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What are superfoods?


A new nutrition term is fashionable, and refers to those foods whose nutritional potential makes them highly valued, from the point of view of health, because of its high concentration of antioxidants, healthy fats, phytonutrients and vitamins. Some are well known, such as extra virgin olive oil or legumes, and others, like quinoa, which for some years to date, found in supermarkets and trendy recipes.

Despite its importance, experts warn that there are no "miracle" foods, and it must be remembered that, by consuming the so-called superfoods, do not provide health for themselves, it is advisable to always eat a balanced diet, consuming products best possible quality and less process.

The high concentration of antioxidants, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals is what makes them attractive to named superfoods, there is nutritionally complete food. But the health of a person, depends on many factors, and no food by itself, prevent any disease. The key to our health is a balanced and varied diet, in which vegetables and legumes have a strong presence, and it is also very important to exercise and rest. Olive oil, quinoa or nuts, without forgetting fruits and vegetables are some foods to consider, to reap the benefits of superfoods.

Experts say there is no doubt, that exists foods with very high nutritional potential, and we must have very present, these foods already exist in the Mediterranean diet, which has taken more followers in recent times. Extra virgin olive oil is the superfood of the Mediterranean diet par excellence, some studies show that regular consumption in women, reduces the incidence of breast cancer. Nuts, legumes, red wine or chocolate are also some foods that should not be missing in our diet.

Some nutritionists define superfoods as those who have a 'high nutritional value': so much micronutrition with little amount is obtained. These micronutrients are very important and ensure that even though in most cases is food that has always existed, in the last decade has begun to know their potential. Green juices, seeds or berries are some of the foods that highlight this nutritionist who also points out broccoli, turmeric, ginger and avocado as important elements to include in our diet.

Besides extra virgin olive oil, legumes, citrus or garlic are some highly recommended to consume products. Quinoa can be a good alternative for vegetables. It is essential to have a balanced and healthy diet, eat vegetables every day of the three most desirable types: cruciferous, broccoli or cabbage, for example, leafy greens like spinach, or chard and those containing beta carotene, such as carrots or pumpkin. It is also important to consider consume products when it is their season.

Turmeric, similar specie than curry, from India, could be considered one of these superfoods and it is increasingly common that nutritionists recommend their consumption, especially by the anti-inflammatory properties of curcumin. Avocados also tend to be part of many lists of superfoods with ginger or berries.

Superfoods that should be included in our diet:

Broccoli: It is one of the vegetables with a high nutritional value, it contains a lot of vitamin C. It has a lot of water content, high in fiber and low in calories. It also contains antioxidant substances that studies have been done, and have seen, that can help prevent diseases like cancer.

Chia: Rich in protein and fiber, is the largest plant source of omega 3, so that consumption is ideal for vegetarians who do not eat fish. It helps control cholesterol levels and blood pressure. Its soluble fiber absorbs water facilitating digestion and satiety.

Cocoa: Contains flavonoids, antioxidants and anti-inflammatory drugs that lower blood pressure and cholesterol. Cocoa has phenylethylamine, a substance that stimulates the secretion of endorphins which produce a feeling of well-being and pleasure. It is best to consume a couple of squares of chocolate with a high percentage of cocoa or as a hot beverage in moderation.

Cranberries: 50 grams of cranberries contain three times more vitamin C, than one orange, and is essential for the production of collagen. Its antioxidants (flavonoids), fight infectious diseases, and enhancing the immune system. In addition, they prevent tissue damage by age.

Extra virgin olive oil: It is one of the superfoods par excellence and very healthy. Besides reduce bad cholesterol and the rate of heart attacks in women has been shown to decrease the development of breast cancer. It also has antioxidant properties.

Garlic: Studies have shown that garlic consumes improves cholesterol, is a good diuretic, besides having antibacterial properties, which help the immune system. In addition there are studies claiming that help prevent some cancers.

Green leaves: Experts recommend, consuming green leaves vegetables every day. They are highly alkalizing and provide much chlorophyll that helps to cleanse the body. In addition, they are rich in amino acids, which are the precursors of proteins, very high in omega fatty acids and fiber, which help clean our digestive system.

Green Tea: All teas contain polyphenols and antioxidants that reduce cell degeneration, but the green has catechin, a type of polyphenol that is more potent than vitamins C and E. This counteracts the formation of atherosclerosis and reduces cholesterol. Prevents skin aging and hair loss.

Legumes: In all its variants, are an essential nutrient in the diet, according to nutritionists, are high in iron and minerals such as calcium or magnesium, are a source of protein biological value, although not as high as the meat, but provides very little fat and is high in fiber.

Nuts: Rich in monounsaturated fats that protect against heart disease, provide protein, vitamins and fiber that interfere with fat absorption. Should be consumed in moderation, no more than five or seven to day, because they are highly energetic.

Oranges: One of the most important citrus due to its high content of vitamin C, folic acid and antioxidants, which helps us fight free radicals.

Oysters: It is the largest source of zinc. More than 85% of zinc in the body is deposited in the muscles, bones, hair and nails. Consume oysters stimulates collagen and skin repair.

Quinoa: It provides protein of high biological value and is also very rich in fiber, easily digested. Fiber and protein is better than legumes. This results in good health of intestinal transit preventing diseases such as colon cancer. They are a contribution of complex carbohydrates, which is our daily source of energy. It has no gluten and is very rich in amino acids. It is prepared like as boiled rice and can be mixed with sauteed vegetables, salad, etc.

Salmon: High in protein, it is also a good source of omega 3, and minerals such as iron, phosphorus, calcium and selenium, essential for healthy hair and nails. It contains B vitamins, such as niacin, necessary for the chemical processing of fats and cholesterol lowering.

Sardines: They are a good source of Omega3 improves cardiovascular health and reduces inflammation in general. Spine provides plenty of calcium. It is an oily fish that being small does not accumulate heavy materials.