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Top 15 Inexpensive Superfoods (and Drinks) That You Need Next Time When You Go Grocery Shopping

Top 15 Inexpensive Superfoods (and Drinks) That You Need Next Time When You Go Grocery Shopping

In the last decade or so we can’t help but hearing the term “superfood” everywhere. The term itself can be traced back to the beginning of 20th century, but it’s increasingly gaining popularity in the recent years. But what qualifies make some food superfood? According to a definition, food becomes super if it’s rich in nutrients and beneficial for your health. Various superfood can help you promote your health by protecting your heart, your liver, boosting your metabolism, boosting your immunity or making your bones stronger.

However, you should not always believe all the magical properties of superfoods advertized by the food industry and run to spend tons of money so that you could live forever. You should check all the facts and truth about superfoods  before spending hundreds of dollars to make yourself super healthy. Yet, it cannot be denied that foods packed with nutrients are indeed good for your health and well-being, and can improve your health in consumed on a daily basis. Plus, there are plenty of inexpensive superfoods to choose from.

1. Dragon fruit helps with lowering bad cholesterol.

    Dragon fruit is cactus-like fruit of green and pink color containing only 60 calories, but it’s rich in vitamins C, B1, B2, B3 and minerals such as iron, calcium and phosphorous. It is really beneficial for your health: it helps lower the bad cholesterol, and it’s a great source of monosaturated fats. Furthermore, it’s good for your digestive track, as has high fiber content. Among its other benefits, it is important to note that dragon fruit helps fight diabetes, signs of aging, suppresses arthritis and helps with acnes. There are many ways you can incorporate dragon fruit in your diet, and for a healthy start of the day, we recommend dragon fruit shake.

    2. Best Anti-aging Drink: Green tea 

      Originating in China, green tea has been widely known for its benefits for thousands of years . Due to the way it’s processed, it retains a high amount of antioxidants, compared to the black tea. Green tea speeds up your metabolism, keeps your heart healthy, fights diabetes and cancer, reduced cholesterol and fights depression.

      3. Ultimate Detoxing Drink: Lemon water

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        This is certainly refreshing drink, but it’s so much more to it. As lemons are rich in vitamin C, B-complex vitamins, calcium, iron and potassium there is no doubt it’s healthy. Diluting it in water helps protect your teeth, and when drinking it daily, it boosts your immune system, encourages healthy digestion, detoxifies your body, and it also helps you lose weight. When making lemon water it’s always good to let it sit 2-4 hours before you drink it.

        4. “Beet” Yourself up with good nutrients! 

          Another vegetable full of antioxidants that was first grown 4,000 years ago and it’s still popular because it’s so healthy. It is high in fibers, minerals such as iron and potassium, and vitamins such as C and B-complex vitamins. Consuming beet makes you and your brain stronger, regulates your blood pressure, helps you fight cancer and fights inflammation in your body. You can find plenty of beet recipes – you can put it in salad, roast it, make a soup or even a cake with beet.

          5. Ginger

            Ginger, which is grown as a root, has long been known for helping with several health conditions [1] . You can consume it in a form of a drink or include it in your cooking, and ginger water can be your everyday choice [2] if you are experiencing certain health problems. Ginger is great for your digestive tracks as it helps fight almost everything from stomach discomfort to colon cancer. It also fights respiratory problems, flu and cold, helps maintain normal blood circulation and boosts your immunity.

            6. Eat Spinach Just Like Popeye the Sailor man. 

              Dating back to 12th century, popularized by Popeye, spinach is rightfully called superfood. It is rich in calcium which helps make your bones stronger, it is also rich in iron thus it’s good for people suffering from anemia. It has anti-cancer properties, plus it’s good for your eyes and helps you with weight loss. There are many ways you can incorporate it into your diet, and we recommend trying these smoothie recipes.

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              7. Chia seed has 6 Times More Calcium Than Milk! 

                Chia is another superfood that can be traced back to ancient times. These white or black seeds are full of omega-3 fats, fibers, proteins, calcium and phosphorous. Chia seeds prevent various health conditions – cardiovascular diseases and cancer. They help control blood sugar levels and make your bones stronger. Chia seed puddings are rather easy to make and really delicious, so you will gladly make them a part of your diet.

