Super Foods. A term that has fairly recently come into popular use for foods that have an extremely beneficial effect on human beings. Super foods are foods that have always been around, but research into them has shown that they have properties that amongst other things give a high level of nourishment to our bodies, help prevent disease, assist in losing weight, and give our moods a lift. Some super foods are well known, run-of-the-mill foods while others originate from exotic places and are largely unknown except to the people who live where the foods grow.

Nature Gives Us Super Foods

If you are used to eating foods high in fats, packed with refined sugars and fried in loads of oil, then you might feel that to switch to a diet made up largely of super foods, many of which are totally unfamiliar, is too much to expect. Change can be frightening. However, you will find that just the act of starting to eat super foods will benefit you enormously. The switch to foods with high levels of absorbable nutrition will enable your brain to function more effectively and your body to become more energetic. As you develop a sensible and healthy eating plan, rich in antioxidants and bioactive nutrients, your body will feel healthier and you will develop a zest for life.

Nature has designed super foods especially for the human body. The problem has been that we either did not realize that they were so good for us, or we did not even know that they existed. Eaten in their unprocessed or as close to their natural state as possible, super foods supply a nutritionally complete diet, a perfect fit for our bodies. They contain a great number of disease fighting properties and are made up of elements that boost brain activity and capacity.

The Well Known

The peach, one of the most common fruits available to us, is a powerful super food that not only offers health benefits, but also has a calming effect on the human mind. One of the elements in peaches is a very mild natural sedative, which calms anxiety and fosters sleep. Eating peaches helps to make the skin clear and glowing. Peaches contain ingredients that, amongst other things, help to fight cancer and are also a natural dewormer of the human intestinal tract.

Blueberries, a familiar ingredient in blueberry tarts, have now come into its own as a super food. These tiny berries can be eaten raw and on their own, and are also suitable for home freezing as a method of storage. Blueberries could be described as the super brain food. It has been discovered that this berry can help improve brain function and enhance mood, as well as containing properties that can help combat cancer cells. The blueberry is also being tested with regard to Alzheimer’s disease and the results are promising.

A nut that is well known is the almond. With their high content of zinc and Vitamin B12, almonds help reverse moodiness and facilitate a feeling of ease. Also containing monounsaturated fats, almonds are an excellent super food snack that will help keep the arteries pliable and the heart healthy. Almonds are rich in iron, which can combat low iron levels in the blood, which is a frequent cause of fatigue.

The Not So Familiar

The acacia or acai berry has lately jumped into the public eye. This super food has properties that help elevate the mood and spirit, as well as an element that helps to balance blood glucose levels. Hailing originally from the Amazon rain forests of Brazil, these berries grow on the Acai Palm trees. One of the reasons why they were relatively unknown is because once picked these purple berries deteriorate very quickly. Nowadays they are harvested and the pulp from the berries is quick frozen and then exported to distribution outlets throughout the world. Their main benefit for people trying to lose weight is that as the ingredients in the berries level blood glucose in the body it helps prevent excessive hunger. Unfortunately, the acai berry has been promoted as a wonder berry that will ensure weight loss on its own. The truth is that like all super foods it must be combined with a sensible eating plan and regular exercise for weight loss to occur.

Although we are all familiar with chocolate, raw cocoa from which chocolate is made is not so often found in our store cupboards. Magnesium is raw cocoa’s main claim to super food status. This essential mineral helps maintain brain function and energy. Research has shown that more than half the adult population of the United States suffers from a deficiency of magnesium in their diets. Typical symptoms of magnesium deficiency are sluggishness and irritation. Although cocoa does not have the most pleasant taste, it makes up for it by providing enough magnesium to meet the need of the human body for this important constituent.

Maca, the Peruvian root powder, was almost unheard of not long ago. Research has revealed that maca can be a key factor in alleviating anxiety and depression. It is packed with potassium, magnesium, iron, calcium and iodine, all elements that can bring about the abating of depression. Studies have shown that in some cases maca can even relieve depression that is being treated with antidepressants. To utilize its full potential, maca must be used in its natural form; it is a heart shaped root vegetable that looks like a radish but grows like a sweet potato and varies in color from creamy yellow to light pink, from dark purple to black. Often not easy to find and usually expensive, unprocessed maca is worth the effort to source it. This root powder, with its natural elements and powerful mood elevating properties, can be used either in a tea or sprinkled over other super foods. It will assist the body in deflecting anemia, tiredness and depression as well as improving mental sharpness.

As medical science investigates the attributes and nutritional worth of super foods the public have become aware of them and their use has escalated. They are not new foods, but often little was known of their nutritional value and their various benefits. Venture a little into the unknown and live life to the full!

Author's Bio: 

Ryan is 28 years old father and ex anxiety sufferer. He worked as a high-school teacher for a few years, but now helps other people overcome their anxiety. He is married, has two adorable girls, and currently lives in Washington D.C. Ryan has tried many anxiety cures, but it took 7 years of suffering and a tipping-point in his life to make a number of "huge leaps" toward anxiety elimination and a more fulfilling life. His success inspired him to create and write for his website which helps other people get rid of this annoying condition.