Today’s busy lifestyle makes it difficult to squeeze in all the healthy foods we need to keep our bodies strong. That’s why superfoods are the perfect addition to your diet—they are easy to fit into any schedule. From blueberries and goji berries to quinoa and chia seeds, superfoods often pack major health benefits into tiny packages and can combat everything from Alzheimer’s and obesity to cancer and mental health.
To see the most health benefits from superfoods, the American Heart Association recommends adding them to an overall heart-healthy diet. Here’s how:
Ch-Ch-Ch Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are small seeds that can be added to smoothies and soups or sprinkled on salads. You can grind them into a powder for a smoother consistency or eat them whole. They are packed with protein, Omega-3, and fiber, and are loaded with calcium, magnesium, and iron. Chia is believed to help with digestion, and could help lower your risk of cardiovascular disease by lowering your blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglycerides, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. A teaspoon of chia can also provide enough energy to get you through your 9 to 5. Chia seeds absorb liquid and puff up, so don’t use more than a teaspoon at a time to start.
For a flavorful, superfood twist, add turmeric to your diet. This yellow-colored spice commonly used in Indian foods has recently come to the forefront as a major contender in the superfoods category. Turmeric has been used in India for ages because of its medicinal properties. The curcumin in turmeric is believed to be packed with antioxidants and has powerful anti-inflammatory qualities, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is beneficial for brain health, lowers your risk of heart disease, fights depression, and relieves arthritis. You can reap all the benefits of this super spice by stirring it into soups and sauces. You can even add it to your daily vitamin regimen now that it’s available in supplement form.
Go for Goji Berries
Goji berries have been used in Chinese medicine for years. They are from the nightshade family, so beware those with sensitivities. These delicious, nutritionally-rich berries are loaded with amino acids, protein, and beta-carotene. They’re great for your skin, reduce cholesterol, and boost your immune system. Get your daily dose by steeping them in tea or adding a Tablespoon or two to a smoothie before blending. You can also easily add them to your daily diet by stirring them into yogurt or tossing them in your favorite salad.
Seek Superfood Inspiration
It’s easy to get excited and buy a week’s worth of superfoods—and then forget or give up by week two. In order to make superfoods a regular part of your diet, consider following superfoodies online. For example, DailySuperFoodLove.com offers daily motivation, recipes and even podcasts to help you keep superfoods in your diet. Amway’s Instagram page features fun recipes like a protein-packed pumpkin smoothie bowl and a berry pearfect smoothie that helps you get in your blue and purple phytonutrients.
Superfoods provide a direct path to improved health without requiring major changes. By simply adding a few of these powerful ingredients to foods you’re already making, you effectively increase your body’s ability to reap the benefits of disease-fighting properties.