Kale. Cacao. Quinoa. Having trouble keeping track of the latest nutritional buzzwords? (Maca powder, anyone?) We don’t blame you. But according to a study by William Paterson University in the US, some of the most powerful fruits and vegies are ones many of us already eat. “While superfoods do have amazing health benefits, it is possible to get all the nutrition you need from everyday fresh foods found in the supermarket,” advises dietitian Kate Rogers. Here are some healthy choices that may already be in your crisper ...
The benefits: “Tomatoes are a rich source of lycopene and vitamin C. These manage and lower LDL (bad cholesterol), and serve as antioxidant protection for the cardiovascular system,” says nutritionist Jacqueline Alwill. How to serve: Raw to up the vitamin C benefit, or cooked for better absorption of lycopene.
The benefits: “An excellent source of vitamins A, C and E and folate, broccoli’s phytochemicals may also help protect against cancer,” reveals Rogers. How to serve: “Best eaten steamed – it’s easier to digest and there’s minimal nutrient loss compared to raw,” adds Alwill.
The benefits: “Raw beetroot is rich in betalains – these support phase two liver detoxification pathways and help reduce oxidative stress and inflammation,” explains Alwill. How to serve: Raw, grated into salads with fresh herbs, pepitas, orange flesh and goat’s cheese, or added to juices.
The benefits: “Pumpkin contains an exceptional amount of carotenes, which have been indicated to protect the body from many cancers, heart disease and the development of type 2 diabetes,” says Alwill. How to serve: “Place chunks in a baking dish, drizzle with olive oil, add a sprinkle of nutmeg and bake until well cooked. Leave skins on for extra fibre and flavour,” advises Rogers.
#5 Red capsicums
The benefits: “These have higher nutrient levels than green capsicums and are slightly sweeter. They also contain incredible sources of capsaicin, vitamin C and flavonoids, which support both our heart and eye health,” says Alwill. How to serve: Slice and eat them raw in salads, roast, or add them to casseroles.
See linked recipes below to check out our recipes that feature these powerfoods!