What exactly is a super food? A super food is a food that is high in nutrients and contains high amounts of phytochemicals. A phytochemical is a chemical compound found in plants. They naturally help protect the plant from certain diseases but also have been recently noted to protect and prevent our body from certain diseases. They are touted to have some anti-aging, anti-heart disease and anti-cancer properties. These substances help protect our cells from damage.
Journey with me as we explore some of these super foods and how to add them to your daily diet!
Let’s start with my favorite food…dark chocolate! Dark chocolate is high in antioxidants which help free your body of substances that can damage cells and increase aging. Flavonoids are also in abundance and help improve vascular health including decreasing the risk of stroke or heart attack and lowering cholesterol. In some populations dark chocolate may even help lower blood pressure. Dark chocolate also has a lower glycemic index than milk chocolate and as a result, does not cause the rapid spikes in blood sugar that milk chocolate can. All this great news about dark chocolate, unfortunately, does not mean that we can eat this as our main dish every day. We only need a little two to three times a week.
How can you enjoy your chocolate?
- Grate some over your morning oatmeal
- Try some shaved dark chocolate on your favorite fruit such as strawberries, peaches, or pears
- You could nibble straight from the bar as dark chocolate also has some caffeine and may help wake you up during that mid day slump
- Do you like mocha? Try grating some in your morning coffee
- Make your own trail mix with your favorite, dried fruits, nuts or seeds and add some dark chocolate chips
- Try melting some dark chocolate and dipping graham crackers in it then let cool on some waxed paper