5 Superfoods Every Woman Should Include In Her Diet
India has always been a superpower when it comes to superfoods. Superfoods are a strong source of protein, healthy fats, vitamins, antioxidants among other nutrients and can cure many health ailments.Every woman should include these superfoods in her diet. These superfoods provide energy and the right nutrition to stay fit.
A healthy woman is a foundation of a healthy family. Choose nutrient-packed superfoods that can help you stay healthy and balance the multiple roles you play on a daily basis.
Here is a list of top 5 superfoods every woman should include in her diet:
- Coconut: Cold-Pressed Virgin Coconut Oil (VCNO) is recommended for its myriad health benefits today. It is obtained from fresh, matured kernel of coconut by mechanical or natural means, cold-pressed and unrefined. Col-Pressed Virgin coconut oil has good taste and smell, since it is derived from fresh coconuts and is subjected to very low, if not totally nil, heat and sunlight. The process of extraction of VCNO preserves all the natural goodness of this oil, including a high content of vitamin-E and minerals.
Many studies have shown a positive association between virgin coconut oil consumption and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease. Several studies have shown positive improvements in cognition, cognitive performance, orientation, and semantic memory in individuals after intervention with virgin coconut oil.
It is recommended to include Cold-Pressed Virgin Coconut Oil (VCNO) in prescribed amounts to your daily diet for the above-mentioned benefits.
- Quinoa: Believed to be ‘the mother of all grains’, this superfood is gluten-free and a complete protein. Quinoa contains twice as much fibre as other grains and helps cut down the risk of hypertension, heart disease, and diabetes. It is rich in copper, iron, magnesium, and phosphorus and is a good source of manganese which helps manage premenstrual syndrome. It is a very versatile grain which can be a substitute for rice. Consume Quinoa as poha, upma or even porridge, as part of your power breakfast!
- Moringa: Moringa oleifera also known as drumstick tree is now considered a superfood because of the various health benefits it has to offer. The dried powder from the leaves has the most nutritional benefits to offer. If you are looking for a food that boosts immunity, reduces inflammation, and provides antimicrobial effects, then your search ends at Moringa.
Moringa leaves contain a type of acid called chlorogenic acid which has shown to control blood glucose levels. The powder obtained from Moringa leaf extracts is also beneficial in the upkeep of your heart health, especially when it comes to controlling the levels of blood cholesterol, blood pressure, and prevention of formation of plaques in the artery. In fact, daily supplementation of Moringa leaves can reverse the formation of fatty liver and therefore helps reduce visceral fat. 100 gm of Moringa leaves has 314 mg of calcium and calcium is important to strengthen your bones.
The easiest way to get all these health benefits from Moringa is to sip on a cup of Moringa tea, which is now easily available in supermarkets and online. The other ways of using Moringa are to either make it into a soup or a vegetable.
- Green Coffee: Green Coffee beans are unroasted beans which preserve Chlorogenic acid (CGA), lost to a great extent during the roasting of coffee beans. Chlorogenic acid aids in weight loss and helps reduce body fat (adiposity) by modifying obesity-related hormones and upregulating fatty acid breakdown in the liver as well as decreasing fatty acid and cholesterol synthesis. It also reduces the absorption of carbohydrates; thus lowering blood sugar and insulin spikes - thereby lowering the risk of Type 2 Diabetes.
- Amaranth Seeds (Rajgira): Usually eaten in India during a fast, amaranth is gluten-free, which makes it a fantastic food to be included in a gluten-free diet. It is also a good source of protein, hence a boon to vegetarians/vegans who struggle to meet their protein requirements.
Packed with higher amount of calcium as compared to milk, this superfood helps stock on the much needed calcium stores in women and prevent osteoporosis later in life.
It is a rich source of lysine - an essential amino acid which helps strengthen hair follicles, prevents premature greying, and hair loss. You can have it as porridge or a chapati or just consume it with milk as part of your regular diet.
Sheryl Salis is a Registered Dietician and Certified Diabetes Educator.