There is a good reason for the world wide popularity of super foods… They make you feel amazing!
Here are some reasons why:
Super high levels of nutrients
Eating smaller portions of highly nutritious foods, makes you feel lighter and more alive. Nutrients for humans is like fertilizer for plants, every part of your body gets healthier, stronger and more vibrant; Diseases decrease, vitality increases.
High levels of anti oxidants
Anti oxidants are often what gives foods their natural colouring and the reason why so many super foods have such rich colours i.e. Blue berry, Goji berry, Acai berry and Cacao. Anti oxidants protect the body from oxidants which can impair cellular metabolism (energy and fat burning), accelerate the ageing process and damage DNA.
High mineral content (especially nuts and seeds)
Minerals are the foundation for cellular function and micro minerals often found in super foods can have profound
Effects on cellular health by stimulating positive DNA expression.
Super foods are an easy and natural way to boost your nutrition, energy and general wellbeing.
Saffron for depression
The most expensive spice in the world, saffron, has shown to be effective for treating depression.
So, adding some saffron to your cooking may help lift moods, manage stress and decrease anxiety.
Though it is expensive it also goes a long way, as it is so concentrated, so much so that too much in your cooking can make it taste “medicinal”.
Recent studies have shown supplemental saffron to have anti-depressant effects on par with many pharmaceutical anti-depressants, but with very few side effects.
It also works very fast, in some cases it only took one week to alleviate mild to moderate depression, whereas most pharmaceutical medicines take 4-6 weeks to take effect.
Effective Dosages are not that high, at 30mg daily makes it attainable through culinary amounts (about 20 threads) but please keep in mind that strengths in culinary herbs can vary greatly and so should not be relied upon to treat depression, but for maintaining general mental health and improving general well-being eating saffron as a part of your diet is a tasty way to promote health and happiness.
Note—this post if for informational use only, for any supplementary or dietary changes please contact your health care practitioner.
Chia seeds are a South American seed from the mint family. They were used by the ancient Mayan and Aztec cultures as a food for increasing energy and endurance (the ancient Mayan word “chia” means strength!)
Chia seeds are a true super food (high density nutrition),
One the highest vegetable sources of omega 3 fats, an essential nutrient needed for proper functioning of the nervous system, brain, the heart , blood and hormonal/endocrine systems. Omega 3 fats are vital in the proper development of children and are highly recommended during pregnancy and breast feeding.
Over a third of chia seed mass is made up of fiber, which makes it one of the highest fiber foods in the world.
Chia contains a special soft vegetable fibre that swells up in water, making the chia seeds both filling and lower in calories.
Fiber also helps to make foods lower GI, as they slow absorption of sugars.
Soft vegetable fibre is also an important food for the “friendly” bacteria in your gut, which are essential for digestive health.
Chia seeds are also very high in anti-oxidants. Anti oxidants are chemical “buffers” that protect against the destructive effects of oxidation. The high levels in chia seeds protect the delicate oils in the seeds keeping them fresh and functioning. Anti-Oxidants can help to protect the body from the oxidative effects of toxins.
A good source of protein. Chia seeds are 14% protein making them a great nutritional food for vegetarians. Proteins can help stabilize blood sugars and can help to keep you full between meals.
Paleo diet and chia seeds
Chia seeds are a perfect compliment to the paleo diet, unlike grains chia seeds are soothing nourishing and anti inflammatory for the digestive tract. The paleo diet generally advocates having more protien, and chia seeds unlike grain are very high in bio available protien. Along with this, their taste and texture make them the perfect solution for a quick and easy paleo breakfast cereal.
As you can see chia seeds are well worthy of the name “superfood”
100mg of chia seeds contain on average –
Fiber: 38 grams.
Protein: 14 grams.
Fat: 31.5 grams (5 of which are Omega-3s).
Calcium 631 mg
Potassium 160 mg
Goji berries are as much a herb, as they are a fruit. Packed full of nutrients and phytochemicals they have a huge potential for nourishing and vitalizing the whole body.
