Five fitness superfoods: are they really worth it?

fitness superfoods: mango

Fitness superfoods have been all the rage and they aren’t showing any sign of slowing down. With so many foods claiming to be fitness superfoods do we really know what foods we should be eating? Recent years has seen the emergence of the likes of sweet potato, kale, and quinoa. However, sometimes healthy eating can be costly and is it actually worth the extra money you spend? And what exactly is a superfood? Well, to be a superfood a product must give a high quantity of nutritional value and antioxidants.  Read more about these next superfoods why they are quite the rage!

Avocado

Some people don’t know that avocado is actually a fruit! This fruit is particularly popular due to its taste and texture. It’s becoming more of a major player in restaurant menus due to its easily adaptable approach to recipes. It offers a host of vitamins, including A, C, D, E and K, as well as folic acid, magnesium, potassium, Omega 3, lutein, and fibre.

Although people may argue that this is a greasy fruit, most of this grease is omega 3 type and can help lower your cholesterol to prevent heart disease. The grease can be used instead of butter or oil when cooking and the actual flesh can also be used to create hair and face masks. The versatility is incredible!

Avocado can also be used for soups, juice, toast, salads, and smoothies. An affordable way to incorporate avocado into your diet is by creating a budget brunch of guacamole bread that can cost as little as 76p a head.

Sardines

Your office colleagues may not thank you for taking these little fish into work but your body will. Sardines are a little nutrient powerhouse! Their scent may be foul; but they can go a long way in helping to reduce inflammation and promoting bone, heart, and skin health.

A single tin of sardines contains more calcium than a glass of cow’s milk — 300mg! As well as this they are high in vitamin D and, like avocado, have a great omega 3 fatty acid profile. Some of its great qualities include immune-boosting properties due to its high amount of selenium. This is normally found on its skin, so don’t go skinning this fish! The skin also helps your skin, aiding conditions such as psoriasis.

This fitness superfood will keep you full and satisfied and are a money-conscious person’s dream as they are cheap. A recipe to rely on could be fresh sardines on toast with sweet pickled red onion.

Mango

The tropical fruit is known for being a quick-digesting carbohydrate which offers 25 grams per one cup serving. It’s bursting at the seams with over 20 vitamins, minerals and antioxidants and is thought by many to be one of the tastiest ways to support a healthy lifestyle. The fruit can rapidly boost your energy at a time when your body needs it.

If you don’t want to eat mango as is, why not try a chicken mango salad? A great way to get the most out of the mango in a tasty, light and cheap dinner.

Quinoa

This seed is often mistaken for a grain, but that doesn’t stop it being full to the brim with nutritional goodness. Featuring all 10 essential amino acids, quinoa is understood to be a complete protein which can help your muscles repair. Due to it being a complex carbohydrate, offering 46 grams each cup, it provides longer lasting energy and is a great fitness superfood.

As well as being gluten-free, quinoa is higher in fibre than most grains, but unfortunately, it’s not all soluble fibre. It has a low glycemic index which can help be part of lower calorie intake. With many believing quinoa is an expensive commodity, a quick and easy cheap recipe is spinach and mushroom quinoa.

Sweet potato

Another powerhouse of nutrients is the sweet potato. Jam-packed with carbohydrates, minerals and antioxidants, this orange tuber is a great source of potassium. This, according to studies, aids muscle tissue repair and can help prevent fatigue in your muscles. Their fibre content is higher than the average potato and, when combined with the likes of magnesium, the sweet potato can help improve your digestion. Elsewhere, they are an effective remedy to curing congestion of the nose, which can help relieve asthma and treat bronchitis. Other benefits are said to include a boosted immune system, helping to cure stomach ulcers, and maintaining the body’s water balance.

Sweet potatoes can be more expensive in the supermarket than the usual spud, but like their less-healthy counterpart, they are an easy option if you want to grow your own veg. All you’ll need is some soil, plant supports, and some warm weather. Besides, gardening is a hobby that can do a lot for your mental health! Not only that but you can save money and switch to a healthier potato: what’s not to love?

For a tasty recipe look no further than the old staple shepherd’s pie. Simply replace the normally mashed potato topping with sweet potato and you’re onto a winner!

While certain fads may die out, the five superfoods mentioned above are clearly here to stay. With so much goodness to offer, they don’t have to be part of an expensive recipe and by researching meals, you can incorporate into your diet without adding too much cost to your weekly shop.

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