Superfoods 101: The Benefits, Uses, and Sources

Superfoods are something you see listed on powders, in drinks, and in most health articles across the Internet and through magazines. You may even hear about other people at the gym or in health circles talking about them. What you may not know is what superfoods are, how they can help your weight loss or health journey as well as where to find them easily. Here are a few things that you should know before you jump feet first into the world of superfoods.

Benefits of Superfoods

You may be wondering why you should even consider superfoods and what they can offer you outside of your normal eating routine. The major benefits of superfoods are the fact that they are loaded with more than one vitamin or mineral source. For example, a superfood would have benefits of anti-inflammatory components as well as being full of various vitamins. This means if you have a busy schedule, or you need as much nutrient benefit from food with little calories, then superfoods are ideal. An example of this would be if you were eating five different fruits and vegetables as well as taking supplements to get everything you need in a day. A superfood, or a few superfoods, could replace all of these foods and supplements and give you a more concise diet plan with fewer calories.

Uses of Superfoods

Superfoods can be used for a number of issues. Some of these issues include health issues like memory issues in the late afternoon or weight loss. Other issues may be more detailed like inflammation from working out or physical illnesses. Superfoods are used to cover a wide variety of issues giving you a more concise and natural source of anti-inflammatories, vitamins, and other nutrients that you are likely getting from unhealthy sources or chemical sources. You can use them in protein shakes, bars, and snacks. You can also use them raw, in juicing, or in smoothies. The uses are numerous and only limited by your imagination and your specific supplemental needs.

Sources of Superfoods

One of the misconceptions that many people have about superfoods is that the only source is through overly expensive protein powders and shakes. This seems to be especially true for people who have a hard time finding certain fresh fruits and vegetables throughout the year. The truth is, there are a number of sources for your superfoods that do not require raw sources or protein powders. Most superfoods can be found in capsule forms or powder forms that can be mixed into a capsule based on your needs. You can also find infused oils, essential food grade oils, and liquid drops containing superfoods. You are not limited to high-cost powders or to foods that are not in season and hard to find.

These are the basic things you need to know before starting the use of superfoods. These are only three of them. Before you follow a misconception, consider that superfoods are readily available in most forms and can be adapted to your needs with the right research and preparation.

There are a number of books about Superfoods.  I just started reading one recently called Super Immunity.  It is a very interesting and well-written book and the author Joel Fuhrmann, MD goes into detail how superfoods can boost your immunity, help fight cancer and other ailments.

I hope you enjoyed this “health-e-byte.”  Please feel free to leave a comment below to let me know what you liked about this short article.

To your health!

Pamela

 

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Why You Should Start a Home Vegetable Garden

Have you ever thought about growing some vegetables of your own in a garden? A lot of people are experimenting with growing their own food because they want to have some of their favorite fruits and veggies hanging around the house. With a small amount of research, you will find that growing your own vegetables isn’t as hard as it looks, and the things you need are relatively inexpensive.

Below are five good reasons why you should start a home vegetable garden:

It’s Great for Your Health

Growing your own vegetables is really great for you. Part of the reason why is that the food that you grow at home isn’t going to be treated with the chemicals that are used to control the decay cycles of the food. Your food will be fully nutritious and fresh because you’ll be likely to have to use a more balanced nutrient-rich soil or hydroponic system to get the garden growing. Those nutrients will be passed to the plants which will be able to deliver their nutrition payload with every bite.

It’s a Relaxing Activity

Have you ever spent any time gardening? Most people feel that gardening is a relaxing activity and that in itself can be great for your health because relaxation helps you to stay healthy as well. As you spend time kneeling over your plants, you can feel a sense of pride that you’ve taken the initiative to foster the process of growth that will lead to some of the tastiest plants you’ve ever had.

The Fresh Fruits and Veggies Taste Better

Have you ever had a piece of fruit from the farmers market? The consensus is that the farmers market fruits and veggies taste better than the ones from the store. That could be for a variety of reasons, not limited to what companies spray on the food, and what they used to feed the plants.

You Know Where They Came From

Recently, it’s come out that many of the plants sold may have different origins than consumers expect. Food that comes from countries that don’t have as many safety regulations could be a serious risk of becoming contaminated at some point during transport. When these foods make it into the population, outbreaks of foodborne illness can break out and spread further.

It Saves Money

Growing your own food saves money. When you can grow your own veggies, you can rest easy knowing that when you run out, there will be another plant waiting for you to pluck it for a freshly seasoned meal.

Do yourself and your family a great service and start planting some really delicious and nutritious fruits and vegetables. If you have kids, get them involved with planting and taking care of the plants as they grow. They will love it.

 

If you enjoyed this “health-e-byte” please feel free to leave a comment below and tell me what you liked about it.

To Your Health!

Pamela

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Microgreens: What are They?

Would you like to try an interesting new way to add nutrition to your food? If so, then you should give microgreens a try. If you are unfamiliar with microgreens, then you might be surprised to find out that they can supply you with some great benefits and taste options that can increase the enjoyment of the food you love. Microgreens are vibrant, and beautiful to look at, but there’s a lot more to them than just bright green color to discuss.

Microgreens: Tiny Plants with Big Flavor

To put it simply, microgreens are just baby plants. These little versions of plants can be amazingly flavorful in addition to providing a very different taste than you would find in the adult version of the plant. These little plants will add nice textures and colors to anything you put them with. When you get a chance, you can try some young versions of plants added to your salads and smoothies to spice up things a bit. Notable ones to try would be cilantro, sprouts, red cabbage, and green daikon radishes. Each of the families of varieties can produce a different flavor profile, so experimenting with them is a must!

Microgreens Contain Concentrations of Nutrients

A few studies of microgreens have determined that many of the species of plants contain massive concentrations of nutrients in them. This is a major reason why people have begun to look at them so closely. The lack of natural nutrition in food has people in the health communities looking for any new and exciting way to make their food more nutritious, and science appears to support their hopes, although there are some varieties of young plants that contain the same amount of nutrients as adult plants. The findings can vary depending on which species is being looked at as a potential nutrient boost.

Are Microgreens Feasible?

While it’s relatively encouraging that microgreens have some big benefits in your food, you might also need a big wallet to be able to afford them from a grocery store or market. Microgreens tend to be very expensive, so it might be a better idea for you to get a growing kit and start to grow some for yourself. They won’t require much water, and they won’t even take very long to grow. You can find various supplies for growing little plants indoors so you can keep your little greens fresh and low cost for your food.

An alternative to a growing kit is to use small planters or build a few vegetable boxes. There are plenty of how-to guides on Pinterest and YouTube on how to build vegetable boxes or even how to set up hydroponics tanks or buckets.  Whatever you choose to use to grow your microgreens, have fun and enjoy your nutritious rewards!

 

My Experiment with Growing Herbs and Veggies Indoors

A few months ago I purchased an Aero Garden kit and planted a few herbs.  They germinated quickly and grew very fast.  We’ve used some of the herbs in our dishes a few times and there’s nothing like having fresh young herbs added to your recipes.

Here are my herbs.  Within a couple of weeks, they were germinated and growing.

And then they took off!  You can grow herbs, tomatoes, and vegetables in the Aero Gardens.

Try an Aero Garden and grow your own microgreens.  You can get one really reasonable here.  I put a link to the one I have but there are other ones you may like better.  They also have the seed pods.

I hope you enjoyed this short “health-e-byte.”  Please feel free to leave a comment below to let me know what you liked about it or if you have any questions.

To your health,

Pamela

 

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