The consumption of Goji berries is dated back as 2500years.
In china goji berries are believed to be an elixir for longevity and vitality, through their ability to build “chi” energy, they are traditionally used in times of weakness and old age to rejuvenate and reinvigorate the body and spirit.
Goji berries have a very impressive phytonutrient profile
Minerals (11 essential and 22 trace dietary minerals), 6 vitamins, unsaturated fatty acids (including the essential fatty acids-linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid), beta-sitosterol, carotenoids (the highest known food source of beta carotene – a powerful anti-oxidant), zeaxanthin (goji one of the richest edible plant sources known for zeaxanthin content), lutein, lycopene, cryptoxanthin, xanthophyll, phenolic pigments, Betaine and Physalin.
Goji berries are a perfect food for adding to paleo breakfast cereals and paleo smoothies.
Each 100g serve of goji berries contain on average-
Protein- 14.4 g 18 amino acids – 8 of them essential.
Calcium – 112 mg, 10% DRI.
Potassium – 1,132 mg, 24% of DRI.
Iron – 9 mg, 100% DRI.
Zinc – 2 mg, 18% DRI.
Selenium – 50 micrograms, 91% DRI.
Riboflavin (vitamin B2)- 1.3 mg, 100% of DRI.
Vitamin C –92 mg 100% DRI.
Beta-carotene- 7 mg, more than any other known food.
Many of the Phytonutrients in goji berries are powerful anti-oxidants that also show a potential to target specific tissues in the body, though none of these effects have been verified by science (yet), taking into account this vast array of phytonutrients the potential for goji berries as a whole body tonic and rejuvenator is huge.
Cacao – Raw Cacao
Cacao – One of the most nutrient dense foods on the planet with incredibly high levels of anti-oxidants. and the ability to lift moods through naturally containing neurotransmitters, Cacao is a true super food.
This has been recognized by the ancient tribes of South America who believed it to be divine elixir given to them by the gods.
Raw Cacao has the highest anti oxidant levels than any other food in the world, 10% of its weight is made up of anti oxidant flavniods. Anti oxidants can help protect the body from the effects from oxidants, toxins and inflammation. This is the most important reason that you want to consume unprocessed raw cacao as studies have shown that up to 90% of anti oxidants in cacao can be lost in processing. Along with this vital enzymes and vitamins can also be destroyed in the processing of cacao which uses fermentation, heat and alkalizing agents.
Not only is Raw Cacao one if the most nutrient dense foods on earth, it is dense in some of the minerlas most commonly deficient in modern man – Magnesium, manganese, selenium, iron and zinc. It is also high in B vitamins – thiamine, niacin, riboflavin- and vitamins A, C, D and E.
Uplifting mood enhancer – The ancient Aztecs used cacao as a powerful aphrodisiac and a mind opening ceremonial drink.
Can Raw cacao enhance sexuality, love and happiness? All cultures that have come in contact with cacao has linked its consumption with some form of romantic, sensual or sexual enhancement as well as reaching for it in times of depression. Is this a coincidence, a spread of culture with the food or is there something more substantial behind it? The amounts of mood enhancing compounds found naturally in raw cacao, point to a potential of this going beyond a cultural myth. Raw cacao contains-
Seratonin – this neurotransmitter helps relieve depression, helping us deal with stress and elevating moods.
Phenylethylamine – The brains natural love drug, produced in high levels in the brain when we fall in love.
Phenylethylamine helps us feel positive, uplifted and rejuvenated.
Anandamine – comes from the Sanskrit word meaning bliss, anandamine is released in times of happiness.
As you can see raw cacao has unfortunately been over processed and undervalued by modern society, it is a potent super food with potential for many positive health benefits. Please remember raw cacao is powerful and should only be consumed in moderate amounts.
Raw cacao will put a boost into your paleo breakfast cereals and paleo smoothies.
Revered through the ages as a longevity food, pomegranate is said to increase beauty, giving the skin a clear radiant glow.
