Trending Now | Superfoods for 2016
Trending Now | Superfoods for 2016
New year, new superfoods. This year brings about a whole new set of nutrient rich and vitamin packed foods to keep in our kitchens. Here at Nimble HQ we have put together a list of the top superfoods for 2016.
Image Source: Vega Superfoods
Move over quinoa! The smallest known grain in the world is having the biggest impact in 2016. Originally grown in Ethiopia, teff is eaten across East Africa in their staple flatbread – injera.
Teff is packed with nutrition - It is high in iron, protein and calcium, vitamin B (great for energy)and vitamin K (helping in bone health). As a gluten free, high fibre and predominantly carbohydrate based grain it gives you a great amount of energy and leaves you fuller for longer.
High in resistant starch*, teff contains a dietary fibre that can help blood sugar management, weight control, and colon health.
Teff can be found in white, red and dark brown colours and has a mild nutty flavour. As a very versatile grain it can be used in various ways for cooking:
- In flour form for baking cakes and muffins
- Cooked in sauces, used as a porridge or polenta substitute and added to smoothies
- As seeds added raw or toasted into salads
- Eaten whole, steamed, boiled and baked
Image Source: Getty Images
Seaweed is giving us an excuse to eat more sushi. Member of the algae family, seaweed comes in 3 varieties – brown, red and green – these varieties are most commonly known in the forms of nori (known for being used for sushi), kelp (mostly found as dried ‘kombu’ and used to make broth like miso soup) and wake (commonly used for seaweed salads).
Filled with antioxidants, fibre, calcium and vitamins A and C (seaweed has more vitamin C than oranges!), seaweed is high in nutrients and low in calories. Raw or sun-dried seaweed contains high protein content and high mineral content including iodine, calcium, iron, and magnesium. Seaweed is great for digestive health, regulation of hormones, and contains anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
Try it wrapped around sushi, in a salad or soup, or on crackers!
Image Source: Hion Superfoods
What looks like a cross between a nashi pear and a mango is the superfruit from southern South America – the lucuma. Lucuma is predominantly known in English speaking countries as the ‘eggfruit’, because of its texture – dry like a hardboiled egg yolk. Don’t let this turn you off, because this superfruit has a creamy citrus flavour that makes it stunningly sweet.
Lucuma is a multipurpose fruit used for cooking and as a natural healing medicine. Benefiting health in multiple ways, lucuma is a source of calcium, iron, zinc, vitamin B3, protein, and full of healthy carbohydrates, providing energy to fuel and help brain function. Lucuma is rich in antioxidants vitamins and minerals and is known to actively help fight and prevent disease, slow the aging process and stabilise blood sugar levels.
Lucuma can be eaten as a whole fruit, used in powder form for smoothies and bircher muesli and used as a sweetener because of its low glycaemic index. However, the tastiest and most popular use for lucuma is in ice cream – definitely worth a try.
Image Source: Vibrant Wellness Journal
White rice, brown rice and now black rice! Black rice has a nutty flavour and unique texture and is commonly used throughout Asia for food decoration, noodles, sushi and dessert.
black rice is high in potassium, iron and has more fibre than white rice. Crammed with antioxidants and vitamin B, it has multiple health benefits, including:
- aids in the increase of metabolism
- maintains healthy skin and muscle tone
- Enhances the functioning of the immune and nervous system
- Promotes cell growth and division
According to associate Professor ZhiminZu from Louisiana State University a spoonful of black rice contains more anthocyanin antioxidants than found in a spoonful of blueberries, but with less sugar and more fibre and vitamin E antioxidants. Anthocyanin antioxidants are known to help to fight cancer and heart disease.
Image Source: Alamy
The new multipurpose flour! Banana flour is traditionally made from green bananas and has an earthy mild banana flavour that makes it highly practical in everyday cooking.
Banana flour is another superfood with resistant starch*, helping to reduce the risk of diabetes, obesity and colon cancer. By keeping you fuller for longer, banana flour satisfies the body and helps to curb cravings while also keeping blood sugar levels controlled.
As a gluten free replacement to wheat flours, Banana four can be used in baking, as thickener for sauces, and when breading meats and vegetables. Banana flour can also be used in raw form by being added to tea, soups, sprinkled in cereal, and mixed in water and smoothies.
Image Source: Getty Image
The new and improved coconut water. Cactus water is made from round and red fruits that grow in the green leaves of the cacti which are juiced, turned into a puree, and then combined with filtered water and organic lemon juice to round out the flavour. Not only does cactus water contain countless health benefits, but it’s surprising earthy berry flavour – like watermelon mixed with kiwi – gives an advantage over its competitors.
Cactus water is made up of vitamins, minerals and 24 rare antioxidants known as betalains which are antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxifying agents. There are multiple health benefits to drinking cactus water as it has a lower sugar and calorie content than nearly all aloe juice and coconut water products. With zero fat and preservatives, cactus water helps to cleanse and detox the body while naturally revitalising the skin.
Containing 5 naturally occurring electrolytes to support hydration, cactus water actively improves athletic performance by increasing the body’s ability to transport and utilize oxygen, and the length of time before exhaustion sets in.
Sweet tip for before you head out drinking – Cactus water contains flavonoids which help to curb the nasty symptoms of a hangover (only if consumed before drinking alcohol).
*Resistant starch is a food source that resists digestion in the small intestine therefore providing some very unique health benefits