                8. Quinoa is Probably the Healthiest Grain in The World! 

                  This is a gluten-free grain that has twice as much proteins as rice and 9 amino acids. It is also rich in fiber, magnesium and it’s a great source of riboflavin. It reduced your cholesterol and helps you lose weight as well. Quinoa also makes your memory more sharp, and regulates your blood sugar levels. There are many creative ways in which you can prepare quinoa.

                  9. The Golden Powder for Better Power: Turmeric

                    Turmeric, or “Indian saffron”, is a root that is usually dried and turned into powder that is beneficial for your brain and cardiovascular health. It has no sugar and it’s very low in calories, but rich in iron and proteins. It has a positive effect on your digestion and it regulates lipid levels. Moreover, it is successful in treating and preventing Alzheimer’s disease and depression.

                    10. If You don’t like Quinoa, You can Always Go For Freekeh.

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                      Freekeh is another grain that has been popular in Mediterranean and Middle East for a long time. One of its main health benefits is that it helps prevent and manage type 2 diabetes because of its low glycemic index. It is full of protein, fiber, zinc, iron and calcium. It is good for your muscles, digestive tract and your eyes.

                      11. Avocado is Everyone’s Favourite! 

                        Native to South Central Mexico, this pear resembling fruit is full of vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin K, vitamin C and potassium. If you consume it on a daily basis, you are less likely under risk of heart disease or cancer. It will also protect your skin and eyes during the aging process and help you maintain weight.

                        12. Eat Flax seed Together With Quinoa To Boost The Protein and Crunchiness! 

                          Flax seeds help you maintain healthy skin and hair and they are the riches plant-based source of omega-3 fatty acids. They are also rich in fiber, protein, manganese, magnesium, phosphorous and selenium. These seeds are high in antioxidants and gluten-free as well. Flax seeds are beneficial for digestive health, for fighting cancer and for lowering cholesterol.

                          13. Salmon is The Healthy Fat You Want To Go For! 

                            Besides being delicious, salmon has numerous health benefits, such as improving your memory and brain power, promoting healthier bones, skin, hair and nails. It also helps in preventing glaucoma, maintains a healthy digestive system and is good for your heart. If you are super busy, we recommend these quick salmon recipes for healthy lunch.

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                            14. Sardines, Smaller than Salmon but Still Powerful! 

                              Sardines are rich in protein and essential vitamin and minerals [3] . They reduce inflammation, protect bone health, fight anxiety and depression, prevent blood clots and regulate blood sugar. They also have anti-cancer and anti-oxidant properties.

                              15. Cinnamon Makes Desserts Taste Better and Healthier! 

                                Cinnamon has been used in cooking, medicine and as an ingredient in fragrances for a long time, and only recently have we become aware of its numerous benefits . It is a great source of fiber, iron and calcium, and it has anti-inflammatory effects. Cinnamon also improves heart health, protects against diabetes and fights bacteria.

                                Featured photo credit: https://pixabay.com/ via pixabay.com

                                Reference

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                                Ana Erkic

                                Social Media Consultant, Online Marketing Strategist, Copywriter, CEO and Co-Founder of Growato

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                                Last Updated on February 21, 2019

                                Top 9 Foods for Incredible Brian Health And Brain Power

                                Top 9 Foods for Incredible Brian Health And Brain Power

                                Your brain is the most intricate and powerful organ in your entire body. It’s essentially a super-computer with brain power like a Ferrari.

                                If you have a Ferrari, would you put cheap gasoline in it? Of course not. You want to put in high-octane performance fuel to get the most out of your investment.

                                When it comes to the brain, many people are looking for the top foods that will supercharge the brainpower to help focus better, think more clearly and have better brain health.

                                In this article, we’ll look at the top 9 brain foods that will help create supercharge your brain with energy and health:

                                1. Salmon

                                Salmon has long been held as a healthy brain food, but what makes this fish so valuable for your brain health?

                                It’s important to understand that your brain is primarily made up of fat. Roughly 60% of your brain is fat. One of the most important fats that the brain uses as a building block for healthy brain cells is omega-3’s.

                                Omega-3’s are essential for building a healthy brain but one of the most important omega-3’s for your brain is DHA. DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) forms nearly two-thirds of the omega-3’s found in your brain.[1]

                                Omega-3’s and DHA in particular help form the protective coating around our neurons. The better quality this coating is, the more efficient and effective our brain cells can work, allowing our brain power to work at full capacity.

