Last week I was speaking with parents at a community event for an early childhood development center. After the talk I had a chance to sit and have dinner with the parents. This is always a pleasure for me. It gives me a chance to understand what the practical questions are that people have about how to create healthy families. The most interesting question I had was what are super foods? One mom told me that she wanted to make and eat super foods for her family, but she was confused about what was a super food. Every list she saw had different foods listed so she didn't know which list was the right list for super foods. I thought she had valid question about what makes something a super food.
Let me try to simply explain the concept of super foods for you. Super foods are packed with nutrients. They are nutrient dense foods. They are foods that are served very close to their natural state, minimally processed. Nutrient-dense super foods are the colors of the rainbow. Super foods are always, always, always whole foods! Whole foods are fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, beans, meats, poultry, fish or dairy products. They are foods that come from nature. If you are eating these foods at every meal, you are eating more super foods than most Americans.
If you have whole foods incorporated into your diet then you have met what I called super foods level one. Then you are ready to become a super foods superstar. This is when you can start reading all the articles about super foods and you can try to incorporate those into your daily or weekly routine. Foods get placed into the category of super foods if they have high levels of nutrients and contain one or several of the following qualities: anti-inflammatory, cancer preventative, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, contain good fats or flavonoids.
So the next time you see an article about super foods know they are talking about whole foods, and they have picked a couple of foods that contain many medicinal qualities too!
[box]For ideas on how to cook and eat whole foods you can download my book Daelicious! Recipes for Vibrant Living.[/box]
Dr. Daemon Jones