Cheat Sheet

Superfoods For Dummies

From Superfoods For Dummies by Brent Agin, MD, Shereen Jegtvig

To start adding superfoods into your diet, it helps to know where to shop for them. If you stray from your superfoods diet, don’t fret, just be mindful of all the health benefits of superfoods to get you back on track. You might consider supplements — but first, try some easy tips to incorporate a few superfoods into your meals, everyday.

Superfood Shopping Tips

If you have a game plan, adding superfoods to your diet isn’t difficult. Some superfoods may take more effort to find than others, but with some simple strategies, you can make fewer shopping trips, save money, and improve your health. Here are some superfood shopping tips to get you started:

  • Ask your doctor and health-conscious friends about their favorite superfoods and where they shop for them.

  • Gather some recipes and plan out your meals, and then use your meal plan to create your grocery list. You’ll have the ingredients you need and minimize waste (and spend less) at the same time. Choose recipes that use superfoods for the main ingredients.

  • Don’t go to the store without a list. You’ll make fewer impulse purchases — and buy less junk food — if you make a shopping list and stick to it.

  • If you’re between meals, eat a snack before you go shopping. When you’re hungry, you’re more likely to buy everything in sight.

  • Check out your store’s organic foods, natural foods, and exotic foods sections. As more shoppers demand healthy food options, more stores are carrying them, and you may be pleasantly surprised at what you find.

  • Stick to the fresh produce section, the freezer section, and the seafood counter in your search for superfoods. Avoid the junk food aisles that have all the sugary sodas, chips, and high-calorie snacks; you won’t find superfoods there.

  • Don’t forget the Internet. If you can’t find a specific superfood at your local grocery store, chances are you can find it online.

Spotlighting the Health Benefits of Superfoods

Superfoods have earned that distinction by having great nutritional value (they’re packed with vitamins and minerals) plus extra health benefits. If you find yourself reaching for a donut instead of items on your superfoods diet, use this list of benefits to get back on track:

  • Improving your nutrition: All the superfoods are rich in the nutrients your body needs, and they’re very low in bad fats and processed sugars that can ruin a diet.

  • Strengthening your immune system: The nutrients and phytochemicals in many superfoods keep your immune system strong so you’re less likely to catch colds and the flu.

  • Fighting free radicals: Superfoods are rich in antioxidants, which destroy the free radicals that can damage the cells in your body. This protection improves your health, reduces your risk of disease, and helps you age gracefully.

  • *Reducing the risk of cancer: The nutrients, fiber, good fats, and phytochemicals found in superfoods reduce your risk of several types of cancer.

  • Keeping your heart healthy: Those same nutrients, fiber, good fats, and phytochemicals also protect your heart by reducing inflammation and keeping blood vessels healthy.

  • Feeling better: Superfoods help you feel more energetic.

  • Boosting metabolism and watching your weight: Many of the superfoods are high in fiber and low in calories, so you can load up your plate without adding many extra calories. Some of the superfoods that are a little higher in calories are rich in protein, fiber, and good fats that keep hunger at bay, and some superfoods actually increase the number of calories you burn.

  • Maintaining your youthful complexion: The antioxidants in superfoods reduce damage to your skin, and many foods are rich in vitamin C that keeps connective tissue strong. The combination means beautiful, healthy skin.

  • Flooding you with flavor: Who says healthy has to be dull and flavorless? Superfoods are delicious and can be used in all kinds of recipes.

Safely Supplementing Your Superfoods Diet

Because of busy lifestyles and personal food preferences, you may be unable to get enough superfoods in your diet. When this happens, superfood supplements may be a great help. You have tons of supplements to choose from but these are some favorites:

Supplement Superfoods
Dr. Shulze’s Superfoods Algae, soy, grains, wheat grass, spinach, and fruit extracts
FRS Healthy Energy Green tea and quercetin (found in fruits and vegetables)
Health Designs: Oranges Multiple phytochemicals from fruit extracts, and green tea
Amazing Grass Wheat grass
Trim Fuel Bar Chia and soy

How to Incorporate Superfoods into Your Daily Diet

Getting superfoods into your diet may seem overwhelming but eating superfoods becomes a habit with a little practice. Choose some of these tips for getting superfoods into your day that work best for you and your family:

  • Pack an apple when you brown-bag it for lunch at work or school.

  • Buy baby carrots and precut broccoli florets, instead of potato chips, and serve them with veggie dip.

  • Make oatmeal for breakfast.

  • Toss a handful of blueberries on top of your oatmeal or breakfast cereal.

  • Add a dozen walnuts or almonds to your favorite salad.

  • Stock up on canned tuna for easy, healthful sandwiches.

  • Enjoy a glass of orange juice instead of soda.

  • Keep a fruit bowl stocked with bananas, oranges, and apples.

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