What are superfoods? Superfood products are specialized foods with an extremely high concentration of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. They're specially grown and processed to maximize their nutritional value.
Superfoods have unique properties that separate them from conventional foods, and possess nutrients in much more concentrated amounts. Some of the types of plant foods used to formulate superfood products are: cultivated field grasses, exotic wild-harvested tropical fruits and berries, blue-green algae, nuts, seeds and roots.
Are superfood products a substitute for fresh fruits and vegetables? Think of superfoods as an addition to your diet, not something that's going to replace the fruits and vegetables you already eat. However, once you compare them closely, you'll see that superfoods are not only more nutritious — they also have several other advantages over other foods.
To really eat healthy, you need quality foods. Maybe you're lucky enough to have a good, reliable source of fresh organic produce nearby, or better yet, you grow your own. However, this isn't the case for most people.
Using conventionally-grown produce means that you're consuming a greater amount of pesticides, herbicides and chemical fertilizer residues. You also don't know how fresh the produce is — and fruits and vegetables lose nutrients starting the day that they're picked.
Is today's produce lacking in nutrients? Studies have shown that conventionally-grown produce isn't as nutritious as it was just 30 years ago — and it continues to decline in nutrient levels. In 2004, the Biochemical Institute at the University of Texas analyzed 43 fruits and vegetables from 1950 to 1999 and reported drastic reductions in vitamin, mineral, and protein content. Using USDA data, they found that one serving of broccoli, for example, had 130mg of calcium in 1950. Today, that number is only 48mg.
Lower nutritional content may be due to the farming industry's desire to grow bigger vegetables faster. The very things that speed growth — selective breeding and synthetic fertilizers — decrease a plant's ability to synthesize nutrients or absorb them from the soil
Does organic produce have more nutrients? According to a study by the Journal of Applied Nutrition, organically grown fruits and vegetables have significantly higher nutritional content than conventional produce. Organically grown apples, wheat, sweet corn, potatoes and pears were examined over a 2 year period and the results showed that they were:
In addition, organic meats were not only found to be leaner, but also have about five times the healthy omega-3s fats.
Many factors determine the nutrient content of any fruit or vegetable, and studies don't always agree on whether or not organic produce always has more nutritional value, although it's reasonable to assume so. Why do I say this?
There's a simple scientific and logical reason why organic produce would have more nutrients. Organically-grown plants have to face a harsh growing environment and defend themselves against pests without the assistance of pesticides and herbicides.
Organically-growing plants naturally protect themselves by producing more phytochemicals, which are also the source of their nutritional content. It's no accident that most superfoods grow under harsh conditions, in the types of climates that stimulate production of more antioxidants.
Growers of superfood products are in the business of making foods with the optimal nutritional content, first and foremost. They pay strict attention to the purity and quality of their food, and take great pains to ensure that they preserve all of the nutrients during processing.
Superfood companies will usually describe, in detail, how their foods are grown and processed on their website, so you know exactly what you're getting when you purchase them. A superfood grower is not going to stay in business long unless he produces foods of the highest quality possible — that's what his customers are looking for.
Contrast this reality with the mindset of conventional factory-farmers.
Factory farms are primarily concerned
with higher yields and increased profits.
Nutrient levels in their produce
aren't a priority for them.
To sum it up, here are all the great reasons why you'd want to add one or more of these superfood products to your daily routine:
1. Huge Nutritional Content in Tiny Portions. A single serving (as small as a tablespoon) typically gives you the antioxidant and nutritional benefits of three to six servings of common fruits and vegetables!
2. You Get Unique and Powerful Phytonutrients and Antioxidants. Superfoods contain nutrients not found in any other common fruit or vegetable.
3. You Avoid Pesticides. These superfood products are almost exclusively organically-grown or wild-harvested, so you avoid the high levels of pesticides that are found in conventionally-grown fresh fruit and vegetables.
4. Long Shelf-Life. Never run out of the benefits of fresh fruit and vegetables at home or work because you didn't have time to go to the grocery store.
5. You Can Have Them Delivered Right to Your Door. How can you beat that?
One of the easiest ways to add the benefits of superfood products to your daily routine is by using them as ingredients in a smoothie.
Superfoods can turn your ordinary fruit or vegetable smoothie into a nutrient-dense meal with the antioxidant benefits of 6 servings or more of fruits and vegetables — your entire minimum daily requirement!
Smoothies are hands-down the best way to get the maximum amount of nutrition from a meal, quickly and easily. You can discover how to make smoothies the healthy way elsewhere on this website.
Click on the links below to learn more about
the different types of superfood products found on this website.
Green Superfood Powders
chlorella • spirulina • wheat and barley grass • green blends
hemp • chia • flax • maca • cacao • coconut oil
acai • goji • mangosteen • noni juice
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