Adding superfoods to your daily dietary intake is very important in maintaining a healthy and balanced diet.
Whether you’re feeling run down or just want to fill your body with extra nutrients, adding superfoods to your meals can make the world of difference.
Organic whole food café and online store, Shokuiku have put together a list of their top 10 superfoods you can’t pass up in 2017:
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1. Ashwagandha (Ayurvedic herb) - Ashwagandha is an ancient ingredient that is used to elevate mood, sexual vitality, brain function and to combat the effects of amnesia. Ashwagandha contains a chemical substance called Withaferin-A, which stimulates the neurotransmitter pathways in the brain. It can be one of the best herbs against anxiety, mood swings, panic attacks, and depression, insomnia and can have a calming effect on the body. It is also believed that the compound called glycowithanolides in Ashwagandha work together to alleviate anxiety, mild mood swings, lack of mental clarity/focus and mental/physical fatigue. This superfood is generally consumed as a supplement but also can be consumed as a tea.
2. Astragalus root powder organic - Another adaptogen from Chinese medicine has been used for thousands of years because of its powerful immunity boosting abilities. It has antioxidant effects that naturally inhibit free radical production. It may be beneficial for reducing the occurrence of colds and upper respiratory infection, and help to lower both blood sugar and blood pressure. Astragalus has antibacterial, antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties. Researches have shown that Astragalus may offer a possible help for people whose immune system have been compromised by chemotherapy or radiation and with heart disease, relieving symptoms and improving heart function. This superfood like Ashwagandha root power is best consumed as a supplement.
3. Bamboo salt grain nine times roasted - Bamboo Salt was originally developed by Korean doctors and monks almost 1,000 years ago as a folk medicinal remedy for various illnesses. The Bamboo Salt is made by putting sea salt into cases made from bamboo trunks sealed with natural yellow clay that is rich in minerals. The trunks are then roasted in a furnace with pinewood being used as fuel. The numerous high-heat roasting processes effectively rids the impurities in the sea salt. In addition, due to the leaching of minerals from the bamboo tree trunks, the pine tree resin, and the yellow clay, bamboo salt contains more than 70 kinds of minerals including calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, manganese, copper, and potassium and zinc. It is also high in sulphur making it a high alkaline food. This superfood is best consumed by adding it to vegan egg recipes due to its unique taste and smell which is similar to egg.
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4. Blue majik - Is an organic, natural phycocyanin-rich extract of the blue-green algae Arthrospira platensis. Blue majik is full of vitamins such as B12 and minerals. This powerful blue pigmented antioxidant can also help with joint health, general body pain, premature ageing and can boost your immune system. This superfood comes in powder and capsules and best used in smoothies.
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5. Reishi - This superfood is also known by the Chinese as Ling Zhi, and is a fungus grown in rotten wood. This immune boosting mushroom is used as a natural medicine to help fight off viral infections. Reishi also helps reduce stress, liver disease, fatigue, and stomach ulcers, and even certain cancer. This superfood generally is used as a tea, in smoothies and soups.
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6. Tiger nuts - This superfood typically comes from a grass like plant called the yellow nutsedge. A tiger nut is not an actual nut though gets its name as they are small and have a similar shape. Tiger nuts are a great source of nutrition, extremely high in protein and have a high energy content. They are full of magnesium, Vitamin E and C, protein and phosphorus. Tiger nuts are also extremely beneficial for vegetarians as a great source of iron. Tiger nuts make a wonderful source of milk, using the same method as making your own almond milk. This superfood is great because like any typical nut, you can add it to various recipes, or as a snack.
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7. Moringa - A Moringa tree is a native to India, and is known as one of the most natural healing plants used to make medicine. The leaf has the highest known nutritional value than any other leaf. The Moringa tree is extremely cheap to grow and maintain, and for this reason it has been used around the world for many years for malnutrition in third world countries. Moringa promise more energy, stabilises blood sugar levels, controls acne, assists with sleep, digestion and even weight loss. Moringa contains proteins, minerals and vitamins and can be used in either a powder, tablet form or an oil. This superfood is great when used in smoothies and in dinner recipes, although it cannot be cooked as this diminishes the nutritional value.
8. Ho Shou Wu - This medical miracle herb is native to China and grows in the form of a vine.. Made into a powder, this anti-aging miracle herb has an endless list of benefits. This herb needs to be properly prepared in an ancient way to be used as a tonic herb. Ho Shou Wu is known for preventing grey hairs and hair loss. While it is used to help strength and stability of knees and lower back, it is also used to protect your liver and is a great source of iron. It enhances immunity, improves red blood cell membranes, and supports circulation, cholesterol and blood pressure. This superfood is great when used in soups.
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9. Mucuna - Mucuna also known as a velvet bean, because the seeds are taken out of the bean and usually used in a powdered form. Mucuna is great to increase fertility in men, supports the bodies ability to handle stress, increasing libido in both men and women, building muscle, treats depression and is a great natural supplement for those with Parkinson’s disease. This super food is especially suited to balance the reproductive and digestive system. It is also great for calming the nervous system and nourishes fluids and tissues in the body. This superfood is best used as a supplement.
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10. Gynostemma - The Gynostemma herb is a adaptogenic herb which basically means it brings your body back into balance. This herb increases stamina and strength and relieves the mind of stress and when used on a regular basis. It helps to also improve anxiety, trauma and fatigue, and is very popular with controlling your weight. This powerful herb is also great for your immune system with its strong content of antioxidants. Gynostemma is great when used as a herbal tea and often used as a replacement for coffee or other caffeinated teas.
ABOUT THE EXPERT
Specialising in organic nourishing raw food and living food cuisine, Shokuiku is a place to learn and experience a new dynamic way of eating. From smoothies with super foods and super herbs, tonic teas, elixirs, freshly made salad and raw desserts, our meals are always nurturing and loving to your body, soul, and of course your taste-buds!