Superfoods. They are everywhere. But what’s so super about them? Though there is no legal or medical definition, superfoods are nutrient powerhouses that pack in large doses of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. There is a lot of buzz about certain foods, but the fact is that common and readily available foods contain these powerful qualities, there are just some that seem to buzz more than others. You don’t have to get online and order goji berries from across the world in order to acquire these certain nutrients. Common foods such as garlic and lemon are also super foods. At the core of a balanced diet are foods that are high in vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients while being low in unnecessary fats and sugars. Variety is key to obtaining all nutrients necessary for good health. Each food group contains different combinations of nutrients. So, for example, oranges provide vitamin C but no vitamin B12; cheese provides vitamin B12 but no vitamin C. But often times, items like kale and blueberries get additional hype due to diet fads in the market. They are in fact super foods, but other foods like oranges are just as great. It’s important to eat a balanced and healthy diet and if there is a superfood fad, try it out, fit it into your diet, as long as it’s part of the bigger balanced diet. Talk to your doctor about more information on balancing your diet and eating healthy.
Blueberries are not only popular, but repeatedly ranked in the U.S. diet as having one of the highest antioxidant capacities among all fruits, vegetables, spices and seasonings. Antioxidants are essential to optimizing health by helping to combat the free radicals that can damage cellular structures as well as DNA. As one of the few fruits native to North America, blueberries have been enjoyed by Native Americans for hundreds of years and have been enjoyed around the world in cuisines from Asia to the Mediterranean. What's New and Beneficial About Blueberries With their nervous system and brain benefits, research has shown that blueberries can improve memory. In a study involving older adults, 12 weeks of daily blueberry consumption was enough to improve scores on two different tests of cognitive function including memory. While participants in the study consumed blueberries in the form of juice, three-quarters of a pound of blueberries were used to make each cup of juice. As participants consumed between 2 to 2-1/2 cups each day, the participants actually received a very plentiful amount of berries. The authors of this study were encouraged by the results and suggested that blueberries might turn out to be beneficial not only for improvement of memory, but for slowing down or postponing the onset of other cognitive problems frequently associated with aging. Have you eaten your blueberries today? Ask your doctor about additional benefits of blueberries and other super foods.