                                Studies have shown that being deficient in DHA can affect normal brain development in children, which is why so many infant formulas and children’s supplements are beginning to include DHA.

                                Being deficient in DHA as an adult can cause focus and attention problems, mood swings, irritability, fatigue and poor sleep.

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                                2. Blueberries

                                Blueberries top the list as one of the most beneficial fruits to maximize your brain health and performance.

                                Blueberries have some of the highest content of antioxidants, particularly anthocyanins, than any other fruit, which helps protect the brain from stress and promote healthy brain aging.

                                Blueberries antioxidant content also help reduce inflammation, which allows the brain to maintain healthy energy levels.

                                Blueberries have begun to receive attention for their connection to brain performance.[2] Studies have demonstrated that eating blueberries on a regular basis can not only improve brain health but also brain performance as well including working memory.[3]

                                Blueberries not only taste great but are low in calories, high in Vitamin C, Vitamin K and Manganese.

                                3. Turmeric

                                Turmeric is a very impressive spice that has well-researched and proven to have tremendous benefits for your brain. Turmeric’s main compound that benefits the brain is called curcumin, which is responsible for turmerics bright yellow appearance.

                                Curcumin has been shown to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-cancer properties.[4]

                                Curcumin increases the production and availability of two important neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine, two important neurotransmitters involved with happiness, motivation, pleasure, and reward.

                                Curcumin has been well documented to have powerful anti-depressive effects. In one study, it was found to be as effective for depression as popular medications such as SSRI’s like Prozac.[5]

                                Curcumin has also been shown to:

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                                • Increase blood flow to the brain.[6]
                                • Increase BDNF production, a powerful stimulator of neuroplasticity.[7]
                                • Increase DHA availability and synthesis in the brain.[8]
                                • Increase antioxidant levels in the brain to prevent brain aging and inflammation.[9]

                                4. Coffee

                                Coffee is the wonderful elixir of energy that many people cherish every single morning. The biggest reason people drink coffee is to get a dose of caffeine.

                                Caffeine is a natural neurological stimulant that not only gives you energy but also prevents adenosine, a neurotransmitter involved with feeling tired, from binding in the brain.

                                Many people are surprised to find that coffee actually contains a large quantity of antioxidants called polyphenols, which are important for reducing inflammation in the brain and keep your brain energized. The antioxidants in coffee also provide a neuroprotective effect, protecting the brain from stress and damage. [R]

                                Coffee can also:

                                • Improve alertness and concentration.[10]
                                • Help with neurodegenerative disorders like Parkinson’s disease.[11]
                                • Reduce your risk of depression.[12]
                                • Improve your memory.
                                • Provide short-term boost in athletic performance.[13]

                                5. Broccoli

                                What was your least favorite food as a kid growing up?

                                Most likely, broccoli was your answer.

                                Broccoli may not have been your top choice, but it might be the top choice for your brain.

                                Broccoli contains a compound called sulforaphane. Sulforaphane has been shown to promote the proliferation and survival of brain cells by reducing inflammation and boosting production of BDNF. It has also been shown to boost neurogenesis, the production of new brain cells.[14]

                                Broccoli is also loaded with important nutrients Vitamin K and Folate. Vitamin K plays a vital role in protecting brain cells.[15] Folate plays a crucial role in detoxification and reducing inflammation in the brain.

                                6. Bone broth

                                Bone broth wasn’t just created to combine with soups, you can actually drink bone broth by itself.

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                                Drinking bone broth has become one of the biggest trends in the health and wellness industry and for good reason. Bone broth isn’t actually a new thing. Bone broth has been used for centuries as a healing tonic to promote health and longevity.

                                Much of the nutritional benefits and value of bone broth comes from its substantial vitamin and mineral content. Primarily calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and potassium.

                                Your gut is called your second brain for a reason. Research continually shows that there is a direct and indirect connection between your gut and your brain. Your gut also houses and stores many important brain compounds involved with optimal brain performance. Therefore the health of your gut is vitally important for your brain health and performance.

                                Bone broth has become a go-to tool for helping heal the gut and provide the gut with the vital nutrient and resources it needs to heal and perform optimally.