It is possible that the Unique anti oxidants found in pomegranate fruit are the scientific grounds have given it the traditional reputation as a longevity and beauty food.
a phytonutrient in pomegranate
Regenerates skin cells
Guards against UV rays
Prevents sun damage to skin.
Studies have also indicated pomegranate as a support for cancer prevention – particularly prostate.
Add Pomegranate to your paleo break cereals or paleo smoothies to enhance health beauty and vitality.
Nuts and Seeds
Extremely nutritionally packed, nuts and seeds are true super foods and should be a stable in any paleo diet.
Low sugar content
High in healthy oils
High in protein
High in minerals
This ratio of nutrients gives the body what it needs to support metabolism, balance blood sugars, build muscle, produce hormones, control inflammation and protect the heart and arteries.
The low carbohydrate and sugar content can help to decrease sugar cravings and insulin resistance.
Very high in minerals and micronutrients, nuts and seeds support the very foundation of health.
Traditionally nuts and seeds have been used to strengthen the body and improve energy. In Chinese medicine, the strengthening and building nature of nuts and seeds is said to increase the body’s ability to deal with stress, whether it be from work, exercise or recovery from illness.
The omega 3 oils found in very high levels in Chia and Flax seeds have been shown in many studies to have profound effects on overall health; particularly in the cardiovascular and nervous (brain) systems.
Nuts and seeds are the start of life, they contain everything needed for generating growth and development, they are true super foods.
Try adding nut and seeds to your paleo breakfasts and smoothies to boost up your levels of omega essential fats.
Blue berry – This delicious common food has some very uncommon properties. We all know about anti oxidants and how they help heal the body from the effects of toxins and help to prevent ageing, but do you know that there are many many different types of anti oxidants that have affinities to different areas of the body and/or diseases. Blue berry’s anti-oxidant Proanthocyanidin has a particular affinity towards the liver, heart and prostate.
In chinese medicine it is said to move stagnant blood in heart and liver and is believed to brighten the eyes and improve night vision.
To help protect the body some blue berries in your Paleo breakfast cereal or smoothie may be just what you need.
Bee pollen – Bee pollen is the pollen collected by bees as a food, it is collected from the flower and mixed with nectar and stored on the back legs of the bee, eventually building up into small balls. Which is then collected by bee keepers.
Flower pollen is the male seed of the flower and contains an astonishing nutritional profile.
Pollen can have up to 35% protein, Higher than meats, eggs and dairy. The proteins in bee pollen are made up of 18 amino acids, half of which are free form (including all the essential amino acids); it contains 17 vitamins (very high in B vitamins), 17 minerals, natural enzymes and is one of the highest food sources of rutin (an important bio flavonoid for cardiovascular health).
All in all bee pollen is the most complete food on earth.
The use of bee pollen dates back to Egyptian times and many traditional cultures have been using bee pollen as a rebuilding and energy enhancing food for centuries. Traditional Chinese medicine calls it a restorative tonic and uses bee pollen to repair the body from long term stress or in recovery from illness. It is also believed to be fertility and sexual tonic.
Bee pollen is a great protein source for vegetarians and a good non animal protein for those following the paleo diet.
Warning – Bee pollen is a potential severe allergen.
Acai – The worlds most nutritious fruit.
Acai is a dark purple super berry that originates from Amazon rain forests of South America.
Acai has traditionally been used as both a food and a medicine for over 2000years by tribes around the Amazon. The people of the amazon used it for – improving energy, increasing libido and decreasing appetite.
The recent popularity of Acai in the west is due to the discovery of the very high levels of anti oxidants in the berry (one of the highest known food sources) and this may be the reason people who take it claim that it gives them more energy and vitality. Acai contains 20 times the anthocyanin’s found in red wine (anthocyanin’s are the anti-oxidants in red wine that have been promoted as beneficial for cardiovascular health)
Acai berries are also very high in essential fats, amino acids (19 different amino acids) and Vit C.
Acai is the perfect super food to increase anti oxidants to your paleo, raw green smoothies or your Paleo breakfast cereals.