Are you interested in harnessing in the power of ancient superfoods to help to boost your health in the busy 21st century? Superfoods are nutrient rich foods that are especially beneficial to health and well-being. For both men and women, dark leafy greens, antioxidant rich berries, whole grains and minimally processed healthy fats are the first step toward enhancing health. If you want to go a bit deeper into the superfood world, consider adding these foods:
Guava: This tropical fruit has even more vitamin C than an orange. In addition to the many well-known benefits of Vitamin C, researchers from the University of California found that women with lower levels of vitamin C were more likely to have gallbladder illnesses.1
Kale and Bok Choy: Healthy bones are essential for longevity. Kale and bok choy are the highest sources of calcium in the plant kingdom. One cup (cooked) gives you 180mg — making them a good source of calcium in your diet.
Maca: Traditionally used by ancient native Peruvians to boost fertility and promote vitality, maca is a superfood that has been prized for thousands of years. It is also a good source of iron (14% DV per 2500mg dose) which can help the body to form red blood cells and support their proper function. For women undergoing menopause it may also help to support healthy mood balance2.
Mulberries: Mulberries contain a polyphenol called resveratrol. Resveratrol is a powerful antioxidant which can fight free-radical damage in the body that causes inflammation and skin damage3. These deliciously tart dried fruits are great on cereal or in salads.
Tomatoes: Yes, the sauce you put on pizza and pasta could actually be healthy for you. Several studies have supported the fact that eating tomatoes 3 to 4 times a week can help in maintaining prostate health4,5 . Lycopene, an antioxidant that tomatoes are rich in, appears to be responsible. Make sure to drizzle some healthy oil on your tomatoes so the lycopene can be better absorbed.
Pumpkin Seeds: Zinc is a mineral critical for normal functioning of the male reproductive system. 11 mg per day is recommended for men — 3.5 oz. of roasted pumpkin seeds provide 10mg of zinc.
Maca: Ancient, native Peruvians used maca for thousands of years as both a food and a tonic. They believed maca increased energy and stamina, improved fertility, and enhanced libido for both men and women. Some studies suggest that maca delivers a revitalizing effect, likely derived from its abundant protein, unsaturated fatty acids, and mineral content6.
Watermelon Research suggests that foods rich in potassium can reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke. Watermelon, a rich source of this mineral, has more potassium — 664 mg — in one large slice than the amount found in a banana.
- Hudes E, Simon J. (2000) Serum ascorbic acid and gallbladder disease prevalence among US adults: the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III). Archives of Internal Medicine Apr 10;160(7):931-6.
- Brooks NA, Wilcox G, Walker KZ, Ashton JF, Cox MB, Stojanovska L.(2008) Beneficial effects of Lepidium meyenii (Maca) on physiological symptoms and measures of sexual dysfunction in postmenopausal women are not related to estrogen or androgen content. Menopause 15(6):1157-1162.
- Halicka HD et al.(2012) Potential anti-aging agents suppress the level of constitutive mTOR- and DNA damage- signaling. Aging. Dec 30.
- Stacewicz-Sapuntzakis M, Bowen PE (2005). Role of lycopene and tomato products in prostate health. Biochica et Biophysica Acta. May 30;1740(2):202-5
- Giovannuci E, Liu Y, Platz E, Stampfer M, Willett W (2007) Risk factors for prostate cancer incidence and progression in the health professionals follow-up study. International Journal of Cancer. October 1; 121(7): 1571–1578.