The Five Super Foods Everyone Should Know

Super foodsA healthy lifestyle requires a combination of nutrient-rich foods and exercise. Yet, while this equation is universally agreed upon in the health community, not all foods are created equal. We’ve come up with The Five Super Foods Everyone Should Know.

Working towards transitioning to a healthier lifestyle this summer? Shape magazine expert and personal trainer Jessica Smith advises “gradual, small changes, are what really worked for me (and many of my clients). Start with simple swaps like replacing your daily afternoon candy bar or dessert with healthier sweet snack.”

We suggest switching out unhealthy snacks for these super foods and adding a punch of nutrients to your health!

Chia Seeds

Chia seeds
{Image via FitSugar.com}

Chia seeds are a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids and they’re one of the highest plant-based sources of protein available. If you’re a vegetarian like me, this is huge! Protein is an essential macronutrient needed for almost every function in your body. It helps with weight loss and is a must for building lean muscle.

Chia seeds are also a great source of fiber. This keeps you feeling full, controls hunger, and balances your appetite.They have the ability to absorb 10 times their weight in liquid, creating a unique gel that is incredibly hydrating and satisfying.

The best part about chia seeds? You can literally add them to ANYTHING. They don’t have a distinct taste which makes them great to add to everything; from yogurt to protein shakes to salads.

Kale

Kale
{Image via MaryCrimmins.com}

Kale is the ultimate Super Food. Packed with vitamins, nutrients, calcium and cancer-fighting phytonutrients, it’s one food you’ll want to eat daily.

Kale is also full of fiber, one cup has about 30 mg of fiber, so it helps regulate and clean out the digestive system.

Another great thing about kale? It’s very reasonably priced and unlike some seasonal veggies, it’s available year-round.

Quinoa

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{Image via AlterEcoFoods.com}

Quinoa is my go-to substitute for rice. It’s a grain crop, known for its’ edible seeds, and is related to species like beetroots, spinach and tumbleweeds. Quinoa’s secret is that it contains an amino acid called lysine, which is lacking in most grains; lysine makes quinoa a complete protein, which is very rare in non-animal proteins.

Protein levels in quinoa are equal to the amount found in milk. It also has your daily doses of vitamin B6, thiamin, niacin, potassium, and riboflavin and is a great source of copper, zinc, magnesium, and folate.

Avocado

Avacado
{Image via DoctorGrabow.com}

The avocado is often associated as being a source healthy fat. Despite popular rhetoric denouncing all fat as bad; our bodies need healthy fats for energy, cholesterol control, and heart health.

The avocado is also a great natural source of protein, sugar, vitamins and minerals and dietary fiber.  An article by MedicalNewsToday.com, claims avocados can help lower body mass, and reduces the likelihood of diabetes and even cancer.

Sources: Wikipedia, Women’s Day, Health Guide, Dr. Oz

Acai Berry

Acai Berry
{Image via AcaiBerryEducation.com}

This recently touted fruit has made its way into SuperFood status in the past few years. Hailing from the Brazilian rainforest, the acai berry is full of antioxidants, amino acids and essential fatty acid.

It slows the aging process, promotes digestive and cardiovascular health. One surprising fact is that the acai berry has more protein in it than an egg! It’s also full of B12, a natural energy boost; try switching out morning coffee for a glass of acai berry juice!

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