                                With the vast amounts of nutrients that bone broth contains, it makes the list as a go-to food for your brain health.

                                Look for high quality, organic bone broth for the best results.

                                7. Walnuts

                                Walnuts are one of the top choices of nuts for brain health. Walnuts also look similar to a brain.

                                Amongst the wide variety of nuts available, walnuts contain the highest amounts of the important omega-3 DHA. DHA, as seen above, is a critical building block for a healthy brain.

                                Walnuts also contain high amounts of antioxidants, folate, magnesium, potassium, and phosphorus, which help to lower inflammation.

                                Melatonin in walnuts is an important nutrient for regulating your sleep. Having low amounts of melatonin can make it challenging to get good quality sleep and getting poor quality sleep can dramatically impair brain health and performance.

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                                8. Eggs

                                For years, eggs were put on the nutritional naughty list; but now, eggs are finally getting the credit they deserve. Eggs can provide a tremendous boost to your brain health and longevity.

                                Eggs, particularly the yolks, contain a compound called choline. Choline is essential for building the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Acetylcholine plays an important role in mood, memory, and intelligence.

                                Egg yolks contain some of the highest quantities of choline. This is very important because low levels of choline can lead to low levels of acetylcholine, which in turn can cause increased inflammation, brain fog, difficulty concentrating and fatigue.

                                9. Dark chocolate

                                You’re about to love chocolate even more because chocolate, particularly dark chocolate, is great for your brain.

                                Chocolate boosts levels of endorphins, your brains “feel good” chemicals. This is why you feel so good eating chocolate.[16]

                                Chocolate also increases blood flow to the brain which can help improve memory, attention, focus, and reaction time.[17]

                                Dark chocolate contains high levels of magnesium, which has been coined “natures valium” for its ability to calm and relax the brain.

                                Lastly, dark chocolate has one of the highest antioxidant profiles out of any other food, including popular superfoods like acai berries, blueberries, or pomegranates.[18]

                                Conclusion

                                Your brain is a high performing organ and it uses quite a lot of energy, roughly 20% of the bodies energy demands.

                                In order to maintain a healthy brain, you need the right fuel to ensure that your brain has all the nutrients it needs to perform as well as adapt to the stress of life.

                                If you want to keep your brain performing well for a lifetime, then you want to make sure you are including as many of these brain health foods as possible.

                                More Resources About Boosting Brain Power

                                Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

                                Reference

                                [1] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: DHA Effects in Brain Development and Function
                                [2] Canadian Science Publishing: Enhanced task-related brain activation and resting perfusion in healthy older adults after chronic blueberry supplementation
                                [3] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Cognitive effects following acute wild blueberry supplementation in 7- to 10-year-old children.
                                [4] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Curcumin: the Indian solid gold.
                                [5] Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects. 2nd edition.: Turmeric, the Golden Spice
                                [6] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Effect of combined treatment with curcumin and candesartan on ischemic brain damage in mice.
                                [7] Science Direct: Curcumin reverses the effects of chronic stress on behavior, the HPA axis, BDNF expression and phosphorylation of CREB
                                [8] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Curcumin boosts DHA in the brain: Implications for the prevention of anxiety disorders.
                                [9] PLOS: A Chemical Analog of Curcumin as an Improved Inhibitor of Amyloid Abeta Oligomerization
                                [10] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Effects of Caffeine on Cognitive Performance, Mood, and Alertness in Sleep-Deprived Humans
                                [11] American Academy of Neurology: A Cup of Joe May Help Some Parkinson’s Disease Symptoms
                                [12] American Academy of Neurology: AAN 65th Annual Meeting Abstract
                                [13] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Effects of caffeine on the metabolic and catecholamine responses to exercise in 5 and 28 degrees C.
                                [14] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Hyperammonemia induces glial activation, neuroinflammation and alters neurotransmitter receptors in hippocampus, impairing spatial learning: reversal by sulforaphane
                                [15] Oxford Academic: Vitamin K and the Nervous System: An Overview of its Actions
                                [16] Diana L. Walcutt, Ph.D: Chocolate and Mood Disorders
                                [17] Health Magazine: Chocolate can do good things for your heart, skin and brain
                                [18] Chemistry Central Journal: Cacao seeds are a “Super Fruit”: A comparative analysis of various fruit powders and products

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