, and in particular, probiotic yogurt, is one of the most beneficial foods for your gut. Scientists are only just beginning to recognize that the condition of the bacteria in your gut is one of the most fundamentally important attributes to good health! The probiotics in yogurt protect your immune system and ensure your stomach has the ability to absorb vital vitamins and minerals more effectively!
Matching foods to make them super!
What many people don’t know is that certain foods actually become more effective when they’re combined with others. By knowing some of the key food pairings, you’ll be able to maximize the benefits you get from your food, turning them from ordinary to super!
- Broccoli and Tomato – Combining these two foods, whether cooked or raw, makes them more effective at fighting cancer-causing free radicals than they would otherwise be on their own. Try making a homemade pasta sauce using tomatoes and broccoli to maximize the benefits for the whole family!
- Chickpeas and Lemon – The vitamin C in lemon juice aides that absorption of non-haem iron into the blood. Chickpeas are full of iron and many people who eat a plant-based diet rely on them to keep their iron levels up but it’s important to ensure they are eaten with high vitamin C foods to maximize the benefits. Hummus, chickpea salads with fresh lemon juice, and falafel with garlic lemon yogurt sauce are brilliant meals to unlock the benefits of chickpeas!
- Avocado and Green Leaves – Leafy greens contain phytochemicals that help protect the body’s cells from deteriorating. The plant-based fats in Avocado help increase the absorption of these chemicals, making it the perfect excuse to add some to your leafy salad!
The truth is that many foods we encounter on a day to day basis are already super, and by ensuring you regularly eat them and match them with others to unlock their benefits, you’ll see and feel the results in no time. If you’re thinking of making an effort to change the way you eat in favor of a more balanced diet this January, head down to NetCost Market where we stock the freshest produce around!