What Are Superfoods? | List of Top 15 Superfoods

Wondering what superfoods are? Check out post and our list of superfoods, their nutritional values, and potential health benefits.

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Definition of superfoods

Superfoods are nutrient-rich food that are thought to be especially beneficial for general health and well-being. Other than essential nutrients, these foods are usually jam-packed with antioxidants as well. As a result, superfoods are often glorified as being able to slow down aging, bolster intelligence, reverse the wear and tear caused by unhealthy foods and pollutants, etc.

The list goes on. And the health claims often look too good to be true. And in fact, there are really too good to be true. Most of them are loosely, if at all, based on inconclusive research that tests extracts in much higher concentrations than that found in the foods. You will have to eat an enormous amount of these superfoods in order to gain those potential health benefits.

Nevertheless, as promised, we have compiled a list of some of the most popular superfoods.

Superfoods Nutritional Values Health Claims
Acai Amino acids, beneficial fatty acids, boron, calcium, copper, enzymes, magnesium, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, vitamin E, zinc Support weight loss, combat cancers and inflammation
Beetroot Iron, folate, nitrates, betaine Lower blood pressure, prevent dementia
Blueberries Vitamin K, C, fiber, manganese, other antioxidants Help protect against heart disease & some cancers, lower blood pressure, improve memory
Cocoa Iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, zinc, antioxidants Reduce blood pressure, prevent cancer, relieve stress
Cruciferous Vegetables e.g. broccoli, kale Vitamin C, folate, Vitamin A, K, calcium, fiber, beta-carotene & other antioxidants Fight cancer, cardiovascular disease & diabetes
Garlic Vitamin C, B6, manganese, selenium & other antioxidants Improve high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, cholesterol, colds & cancers
Green Tea Vitamin Bs, manganase, potassium, magnesium, caffeine, other antioxidants Support weight loss, lower cholesterol, fight cardiovascular disease, prevent cancer & Alzheimer’s disease
Goji Berries Vitamin C, B2, A, iron, selenium & other antioxidants Boost the immune system & brain activity, protect against heart disease and cancer, improve life expectancy
Nuts e.g. almond, walnuts Fiber, riboflavin, magnesium, iron, calcium, monounsaturated fat Help lower blood cholesterol levels, support healthy heart
Oily Fish Vitamin D, protein, vitamin Bs, selenium, Omega-3 Prevent cardiovascular disease, prostate cancer, age-related vision loss, dementia, rheumatoid arthritis
Pomegranate Juice Fiber, vitamin A, C, E, iron, other antioxidants Prevent heart disease, high blood pressure, inflammation, cancers, strengthen bones
Yoghurt Calcium, vitamin D, protein, probiotics Promote good digestive health
Sea weeds Amino acids, beta-carotene, calcium, iodine, iron, magnesium, Omega-3 Combat cancers, promote good digestive health
Wheatgrass Chlorophyll, vitamin A, C, E, iron, calcium, magnesium Reduce inflammation, prevent cancer
Red Wine Antioxidants (In moderation) support healthy heart, prevent cell damage, promote longevity

Though the therapeutic uses of these superfoods are not founded on sound evidence, it is still undeniable that these foods are high in nutrients (and, for some of them, low in calories too). There is definitely no harm to add them into your daily diet. However, you should bear in mind that the key to healthy life is to have a balanced diet. You should still take a variety of different foods to ensure you obtain all the nutrients you need. None of these foods by itself provides all the nutrients our body required. And like every other good things in life, more is not always better, these superfoods should be taken in moderation.

How To Choose The Best Fish Oil Pills For You?

Wondering what’s so good about fish oil supplements and why everyone is taking them? This blog post is going to explain on the the benefits and side effects of fish oil and how to choose a fish oil supplements.

Fish Oil

Fish oil is a good source of Omega 3. Fish oil supplements on the market can basically be grouped into 3 broad categories, fish oil, fish liver oil and krill oil.

  • Fish oil, depending on the manufacturers, are either sourced from wild-caught fish or farmed fish, which can be small fish like anchovies and sardines or big fish like tuna and salmon.
  • Fish liver oil usually sourced from cod liver. Cod liver oil is also rich in Vitamin A and D too.
  • Krill oil are sourced from krill, which are basically small shrimp. Apart from Omega 3, krill oil also comes with astaxanthin, a powerful antioxidants which give krill their red colour.

Omega 3

Omega 3 refers to a group of polyunsaturated fatty acids.

  • Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA)
  • Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)
  • Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA)

EPA and DHA can be found in seafood, whereas ALA can be found in vegetable oils, seeds and nuts.

So what is so good about fish oil?

EPA and DHA found in fish oil are essential building blocks for cells.

Most notably, scientific research have shown that Omega 3 helps lower triglycerides level which is bad for your heart.

While there may be arguments whether fish oil supplements are beneficial in slowing progression of various other health conditions, studies found that people who take diets rich in Omega 3 are less likely to die of heart diseases and develop other age related disease.

As the old saying goes, “Prevention is better than cure.” Why not boost up your Omega 3 intake now?

Note: You are advised to consult your health professional first before supplementing yourself especially if you are allergic to seafood, pregnant or taking other medications.

Omega 3 (DHA and EPA) benefits, tips on choosing supplements
Fish Oil: Benefits and Tips on Supplementation

Choosing the Right Fish Oil Supplements

So what do you need to look at when choosing the right fish oil supplements?

  • Fish Source – Ideally, you will choose fish oil sourced from small wild-caught fish. This is because farmed fish are likely to have higher concentration of antibiotics and pesticides. Larger fish, on the other hand, are further down the food chain and will therefore accumulate more toxins from the smaller fish they eat.
  • Purity – Choose fish oil that has been molecularly distilled as this ensures even the smallest contaminants are removed. You might also want to avoid products with added artificial colours, sweeteners and emulsifier.
  • Eco-friendliness – Make sure you only buy products that are from a sustainable source. You wouldn’t want to be an accomplice in overfishing. That’s not good for you either if you want to always get the fish oil you need.
  • Formulation – Fish oil supplements can be found in capsule or liquid form. The pro about capsule form is that they usually last longer before they go bad (yes, fish oil can go rancid), however, the capsules which are usually made of gelatin can be a problem for people who are allergic to gelatin or those who don’t eat gelatin. The good thing is for many of the fish oil capsules on the market, you can just squeeze the fish oil out without taking the gelatin. Liquid formulation, on the other hand, is good for people who want to avoid gelatin or have difficulty swallowing capsule. However, liquid fish oil does go bad faster.
  • Concentration – The most important thing about taking fish oil supplements is that it is the amount of Omega 3 (DHA and EPA combined) that matters rather than the amount of fish oil. Taking fish oil supplements with higher strength means that you will not have to take as many capsules each day.

Side Effects of Fish Oils

There is no serious adverse effects associated with fish oil supplements. The more common side effects will be:

  • Stomach pains or nausea
  • Diarrhoea
  • Fishy burps (if you consider that a side effect?)
  • Potential for excess bleeding on very high doses (especially if you are taking blood thinning medications)

P/S: Fish oil supplement is best taken with meals.

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