Superfoods are no longer a buzzword that attracts readers to scroll through an article but is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle that takes the superfood concept from ideal to practice with everyday grocery shopping. A survey of 757 registered dietitian nutritionists found that shoppers continue to include highly nutritious, immune-boosting foods on their grocery lists.
One of the challenges with superfoods is their inaccessible prices or availability at local grocery stores. The same study found that consumers will prioritize foods that are affordable and value-based (70.4%), easily accessible and convenient (59.1%), and support immunity (57.6%).
This season is critical to boost immunity and replenish your body with the vitamins and minerals it needs during warm spring days transitioning into summer adventures. These are the top three superfoods you need this spring:
A vibrant, sweet, and delectable fruit available all season round in most grocery stores has nutritional benefits that can be unlocked 365 days of the year yet are best during the spring. Strawberries are full of antioxidants like Beta-carotene, Lutein, Lycopene, etc. which can protect you from getting common colds and help protect you against chronic diseases like cancer and heart disease. Strawberries also contain vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin E which help build your immune system, growth and development, helps protect your cells from the effects of free radicals, and improve vision, and the health of your blood, brain, and skin. Including a handful of strawberries in your diet can make it wholesome; this fruit is packed with high fiber content.
This tangy tropical fruit is rich in vitamin C, manganese, and bromelain, a digestive enzyme that can help improve digestion and reduce inflammation. Vitamin C is essential for a healthy immune system, iron absorption, growth, and development whereas on the other hand, manganese helps aid in growth and metabolism and reduces inflammation. Pineapples also contain other micronutrients, such as copper, thiamine, and vitamin B6, which are essential for healthy metabolism. However, the star of the show is Bromelain which has scientifically been proven to ease symptoms of arthritis. One study found bromelain supplements to be as effective in easing osteoarthritis in the lower back as a regular pain treatment. Another study has shown that it can also boost immunity and suppress inflammation. In a 9-day study, 98 healthy children ate either no pineapple, roughly 1 cup (140 grams) of pineapple, or roughly 2 cups (280 grams) of pineapple daily (29). Those who ate pineapple had a significantly lower risk of both viral and bacterial infections. Plus, the children who ate the most of this fruit had almost four times more disease-fighting white blood cells than the other groups. Lastly, Bromelain has been proven scientifically to reduce the risk of cancer. A medical study published highlights that one test-tube study found that bromelain suppressed the growth of breast cancer cells and stimulate cell death.
This delectable protein is more than a meat alternative. These legumes are packed with high amounts of protein, fiber, and iron. Additionally, lentils can lower blood pressure, blood cholesterol, and blood glucose. One of the key components in lentils is polyphenols, a category of health-promoting phytochemicals that have strong antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotective effects. A research study was conducted where the polyphenols in lentils were able to stop cancer cell growth, especially on cancerous skin cells. Lentils also contain antinutrients, which can affect the absorption of other nutrients.
Including these superfoods can help you design a well-balanced diet. Green schools Green Future champions the importance of healthy, organic, and well-balanced diets and is a core concept that will be included in our school. The school we build will be more than an education ground but will provide clean electricity for the community, clean and sanitary water, have adequate WASH programs, and most importantly teach concepts like sustainable agriculture, food systems through aquaponic farming, and necessary everyday skills like how to prepare a diet-balanced meal.
However, we need your help to bring this vision to life. We have raised 17% of our goal and would be grateful for your support. We can now offer donors a tax-deductible receipt. We are certain that we can build our first school—a symbol of hope and a centre for green education—with your help. Your gift will make this project a reality, sparking hope and altering lives for our students with our vertical farm, aquaponics and hydroponics, green roofs, solar electricity, computer laboratories, culinary arts workshops, and all the hands-on applications needed for each child’s guaranteed success. Donate today and be a part of our mission.
Link to Survey: https://www.bhg.com/top-superfoods-2023-7109998
Link to Study: https://www.bhg.com/top-superfoods-2023-7109998
Medical research on strawberries: https://medlineplus.gov/antioxidants.html#:~:text=Antioxidants%20are%20man%2Dmade%20or,Beta%2Dcarotene
Article reference on strawberry vitamins: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods/strawberries
Article on pineapple health benefits: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/benefits-of-pineapple#TOC_TITLE_HDR_5
Article on lentil health benefits: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/lentils#antinutrients
Written By Sarah Syed