Superfoods: The Healthy Choice

Raquel Wong, Staff Writer

What is a superfood? A superfood is a high nutrient food that has varies minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. Superfoods are not some cure-all mythical botanical. But they can aid in healing heart disease, cancer, stroke, immune deficiency, respiratory diseases, emphysema (a lung disease), and Parkinson’s disease.

Even though these foods increase health and well-being, the concepts of superfoods is sometimes used as a marketing ploy. The benefits are real but the word itself (“superfood”) was made to sell products.  Companies also add sugar to make the food more appealing and sell more products.

Superfoods without the added sugars have a wide range of health benefits including helping digestion, diabetes, and blood problems. Most importantly, superfoods have phytochemicals. Which are active compounds made by plants to fight off pathogens. Consuming foods filled with phytochemicals helps protects our cells from damage and prevent diseases.

Despite controversies, are still healthy and deserve some consideration. The best superfood to start with is salmon since it is so popular in the Northwest. Seafoods contain omega-3 fatty acids that are good for preventing heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s, cholesterol, and arthritis. Salmon is also an excellent substitute for sardines, another superfood but usually less liked than salmon. Sardines are not likely to be contaminated from being in pollutant waters. The fish is also high in vitamin-D and always in supply.

Besides fish, another well-known superfood is beans. Beans lowers cholesterol, is filled with vitamins, minerals, and is a hearty snack. Nuts are a quick grab-and go-food. Specifically, walnuts contain antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, and are high in calories. Another good option is tea, which aids in hydration and contains antioxidants. The Journal of Physiological Anthropology did a study of green and white tea on students’ stress levels. Both teas reduced stress levels but white made a bigger decrease in stress. Berries’ health benefits have also been studied and are proven to help treat diabetes and improve vision.

Nutrition is an important part of daily life. Next time at the grocery store maybe think about incorporating some new foods into your diet and optimize your health.