What Are Superfoods? Top 10 Facts (and Myths)

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It seems as though every week someone comes out with a new superfood that is the be all and end all of a healthy lifestyle. Superfoods are foods said to be able to improve your health and are sometimes touted as having abilities that so called “normal foods” do not. How can you know which foods really are essential to optimal health? Here are the top ten facts and myths about superfoods.

1. You Cannot Be Healthy Without Certain Superfoods

This is not true. Different foods have different amounts of vitamins and nutrients. You have to get enough, but you don’t have to get them from certain foods.

2. Superfoods Can Dramatically Improve Your Health

This is true. Some foods have high concentrations of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that you need and increased consumption of these healthy foods can improve your health. It is just another way of eating a healthier diet. A healthier diet means a healthier you.

3. Superfoods Have To Be Exotic To Be Worthwhile

This is certainly false. You probably already eat superfoods. While the list of superfoods can change from one source to another, many versions of this list contain foods as common as oranges, tomatoes, broccoli, and beans. You do not have to find rare fruits, nuts and berries to eat superfoods.

4. Superfoods Can Fight The Aging Process

Actually, this has some truth to it. Foods that are high in antioxidants fight free radicals which damage your cells. This damage impairs their ability to repair, replicate, and maintain their proper functioning or, in other words, their youth.

5. Superfoods Are Nutritionally Better Than Other Foods

Some foods do have increased amounts of certain vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, but the amount varies from food to food. Sometimes the line between a regular food and a super one is arbitrary.

6. Superfoods Can Make Up For An Otherwise Unhealthy Diet

This is not true. You can be healthy without supposed superfoods, but you cannot be healthy without a proper diet. No amount of superfoods will make up for an otherwise poor diet.

7. The More Superfoods You Eat, The Better They Are For You

Your body can only use so much of the substances that it needs for health. Extra amounts just go to waste so more does not necessarily mean better.

8. Too Many Superfoods Can Be A Bad Thing

This could be true. Just as extraneous nutrients could go to waste, some substances that are present in your body in massive quantities could actually do damage if the body cannot excrete them.

9. Superfoods Can Be Bad For The Environment

In a manner of speaking this may be true. If superfoods must be transported from one part of the world to another to be consumed then they may have a rather sizeable carbon footprint. It may be unnecessary to transport them if the same substances found in that superfood can be found in locally grown foods, which is usually the case.

10. A Healthy Diet, With Or Without Superfoods, Is Best

This is the truth and the final word on the matter.

Thomas Rheinecker is a freelance writer and covers topics such as nurses assistant and medical careers, healthcare topics, and more.

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